MSc in Architecture

USI Università della Svizzera italiana

Program Description

MSc in Architecture

USI Università della Svizzera italiana

Goals and Contents

The Master of Science in Architecture offers the opportunity to acquire the most advanced theoretical knowledge and operative skills for the practice of contemporary architectural design. Architectural design is taught through its disciplinary foundations and is closely related with technological innovation, environmental issues, models of territorial management and the themes of restoration and reestablishment of the historical, architectural and environmental heritage.

The objective the Master pursues is to train professionals who, on the basis of the acquired awareness and in-depth knowledge of the complexity of current architectural practice, are competent both to carry out the functions of direct architectural design and to coordinate the different specialists involved in professional projects.

The study programme consists of a series of theoretical lectures and design studios dedicated to arguments and methods of architectural design in its different forms (housing, services industry, culture, etc.) and scales (from interior design to the architectural structure, all the way up to the urban and territorial plan).

The programme draws on three different but correlated teaching approaches. The first consists in theoretical courses pertaining to the methodological, technological and historical knowledge that will enable future architects to explore critically central themes of contemporary architectural culture. The second approach is embodied in the so called "horizontal design studios" and combines theoretical consideration with practical design work carried out on individual case studies. The third approach entails, each semester, the choice of a design studio which focuses on a specific project typology, whether architectural or urban.

The last semester is entirely dedicated to the drafting of the final thesis, which consists in a project that is related to a topic chosen by the design studio professor. Although each professor chooses a different topic to be developed by his students, all concern a specific site selected by the school.

Graduates are qualified to practice architecture as independent professionals or working with large architectural firms. Thanks to the acquired skills, which cover the whole project process and the different scales of intervention, graduates are prepared for the elaboration of projects ranging from the preliminary project to the working drawings.


The main language of tuition is Italian. However there is usually at least one design studio offered in English and some courses are held in English. In the weeks preceding the fall semester, an Italian course is organised (for both beginners and advanced users).

This school offers programs in:
  • English

Last updated January 17, 2017
Duration & Price
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Start date
Sept. 2017
24 months
Full time
16,000 CHF
Start date Sept. 2017
Switzerland Lugano
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info
Duration 24 months
Price 16,000 CHF