This 12 month MArch Architecture Design and Build focuses on the relationships between design and the physical creation of space. The course will explore the nature of making and production as they relate to architectural design and practice.

The course is designed to ensure that students have the opportunity to learn about architecture by making, to understand materials through a hands-on exploration in their application, and ultimately to develop a critical response to the implications of design decisions on people and places.

A notable feature of this course is the development of design ideas at 1:1 scale and the integration with architecture students form varying backgrounds and experience levels.

Key facts

  • Participation in relevant prestigious national and international design competitions, in which there have been recent successes, is encouraged on this course.
  • As part of its remit, the Department of Architecture and Built Environment aims to develop your vocational skills and the environmentally responsible attitude necessary in today’s rapidly changing world.
  • The department enjoys strong collaborative links with overseas institutions.You may have the opportunity to attended conferences, seminars and training courses both in the UK and abroad.

Course details

This course comprises a series of design projects, skills-based workshops and research seminars, through which you will investigate technologies in an interdisciplinary manner to provide innovative solutions that are supported by appropriate technical evidence, testing and modelling.

You will develop a multidisciplinary approach to exploring the relationships of design and construction through opportunities offered by novel materials and structures, and develop the integrated design skill derived by considering how things are made.

You will be encouraged to creatively engage with working at 1:1 scale and the reqired techniques in the analysis and exploration of design. Students will develop professional skills in communicating ideas effectively in written reports, verbally and by means of presentations to groups, and the ability to exercise original thought.

This course does not currently convey professional accreditation in the UK.

Entry requirements

A 2:1 degree (or international equivalent) in architecture or a similar subject. This must include modules in architectural design amounting to 25%-50% of the total credits. An architectural design portfolio must also be submitted.

Course content

This course comprises a series of design projects, skill-based workshops and research seminars, through which you may investigate technologies in an interdisciplinary manner to provide innovative solutions that are supported by appropriate technical evidence, testing and modelling.

You will spend the summer semester producing a supervised dissertation. This will be an in-depth study of an individually determined topic and is your opportunity to conduct a major piece of independent research that reflects your interests and aspirations.

The MArch Architecture Design and Build is offered on a full-time basis over one year.

In the autumn and spring semesters, you will complete 120 credits worth of modules including a number of design projects, which are supported by lectures, workshops, seminars and tutorials to provide you with a parallel knowledge base and intellectual support for the design projects.

Finally, you will complete a 60-credit written dissertation during the summer period towards the end of the course.

Learning outcomes

By focusing on the contemporary challenges and opportunities in building design, you will develop a solid understanding of issues such as:

  • The consequences of design decisions on constructed space
  • The opportunities offered by understanding the relationships of designer and maker
  • The benefits of learning through making architecture with scale models and full-scale prototypes

Core Module

Typical modules include:

  • Masters Studio 1 (Design+Build A) (20 credits)
  • Design Build Theory and Practicum (20 credits)
  • Masters Studio 2 (Design+Build B) (30 credits)
  • Design, Technology & Materials (20 credits)
  • Research and Professional Skills, Tools and Methods (20 credits)
  • Design Fabrication (10 credits)
  • Dissertation (60 credits)

The modules we offer are inspired by the research interests of our staff and as a result may change for reasons of, for example, research developments or legislation changes. This list is an example of typical modules we offer, not a definitive list.

Please note that all module details are subject to change.


This MArch programme is project oriented - it explicitly calls for design proposals rather than purely theoretical work. The course stresses the importance of connecting design projects to the broader decision-making context of real and complex projects.

This programme has been specifically designed with the profession's needs in mind and most of the graduates from the MArch courses return to work as professionals within both the private and public sector in their own countries. Many do however continue to PhD programmes either at Nottingham or other leading universities.

Entry Requirements

  • Entry requirements: 2.1. Honours degree or equivalent
  • Other requirements: Architectural design work portfolio must be submitted.
  • IELTS: 6.5 (at least 6.0 in each element)
Program taught in:

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Last updated November 5, 2018
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Sep 2019
1 year
7,785 GBP
UK/EU Fees £7,785; International Fees: £17,910
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