Director of undergraduate studies: Bimal Mendis, 328 RDH, 432-8325,;

Architecture is a humanistic endeavor. The purpose of the undergraduate major is to include the study of architecture within a comprehensive liberal arts education, drawing from the broader academic and professional environment of the Yale School of Architecture. The curriculum includes work in design; in history, theory, and criticism of architecture; and in urban studies, and leads to a bachelor of arts degree with a major in Architecture. As a liberal arts major in Yale College, it is not an accredited professional degree program. For accredited professional degree programs, refer to the requirements of the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB).

Introductory Courses for Nonmajors and Majors

Introductory courses are ARCH 150, 200, and 280. They are open to all Yale College students and are required for those interested in the Architecture major prior to application. Interested students may also consider courses such as ARCH 260, 261262, or STCY 176.


Three courses are prerequisite for all concentrations: ARCH 150, 200, and 280.

Requirements of the Major  

The major for the Class of 2019 With DUS approval, the following changes to the requirements of the major may be fulfilled by students who declared their major under previous requirements. 

The major for the Class of 2020 and subsequent classes Students majoring in Architecture are required to take fifteen course credits, including prerequisites and the senior requirement. Majors are expected to take the three prerequisites by the end of their sophomore year and to complete a core of four courses, for five course credits, by the end of their junior year. They must also base their studies in one of three areas of concentration: Design; History, Theory, and Criticism; or Urban Studies. Majors are also required to complete three orientation sessions: digital media orientation, library orientation, and shop orientation. Within the concentrations, electives are categorized under four broad subject areas: history and theory of architecture; urbanism and landscape; materials and design; and structures and computation.

Design concentration The Design concentration explores the role of architecture in shaping the world around us. It introduces complex processes involved in solving spatial and programmatic problems. Creative work is grounded in the study of history and culture, and in the analysis of social conditions influencing architecture. Design studios provide a forum for production and discourse. Studio projects address issues of architectural form, space, composition, site, tectonics, and programs within broader humanistic ideals. 

For the Design concentration, the following additional courses are required:

  1. A core of four courses: the studio courses ARCH 250 and 251 taken during the junior year after the student is accepted into the major; and the history of architecture surveys ARCH 260 and 261 or 262, to be completed by the end of the junior year
  2. One elective in history and theory of architecture chosen from ARCH 341, 348, 431, or other relevant course in History of Art approved by the DUS
  3. One elective in urbanism and landscape chosen from ARCH 344, 345, 347348, 385, STCY 176, or other relevant course in American Studies; Ethics, Politics, and Economics; Environmental Studies; or Political Science approved by the DUS
  4. One elective in materials and design chosen from ARCH 162 or another relevant course in Environmental Studies approved by the DUS
  5. One elective in structures and computation chosen from ARCH 161, an approved calculus or physics course, or other relevant course approved by the DUS (Elementary calculus is strongly recommended as preparation for graduate studies in Architecture.)
  6. The senior requirement, ARCH 450 and 494

History, Theory, and Criticism concentration The History, Theory, and Criticism concentration is intended to establish a broad historical and intellectual framework for the study of architecture. An interdisciplinary approach is encouraged through additional courses taken in various fields of humanities and social sciences. Normally these interdisciplinary courses address subjects closely linked to architectural history, theory, and criticism. Such courses may include archaeology, history of religion, aesthetics, philosophy, or visual culture. Permission of the DUS is required if the courses fall outside the specified course of studies. During their senior year students complete a written senior essay on a topic approved by the faculty.

For the History, Theory, and Criticism concentration, the following additional courses are required:

  1. A core of four courses: the urban laboratory, ARCH 360 taken during the fall term of junior year; ARCH 362 or an elective taken during the spring term of junior year; and the history of architecture surveys ARCH 260 and 261 or 262 to be completed by the end of junior year
  2. Four electives in history and theory of architecture, chosen from ARCH 341, 348, 431, or other relevant courses in History of Art approved by the DUS
  3. One elective in urbanism and landscape chosen from ARCH 344, 345, 347, 348, 385, STCY 176, or other relevant course in American Studies; Ethics, Politics, and Economics; Environmental Studies; or Political Science approved by the DUS
  4. The senior requirement ARCH 490 and 491

Urban Studies concentration The Urban Studies concentration encourages a broad, interdisciplinary investigation of the complex forces that shape the urban physical environment. The sequence of courses culminates in a senior essay that builds on course work, and either develops analysis and planning proposals for a specific site or furthers an individual research agenda.

For the Urban Studies concentration, the following additional courses are required:

  1. A core of four courses: ARCH 360 and 362 taken during the junior year; and ARCH 341 and 345, to be completed by the end of the junior year
  2. Four electives in urbanism and landscape chosen from ARCH 344, 345, 347, 348, 385, STCY 176, or other relevant courses in American Studies; Ethics, Politics, and Economics; Environmental Studies; or Political Science approved by the DUS
  3. One elective in history and theory of architecture chosen from ARCH 341, 348, 431, or other relevant course in History of Art approved by the DUS
  4. The senior requirement, ARCH 490 and 491

Digital media orientation All Architecture students are required to complete orientation sessions in digital media workshop and materials laboratory. Students enrolled in ARCH 200 are required to complete these sessions at the beginning of the spring term of the sophomore year. Access to digital media equipment will not be allowed until the required orientation sessions have been completed. Questions should be addressed to the DUS or the manager of digital media, Vincent Guerrero (432-7552,

Library orientation The Architecture program requires all students to complete a ninety-minute introductory library research session. Students enrolled in ARCH 200 must take this session at the beginning of the spring term of the sophomore year. Failure to complete the required orientation will preclude completion of the major. Students may offer no substitutions for this orientation. Students should register with the Haas Family Arts Library Public Services Librarian, Lindsay King (436-8052, Questions should be addressed to the DUS.

Shop orientation The Architecture program requires all majors to complete several woodshop and materials lab orientation sessions. Students enrolled in ARCH 200, and are interested in using the shop, must take these sessions during the first weeks of the spring term of the sophomore year. Access to the woodshop and materials lab will not be allowed until the required orientation sessions have been completed. Questions should be addressed to the DUS or to the shop coordinator, Timothy Newton (432-7234,

Senior Requirement 

Seniors in the Design track take ARCH 450 in the fall term and 494 in the spring term. Seniors in the History, Theory, and Criticism track and in the Urban Studies track take ARCH 490 in the fall term and 491 in the spring term. Proposals for senior projects and essays are submitted in the fall term for review and approval by the senior project coordinator; they are then distributed to faculty members for review. Upon successful review, students may ask faculty members to act as senior advisers. Senior essays and projects for ARCH 491 are due in the office of the DUS by Friday, April 12, 2019. Design projects for ARCH 494 are due as specified by the course instructor. All seniors must submit a portfolio of their work to the office of the DUS by Friday, May 3, 2019. For all architecture majors, this portfolio must be representative of the student's design work including prerequisites and the senior project. History, Theory, and Criticism majors and Urban Studies majors must also include a copy of the senior essay and other appropriate texts.

Advising and Application to the Major

Yale College students interested in the Design concentration must apply to enter the major during the spring term of their sophomore year, after taking ARCH 150200, and 280. An application to the major must be submitted to the office of the DUS no later than 4 p.m. on March 29, 2019, in 328 Rudolph (third floor). All applications are reviewed by a faculty committee. Applications must include the following information: name, address, telephone number, courses related to architecture already taken, a statement of purpose, and a writing sample from Yale College. Portfolios representative of course work for ARCH 150, 200, and 280 must also be submitted for review as part of the application process by May 1, 2019. Applicants will be notified in writing regarding acceptance to the major by May 31, 2019. 

Students interested in the History, Theory, and Criticism and Urban Studies concentrations do not have to apply to the major, but must submit a statement of interest by the end of their sophomore year. Students have an opportunity to petition the DUS at the end of either the fall or spring term of their junior year if they wish to change concentrations. The DUS will notify students of the result of such a petition. Based on a student's performance in required courses, the DUS may also recommend a change in concentration.

Courses in the School of Architecture Unless otherwise indicated in the course descriptions, all courses in the School of Architecture are open to majors and nonmajors with permission of the instructor and the graduate registrar. They are not available for the Credit/D/Fail option. Students are admitted on the basis of their previous course work and previous performance.


Prerequisites ARCH 150, 200, and 280

Number of courses 15 course credits (incl prereqs and senior req)

Specific courses required DesignARCH 250, 251260, and 261 or 262History, Theory, and CriticismARCH 360, 362 or elective, ARCH 260 and 261 or 262; Urban StudiesARCH 360, 362, 341, 345

Distribution of coursesDesign—1 elective in history and theory of arch, 1 in urbanism and landscape, 1 in materials and design, 1 in structures and computation, all approved by DUS; History, Theory, and Criticism—4 electives in history and theory of arch, 1 in urbanism and landscape, all approved by DUS; Urban Studies—4 electives in urbanism and landscape, 1 in history and theory of arch, all approved by DUS

Other Orientation sessions in digital media, library, and shop

Senior requirement All concentrations—portfolio representative of design work, including prereqs and senior req; DesignARCH 450 and 494; History, Theory, and Criticism and Urban StudiesARCH 490 and 491

A liberal arts education provides an ideal framework for studying architecture. Students in the major understand and pursue architecture as a humanistic endeavor. They graduate with a comprehensive understanding of the discipline of architecture as it relates to the ideas, concepts, and methods of designing buildings, cities, and landscapes within the broader context of culture. The major includes course work in design, history and theory, urbanism, landscape, and technology, and leads to a bachelor of arts degree. Architecture majors are prepared for advanced study in a variety of fields, including architecture, art, history of art, urban planning, environmental studies, social studies, and public affairs.

The major is open to all students through an application process; sophomores apply after taking three prerequisite courses. For more information, see under Architecture in Yale College Programs of Study.

The Architecture program offers several courses open to first-year students, including those listed below. First-year students may also take architecture courses offered through Yale Summer Session.

  • ARCH 150, Introduction to Architecture
  • ARCH 154, Drawing Architecture
  • ARCH 230 , Introduction to the Study of the City
  • ARCH 341, Globalization of Space


Professors  Turner Brooks (Adjunct), Keller Easterling, Alexander Garvin (Adjunct), Steven Harris (Adjunct), Alan Plattus, Alexander Purves (Emeritus)

Associate Professor Eeva-Liisa Pelkonen

Assistant Professors Sunil Bald (Adjunct), Jesse LeCavalier (Visiting), Bimal Mendis (Adjunct), Kyoung Sun Moon, Elihu Rubin

Lecturers Victor Agran, Erleen Hatfield

Critics Marta Justo Caldeira, Kyle Dugdale, Andrei Harwell, Adam Hopfner, Joyce Hsiang, Timothy Newton, Rosalyne Shieh


* ARCH 006a, Architectures of Urbanism: Thinking, Seeing, Writing the CityMichael Schlabs

What is architecture, and how is it conceived, relative to notions of the urban – to the broader, deeper, messier web of ideas, forms, and fantasies constituting “the city?” Can architecture play a role in defining the city, as such, or does the city’s political and social construction place it outside the scope of specifically architectural concerns? Likewise, what role can the city play in establishing, interrogating, and extrapolating the limits of architecture, whether as a practice, a discourse, or a physical manifestation of human endeavor in the material environment? This course addresses these and other related questions, seeking to position architecture in its broader urban, social, cultural, political, intellectual, and aesthetic contexts. In so doing, it assumes the position that the nature and character of the urban can largely be characterized in terms of the manner in which we, as a society, conceive, construct, and contribute to notions of “the public,” or “the common.” Prerequisite: general knowledge of 20th-century history.  HU
TTh 11:35am-12:50pm

ARCH 150a, Introduction to ArchitectureAlexander Purves

Lectures and readings in the language of architecture. Architectural vocabulary, elements, functions, and ideals. Notebooks and projects required. Not open to freshmen. Required for all Architecture majors.  HU
MWF 9:25am-10:15am

* ARCH 154b, Drawing ArchitectureVictor Agran

Introduction to the visual and analytical skills necessary to communicate architectural ideas. Observation and documentation of architectural space on the Yale campus. Drawing exercises introduce the conventions of architectural representation: plan, section, elevation, and isometric drawings, as well as freehand perceptual drawings of architectural space. Open to first and second year students. 
W 1:30pm-3:20pm

* ARCH 161a, Introduction to StructuresErleen Hatfield

Basic principles governing the behavior of building structures. Developments in structural form combined with the study of force systems, laws of statics, and mechanics of materials and members and their application to a variety of structural systems. Prerequisites: trigonometry and some knowledge of calculus. Enrollment limited to 20.  QR, SC
TTh 9am-10:15am

* ARCH 162b, Materials in ArchitectureTimothy Newton

Science and technology of basic building materials studied together with historic and current design applications. Skills and processes required to create, shape, and connect materials experienced through hands-on projects. Technical notebooks, drawings, design and build exercises, and projects required. Enrollment limited to 20.

ARCH 200b, Scales of DesignBimal Mendis

Exploration of architecture and urbanism at multiple scales from the human to the world. Consideration of how design influences and shapes the material and conceptual spheres through four distinct subjects: the human, the building, the city, and the world. Examination of the role of architects, as designers, in constructing and shaping the inhabited and urban world. Lectures, readings, reviews and four assignments that address the spatial and visual ramifications of design. Not open to first-year students. Required for all Architecture majors.  HU
Th 11:30am-1:20pm

* ARCH 230b / STCY 176b, Introduction to the Study of the CityAlexander Garvin

An examination of forces shaping American cities and strategies for dealing with them. Topics include housing, commercial development, parks, zoning, urban renewal, landmark preservation, new towns, and suburbs. The course includes games, simulated problems, fieldwork, lectures, and discussion.  SO
T 1:30pm-3:20pm

* ARCH 250a, Methods and Form in Architecture IKatherine Davies

Analysis of architectural design of specific places and structures. Analysis is governed by principles of form in landscape, program, ornament, and space, and includes design methods and techniques. Readings and studio exercises required. Enrollment limited to 25. Open only to Architecture majors.  1½ Course cr
MW 1:30pm-3:20pm

* ARCH 251b, Methods and Form in Architecture IIStaff

Continuation of ARCH 250. Analysis of architectural design of specific places and structures. Analysis is governed by principles of form in landscape, program, ornament, and space, and includes design methods and techniques. Readings and studio exercises required.  1½ Course cr
MW 1:30pm-3:20pm

ARCH 260a / HSAR 326a, History of Architecture I: Antiquity to the BaroqueKyle Dugdale

The first half of a two-term sequence in the history of architecture. Architecture and urbanism from ancient Egypt through Greek and Roman classical traditions to the Enlightenment. The formal expression—organizational, structural, and ornamental—and social context of specific buildings and urban areas. Architecture as a form of social expression that builds on its own stylistic development, articulating a response to changes in history and culture. Emphasis on Western architecture, with selections from other parts of the world.  HU
TTh 10:30am-11:20am

* ARCH 271a / HSAR 266a / MMES 126a / SAST 266a, Introduction to Islamic ArchitectureKishwar Rizvi

Introduction to the architecture of the Islamic world from the seventh century to the present, encompassing regions of Asia, North Africa, and Europe. A variety of sources and media, from architecture to urbanism and from travelogues to paintings, are used in an attempt to understand the diversity and richness of Islamic architecture. Field trip to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.  HU
MW 10:30am-11:20am

ARCH 280b / AMST 197b / HSAR 219b, American Architecture and UrbanismElihu Rubin

Introduction to the study of buildings, architects, architectural styles, and urban landscapes, viewed in their economic, political, social, and cultural contexts, from precolonial times to the present. Topics include: public and private investment in the built environment; the history of housing in America; the organization of architectural practice; race, gender, ethnicity and the right to the city; the social and political nature of city building; and the transnational nature of American architecture.  HU
MW 11:35am-12:50pm

* ARCH 341b / GLBL 253b / LAST 318b, Globalization SpaceKeller Easterling

Infrastructure space as a primary medium of change in global polity. Networks of trade, energy, communication, transportation, spatial products, finance, management, and labor, as well as new strains of political opportunity that reside within their spatial disposition. Case studies include free zones and automated ports around the world, satellite urbanism in South Asia, high-speed rail in Japan and the Middle East, agripoles in southern Spain, fiber optic submarine cable in East Africa, spatial products of tourism in North Korea, and management platforms of the International Organization for Standardization.  HU
MW 10:30am-11:20am

ARCH 345a, Civic Art: Introduction to Urban DesignAlan Plattus

Introduction to the history, analysis, and design of the urban landscape. Principles, processes, and contemporary theories of urban design; relationships between individual buildings, groups of buildings, and their larger physical and cultural contexts. Case studies from New Haven and other world cities.  HU
TTh 9:25am-10:15am

* ARCH 362a or b, Urban Lab: City MakingStaff

How architects represent, analyze, construct, and speculate on critical urban conditions as distinct approaches to city making. Investigation of a case study analyzing urban morphologies and the spatial systems of a city through diverse means of representation that address historical, social, political, and environmental issues. Through maps, diagrams, collages and text, students learn to understand spatial problems and project urban interventions. Prerequisites: For non-majors: permission of the instructor is required. For ARCH majors: ARCH 150, 200, and 280.   1½ Course cr

* ARCH 390a / ENAS 410a, Making SpacesJoseph Zinter

A project based course. Borrowing from practices of adaptive reuse and spatial design, students use design thinking methodologies to carefully research an existing place or site and develop possible interventions that consider not only the physical space but also its function and purpose within a community.  
TTh 11:35am-12:50pm

* ARCH 450a, Senior StudioTurner Brooks

Advanced problems with emphasis on architectural implications of contemporary cultural issues. The complex relationship among space, materials, and program. Emphasis on the development of representations—drawings and models—that effectively communicate architectural ideas. To be taken before ARCH 494. Enrollment limited to Architecture majors.  1½ Course cr
MW 1:30pm-3:20pm

* ARCH 471a or b, Individual TutorialStaff

Special courses may be established with individual members of the department only. The following conditions apply: (1) a prospectus describing the nature of the studio program and the readings to be covered must be approved by both the instructor and the director of undergraduate studies; (2) regular meetings must take place between student and instructor; (3) midterm and final reviews are required. For seniors with DUS approval; meetings by appointment with DUS.

* ARCH 472La, Individual Tutorial LaboratoryBimal Mendis

An independent tutorial focusing on methods and techniques of representation in architecture, including the synthesis of studio work using a variety of visual media. Concurrently with ARCH 471 or after a spring term abroad.  RP½ Course cr

* ARCH 490a, Senior Research ColloquiumMarta Caldeira

Research and writing colloquium for seniors in the Urban Studies and History, Theory, and Criticism tracks. Under guidance of the instructor and members of the Architecture faculty, students define their research proposals, shape a bibliography, improve research skills, and seek criticism of individual research agendas. Requirements include proposal drafts, comparative case study analyses, presentations to faculty, and the formation of a visual argument. Guest speakers and class trips to exhibitions, lectures, and special collections encourage use of Yale's resources.
Th 11am-12:50pm

* ARCH 491b, Senior ProjectStaff

An essay or project in the student's area of concentration. Students in the history, theory, and criticism track or in the urban studies track pursue independent research with an adviser; this project must terminate in a senior essay.

* ARCH 494b, Senior Project Design StudioStaff

Individual design investigations, focusing on independence and precision in the deployment of design ideas. Reliance on visual and nonverbal presentations. Development of a three-dimensional component, such as large-scale mock details, or other visual means of presentation, which might include photography, film, video, or interactive media. Examination of the skills, topics, and preparation to support design research.  1½ Course cr
MW 1:30pm-3:20pm