Degree Requirements: Master of Science in Architecture


All applicants to the Master of Science in Architecture (M.S. Arch.) program must 1) hold the professional degree of Bachelor of Architecture (B.Arch.), the professional degree of Master of Architecture (M.Arch. I) or an equivalent accredited professional degree in architecture from a foreign institution; and 2) have completed a minimum of one year of work experience after obtaining their first professional architectural degree. The program is structured to be completed in two full-time consecutive semesters with a final thesis semester during the subsequent summer session. The Summer semester runs from June–early September (after Memorial Day until the date of the Master of Science in Architecture final thesis review and exhibition opening in September). Final thesis presentations will take place during the second week of September at the end of the M.S. Arch. program. Graduate students must complete all 30 credits of the Master of Science in Architecture degree requirements in full-time contiguous resident study at The Cooper Union.



Semester 1 (Fall)    
ARCH 411 Graduate Research Design Studio I 6
ARCH 401 Proseminar 2
FA100R Introduction to Techniques 0
  Seminar in concentration 2
  Seminar out of concentration 2
Total Credits First Semester   12

Semester 2 (Spring)    
ARCH 412 Graduate Research Design Studio II 6
ARCH 402 Thesis Research Tutorial 2
FA 100R Introduction to Techniques 0
  Seminar in concentration 2
  Seminar out of concentration 2
Total Credits Second Semester   12

Semester 3 (Summer)    
ARCH 413 Graduate Thesis (written or studio) 6

Total Credit Requirement for M.S. Arch. Degree 30

In April of the spring semester prior to advancing to Arch 413 Thesis, each student will be required to present their thesis topic and program for review and acceptance by the faculty. Final thesis presentations will be made during the first week of fall semester following the student’s year of study.

Seminars Out of Concentration
It is recommended that students register for courses originating in the graduate program (Arch 482, Arch 483, and Arch 485) to satisfy their out-of-concentration seminar requirements. 

Graduate courses in the Albert Nerken School of Engineering as well as select upper-level undergraduate elective courses can be made available to Master of Science in Architecture students with prior permission from the student’s academic adviser and the individual course instructor. Undergraduate courses may be used to satisfy requirements for out-of-concentration coursework only.

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  • Founded by inventor, industrialist and philanthropist Peter Cooper in 1859, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art offers education in art, architecture and engineering, as well as courses in the humanities and social sciences.

  • “My feelings, my desires, my hopes, embrace humanity throughout the world,” Peter Cooper proclaimed in a speech in 1853. He looked forward to a time when, “knowledge shall cover the earth as waters cover the great deep.”

  • From its beginnings, Cooper Union was a unique institution, dedicated to founder Peter Cooper's proposition that education is the key not only to personal prosperity but to civic virtue and harmony.

  • Peter Cooper wanted his graduates to acquire the technical mastery and entrepreneurial skills, enrich their intellects and spark their creativity, and develop a sense of social justice that would translate into action.