Bachelor of Science in Architecture

Program Information


The Department of Architecture at the University of Colorado Denver offers a Bachelor of Science in Architecture degree program on the downtown Denver campus. The program’s design studio-based curriculum combines critical thinking with active making in pursuit of creative solutions to contemporary design problems.  

In their first three years of study, students learn the fundamentals of design, how to apply them to the design of buildings, neighborhoods and cities, and how to graphically communicate a design solution. 

Before their final two semesters of the program, students have the option to choose to continue on the Architectural Studies Track or move to the Architectural Design Track.  Both tracks will allow students to complete a 4 studio-track professional Master of Architecture degree (MAarch) at CU Denver and pursue a professional career in architecture. In addition to offering a strong foundation in architecture, both the Architectural Design and the Architectural Studies tracks prepare students to pursue graduate studies and future careers in allied design disciplines, including Digital Design (games and animation), Industrial Design, Graphic Design, Landscape Architecture, Urban Design, and Real Estate Development, among others.  
 

The Architectural Studies Track offers students a less prescribed path, with greater freedom to shape the direction of their studies in the final two semesters. Based on individual interests and projected career paths, students who choose this track will have the opportunity to focus on one or more areas of study in architecture and/or allied disciplines. These include architectural history/theory, technology, and/or visualization, among other options. 

The Architectural Design Track is for students who desire additional Design Studios to hone their design skills.  This track also prescribes additional history and technical course work to support design thinking and application. 

Both tracks prepare students for admission to a two-year (minimum) accredited graduate architecture degree program in the United States, Canada, or compatible degree programs internationally.  Advance standing in a Master of Architecture program can be maximized in either track by selecting elective courses in technical studies and professional practice typically recognized by accredited graduate architecture degree programs.  

Architecture Contacts


Marc Swackhamer headshot

Marc Swackhamer

Professor Chair of the Architecture Department
Jo Vandenburg headshot

Jo VandenBurg

Instructor & Associate Chair of Architecture
Krista Busch

Krista Busch

Senior Undergrad Academic Advisor
Kyle Danforth

Kyle Danforth

Senior Undergrad Academic Advisor

Please contact Jeana first with any questions about the BS Architecture program or the College of Architecture and Planning

Schedule an Appointment with Jeana

Academics


Travel Study Opportunities


Admissions


If you’re interested in coming to CU as a new student or to continue your education, we are here for you. Please contact Jeana Delamarter or schedule a Zoom or Phone call with her here.

Applicants who have a cumulative 3.0 GPA and a Composite score of 24 on the ACT or 1150-1180 on the SAT Combined Math and Evidence-Based Reading and Writing Score are considered strong candidates for admission to the College of Architecture and Planning. Applicants not meeting requirements for direct admission to the College of Architecture and Planning may be considered for admission to the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences with a Pre-Architecture interest.

More information regarding undergraduate admissions >

For automatic admission to the architecture major, students must have a 2.75 cumulative GPA for all coursework attempted. Students with at least a 2.3 cumulative GPA may be considered on an individual basis if the academic record shows a consistent record of improvement and/or strong performance in science, mathematics, art or architecture-oriented courses. Students with a 2.0 to 2.29 cumulative GPA may be considered for admission as Pre-Arch majors in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. 

If not initially admitted to the architecture program, transfer students can be reconsidered through an internal CU Denver process upon meeting the criteria outlined above.

More information regarding transferring >

International students will need to submit certified English translations of their high school transcripts as well as any transcripts from university coursework. English language proficiency must be demonstrated as well, either through the successful completion of TOEFL, IELTS, or the ESL Academy at CU Denver.

International Admissions Website >

Tuition & Fees

The University of Colorado Denver has one of the most affordable tuition rates in Colorado.  Our tuition and fees are set by the Board of Regents, the governing body of the University of Colorado.  Tuition is based on student classification (undergraduate, graduate, academic program, resident or nonresident) and you can find out what rates will apply to your situation here.
Undergraduate students who are residents of WICHE states are eligible to request a reduced tuition rate of 150% of resident tuition at participating two- and four-year college programs outside of their home state through the Western Undergraduate Education (WUE) program.

CAP Concierge

Curriculum


Declaring this Major

Are you interested in declaring a major in Architecture? Login to the Academic Catalog Management platform.

General Requirements

To earn a degree, students must satisfy all requirements in each of the areas below, in addition to their individual major requirements.

Information about Academic Policies

Program Requirements

Students must earn at least a C- grade in required architecture and math courses. Architecture and math courses must be repeated if the student earns less than a C- grade.
Course #Course Title# Credits
ARCH 1711Architectural Visualization I 
ARCH 1721Architectural Visualization II 
Take all of the following required Design Studies courses in the order indicated
ARCH 2111Design Studio I (co-rec or pre-rec ARCH 1711) 
ARCH 2121Design Studio II (co-rec or pre-rec ARCH 1721 and ARCH 1711) 
ARCH 3111Design Studio III (pre-rec ARCH 2121) 
ARCH 3121Design Studio IV (pre-rec ARCH 3111) 
Take all of the following Cultural Studies courses in the order indicated
ARCH 1110Introduction to Architecture 
ARCH 2230Architectural History I 
ARCH 3230Architectural History II 
Take both of the following Technical Studies courses
ARCH 3130Construction Practices: Material and Structural Systems 
ARCH 3430Construction Practices: Building Envelope 
Take one of the following Math courses/sets:
MATH 1110 & MA1120College Algebra, College Trigonometry 
or one of the following
MATH 1130Precalculus Mathematics 
MATH 1401Calculus I 
MATH 2411Calculus II 
MATH 2421Calculus III 
Note: also applies to the CORE Math requirement
Take both of the following Physics courses
PHYS 2010College Physics I 
PHYS 2030College Physics Lab I 

Two Track

Students in the BS Architecture program have the option to choose one of two sub-plans with different course requirements.  All students are enrolled in the Architectural Studies sub-plan when declaring the BS Architecture major.  Before the final two semesters in the program, students must choose to either stay in the Architectural Studies sub-plan or opt-into the Architectural Design sub-plan.  Each sub-plan has 27 credits of specified course work to complete the degree.  The Architectural Studies sub-plan allows more flexibility in course selection, the Architectural Design sub-plan is more structured.  Students should meet with their Academic Advisors prior to selecting a sub-plan for guidance on the impact each will have on their intended career path after graduation.
BS Arch Architecture Studies Track graphic

 

27 credits specific to Architectural Studies ONLY

  • Take 15 hours of Architecture electives (prefix ARCH) 
  • Take 12 hours of CAP electives (may be any prefix used in the College of Architecture and Planning).

NOTE: Any of the specific courses listed in the Architectural Design sub-plan may be taken and will count as ARCH electives.

Take the additional required elective:

  • ARCH 36xx – any History/Cultural Architecture elective

Take both of the following additional Technical Studies courses:

  • ARCH 3330 – Building Systems I
  • ARCH 3340 – Theory of Structures I

Take 6 hours of CAP electives (any prefix used in the College of Architecture and Planning)

Additional General elective hours may be needed to reach the required 120 hours for the BS Architecture degree.

Note: Required math and physics courses may apply toward General electives if not already applied toward Core Math and Biological and Physical Sciences requirements.

BS ARCH Architecture Design Track Graphic

27 credits specific to Architectural Design ONLY

Take both of the following additional Design Studies Courses:

  • ARCH 4111 – Design Studio V (pre-rec ARCH 3121)
  • ARCH 4121 – Design Studio VI (pre-rec ARCH 4121)

Take the additional required elective:

  • ARCH 36xx – any History/Cultural Architecture elective

Take both of the following additional Technical Studies courses:

  • ARCH 3330 – Building Systems I
  • ARCH 3340 – Theory of Structures I

Take 6 hours of CAP electives (any prefix used in the College of Architecture and Planning)

Additional General elective hours may be needed to reach the required 120 hours for the BS Architecture degree.

Note: Required math and physics courses may apply toward General electives if not already applied toward Core Math and Biological and Physical Sciences requirements.

Living in Denver


Student Work Gallery


Allowing Mixing Without Forcing

Date: 1/22/2018
Student Researchers: Marianna Caicedo Faculty Advisor: Andre Baros


This student housing project brings students together by meeting their needs during a developmental stage and allowing them to mix without forcing them. Some students tend to isolate themselves, and it is difficult for them to create relationships as well as connect with others. My solution to encourage interaction is having the most significant meeting points between the buildings but also having some smaller nodes along the hallways. The mixing in this project occurs in three different layers or scales, the smallest being the unit following the interior of the building and the largest being the exterior of the building or site. In all scales, the mixing is always encouraged but never forced to allow students to choose to interact or to stay in privacy.

Allowing Mixing Without Forcing