Top 10 Best Architecture Schools in the World Review

Today, with a population of over 7 billion people and an increased yearly rate, the field of architecture is a lucrative field of study considering today’s trends. Around the globe, architects and professional designers are sought after as there is need for housing and businesses to meet the demands. Upon graduation, architect firms quickly employ graduates from the best architecture schools.


The Top 10 Best Architecture Schools in the World are as follows:

1. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is located in Massachusetts USA. The charter of the school was signed in 1861 and it opened its door in 1865. Throughout the years, MIT has continued with its commitment to excellence. In 1999 MIT and Cambridge University in England formed The Cambridge-MIT Institute (CMI), which comprises an exchange program and detailed research for undergraduates, graduate students and faculty.

2. UCL (University College London, Bartlett School of Architecture)

UCL (University College London, Bartlett School of Architecture)

It was established in 1826 under the name London University. It was the first university to admit female students on equal terms with men. Within UCL is the Bartlette School of Architecture which was founded in 1841

3. Delft University of Technology

Delft University of Technology

Delft University of Technology is located in the Netherlands. Bachelor and master degrees as well as post-master programs are offered at the faculty. Courses include those related to architecture design, as well affiliated courses including building physics, landscape architecture, and housing. Delft exchange program is very commendable.

The University was established in 1842 by King Willem II, King of the Netherlands. It is best known for architecture courses, especially the study of urbanism, and engineering. Dutch students speak good English and the English program at the school is better than many schools.

4. University of California, Berkeley, United States

University of California, Berkeley, United States

The University of California (UCB) was founded in 1868 and five years later the university moved to Berkeley. The Architecture Department was established in 1906 and it became a college in 1957. National rankings place UCB undergraduate and graduate programs among the finest.

5. Harvard University, United States

Harvard University, United States

Harvard University is situated in Cambridge, Massachusetts and was established in 1636. Harvard is a very prominent institution and is modeled after Oxford University. In 1874 architecture courses were first taught and in 1914 The Faculty of Architecture was established as a graduate school.

The Harvard Graduate School of Design which is referred to as The GSD was created in 1936. The GSD is ranked as the #1 graduate school in North America. Harvard established the nation’s first academic degree programs in landscape architecture, urban design and city and regional planning.

6. National University of Singapore, Singapore

National University of Singapore, Singapore

In 1949 the University of Malaysia was formed, building on the former King Edward College and Raffles College. In 1955 Nanyang University, a privately funded Chinese University opened its door. The University of Malaysia was renamed the University of Singapore in 1962. In 1980 The National University of Singapore (NUS) was established with the merger of the University of Singapore and Nanyang University.

NUS Architecture is a proven programme, and the only one professionally accredited by The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), Board of Architects (BOA) Singapore and Singapore Institute of Architects (SIA). The Department of Architecture is in its 57th year of existence.

7. ETH Zurich, Switzerland

ETH Zurich, Switzerland

ETH Zurich was opened in 1854 and it is reputable for the architects, theorists and historians who once studied there. To earn a bachelor degree one must have a high school diploma or equivalent, entrance examination, and be proficient in German. To advance to the masters program one must have the requisite bachelor degree or equivalent first academic degree and again be versed in German.

8. Tsinghua University, China

Tsinghua University, China

Tsinghua University was established in 1911. The name was changed to “Tsinghua Xuexiao (Tsing Hua College)” after the 1911 Revolution. In 1925, a four-year undergraduate program was launched. In 1928, its name was changed to “Guoli Tsinghua Daxue (National Tsinghua University),” and in the autumn of 1929 its graduate school was set up.

In 1952, Tsinghua University became a multidisciplinary polytechnic university specializing in training engineers. The School of Architecture was established in 1988 and it is located in the north-western suburbs of Beijing.

9. University of Cambridge, United Kingdom

University of Cambridge, United Kingdom

The University of Cambridge was established in 1209 and it is situated in the beautiful city of Cambridge, England. It is one of the oldest schools in the Anglophone countries. It is famous for its outstanding academic program on architecture, which attracts many students around the world.

10. The University of Tokyo, Japan

The University of Tokyo, Japan

The University of Tokyo referred to as Todai is a research university located in Bunkyo, Tokyo, Japan. The university was chartered by the Meiji government in 1877 under its current name by amalgamating older government schools for medicine and Western learning. It was renamed “the Imperial University in 1886, and then Tokyo Imperial University.

T-ADS at U-Tokyo, Department of Architecture is advanced research and education laboratory which is composed of:

  • DFL which researches computation and fabrication,
  • SPL which researches material sustainability in urban space,
  • MIL which researches theories of architecture and takes in charge of publishing.

Scott Simpson in an article entitled “School’s out. Now what?” expressed that what is important is how best to use the knowledge gained in architectural school to chart a successful career, as the world is constantly changing.
In a few excerpts, he expressed, “Advances in just about any field (medicine, manufacturing, finance, information technology, and even agriculture) are just as profound and far-reaching. We live in a turbulent world which is continually being jostled by the emergence of new ideas, technologies, processes, and expectations. The more things change, the more we expect them to keep changing.

“What passes for “expertise” today has a rapidly diminishing shelf life, so if we don’t stay current we risk getting stale in a hurry, regardless of where we are in our respective careers…What really counts is creative problem solving and an ability to think critically about a wide range of issues. This requires adopting a strategy of lifelong learning. It’s a bit like river rafting: you can let the current carry you along, but to get to where you really want to go, it’s up to you to do the paddling.”