ARB/RIBA Part II validated course
Page last updated 11 March 2021
This Master of Architecture, RIBA part II, ranks among the top 20 in the UK. You'll take part in live projects with genuine client briefs, in well equipped studios and workshops, and choose from three specialisms in your second year to develop an individually distinctive portfolio.
UWE Bristol has an excellent reputation for its architecture courses, and the calibre of its graduates. We have been ranked sixth nationally for student satisfaction for our Architecture courses in The Guardian University League Tables 2020.
If you have Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) or Architects Registration Board (ARB) Part I accreditation, this course is an excellent opportunity to achieve your Master of Architecture, plus RIBA and ARB Part II accreditation. Part III accreditation is also achievable here.
Hone in on your career aspirations
You can specialise in one of three or more areas, such as Social Architecture, Conservation or Urbanism, in your second year, to help differentiate your skills and develop a unique portfolio.
You will have attentive support from an excellent department with extensive research expertise and complementary knowledge, and learn from industry-experienced tutors and practising professionals.
Learning incorporates working on live briefs from genuine clients, and studying cities and buildings on national and international field trips. It will encourage and develop your design skills, and introduce you to working directly with clients and end users, and running an architecture practice.
This course also offers further real-world experience with excellent connections to industry and local communities and puts on a high-profile end-of-year show in Bristol, attended by local, regional and national practices.
Where can it take me?
Take a look at our online yearbook of student projects from our architecture and product design courses.
Watch: The learning and teaching experience
The MArch is a design-led course aimed at developing architectural professionals who show an ethically responsible attitude towards society, clients, users and the environment. It imparts the knowledge and skills you will need for a successful career in architectural practice, and prepares you for the office-based aspects of the role which also acts as a primer for the RIBA/ARB Part III examination.
The optional modules listed are those that are most likely to be available, but they may be subject to change.
The Masters of Architecture course is delivered over two years full time or three years part time. All modules are core to the award and students are required to successfully complete all modules (total 240 credits) to achieve the award.
For full-time students, the first year combines Design Studio A with Architectural Representation And Modelling, Advanced Cultural Studies, and Professional Practice modules.
You will study:
- Design Studio A (30 credits) - Typically involves two or more projects, including a 'live' project involving hands-on construction, or working with a client or user group in small groups, as well as a more theoretical individual design project. Involves a taught Technical Substantiation course.
- Advanced Cultural Studies: Narratives of Built Form (15 credits) - Explores the relationships between buildings and ideas by applying theories from a range of disciplines, including architecture, art and design, archaeology, psychology, and science.
- Architectural Representation and Modelling (30 credits) - Fine-tune your knowledge and ability in drawing, modelling and other relevant media for analysis, formal experimentation and conceptual speculation when designing and representing projects.
- Low/Zero Impact Buildings (15 credits)
You will study one optional modue from:
- Live Project Studio
- Design in Practice
This is where you begin to specialise, the modules listed are subject to change to reflect current issues in architecture and urban design, as well as faculty research and specialisms. This introduces the principles of research and you can also explore your specialist modules in more depth in the Design Research module. There are also modules in Advanced Cultural Studies and Professional Practice.
You will study:
- Design Studio B (60 credits) - This is where you produce your final year design thesis, and focus on your choice of Sustainable Architecture, Conservation or Urbanism.
- Advanced Cultural Studies: Narratives of Architectural Theory (15 credits) - You look critically at the theories behind architectural phenomena, including philosophical approaches to the social, economic, political, technological and aesthetic cultures architecture emerges from.
- Professional Practice in Architecture 2 (15 credits) - Introduces you to the understanding and competence you will need to pass the threshold for professional validation in Part 3 and develops your understanding of the issues surrounding effective practice and project management.
- Design Research (30 credits) - Generate your own design research project, experiment and work directly with materials, drawings or film.
Part-time study options
If you have family, financial, work and other commitments, you can study this course part-time over three years.
This structure is for full-time students only. Part-time students study the same modules but the delivery pattern will be different.
The University continually enhances our offer by responding to feedback from our students and other stakeholders, ensuring the curriculum is kept up to date and our graduates are equipped with the knowledge and skills they need for the real world. This may result in changes to the course. If changes to your course are approved we will inform you.
Learning and Teaching
Where possible, we have designed taught modules to integrate with learning in the design studio and professional practice. The course comprises weekly studio-based lectures, individual tutorials and group seminars, as well as regular project design reviews. Design projects are the focus for constructional, structural and environmental technical studies, taught by specialists through lectures, seminars and studio tutorials.
Visiting practitioners, academics and internal researchers contribute to the teaching, and support your specialist knowledge development.
For more details see our glossary of teaching and learning terms.
Full-time: Two years
Part-time: Three years
You will study alongside full-time students, so will enjoy the same level of tutorial support and peer learning in the studio. The first two years include the studio work, and you need to commit to two days a week (typically a Monday and a Thursday) during term time in addition to another two days a week of independent study. You would also need to be available for a week-long study visit.
Assessment focuses on presentations of project work, portfolio submissions, and illustrated reports and essays.
For more details see our full glossary of assessment terms.
This course provides an opportunity to achieve a Master of Architecture and Part II accreditation from the Architects Registration Board (ARB) and the Royal Institute of British Architects. Students can progress to study for their Part III at UWE, in order to join the UK Register of Architects.
This course is also accredited by the Board of Architects Malaysia.
Each year, we arrange a field trip that is integral to the studio projects, so you can study cities and buildings, attend public lectures and, on occasion, meet local organisations and students. Destinations so far include Istanbul, Amsterdam, Paris and New York.
You learn alongside students from across the faculty in our modern, well-equipped facilities. These are open around the clock, and include our award-winning Design Studios.
- Study and collaborate on group assignments in our dedicated MArch studio space.
- Develop skills in design, sketching, CAD and environmental modelling on industry standard software.
- Create architectural models using laser cutters, 3D printers, 3D routers and other equipment available in our workshops and laboratories.
- Test lighting in environmental physics and acoustics laboratories.
Find out more about the facilities and resources UWE Bristol has to offer.
Learn from industry
Get involved in workshops and projects led by professional structural and mechanical engineers, as well as architects from practices like Zaha Hadid Architects, Fielden Clegg Bradley Studios, White Design and Stride Treglown.
We arrange and promote a range of internships. For instance, we have funded internships with Womad Festival, Hands-on-Bristol and the Beckery Island Regeneration Trust.
Socialise and learn
Our Architecture Society arranges lectures from visiting professionals, plus field trips and social events that bring colleagues and like-minded students together.
Showcase your work
Careers / Further study
The MArch course not only introduces design skills, but in the second year focuses on the experience of working in an architecture practice, preparing you for the next stage of your architecture career. The course has RIBA and ARB Part II accreditation.
Our award-winning careers service helps you develop your employment potential through career coaching, a vacancy service for internships, placements, jobs, global opportunities, volunteering and community activity plus support for entrepreneurial activity, and access to employer events.
Full time course
Part time course
Indicative Additional Costs
Supplementary fee information
Students taking this course as a continuation of Part 1 in Architecture may be funded as an undergraduate. For further information please see our tuition fees pages.
We require one of the following:
- an honours degree of 2:1 or above from a RIBA Part I validated course; or
- a first degree in Architecture from an overseas institution that can be demonstrated to be equivalent to a 2:1 or above from a RIBA Part I validated course; or
- an honours degree of 2:2 from a RIBA Part I validated course, plus a minimum of 60% in the final year design project and/or evidence in your portfolio of significant development since you completed your degree; or
- successful completion of the ARB Part I examination; or
- appropriate academic or professional qualifications equivalent to the above which you should describe in detail in your application.
You may be invited to an interview (via video conferencing for overseas students) on the basis of your formal application and digital portfolio. Applicants without an ARB accredited degree or who live outside the UK must submit their portfolio at the time of application.
English language support
If you meet the academic requirements but require additional support to take your language skills to the required level, you may be able to attend one of our pre-sessional English courses. Students who successfully complete the pre-sessional course can progress onto their chosen degree course without retaking an IELTS or equivalent.
Read more about our Pre-Sessional English Programme.
How to apply
Advice on submitting a portfolio
We are now using an online portfolio review process. Once UWE Bristol has received your application, we may ask you to give us access to an online portfolio. Once we have received the links (URLs) to your portfolio, the Master of Architecture team will review your application and portfolio. We will sometimes ask applicants to attend an interview (via Skype for overseas applicants) to discuss their application and portfolio in more detail.
For general portfolio advice and what to include, please see our portfolio and interview guidance.
Advice on interviews
The purpose of the interview is to consider your application in the context of your future learning journey at UWE. Therefore, other than introducing yourself and offering to us a description of your previous experiences as a student and in professional practice, we would like to discuss with you your portfolio and approach to architecture as a holistic discipline.
For further advice on the interview, please see our portfolio and interview guidance.
Please see the general information about applications.
For further information
- Email: Admissions@uwe.ac.uk
- Telephone: +44(0)117 32 83333