This MA is unique in architectural history, theory and criticism postgraduate study, providing a coherent and intensive forum in which students develop independent approaches to the subject. Graduates progress to academic, journalistic, curatorial and architectural professions with diverse skills in established and emerging subjects, theories and methodologies.
The programme examines architecture and cities from early-modern 16th-century to contemporary 21st-century contexts. Rather than focusing on the work of individuals, stylistic classification or normative categories, the programme locates architecture within social, ideological, creative, political and urban processes, exploring the boundaries of what constitute legitimate architectural objects and sites of study.
Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.
The programme consists of two core modules (60 credits), four optional modules (60 credits) and a report (60 credits).
A Postgraduate Diploma, two core modules (60 credits), four optional modules (60 credits), full-time nine months is offered.
Students choose four of the following:
All MA students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a 10,000-word dissertation and an oral examination.
Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of seminars, lectures, building and gallery visits, film screenings, group working and one-to-one tutorials, and a field trip (optional). Assessment is through coursework, consisting of short exercises, classroom presentations, and longer essays for individual modules, a 10,000-word report and oral examination, and verbal presentations.
An annual programme field trip (optional) takes place, normally in May.
Departmental stipends of c. £250 are normally applicable. Maximum cost to the student is £250.
Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Architectural History MA
Graduates from the UCL Bartlett are very successful in gaining subsequent employment in the UK and internationally. At present there is a growing demand for our Master's graduates from a wide range of both public and private employers. Many graduates from the programme have gone on to research, teach and publish at universities and other institutions worldwide, including national media, publishing and heritage organisations, art galleries and museums.
Recent career destinations for this degree
Postgraduate study at the UCL Bartlett Faculty of the Built Environment is situated within a vibrant graduate and research environment, including a large cohort of PhD students and an extensive range of faculty members with interests in architectural history and theory. Students on the Architectural History MA are immersed in one of the world's largest and most innovative centres for architectural history and theory, and are able to engage in innumerable seminars, research representations and other events. Our graduates are highly sought after. Some choose to continue with academic research or teaching, others go on to roles in the visual arts, education, publishing, heritage, design and architecture.
Careers data is taken from the ‘Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education’ survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2013–2015 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.
The UCL Bartlett is the UK's largest multidisciplinary built environment faculty, bringing together scientific and professional specialisms required to research, understand, design, construct and operate the buildings and urban environments of the future.
Located in London, it is at the heart of a large cluster of creative architects and engineering firms and has all the resources of a world city at hand.
This MA is the UK's longest established programme in its field, and prioritises the exploration of new and existing methodologies and critical theories as they might be applied to the study of architecture and cities.
The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.
The following REF score was awarded to the department: Bartlett School of Architecture
81% rated 4* (‘world-leading’) or 3* (‘internationally excellent’)
Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.
This programme is intended for students who seek advanced training in the history and theory of architecture. It provides methodological and conceptual tools essential for contemporary research and affords the opportunity for the in-depth study of a select topic in the history and theory of architecture.
The programme will provide you with a firm basis in the methodological and theoretical paradigms of architectural history. Through a combination of coursework and supervised dissertation research with optional internships, you will acquire both a breadth of historical understanding and rigorous research practices.
This programme comprises two compulsory courses focused on methodology and four option courses, which draw on staff research expertise, followed by a 12,000–15,000 word supervised dissertation.
Additionally, you may enrol in courses offered by allied disciplines such as history of art, archaeology, architectural conservation, history, literature and others.
The flexible profile of the programme reflects the diversity of positions within the fields of architectural history and theory, making it suitable for students from a broad range of backgrounds and with a variety of interests and career objectives.
The MSc Architectural History and Theory seeks to provide the following core learning outcomes:
The programmes provides preparation for doctoral research, work in industries that document and interpret the built environment, work in museums and conservation agencies or journalism/media
Delve deeper into the history and theory of architecture with the research and thesis-based Master of Architecture.
This qualification will be of interest to you if you are already working in the profession and want to deepen your understanding of a particular aspect of architecture. Or you may have recently completed a Bachelor of Architectural Studies (BAS) or Postgraduate Diploma in Architecture History and Theory (PDGipAHT), and want to continue on to do research.
You'll further develop your critical thinking and discussion skills with in-depth study into your area of interest. Increase your understanding of how architectural history and theory are applied to design, so you can express your own ideas and conclusions within a theoretical framework.
Choose a thesis that reflects your current knowledge of the intellectual, technical, aesthetic and cultural conditions of architecture. Your research topic must have a basis in theory as well as method.
You'll get quality supervision and support from staff with international reputations for teaching, research and publishing.
You may be able to include media such as a drawing portfolio or video with your thesis submission. If you choose to use design as your primary research method in your thesis, it must be explained within a theoretical context.
Past research topics include:
The MArch does not qualify you for registration as an architect.
The MArch can be completed within three trimesters or one calendar year of full-time study, or in a minimum of six trimesters if you're studying part time. You have a maximum of three years from enrolment to complete and present your thesis.
If you are studying full time, you can expect a workload of 40–45 hours a week for much of the year. Part-time students will need to do around 20–23 hours of work a week. Make sure you take this into account if you are working.
Postgraduate study at Victoria will help you build valuable relationships and networks with peers, university staff and future colleagues. You'll have opportunities to attend events, seminars, workshops and social functions.
The Postgraduate Students' Association can also give you information on study at Victoria and provides a voice for you on campus.
If you are already working in the profession, you'll add a new level of expertise to your practice.
The skills and knowledge you gain will open doors to a range of other jobs including architectural conservator, archivist or museum researcher. You might also find work as a critic or writer, curator, historian or librarian.