MSA Graduation Requirements-School of Architecture - Carnegie Mellon University

What to expect from our MSA program...

The Master of Science in Architecture curriculum is structured as a 9-month (Fall-Spring) program. The open curriculum of our MSA program allows for customization to meet the interests of each individual. Selective courses can be chosen from amongst any of the Core Requirements for the MSAECM, MSBPD, MSCD or MSSD programs.

While this program is ideal for students seeking to enhance an existing skill set, it can also act as a testing ground where students are able to explore new and varied areas of academic study. This program is designed to accompany degrees related to the built environment including architecture, landscape architecture, engineering, construction, computer-aided design, planning, management and others.

Core Course Descriptions:

Building Performance Modeling

This course introduces fundamentals and computational methods in building performance modeling. Topics include: modeling and design, overview of thermal, visual and acoustical domain knowledge, integration of performance simulation in computer-aided design, introduction to the application of advanced computational building simulation tools, case studies, and design assignments on the application of simulation in the evaluation and improvement of building performance.

Paradigms of Research in Architecture

This course is an introduction to models and methods of academic research – particularly as they relate to building design issues – and a forum for intellectual curiosity. The initial 10 weeks of the semester involve an overview and cover several methods of research, including models of natural sciences, social sciences, sciences of the artificial, engineering and aesthetic in building design. During the final 5 weeks of the semester faculty from both the College of Fine Arts (CFA) and Carnegie Institute of Technology (CIT) will be invited to make presentations about their areas of research and the methods they use.

Introduction to Data Structures

This course is for students with prior programming experience, who wish to continue their education on program design and analysis. The course reinforces object-oriented programming techniques in Java and covers data aggregates, data structures, and an introduction to the analysis of algorithms that operate on those data structures.

Principles of Computing

This is a course in fundamental computing principles for students with no computing background. This course covers basics in programming constructs, use of abstraction in computing, use of computational principles in problem-solving, classification of computational problems, and social, ethical & legal issues involved with computational developments.

For a complete and up-to-date catalogue of course offerings, (including course descriptions, schedules, instructors, etc.) please visit the University's Schedule of Classes (SOC) website.

Core Courses

  • Building Performance Modeling

  • Paradigms of Research in Architecture

  • Intro to Data Structures
    Principles of Computing

Selective Options

  • Building Controls & Diagnostics

  • LEED™ Buildings & Green Design Concepts

  • Performance of Advanced Building Systems

  • Productivity, Health, & the Quality of Buildings

  • Real Estate Design & Development

  • Zero Energy House

  • and many more....