Postgraduate MArch


School of Science, Engineering and Environment




Two year

Next enrolment

September 2024


In a nutshell

The heart of the world’s first industrial city is our laboratory, you will be based in our design research studios at Peel Park. The special features of the course are framed by our identity as the Salford Laboratory of Architecture (S-LAB) - a space and forum through which to explore contemporary ideas of place, culture and technology that places our internationally and academically diverse student cohort at the heart of architectural experimentation. This position leverages the University of Salford’s reputation and world leading facilities to engage and collaborate with other disciplines, external organisations, and industry partners through live-projects. We are ideally placed within a global media city that has become a powerhouse of the UK's digital economy and is widely recognised as a national and international hub for the creative industries and a test-bed of innovation in the built environment.

Delivered over two years and enriched with theoretical and research skills, knowledge exchanges, and practice-based learning that refines and develops your confidence. Our programme and modules instil a sense of care for socio-environmental systems, imaginative curiosity and techno-ecological ingenuity; it constructs its encounter with the architectural through art, philosophy, and science.

The MArch at Salford is prescribed at Part 2 Level by the UK Regulator of Architects, the Architects’ Registration Board (ARB). If you successfully complete this MArch and hold a recognised undergraduate Part 1 qualification,  you can progress to complete the the Part 3 Diploma - and be eligible to register as an architect and to join the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA).

International applicant? Please check international intakes for the latest information and application dates.

Start your MArch Architecture study journey

Register for our next Open Day  where you can learn more about the course, tour our impressive studios and meet the tutors

You will:

  • Enhance your knowledge of architecture design thinking to explore the relationships between ecological and human systems
  • Experience an immersive and dynamic studio-based learning environment, complete with 3-D printers, laser cutters, portable workspace and digital tools and technologies to articulate an architectural position
  • Develop critical understanding of the professionalism, duties and personal responsibilities of architects to clients, building users, constructors, co-professionals and the wider society

students accepted

Course accreditations

Architects Registration Board

This is for you if...


You intend to enhance your knowledge of architecture and design research to explore relations between techno-ecological and socio-technical systems.


You aspire to contribute to our dynamic studio-based research-led design culture.


You are curious to imagine and create cultural understandings of architectural research through fieldwork and ethnographic, archival, speculative, computational and artistic methodologies.


You seek critical understanding of the professionalism, duties, and personal responsibilities of architects to clients, building users, constructors, co-professionals, and the wider society.


You have the motivation to join a research-led community and a course that builds on your experience inhabiting different forms of climate catastrophe and social injustices.


You are inspired to work closely with our faculty to develop polemical propositions for speculative, research-informed architectural futures.

Course details

All about the course

Architecture student and lecturer beside practical work models

Course delivery

From our location in the world’s first industrial city, we adopt the position of a socially-engaged practitioner, and put practice-based learning and industry collaboration at the heart of your learning experience.

Delivered over two years, our MArch course is based on a 240-credit modular structure.  Each module is carefully-designed to provide learning and appropriate skill development consistent with its position in the overall structure. Intensive 'diagonal' workshops are embedded throughout.

  • In year one, you will experience Design Studio modules in Performative Technologies and Urban Ecologies, which include placement experience in architectural and design offices with local industry partners. This is complemented with modules in Digital Design Technologies, Histories and Theories and Practice Management and Law
  • In year two, you will experience further Design Studios, which include design workshops with industry partners from the UK and Europe. Year two culminates with a semester-long design research project (thesis) in which you will articulate an architectural position based on professional practice

Learn more about the current course modules in the section below.

Course team

The MArch postgraduate course is delivered by an academic team with extensive research and industry knowledge.  The architecture department at Salford is globally-renowned, with strong regional, national and international industry links.

Course leader: Dr. Derek Hales

Year one

Histories, Theories & Methodologies

This research methods module helps you develop your approaches to design research and futures through fieldwork, archives, and speculation on/through/for architecture. You will learn about the histories of theories and methodologies of our discipline and those that influence it from philosophy to linguistics, computation, anthropology, geography, and ecology, among others. The module considers the unbuilt, the literary, the cinematic, and the interactive through an architectural lens. It examines books, magazines, and the discipline’s periodicals, together with artefacts produced in exemplar architectural practices and academic studios. By the end of this module, you will establish a critical versatility in several modes of knowledge production and an ability to create and validate transdisciplinary futuring practices such as architecture.

Design Studio 1

This studio module is practice-based and research-led through design workshops. The interdisciplinary future of Architecture and its ecological associations across the urban, rural, and landscape scales are a central concern for the studio. It is framed within contemporary and relevant eco-environmental research themes and aims to produce outputs grounded in landscape urbanism and urban ecologies. The studio allows you to engage with relational and systems thinking in urban analysis, enabling you to experiment with design research, digital technologies, and communication skills. It embeds core principles in the first year of design exploration, expanding the remit of architectural research and extending its thought process to mobilities and flows across the landscape.

Design Studio 2

This studio module is practice-based and research-led through group seminars, workshops, and tutorials. The transdisciplinary future of Architecture and its relationships with theory and experimentation are a central concern for the studio. It is framed within contemporary and relevant socio-political research themes and aims to produce outputs responsive to global challenges and accelerating technological transformation. The studio allows you to engage with speculative, performative, and ethnographic methodologies in architectural research and design, enabling them to experiment with digital technologies and pursue novel solutions. You will develop your communication skills in various representation and narrative techniques.

Construction Science, Technologies & Law

This practice module helps you develop a critical understanding of the nature of professionalism and the architect’s duties and responsibilities to clients, building users, constructors, co-professionals, and the wider society. The relationship between Technology, Innovation, and Law is central to the module. It takes a philosophical stance and develops a practical grasp as to how planning law, the Building Safety Act, building regulations, the Construction Design Management regulations, and International Standards, such as BIM, affect architectural practice. The module focuses on the role of the Principal Designer within the design team and on developing the independent learning abilities required for continuing professional development. You will explore emerging technologies, innovative methods and models of procurement, entrepreneurship, manufacturing, and interdisciplinary practices.

Year two

Design Studio 3

Design Studio 3 is one of a pair of design research modules running in three consecutive phases across the final year. It provides an experimental platform which informs the design thesis (Design Studio 4) and typically establishes the programme or content of the final design thesis, involving a design-led investigation of your matter of concern. Design Research methodologies, coupled with the Dissertation, provide conceptual frames through which you will critically engage with the formulation of your proposition and communicate its intent.

Design Studio 4

Design Studio 4 typically establishes a scale shift in design proposals, from site strategy to programme and also from form to programme/programme to form, testing aspects of the proposition made between the dissertation and Design Studio 3. The module is structured in three phases across the year includes an investigation of significant speculative and technological strategies that are critical to the thesis. Your Thesis concludes in a public showcase which communicates the final resolution of the project and all associated research, exhibited to professional presentation standards and includes a critical study of a significant aspect of the proposition as a work of architecture.


The Dissertation provides an opportunity for you to explore a research topic that relates your interest in a matter of architectural concern through the production of an extended piece of scholarly academic media (7000 words). Extending your engagement in Histories Theories and Methodologies from year 1 into year 2, in the Dissertation, we encourage you to develop the subject of your enquiry or the matter of concern for your thesis. The research dissertation is to be developed in parallel with your interests, and career aspirations and whilst submitted at the end of the first term should continue to inform the exploratory design research of Design Studio 3 through three phases and conclude in re-presentation of the dissertation with the thesis at public exhibition. The subject chosen will therefore reflect the symbiosis between design practice and theory and allow for individual specialist scholarship to be located within a deeper understanding of an architecture driven by socio-political, accelerating technological, and eco-environmental matters of global concern.

Please note that it may not be possible to deliver the full list of options every year as this will depend on factors such as how many students choose a particular option. Exact modules may also vary in order to keep content current. When accepting your offer of a place to study on this programme, you should be aware that not all optional modules will be running each year. Your tutor will be able to advise you as to the available options on or before the start of the programme. Whilst the University tries to ensure that you are able to undertake your preferred options, it cannot guarantee this.

What will I be doing?


Learning takes place in our purpose-built design studios. These carefully designed spaces house the specialist equipment and tools you'll need to inspire your creativity and execute your ideas.  

Personal development is encouraged through structured workshops and other activities, with the research skills you develop enabling you to be self-directed.

Work-based learning/industry experience – in which you will act as 'consultant-researcher-designers' – will complement specific modules where you will assess a theoretical concept with its practical implementation.

Our academics are leading architecture practitioners who regularly contribute to research and enhance current practice.  Visiting speakers will also contribute to your learning, bringing real-world examples to provide you with a deeper understanding of architecture and what is required to become a chartered architect.


Learning outcomes are achieved through a combination of design studio-based activities and seminar-led sessions. Example assessment methods include lectures (including from invited practitioners), seminars, tutorials and workshops, supported by student presentations, symposia and peer feedback.

  • Design Studio Portfolio/Problem - based learning workshops 50% of Year 1 
  • Critical reflection and reports 50% of Year 1 
  • Design Studio Portfolio/Problem - based learning workshops 75% of Year 2 
  • Dissertation 25% of Year 2

School of Science, Engineering and Environment

Rising to the challenge of a changing world, our postgraduate courses are designed to shape the next generation of urbanists, scientists, engineers, consultants and industry leaders.

Shaped by industry, and delivered by supportive programme teams, you can develop the skills to take your career potential further.


Salford Laboratory of Architecture (S-LAB) is a forum exploring contemporary ideas of place, culture, and technology. Reflecting the University of Salford’s strategy to prepare its students for the future, S-LAB is an environment for research-led and industry-focused experiences. The laboratory thrives in the techno-industrial milieu of the region, in cutting-edge campuses and buildings, and in the ambitious student body it attracts.


Industry Collaboration

We put industry collaboration at the heart of architecture study at Salford. Supported by Architect Stephen Hodder, of Manchester-based practice Hodder + Partners, our MArch Architecture students had the opportunity to work on live briefs focusing on the newly-opened RHS Bridgewater in Salford.

During the project, our students designed new buildings concepts, went on site visits and tours of the gardens, engaged with professional architects and put their skills into practice. These collaborations provide our students with invaluable experience and insight of future careers.

Employment and stats

What about after uni?

Degree show


With a Part 2 qualification, you are well on your way to becoming a chartered architect. Architecture is a highly-valued profession throughout the world. As a qualified architect, you will work throughout the built environment profession on a diverse range of projects and developments.  

As a Part 2 architecture graduate, you are likely to find employment opportunities with architectural practices, design practices, and engineering consultancy firms. There may also be opportunities with central government, local authorities, property developers, building contractors, housing associations, financial institutions, major retailers and manufacturing companies.


On successful completion of your Part 1 and Part 2 architecture studies, you can progress to the RIBA Advanced Diploma in Professional Practice in Architecture (Part 3)validated and prescribed by the RIBA and ARB respectively.  You will need to engage with the required 24 months of professional practice before sitting the Part 3 exam.

You might also choose to take your subject interest further with postgraduate research. Our Centre for Urban Processes, Resilient Infrastructure and Sustainable Environments is home to PhD and Research Master’s opportunities exploring how we can enhance our built environments at local, national and international scales. 

Explore our Doctoral School to learn more about research training, support and opportunities.

A taste of what you could become

An architect

An urbanist

A planner

A designer

A consultant

And more...


What you need to know


The MArch Architecture course at Salford is designed for applicants who are passionate about architecture and want a learning experience embedded with live briefs and collaborations with forward-thinking architectural design practices.

The MArch fulfils Part 2 requirements of the professional architecture qualification process. 


All of our courses are taught and assessed in English. If English is not your first language, you must meet our minimum English language entry requirements. An IELTS score of 6.0 (no element below 5.5) is proof of this, however we do accept a range of equivalent qualifications. 

Read more about our English language requirements, including information about pathways that can help you gain entry on to our degree courses. If you do not have the English language requirements, you could take our Pre-Sessional English course


Please check international intakes for the latest information and application dates.

Standard entry requirements

Undergraduate 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) in a BSc/BA Architecture course. 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. 

If applying for entry in 2022, our entry requirements will be a second class honours degree (2:2) in a BSc/BA Architecture course.


Applicants are required to submit an electronic portfolio of work as part of the application process. Applicants who can evidence a passion for architecture, and can demonstrate they can achieve at a high level, will be considered for an interview to receive a place on the course.

Your portfolio should include relevant work from an undergraduate architecture course which shows achievement of ARB/RIBA Part 1 (or non-UK equivalent), plus 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.

Visit the ARB website for more information on the ARB/RIBA Part 1 criteria.

International student entry requirements

We accept qualifications from all around the world. Find your country to see a full list of entry requirements.

Alternative entry requirements

Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL)

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).

For more information or enquires about this scheme, please contact: 

Learn more about the Salford Alternative Entry Scheme.

How much?

Type of study Year Fees
Full-time home 2024/25 £9,990.00per year
Full-time international 2024/25 £16,380.00per year

Additional costs

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

International student scholarships

If you are a high-achieving international student, you may be eligible for one of our scholarships. Learn more about our latest international scholarships.

Apply now

All set? Let's apply

Enrolment dates

September 2024

September 2025

UCAS information

Course ID K102

Institution S03