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Architecture (MArch)


School - School of the Built Environment

Subject area - Architecture

UCAS Code: K102

Start Date(s): September


MArch: two years full-time 

PgDip: One year full-time

PgCert: Six months full-time


UK - £9,250 per year

International - £12,960 per year

In Brief:

  • Integrated industry experience will prepare you for professional practice
  • In 2017, we ranked 5th in the UK and 36th in the QS world ranking for Architecture and Built Environment teaching.
  • This course is designed to satisfy the requirements of the Architects Registration Board (ARB) and the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), providing the crucial second stage in the seven-year education of an architect
  • International students can apply

Course Summary

Our contemporary Master of Architecture (MArch) programme combines the best of theory and practice to get you ready for professional practice, entering offices or engaging with MPhil and PhD research.  

Our uniquely hands-on programme integrates industry experience with academic study; while completing your degree you will complete industry placements where you will take an active role in creating architecture and enhancing practice.

You will typically get the opportunity to go an international study trip, enabling you to enrich your study experience and stimulate your creativity. Visiting speakers will also contribute to your learning, bringing real-world examples that will enable you to develop a deeper understanding of this subject  and giving you insight into what is required to become a chartered architect.

Our academics are leading architecture practitioners who regularly contribute to research and enhance current practice. Their knowledge and experience puts them at the forefront of this field, and if you study here, you will be able to tap into this vast knowledge bank. Recently, Stephen Hodder MBE has joined our School as Visiting Professor in Architecture complementing our existing team of architecture professionals.

You will learn in our world-leading School of the Built Environment, which was ranked 5th in the UK and 36th in the world for architecture teaching, in the prestigious 2017 QS World University Rankings. You will be taught in purpose built design studios located in our brand new New Adelphi building. These carefully designed spaces house the specialist equipment and tools you'll need to inspire your creativity and execute your ideas.

In Summer 2018, our current MArch students experienced a 10-day Summer school in Boston and New York at some of the world’s leading centres of architectural research under a scheme funded by banking group Santander.  The visit took in MIT, Harvard, the PRATT Institute, Columbia and Northeastern Universities along with Utile Architecture & Planning and much-talked heralded start-up space, the Cambridge Innovation Centre.

Awards and Accreditation

Course Structure

In the first year of the MArch you will benefit from placement experience in architectural and design offices as part of the design-based modules (i.e. Performative Technologies – Material Matters, Advanced Digital Design Technologies, Urban Ecologies). Through these placements you will be able to develop your professional skills and understanding of the realities of the field.

Your personal development is encouraged at each level of the MArch through structured workshops and other activities, with the research skills you develop enabling you to be self-directed. The two year course will culminate with a semester-long design research project – a thesis – in which you will articulate an architectural position which looks forward to professional practice.

To earn a PgCert qualification you will complete 60 credits; to earn a PgDip you will complete 120 credits; the full MArch is constituted by 240 credits.

On this module you will critically explore the role played by histories and theories in generating cultural values as related to making places and material artefacts. You will develop a comprehensive and systematic understanding of how theories of architecture contribute to framing practice, and how built places and material artefacts participate in forming theories. It will enable you to engage with how theories of art practices contribute to architectural design, demonstrating originality in the application of the knowledge, together with a practical understanding of how established techniques of research and enquiry are used to create and interpret knowledge in the architecture and design disciplines. You will also gain a systematic and critical understanding of historiographies implicit in architecture and how these can contribute to design.
Through this module you will be able to impart a sophisticated knowledge and understanding of the responsibilities of the architect, as well as how such areas as property law, building regulations and the Construction Design Management Regulations (CDM) affect architectural practice, and to explore innovative methods and models of procurement, entrepreneurship, manufacture, and interdisciplinary practice. You will explore matters of concern inherent in, for instance, legislation affecting urban design and its participation in the control of the public realm, in order to engage in cutting edge experiences of practice, management and law from leading and speculative practitioners. You will be able to develop critical understanding of the nature of professionalism and the duties and personal responsibilities of architects to clients, building users, constructors, co-professionals and the wider society and the role of the architect within the design team and construction industry, recognising the importance of current methods and trends in the construction of the built environment and developing independent learning ability required for continuing professional development. You will assess the constructional and structural systems, the environmental strategies and the regulatory requirements that apply to the design and construction of a comprehensive design project through practice management. You will also critically examine the financial factors implied in varying building types, constructional systems, and specification choices, and the impact of these on architectural design; understand the cost control mechanisms which operate during the development of a project; prepare designs that will meet building users’ requirements and comply with UK legislation, appropriate performance standards and health and safety requirements.  
The aim of this module is for you to enhance your knowledge of architecture design thinking to explore the relationships between ecological and human systems.
The aim of the dissertation is to provide you with an opportunity to engage in a piece of written research which establishes the important discourses embedded in the your matters of concern/themes at the forefront of the discipline.  You will develop the knowledge and skills necessary to undertake a structured, managed and well-presented project which demonstrates an understanding of the relevant literature, selection and application of an appropriate research methodology followed by analysis and dissemination of results in a succinct manner. You will explore critically current research and advanced scholarship in the architecture and design fields. The dissertation will equip you with the knowledge and understanding needed to evaluate methodologies and develop critiques on the current research on architecture and design and possible alternative original hypotheses. You will develop the skills to make sound judgements in the absence of complete data and communicate conclusions clearly to specialist and non-specialist audiences.
The module aims to develop, apply and test the your architectural design skills in the context of a complex design project.
On this module you will apply and test the student’s architectural design skills in the context of a complex design project. You will develop the necessary skills, competencies and understanding of a selected range of theoretical, technical, cultural, historical and professional issues, and the ability to integrate them into their designs. This module will enable you to focus on the detailed development of conceptual solutions into a concise architectural design project. You will use diverse representational and design media to communicate design concepts and information through appropriate means and techniques (graphical, textual, numeric, etc) to various stakeholders. You are encouraged to reflect on the overall process of their designs and on the development of their professional and intellectual agendas.

Please note, exact modules may vary in order to keep content current. Your tutor will be able to advise you as to the modules you will study on or before the start of the programme.

Entry Requirements

Qualification Entry requirements
Degree Applicants for the Master of Architecture (MArch) programme will typically have a first degree in architecture from an accredited undergraduate programme (normally with ARB/RIBA Part 1 exemption). Typically students will have achieved a minimum of an upper second class honours degree (2:1). Whilst it is not a requirement for entrants to have completed ARB Part 1, all Parts (1, 2 and 3) will need to be completed in order to be admitted to the UK Register of Architects.
Portfolio Applicants will be required to submit an electronic portfolio of work as part of the application process. Applicants who have a portfolio which evidences a passion for architecture, and who have demonstrated they can achieve at a high level, will be considered for a place on the course and for an interview. The portfolio should include relevant work from an undergraduate architecture course which shows achievement of ARB/RIBA Part 1 (or non-UK equivalent), as well any work completed in practice which might be relevant. Portfolios should demonstrate a range of creative and representational media, including various forms of drawing and three-dimensional making. Relevant written work should also be included. For more information on the ARB/RIBA Part 1 criteria please see

Salford Alternative Entry Scheme (SAES)

We welcome applications from students who may not have formal/traditional entry criteria but who have relevant experience or the ability to pursue the course successfully.

The Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) process could help you to make your work and life experience count. The APL process can be used for entry onto courses or to give you exemptions from parts of your course.Two forms of APL may be used for entry: the Accreditation of Prior Certificated Learning (APCL) or the Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL).

We do not require references provided that you have the standard academic entry requirements.  If you do not, then we will ask you to complete the Accreditation of Prior Learning process referred to above.

English Language Requirements

International applicants will be required to show a proficiency in English. An IELTS score of 6.0 with no band below 5.5 is proof of this.

Applicant profile

The MArch is designed for those who are passionate about architecture, have an appetite for knowledge, a desire to experiment and who wish to engage with forward thinking architectural design practices in which advanced technical skills, 'live' briefs and practice-based learning are embedded. The MArch provides the second stage in the seven-year education of an architecture.

Fees and Funding


Fees 2019-20

Type of Study Fee
Full-time £9,250 per year
Full-time International £12,960 per year

Fees 2018-19

Type of Study Fee
Full-time £9,250 per year
Part-time Your annual fee will be calculated pro rata to the full-time fee according to the number of credits you are studying.
Full-time International £12,600 per year

Additional costs

You should also consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.


  • The programme is based on a modular structure over two years with each module providing learning and appropriate skill development consistent with its position in the overall structure, and complementary to the other modules at each level.
  • Intensive 'diagonal' workshops are embedded throughout the program to ensure integration across the modules and a holistic approach.
  • The learning outcomes will be achieved through a combination of design studio-based and seminar-led learning that includes lectures (including from invited practitioners), seminars, tutorials and workshops, supported by student presentations, symposia and peer feedback. 
  • Work based learning/industry experience – in which students will act as 'consultant-researcher-designers' – will complement specific modules, aimed at testing the theoretical concepts against their practical implementation. 
  • Normally an international study trip will be incorporated in the learning and teaching strategy. 
  • The lectures will engage students in a variety of tasks and discussions of issues. You will be actively encouraged to increase your knowledge by further reading and visits.


Find out more about the School of the Built Environment

Career Prospects

Students graduating from the MArch will be able to enter employment, typically in architectural offices but also in other built environment and design practices. Those wishing to continue their architectural career progression will seek opportunities to engage with the required 24 months of professional practice before sitting the Part 3 exam.

Links with Industry

Our experienced international programme team maintain strong links with the architecture, engineering and construction sectors, including local and international architectural practices. This strong link with the professions ensures a stimulating range of external guest lecturers, as well as placement opportunities.

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