Earning Minor Degrees

What is a minor?

A minor is a secondary area of interest that often complements a student’s major. Although not a degree requirement for College of Architecture and the Built Environment, many students choose to pair their major discipline with another related design field. A minor allows students to group electives together in a meaningful way, providing a set of courses that provides supplemental study in a particular subject area. Options for minors are determined by the academic program and consist of a minimum of twelve credits in the subject area.

Why choose to study a minor?

In addition to integrating and unifying subjects covered in electives, minors enable students to pursue secondary areas of interest and to develop a knowledge base and skill sets that complement their major area. By layering a secondary area onto a primary field of study, minors indicate versatility and flexibility to a prospective employer, increasing a student’s marketability and expanding prospects for internships and future employment.

Plus, by completing one of the College of Architecture and the Built Environment’s graduate minors—consisting of foundation courses from a specific graduate program, including Sustainable Design, Construction Management, Real Estate Development, Geodesign, Architecture and Interior Design—a student may be eligible for advanced standing in a Master’s program or for admission into an Accelerated Dual Degree program.

Guidelines for Minors

  • A student may not combine a major and minor in the same or similar functional area (e.g., an Interior Design major and an Interior Design minor).
  • A student may not use the same course for credit in both the major and minor areas. In other words, only elective credits can be applied to the minor.
  • Minors consist of 12 credits. At least one is a required course completed by a selection of courses of which the student may choose. Any substitute elective course from within the minor discipline must be approved. Please review and obtain the appropriate form available at University Registrar’s website.

College of Architecture & the Built Environment Minors

  • Architectural History & Theory. In-depth exploration of significant architecture and design themes and analyze historical periods and issues relative to the meaning and practice of architecture and related disciplines.
  • Building Technology, Encompasses structural systems, loading, and materials and the relationships of structures, environmental systems and building enclosure within a variety of building typologies. (Architectural Studies students only.)
  • Computational Design. Introduction to the concepts and applications of computation in architectural design and explores computational design thinking through novel techniques, tools, processes and theories, including parametric design, geometric reasoning, algorithmic modeling, performance-based modeling, physical computing, data visualization, and digital fabrication.
  • Construction Management. Introduction to construction management concepts and principles as applied to contemporary practice, investigating the intersecting roles of construction manager, architect, client, and general contractor.
  • Geographic Information Systems (GIS). Explores applications of GIS to various disciplines, including advanced concepts in geospatial technology and desktop as well as internet technologies.
  • Historic Preservation. Foundation in contemporary practice and fieldwork, sustainability issues, building conservation, adaptive reuse of historic structures, as well digital technology for managing, documenting, conserving, and interpreting historic or culturally significant structures and places.
  • Interior Design, Intended for Bachelor of Architecture and B.S. Architectural Studies majors interested in gaining expertise in problem-solving methodologies, current technologies for visual expression and sustainable practices as applied to the interior environment. The Interior Design minor can seque into the M.S. in Interior Architecture.
  • Landscape Architecture. Landscape Design is intended for design majors (primarily for architecture or interior design majors), and Landscape Planning for non-design majors (primarily for environmental and conservation biology or environmental sustainability majors).
  • Photography. Introduction to photographic techniques, processes, history and theory, focusing upon photography as part of visual culture in its application to commercial, fashion, advertising and product design, and as a medium for self-expression.
  • Real Estate Development. Graduate courses introduce the economic, social and physical issues inherent in environmentally and fiscally sustainable real estate and land-use development, encompassing market analysis and valuation, finance and investment, legal issues, public-private partnerships, urban regeneration and adaptive reuse, development paradigms and their long-term local, national, and global impacts.
  • Sustainable Design. Graduate courses introduce techniques used to measure, predict and design for thermal comfort, and resilience across scales, as well as methods to calculate sustainable systems, and evaluate, compare, perform life cycle analyses of materials.