Online Master's Degree Programs in Architecture

Get information about master's degree programs in architecture. See what this degree entails, what you'll study and what kind of career field you'll face after graduation.

How Can I Earn a Master's Degree in Architecture Online?

Although online master's degree programs in architecture are not as common as on-campus programs, programs are available in distance-learning formats. If you enroll in an online degree program in this field, you'll primarily use online discussion boards and e-mail; however, some programs also require you to utilize video chat, such as Skype, to correspond with professors and classmates. Some online programs may also require you to complete campus visits to present research, submit projects or attend lectures.

Online Availability Online programs are available
Degree Types Master of Science or Master of Architecture
Program Length Two to three years; those with a bachelor's in architecture may take as little as one year
Median Salary (2018)$79,380 (for architects, except landscape and naval)*
Job Outlook (2016-26)4% growth (for all architects, except landscape and naval)*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Can I Expect From This Online Degree Program?

Master's degree programs, such as the Master of Science (M.S.) in Architecture or the professional Master of Architecture (M.Arch), generally aim to provide academic study and practical design experience. You can learn more about designing a variety of buildings and structures, such as parking lots, patios, garages and pools.

You can learn about advanced architectural areas, including design theory, structural engineering, urban planning, physics and professional collaboration. Many programs also cover the stages of construction, such as design, materials purchasing, building and delivery. Because architects often oversee a project from start to finish, most programs also teach you how to manage and supervise different design and construction teams, as well as independent contractors.

Many online programs now focus on green architecture, a practice designed to reduce the environmental impact of buildings. You might learn green practices, like using green building materials and natural lighting, reducing energy costs during construction and implementing renewable energy sources into a structure's electrical systems. Prospective architects also learn about all the systems within a structure, including electrical, plumbing and ventilation.

How Long Does This Program Take?

The time it takes to complete an online master's degree program in architecture generally depends on your previous educational experience. For example, if you have completed a professional bachelor's degree in architecture, you can often enroll in a 1-year Master of Science program. However, if you have a non-professional bachelor's degree in architecture or a degree in an unrelated area, it could take 2-3 years to earn your Master of Architecture.

What Can I Do With This Degree?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) only a professional architecture degree is required for employment as an architect. Your online master's degree could lead to academic or research careers in architecture. The BLS predicted that employment for architects would increase by 4% between 2016 and 2026, which may be due to an increased population in the Sun Belt states, as well as current architects leaving the field. In May 2018, the average salary for architects was $88,860, per the BLS.