Top 7 Universities for Architectural Engineering in the USA

Top 7 Universities for Architectural Engineering in the USA

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Architectural engineers are professionals who study the planning, design, construction, and operation of engineered systems for different types of buildings. Their jobs share similarities with those of civil engineers in terms of tasks and specializations, but also feature differences which make the career field distinct. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, an annual increase of 8.4% is expected until 2024 for civil engineers, including architectural engineers, due to the need for improvements and repairs to existing and aging infrastructure. For those interested in pursuing a more in-depth study of the technical aspects of the construction industry and wish to become more qualified for jobs related to this field, a Master's degree in architectural engineering is the best option. Below are some of the top universities that offer Master's degrees in architectural engineering in the USA.

For more opportunities check out our architectural engineering program listings here

Top 7 Universities for Architectural Engineering in USA1.California Polytechnic State University

California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly) is a comprehensive public university that offers a hands-on educational experience for academically-focused students. Cal Poly is the second-largest land-holding university in California with 9,178 acres. It was established in 1901 when legislation to establish the California Polytechnic School was signed by Governor Gage. 

Its College of Engineering promotes "project-based learning" to link theory with hands-on practice through its discipline-focused laboratories. Cal Poly offers a Master of Science in Architectural Engineering as a two-year program. Some of the highlighted courses in the Master's degree are advanced structural mechanics, nonlinear structural behavior, finite element method for building structures, and structural systems behavior.

2. Illinois Institute of Technology

The Illinois Institute of Technology (Illinois Tech) is a private, technology-focused research university that prepares professionals to keep an innovative mindset and entrepreneurial spirit. It was established in 1890 as the Armour Institute. The university officially became the Illinois Institute of Technology as a result of the merger of the Armour Institute and Lewis Institute. 

The Armour College of Engineering (ACE) is the largest and oldest school in Illinois Tech and has produced many notable engineers including Leonard Reiffel, Robert Lee Roderick, and Martin Copper. ACE offers a Master of Engineering in Architectural Engineering as a coursework degree program. Students are required to complete a minimum of 32 credit hours and can specialize in construction management, building systems, or structures. 

3. Milwaukee School of Engineering

The Milwaukee School of Engineering (MSOE) is a private non-profit university that offers Bachelor's and Master's degrees not only in engineering but in business and nursing as well. MSOE was founded in 1903 as the School of Engineering of Milwaukee by Oscar Werwath. As a student of MSOE, students can enjoy various student support services that aim to promote success in both academic and non-academic pursuits. This includes student access to RCAS tutoring, their wellness center, public safety services, and comprehensive IT support.

The university prides itself on providing the “MSOE advantage,” which allows students to get more out of their degree. The MSOE advantage is intended to offer more personal attention, practical experience, and career power. A Master of Science in Architectural Engineering (MSAE) degree is one of the Master's degrees offered by the university that emphasizes structural design and analysis. The Master's program is flexible, with courses offered in the evenings, and can be completed in three to five years. Students are required to complete a total of 45 graduate credits with at least 36 credits in the technical specialty courses. Some of the courses a student can study are bridge design, hydronic heating and cooling design, applied finite elements, and reinforced concrete structure design.

4. Pennsylvania State University

Pennsylvania State University (Penn State) is a research university with 24 campuses around the state. It was founded in 1855 as a land-grant university that aimed to apply scientific principles to farming. Penn State contributes more than $11.5 billion to the state's economy. The university collaborates with various partners in the industrial, educational, governmental, and agricultural sectors to research valuable issues to the society. Its total research expenditures topped $900 million by 2018.

Penn State's Graduate School offers PhD, Master of Science (MS), Master of Architectural Engineering (MAE), and Master of Engineering (MEng). Students are required to have a GPA of 3.0 upon admission to qualify. MEng, MS, and PhD programs require a minimum of 10 approved lectures and MEng and MS students must complete at least 39 credits of coursework. Among the courses are historical structural design methods, building performance failures and forensic techniques, earthquake-resistant design of buildings, and solar engineering of thermal processes.

5. University of Colorado-Boulder

The University of Colorado-Boulder (CU Boulder) prides itself for being a top university for innovation where faculty and students collaborate to test new concepts. It first opened its doors in 1876 and is the home of the world-changing Engineers Without Borders that helps improve lives in developing countries and has positively impacted communities in over 45 countries.

As an engineering student at CU Boulder, one can participate in its Engineering Active Learning Program that provides students hands-on engineering experience in the local and global scene while at the same time forging professional connections through internships. Its Civil, Environmental and Architectural Engineering Department offers both Master of Science (MS) and PhD degrees for architectural engineering students. Both degrees have a study emphasis on building energy, construction engineering and management, materials and resources, and illumination. Students are required to complete a total of 30 credit hours for both Master's and PhD programs. 

6. University of Kansas

The University of Kansas (KU) is a research institution and the state’s flagship university. It was founded in 1865 and welcomed a class of 55 students a year later. Today, the university has over 28,000 students on 5 campuses. KU has over $240 million in externally funded research conducted by its independent and multidisciplinary research centers. KU's School of Engineering prides itself on being a bridge to the future and a pioneer of new technologies. Its Civil, Environmental & Architectural Engineering Department offers a Master of Science (M.S.) degree in architectural engineering that specializes in technical areas such as energy management, construction engineering, building mechanical systems, and lighting and electrical systems. The degree can be taken up as part-time or full-time with a required minimum GPA of 3.0 upon admission. Students will have to complete a total of 30 credit hours with options that depend on the thesis and projects.

7. University of Miami

The University of Miami (UM) is a research university that is comprised of 11 schools and colleges. It was established in 1925 during the region's well-known real-estate boom. UM first opened its doors to 646 full-time students and consisted of the College of Liberal Arts, School of Music, and the Evening Division. Today, the university has over 16,000 students in its 115 Bachelor’s, 104 Master’s, and 63 Doctoral programs. Students at UM can enjoy the university's unparalleled academic support, sports, and cultural offerings as well as join in its various wellness and fitness programs. 

UM's College of Engineering is equipped with state-of-the-art laboratories and facilities and is comprised of 5 departments. The Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering Department offers MS in Architectural Engineering that focuses on the building industry with an appreciation of integrated architectural requirements. Its specialty areas of study are integrated building systems, mechanical, electrical, and plumbing (MEP) systems, and structural engineering and structural materials. Students are required to complete 30-course credits and should take at least two Civil, Architectural, and Environmental (CAE) core courses as well as at least three CAE elective courses.

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