Why study Architecture?

Four-Year Pre-Professional Degree

The Bachelor of Science in Architecture (BS-Arch) degree is composed of seven academic semesters and three cooperative (co-op) semesters within four years of undergraduate education.  Students are educated in design, construction technologies, digital arts, the humanities, social sciences, and aesthetic expression. Architecture is the culturally responsible design and production of buildings that are useful, durable, meaningful, inspiring, and responsive to their physical and social contexts. Architecture is an art, a technical craft and an ethical practice. Students reinforce their skills in the field through several co-op semesters that offer students the opportunity to work full-time in an architecture firm either locally, nationally or internationally.

The pre-professional BS Arch degree creates the foundation in the field of architecture as preparation for continued education in a NAAB accredited degree program. Students are also prepared for entry level employment in architecture and in fields related to architecture, such as construction management, interior design, environmental design, theater set design, real estate development,digital fabrication and animation. 

Admission Requirements

The College of Design, Architecture, Art, and Planning at the University of Cincinnati seeks to attract, enroll and graduate academically talented students of varied and diverse backgrounds. Success in our programs is largely dependent upon sound academic preparation. However, in multidisciplinary programs like those in DAAP, students’ insight and perspective are greatly enhanced by exposure to students from different backgrounds, geographies and co-curricular interests. DAAP has designed an admissions review process and a timetable to support these goals.

Freshman Priority Deadline: December 1 by 5 p.m. EST

Admission criteria for architecture varies based on the relative strength of test scores, class rank and GPA. Portfolios are not a component of the admission application. All applicants meeting the above criteria and the priority deadline will be notified of admission decisions by February 1. Please do not call prior to this date regarding a decision on your application.

Freshman applicants, please visit the Admission Requirements  page for more information. Applications received after December 1: Applicants who submit a complete application may be reviewed for admission on a space-available basis with notification after February 1. The academic credentials of the pool of applicants seeking admission to architecture vary each year. Architecture is a highly selective program and has a limited number of spaces available. Freshmen applying to this program should also have completed the following college-preparatory subjects:

  • 4 units of English
  • 4 units of college prep math, including one unit of pre-calculus, calculus, or advanced math
  • 1 unit of physics
  • 2 additional units of science
  • 5 units of electives*

*Elective units must include one or any combination of foreign language, fine arts, business, career-technical education, family and consumer sciences, technology, agricultural education or additional core courses not otherwise required.

If a student lacks the math and physics requirements from high school, then the student should complete an appropriate college level course.  High School Requirement: 4 units of college prep, including 1 unit of pre-calculus, calculus, or advanced math (trigonometry), and 1 unit of physics; OR College Requirement: MATH1022, 1024, 1026, 1044, 1060, or 1061; PHYS1011, 1017, 1018, 1037, 1051, or 2001 OR equivalent course.

People who are successful in architecture tend to have visual and kinesthetic/tactile learning styles. The design of a building involves the synthesis of a variety of diverse requirements and values into a coherent creation. Among such requirements and values are functional suitability, aesthetics, technical performance, economic resources and constraints, social and cultural issues, environmental concerns and human comfort.

Architects must be intrigued by the design of buildings, enjoy putting things together, and not be intimidated by the need to generate alternate solutions to complex problems. They must possess strong communication skills and be comfortable in meeting with many different types of people, as well as being attentive listeners. Architects must have excellent time- and project-management skills, and understand business planning. They need to know how to create informative and persuasive proposals and maintain good client relationships.

The School of Architecture and Interior Design (SAID) offers a 21 credit hour architectural studies minor for students interested in studying the context, theory, and principals involved in the design of structures and cities.

Students must meet the SAID program admissions standards and maintain a 3.0 GPA to pursue the minor. Students can apply by filling out the form available here and submitting it to the DAAP Student Affairs Office, 5470 Aronoff.

All prospective students interested in this program should visit the DAAP website to find more information or contact the DAAP Student Affairs office at 513-556-1376 or All prospective students are encouraged to visit campus to learn more about their major(s) of interest. To register for a DAAP "College Close-Up" Visit and a "Preview UC" campus tour, please go here. For more information on DAAP advising, please go here. Current DAAP students can schedule an appointment with their advisors by calling DAAP Student Affairs at 513-556-1376 or by using the Starfish scheduling tool on Blackboard (

  • The city of Cincinnati, once called the "Queen City of the West" by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, provides an excellent array of cultural resources for students who intend to pursue a degree in the visual arts. It offers the energy and assets of a larger city, along with quiet neighborhoods steeped in rich traditions. Cincinnati offers live music venues that range from top-notch symphony and opera companies to a growing pop and rock community. Home to the Cincinnati Art Museum, the Taft Museum and the Contemporary Arts Center, the city also enjoys the presence of numerous art galleries and a strong support system among practicing artists. Cincinnati is situated within driving distance of Chicago, Pittsburgh, Atlanta and New York City, allowing DAAP students to take advantage of the rich cultural resources of these cities as well.
  • UC's College of Design, Architecture, Art, and Planning (DAAP) is one of the most comprehensive colleges of its type in the country. A collection of nationally respected design and art programs is housed in a unique and educationally stimulating architectural setting. Architecture students have opportunities to enroll in courses in a range of related disciplines and to participate in interdisciplinary studios or special projects.
  • Students learn creative and technical skills in the studio environment, taught by a passionate faculty who interact with their students on a daily basis. The goal is to guide students as they grow both intellectually and professionally.
  • Other educational opportunities include organized travel semesters, foreign study semesters and student exchange programs in England, Germany and Denmark. Many architecture students also pursue joint degrees and certificate programs within the college and the university.
  • The DAAP college library has an outstanding collection of books, periodicals and visual resources supporting architecture, planning, design, art history and related subjects. Access to library holdings is provided by an automated online catalogue, UCLID, which provides access to the University of Cincinnati Library information database, and through OhioLINK, the holdings of other academic libraries throughout Ohio.
  • The Computer Graphics Center is a state-of-the-art university facility with hardware that includes PCs, Apple computers and peripherals such as scanners, plotters and digital video-editing suites. Students have access to sophisticated graphics equipment and receive hands-on instruction to augment the use of laptops in the classroom. All computing equipment is linked by high-speed Ethernet to facilitate access across the campus.
  • The college supports a Rapid Prototyping Center, which is the home of state-of-the-art equipment that allows students to create communication aids for their design projects. Using CAD (computer-aided design) models, students are able to create physical models using three basic methods: 3-D printing, large format laser-cutting and CNC (computer numeric control) devices, including a Komo CNC Router. This facility is intended for all DAAP students to use in creating large-scale design.
  • Co-op Education: Co-op (also called professional practice or cooperative education) gives special character to architectural education at the University of Cincinnati, which invented the concept of co-op 100 years ago. Salaried practical experience arranged from a roster of over 500 firms all over the U.S. and overseas complements students’ growing academic understanding of the discipline. Our graduates’ advanced professional experience and self-reliance make them singularly valuable to employers. Moreover, state licensing boards grant them substantial credit toward the three years of internship that are required to take the architectural registration examination.
  • Computer Requirements: All undergraduate students in this program are required to purchase a personal laptop computer. Each discipline has its own specific requirements for hardware and software. You can find more information about computer requirements here. Please note that these requirements may be slightly altered as equipment evolves. Therefore, students new to DAAP are encouraged to delay their computer purchase until the summer prior to entering to make the most informed computer purchase. Many of our programs have additional technology requirements for students in the later years of study.

To earn a BS in architecture, students must complete 126 credit hours. They also must receive satisfactory evaluations for three semesters of professional practice (co-op). To be eligible for graduation they must achieve a minimum overall grade point average of 2.0 (C) and maintain at least a 2.0 grade point average in the final year. Graduation with honors requires a 3.6 grade point average. Courses in physical education, performance and ROTC are not accepted as elective credits toward degree requirements in architecture.

Students seeking to transfer from another regionally accredited university or college must have at least a 3.0 cumulative grade point average in previous college work to be considered for admission. For priority consideration, complete transfer applications should be received by March 1 for the following fall. All applicants must have completed the equivalent of the fourth year in college-prep math (pre-calculus, calculus or advanced math) and one unit of physics to be considered. If offered admission, transfer students from other architecture, art or design programs seeking advanced standing can submit a design portfolio to the DAAP Student Affairs Office for evaluation. The application is available here. Transfer students to the School of Architecture and Interior Design programs are generally admitted to the first year of the program. 

Students seeking to transfer from other colleges and programs at UC must have at least a 3.0 cumulative grade point average in previous college work to be considered for admission. All applicants must have completed the equivalent of the fourth year in college-prep math (pre-calculus, calculus or advanced math) and one unit of physics to be considered. Transfer students to the School of Architecture and Interior Design programs are generally admitted to the first year of the program.

 Current UC students should submit an "Application for Change in College and Program" form to the DAAP Student Affairs Office in Room 5470 Aronoff by March 1 for priority consideration for the following fall. This form is available here or in the DAAP Student Affairs Office.

Current DAAP students wishing to transition into a different major must submit a "Change of Program" form to the DAAP Student Affairs Office in Room 5470 Aronoff. This form is available here or in the DAAP Student Affairs Office.

Unless an international student meets one of the exemptions listed here, he or she must complete the ACT, SAT, IELTS, TOEFL, or ELS.

Application Deadlines

High school applicants who submit a complete application by 5 pm EST on December 1 will be pooled and reviewed for selection. Consideration of the applicants' personal statements and co-curricular activities will be factored into the admissions decisions. Applicants who submit a complete application by 5 pm on December 1 will be notified of selection decisions by February 1. Please do not call prior to this date regarding a decision on your application. Applications received after December 1 may be considered on a space-available basis.

Students seeking to transfer from other colleges and programs at UC or another regionally accredited university or college should submit a complete application for admission by the priority deadline of March 1 for the following academic year.

The University of Cincinnati and all regional campuses are accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

The architecture program of the University of Cincinnati has been accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB) continuously since 1948, and its courses satisfy requirements maintained by various state architectural registration boards.

In the United States, most state registration boards require a degree from an accredited professional degree program as a prerequisite for licensure. The NAAB, which is the sole agency authorized to accredit U.S. professional degree programs in architecture, recognizes three types of degrees: the bachelor of architecture, the master of architecture, and the doctor of architecture. A program may be granted a 6-year, 3-year, or 2-year term of accreditation, depending on the extent of its conformance with established educational standards.

Master's degree programs may consist of a pre-professional undergraduate degree and a professional graduate degree that, when earned sequentially, constitute an accredited professional education. Students with an undergraduate degree in disciplines other than architecture may also seek an accredited master's degree. The pre-professional undergraduate degree is not, by itself, recognized as an accredited degree. 

Contact Information

DAAP Student Affairs
College of DAAP
P.O. Box 210016
Cincinnati, OH 45221-0016

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Program Code: 23BAC-ARCH-BSACH