Top Degrees for Architectural Engineering in Europe

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Top Degrees for Architectural Engineering in Europe

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Following the 2008 economic crisis, Europe's construction sector has slowly recovered and now provides over 18 million direct jobs. The steady demand for high-level engineering work, especially in the fields of architectural engineering, can open up more job opportunities for architectural engineers throughout Europe. This is good news for students and professionals who wish to pursue or make use of an architectural engineering degree in Europe. Below are some of the top universities for architectural engineering Master's degrees.

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1. Aarhus University

Aarhus University is a research school founded in 1928. It is the largest and oldest university in Denmark and consistently ranks on various lists including the Shanghai Academic Ranking of World Universities, the Leiden Ranking, and the QS World University Rankings. Aarhus University also prides itself on its unique research facilities, research-based teaching, and favorable tuition fees.

Students working on a Master of Science in Civil and Architectural Engineering can benefit from a research-intensive environment where they can also get the chance to collaborate with a private company. They may also choose study packages that allow them to specialize in relevant fields of study within civil and architectural engineering.

The compulsory courses that students need to take during the first year fall under:

  • Experimental mechanics theory

  • Numerical analysis in civil engineering

  • Applied innovation in engineering

  • Risk and reliability in engineering

These compulsory courses amount to 30 European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS) credits. Additionally, specialized study packages include the following:

  • Optimization of the construction system

  • Concrete structures and geotechnics

  • Structural dynamics

  • Tectonic design

  • Indoor climate and energy

2. KTH Royal Institute of Technology

The KTH Royal Institute of Technology was founded in 1827 and has grown to be one of Europe's leading technical and engineering universities. KTH is part of international research collaborations and joint programs with various colleges in the US, Australia, Asia, and Africa. There are five KTH campuses in Greater Stockholm, each strategically located near their areas of research and study. Its Master's program for the architectural engineering degree is offered at the KTH Campus in Stockholm by the School of Architecture and Built Environment.

The university's Master's in Civil and Architectural Engineering gives students advanced knowledge in the field of structural engineering, civil engineering, and architectural engineering. Its architectural engineering track covers both engineering design and analysis of buildings, emphasizing its system-level performance and lifecycle perspective. 

The program can be completed in two years, after which graduates are awarded a Master of Science degree. Some of the topics that are covered in the course are:

  • Design and construction of roads, streets, railway tracks, bridges, and tunnels

  • Environmental aspects of the built environment

  • Geotechnical engineering

  • Hydraulic engineering

  • Steel and timber structures

3. Politecnico di Milano

The Politecnico di Milano is a scientific-technological university that is known as a training institution for industrial designers, architects, and engineers. Politecnico was founded in 1863 and has been at the center of various educational and outreach initiatives in the technical and scientific world to this day. It has a total of seven campuses and over 45,000 enrolled students.

The Master of Science in Building and Architectural Engineering at Politecnico helps its graduates' prepare to face the cultural and technical challenges of sustainability in the construction sector. It offers two tracks: architectural engineering and building engineering, both of which are conducted entirely in English. The two are offered at separate campuses: architectural engineering at the Lecco Campus and building engineering at the Milano Città Studi Campus. 

MSci in Building and Architectural Engineering can be completed within two years. Some of the courses included in the curriculum for the architectural engineering track are:

  • Integrated project management and design tools

  • Building in seismic areas

  • Building services

  • Refurbishment and energy retrofit

  • The sustainable multidisciplinary design process

4. Technical University of Denmark

The Technical University of Denmark (DTU) is a leading university in the technical and natural sciences area. It was founded in 1829 by Hans Christian Ørsted with the vision of developing and creating value using science and engineering. Today, the university prides itself on its wide range of international research and sought-after graduates. The university has also ranked highly in several university rankings including the Leiden Ranking, Reuters Top 100 World's Most Innovative Universities, and the QS World University Rankings. 

The university's Master of Science degree in Architectural Engineering helps students link engineering skills to the design process through cross-disciplinary project courses. It supplements the generic project courses with a wide range of specializations including:

  • Load-bearing structures

  • Acoustics

  • Lighting

  • Project management 

  • Indoor climate

  • Building information modeling

The Master's degree is a two-year graduate program with 120 ECTS credit points. Some of the courses included in the curriculum are:

  • Integrated project design 

  • Sustainable urbanization from a practical case perspective

  • Technology, economics, management, and organization (TEMO) business models

  • Probabilistic modeling in civil engineering

  • Advanced steel structures

  • Dynamics of structures: theory and analysis

5. University of Bath

The University of Bath is a public university founded in 1856 as the Bristol Trade School. Today, the university offers world-class education with an excellent reputation for research and teaching. It is now ranked as one of the top universities in the UK and a major contributor to the local and national economies.

The university offers a Master of Science in Architectural Engineering: Environmental Design. It emphasizes creating spaces that are practical, sustainable, and beautiful. Interested students can also take a five-day intensive course in the Passivhaus - an independent and non-profit organization that designs, builds, and tests over 65,000 buildings that use its low-energy design standard - for an additional fee.

The Master's degree can be completed in one year, to include design projects, laboratory sessions, coursework, dissertation, and oral assessment among others. Required course units include:

  • Principles of construction project management

  • Building-integrated environmental systems

  • Professional and research skills for the construction industry

  • Assessment and modeling tools

  • Environmental performance of materials and buildings

6. University of Sheffield

The University of Sheffield is a public research university developed from three local institutions, namely: the Sheffield Technical School, the Sheffield School of Medicine, and Firth College. It is a proud member of the Russell Group of leading UK research universities and consistently ranks highly in the QS World University Rankings and the Times Higher Education World University Rankings.

The university's Master of Science in Architectural Engineering Design is accredited by the Further Learning for a Chartered Engineer (CEng) and the Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers. Students taking up the program will have access to labs, computer facilities, wind tunnels, the Urban Flows Observatory Visualisation Suite, and virtual reality equipment, among other facilities.

The Master's program can be completed by full-time students in one year and has optional modules to choose from in addition to its required core modules. Included in the core modules are:

  • Principles of building physics for sustainable design

  • Architectural engineering project design

  • Sustainable engineering design

  • Urban microclimate

7. Vrije Universiteit Brussel

The Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) is an internationally-oriented university that prides itself on delivering high-quality research and tailor-made education. VUB was founded in 1834 by Pierre-Théodore Verhaegen and was originally named Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB). It is the only Flemish university that included the 'Free Research' principle in its statutes. 

VUB's Master of Science in Architectural Engineering is offered with cutting-edge, scientific research that prepares its students for a wide range of careers. The program combines both structural engineering and architectural studies with management training and trains students on designing large-scale architectural projects. 

The standard track for the Master of Science in Architectural Engineering has a total of 120 ECTS credits and is built up modularly with compulsory courses, electives, and a master’s thesis. Some of the available courses are:

  • Structural renovation techniques

  • Design of concrete structures

  • Energy performance of buildings

  • Low-energy design for sustainable buildings

  • Soil mechanics