Architecture (Master of Science)
|Degree: Master of Science|
|Duration: 4 Semester|
|Language: German, some courses in English|
|Internship: a minimum 12-week-long internship is required for admission to the Master’s programme. This internship must be completed before registering for the Master’s thesis; further information.|
Requirements for Admission: |
|Admission Procedure: As long as the requirements for admission (Entrance Requirements Verification) are fulfilled, there is no restriction on admission.|
|Part-time Studies: possible under specific conditions|
|Programme Start: winter semester or summer semester|
|Application Deadline: International applicants find their application deadline here.|
|Application: Online application|
|Special Features: TU Darmstadt offers a Double Degree Programme at a partner university for this course.|
The Master of Science in Architecture is designed to deepen and broaden the knowledge and skills regarding the planning, design, visualisation and construction of buildings. The Master’s programme is characterised by the integration and in-depth study of the two subject areas Structural Design and Urban Planning (as per the “Darmstadt Model”). Plans and models from design projects will be presented by their designers and then discussed during the colloquium. A 12-week internship is part of the programme.
The Master of Science degree programme in Architecture is divided into five sections, as follows:
1.In the Design section, students will produce two designs, one for High Rise Planning and one for Urban Planning. In the third semester, students then concentrate on one of these two areas and produce a more comprehensive and detailed design in that area, which then serves as preparation for the Master’s thesis design requirement for one of these areas of specialisation.
2. The Specialisation Module section introduces students to the various specializsations in architecture. Modules may be chosen from the departmental course catalogue, including Historical Principles, Visual Arts, Building Planning and Construction, Urban Planning Studies, and Building Technology. The specialisation modules may in some cases be offered only once a year, whereas all other modules are offered in the summer semester as well as in the winter semester.
3. The Research Module section to have students become familiar with scientific methods as they deal with subject areas relevant to architecture. Various modules are at students’ disposal as the means to become familiar with analytical research methods. Besides working with various project groups on current research, students may also choose to work on an adjudicated project or with raw materials in a planning context. Another possibility is to work in the design research area or in the implementation of methods within a related discipline.
4. In the Optional Area, students may choose from five types of courses. Volunteering as a tutor in the department or assisting with organisational duties would serve as the equivalent of a Soft Skills course. Another option open to students are so-called Impromptu Designs, which involve the creation of short, compact concepts. Whereas optional courses from the department of Architecture serve to strengthen knowledge of the discipline, optional courses from other departments are designed to foster an interdisciplinary overview. It will also be possible to attend courses from other universities in this context.
5. The Master’s Thesis is the final section of the degree programme. The thesis is always an architectural design project and never an only theoretical subject. The thesis is carried out similar to an architectural tendering procedure, i.e. an architectural design project bound by given circumstances and conditions. Each semester three subjects can be chosen from for the thesis, and all resulting projects have to be rendered at the same time.
Depending on the subject chosen, the thesis can be carried out by students as a group work. The thesis is looked at and assessed jointly by all professors of the Department of Architecture, instead of individually by only one professor. This means, a student does not work on his/her thesis with one specific professor alone, but with the Department of Architecture of TU Darmstadt as a whole.
The additional internship at a firm will provide students with practical experience and qualifications. The internship gives students the opportunity to practice with architecture, engineering or planning firms or in specialised offices the theoretical material they have learned during classes, thereby preparing students for future careers in this field. If possible, the 12-week internship should be completed before beginning the Master’s degree programme, and at the very latest before registering for the Master’s thesis. The internship may also be divided into a maximum of two stages. Paid work in an architectural firm may also count as an internship; this work may also be done outside of Germany. Studying at a partner university of TU Darmstadt for one or two semesters is possible, but no obligatory part of the Master's programme. If desired by students, therefore, these studies abroad have to be organised individually, with help by the Department of Architecture's International Office.
Advice for Prospective M.Sc. Students
While the Bachelor of Science in Architecture focuses mainly on the fundamentals of the field, the Master of Science in Architecture builds directly on this foundation by providing students with more depth and breadth scientifically and more insight into the field. In contrast to the Bachelor degree programme, the Master of Science enables and requires students to adopt their own major focus and to work towards their own independent academic, scientific research profile. In addition, it must be noted that a Bachelor’s degree in Architecture is not sufficient (to date) as a professional architectural qualification or for employment as an independent architect. This qualification can only be achieved with a minimum of 8 semesters in a degree programme. Further information on the official requirements for an architectural career may be found at Architekten- und Stadtplanerkammer Hessen (architect and city planner associations in Hessen). For these reasons it is recommended that students complete a Master of Science degree.
If an occupation as a self-employed architect is desired, the Master degree programme in Architecture has to be accomplished, as well. A different Masters’ degree programme, which matches individual preferences even better, i.e. in artistic, creative, technical, economic or social areas, can also be attended. These degree programmes are, however, not offered by the Department of Architecture. Whether the B.Sc. Architecture is accepted as a requirement of admission depends on the University's decision in each case.
The Department of Architecture of TU Darmstadt hosts a yearly exhibition „Sichten“, curated by the students themselves, which gives a good overview of the diversity of the degree programme and the current standard of good performances. Furthermore the regular Wednesday-Night-Lecutres „Positionen“ are a good opportunity to meet internationally known architects, who are presenting their work.
Related Degree Programmes
|Civil Engineering (M.Sc.) (Bauingenieurwesen, M.Sc.)|
|Architecture (B.Sc.) (Architektur, B.Sc.)|
|International Cooperation in Urban Development (M.Sc.)|
|Business Engineering – Technical Field of Studies Civil Engineering (M. Sc.) (Wirtschaftsingenieurwesen – Technische Fachrichtung Bauingenieurwesen, M.Sc.)|
Upon successful completion of a Master of Science degree, there is the opportunity to begin working towards a Ph.D. either at the TU Darmstadt or at another national or international university. Further information on doctoral studies at TU Darmstadt:
Ingenium – Young Researchers at TU Darmstadt (umbrella organisation for promoting early career researchers)
Architects deal with the planning, visualisation, design and construction of residences, public buildings and industrial buildings. Other activities include the design of complex urban facilities both within Germany and abroad, plus building renovations. They are involved with technical design issues, as well as visual, economic, socio-cultural, ecological and legal aspects and standards. They work closely with the aspects of functionality, aesthetics, environmental suitability and target group.
Getting started as an architect is unfortunately not always easy. A large number of architects have been graduating recently and the job market has not been able to keep pace. For this reason architects are finding positions in various fields. Many architects market themselves as generalists and start their own firm. It is also possible to work with other architects in a large firm, which may specialise in one or more areas, such as submitting bids. Other options for architects include working for municipal and other agencies (e.g. building authorities), engineering and construction offices, real estate agencies, advisory and building inspection firms (either independently or for insurance companies), construction companies and property developers. Working as facility developers, architects deal with the economic effectiveness and viability of buildings. Some architects specialise in specific areas such as renovation and/or energy efficient buildings. The aesthetic, artistic side of architecture also leads graduates to career fields such as photography, design, advertising and graphic design. Finally, architects may also find themselves working for the preservation of historic sites, for museums, in journalism, the art trade or in humanities research (e.g. art history).
It is therefore important for students to start early in the degree programme to gain practical work experience in architectural offices or other relevant organisations. In this way students can promote themselves as competent professionals in practice and make important professional contacts. The likelihood of finding a good position is definitely heightened if the student is flexible when it comes to commuting or even moving abroad. Good English language skills are particularly important when it comes to the international job market.
TU Darmstadt's offer of Job Shadowing is a quick and simple method of career orientation by accompanying professionally experienced TU Darmstadt alumni for one day.
Further information about career opportunities on the German job market may be found on the following websites:
Architekten- und Stadtplanerkammer Hessen (Architectural and Urban Planning Association of Hessen)
Verband Deutscher Architekten e.V. (VDA) (Association of German Architects)
Verband Deutscher Architekten- und Ingenieurvereine e.V. (DAI) (Association of German Architects and Engineers)
Vereinigung Freischaffender Architekten Deutschlands e.V. (Association of Independent Architects of Germany)
Bund Deutscher Architekten (BDA) (Union of German Architects)
Bund Deutscher Baumeister, Architekten und Ingenieure (BDB) (Union of German Builders, Architects and Engineers)
Hauptverband der Deutschen Bauindustrie e.V. (Federation of the German Construction Industry)
Verein Deutscher Ingenieure (VDI) (Association of German Engineers)