Many countries are known for their higher education in Architecture, and Canada is one of the most sought-after countries by international students of all fields. Canada has been among the top countries for education since 2016, with international standards of teaching from the best academic professionals in the world.
Canada is also one of the safest countries to live in, with very student-friendly living standards, flexible immigration policies, and multicultural society. Pursuing a postgraduate degree in architecture in Canada has many advantages ranging from but not limited to a better chance of job placement, higher earning potential, and the usage of state-of-the-art technology, etc.
This article lists the 12 universities with state-of-the-art architecture programs that are approved by the Canadian Architectural Certification Board (CACB).
1. University of Toronto (U of T), Toronto
The University of Toronto was founded in 1827 and over the years it has evolved into one of Canada’s leading institutions and is also one of the world’s top research-intensive universities.
Master of Architecture (M.Arch)
The M.Arch program at the University of Toronto is a well-balanced mix of theory and practical teaching and aims to prepare students to face the real world by helping them develop critical, creative, and independent thinking to create designs that respond to current environmental issues and societal changes. There are two types of degrees offered: professional and post-professional.
- Master of Architecture (professional) – This option is intended for those who do not already hold a professional degree in architecture.
Duration: 3 years full-time
Eligibility: A bachelor’s degree with a final-year grade point average of at least mid-B. Some preparation or experience in architectural design is encouraged.
- Master of Architecture (post-professional) – This option is intended for those who already hold a professional degree in architecture.
Duration: 1 year full-time
Eligibility: An accredited architectural professional degree from a recognized university.
In addition to this, the John.H.Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design also offers 6 other master’s programs. The Department of Civil Engineering also has a Masters of Engineering: Cities Engineering and Management, which is an option for architecture graduates. For further details on the other postgraduate courses mentioned above –
2. University of British Columbia, Vancouver
The University of British Columbia (UBC) was established in Vancouver, Canada in 1915 and it is now a global centre for learning and research. UBC encourages bold thinking, curiosity, and initiative, and helps students unlock their hidden potential and succeed in their chosen profession.
This professional course of study consists of design studios integrated with courses in architectural history and theory, technical and material systems, and design media. In UBC, the students also have a study abroad option, with opportunities to have global exposure and engage with the architecture and landscape architecture of different countries around the world.
Duration: 3 years full-time
Eligibility: Bachelor’s degree academically equivalent to a four-year bachelor’s degree at UBC.
In addition to this, the School of Architecture + Landscape Architecture also offers 5 other master’s programs. For further details on the other postgraduate courses visit https://sala.ubc.ca/academics/graduate-degrees.
3. University of Calgary, Calgary
The University of Calgary first started as a branch of the University of Alberta which was founded in 1908. Since then, University has grown quickly to become one of the leading universities in Canada with international standards of education that encourages research that addresses societal and environmental challenges faced by the world.
The M.Arch program of UCalgary teaches students about the challenges facing architecture today with a curriculum focused on responsive design, critical and creative thinking. The program also offers many enrichment opportunities, including external lecture series and study abroad programs (Barcelona, Tokyo, and the Pacific Northwest).
Duration: 3 years full-time including a Foundation year (students with an undergraduate degree in architecture from a CACB or NAAB-accredited program are eligible for the two-year degree)
Eligibility: Four-year undergraduate degree, ideally with experience in design.
In addition to this, the School of Architecture, Planning, and Landscape also offers 3 other master’s programs. For further details on the other postgraduate courses visit https://sapl.ucalgary.ca/future-students/graduate.
4. Ryerson University, Toronto
Ryerson University is a leading institution for research and innovation in Canada and is located in the heart of downtown Toronto. The University firmly believes that education and experience go hand in hand and their curriculum makes sure that what is learned in the classroom is enhanced by real-world knowledge through internships.
The curriculum of the Master of Architecture (M.Arch) program at Ryerson University is formulated in such a way that students can strengthen their ability to think critically and create responsive and impactful solutions. Graduate students are also provided with opportunities to study internationally through field trips and international conferences all around the world.
Duration: 2 years full-time
Eligibility: Completed a BArchSc degree (or equivalent), with a minimum grade point average (GPA) or equivalent of 3.00/4.33 (B)
5. Université de Montréal, Montréal
The Université de Montréal is a French medium public research university in Montreal, Canada. Over the course of more than 135 years, it has become a reputed institution in Canada. It offers more than 650 undergraduate and graduate programs, including almost 71 doctoral programs.
The M.Arch programme was created in 1998 and redesigned in-depth in 2016. The program isn’t restricted to just lectures and studios, but also includes workshops, seminars, and international study trips to various cities around the world such as New York, Barcelona, Santa Clara (Cuba), Edinburgh (Scotland), etc.
Duration: 1 year full-time (A preparatory year may be required for some candidates)
Eligibility: Must hold a pre-professional bachelor’s degree in architecture, or the equivalent and to be eligible, all candidates must attest to a knowledge of the French language.
In addition to this, the School of Architecture also offers 4 other masters programs. For further details on the other postgraduate courses visit https://urbanisme.umontreal.ca/accueil/.
6. McGill University, Montreal
McGill is a public university in Montreal, founded in 1821. It is one of Canada’s best institutions of higher learning and one of the leading universities in the world today. McGill University is the most culturally diverse research-intensive university in the country and is recognized around the world for its excellent teaching and research programs.
The Master of Architecture degree is based on a design-intensive professional curriculum centered on a sequence of four studio courses. Complementary and elective courses provide flexibility in individual program design and allow students to explore subject areas related to research and design interests.
Duration: 2 years full-time
Eligibility: students must have the equivalency of the B.Sc. (Architecture) to be admitted.
In addition to this, the Peter Guo-Hua Fu School of Architecture also offers two other graduate options. The School of Urban Planning offers a Master of Urban Planning degree for architecture undergraduates. For further details on the other postgraduate courses mentioned above –
7. University of Waterloo, Waterloo
Established in 1957, the University of Waterloo has grown to become the #1 university in Canada today for experiential learning. The University of Waterloo is well-known and most sought after for its academic programs, world-leading co-operative education and teaching/research excellence.
The Master of Architecture at the University of Waterloo is a two-year program. The program accepts applicants from pre-professional architecture programs from any country, in which students are expected to have completed the courses required for professional accreditation.
Duration: 2 years full-time
Eligibility: Students require a four-year, honours pre-professional undergraduate Architecture degree or professional Bachelor of Architecture degree with a minimum overall average of 75%.
8. Carleton University, Ottawa
Carleton University was founded in 1942 and is now an official UNESCO World Heritage Site. Over the years, it has grown to become one of Canada’s leading universities recognized for its
leadership in teaching, research, community engagement, and interdisciplinary study.
The Master of Architecture degree prepares students for a future in the profession and emphasizes creativity and innovation within theoretical and practical parameters. The MArch 2 year degree is for students who already have a pre-professional undergraduate degree in architecture, and the 3-Year MArch is for students who don’t.
Duration: 2 years full-time
Eligibility: Students require a pre-professional undergraduate degree in Architecture
In addition to this, the Azrieli School of Architecture and Urbanism also offers a Master in Architectural Studies and the School for Studies in Art and Culture offers an MA in Art and Architectural History. More details on these courses can be found here –
9. University of Manitoba, Winnipeg
The University of Manitoba was established in 1877 and is western Canada’s first university. It is one of the country’s top research institutions. The university provides a great experience for students built on the foundation of innovative teaching that encourages students to learn, thrive, and grow through unique experiences inside and beyond the confines of the campus as well.
Students in the M.Arch are guided and challenged by professors to engage in diverse research. The curriculum provides scope for learning outside the studio through conversations and collaborations with professionals, industry partners, community members, and international leaders in architecture and design.
Duration: 2 years full-time
Eligibility: A four or five year Bachelor’s degree in Architecture, Architectural Design, Architectural Science, Environmental Design (Architecture Option), or equivalent
In addition to this, the Faculty of Architecture also offers 3 other masters programs. For further details on the other postgraduate courses visit www.umanitoba.ca/architecture/programs-study.
10. Dalhousie University, Nova Scotia
Dalhousie University is located in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Founded in 1818, it is one of Canada’s oldest universities. The university has one the most unique curriculums amongst the colleges on Canada’s East Coast, blending academic programs with pioneering research.
Master of Architecture (M.Arch) – Professional Degree
The two-year M.Arch program is a part of the professional program BEDS+M.Arch. The university no longer has a post-professional M.Arch program. The BEDS+M.arch program follows the following pattern –
- 2 years of general (non-architecture) studies at any university
- 2 years of architecture in the pre-professional Bachelor of Environmental Design Studies program at Dalhousie
- The MArch program at Dalhousie
This results in a total of 4 years of study at Dalhousie and students graduate with two degrees.
Duration: 4 years
Eligibility: Students who have two years of general (non-architecture) studies at any university and transfer students who have completed a four-year pre-professional architecture degree are eligible for this program.
The School of Architecture also offers a Master of Environmental Design Studies program. Information about the same can be found at – ww.dal.ca/faculty/architecture-planning/school-of-architecture/programs/meds-design-build.html
11. Université Laval, Québec City
Université Laval is a public research university in Quebec City and is one of the oldest centres of higher education in Canada. For 350 years, the Université Laval has been shaping students and teaching them how to tackle challenges and achieve their goals. Université Laval plays a vital role in the community, working hand-in-hand with local leaders and innovators in research and development.
The master’s degree program prepares students to graduate to be responsible architects, to provide innovative and responsive solutions to the world’s architectural problems and the changing needs of society.
Duration: 1.5 or 2 years
Eligibility: Any student with a bachelor of architecture or equivalent is eligible.
In addition to this, The School of Architecture also provides 2 other Masters’ options. The school also has a Simultaneous Master’s option where students graduate with two master’s degrees. Information on the same can be found at –
12. Laurentian University, Ontario
Laurentian University is one of Canada’s top undergraduate universities. Its award-winning programs, multicultural learning atmosphere, and breathtaking campus make it one of the most sought-after universities in Canada. Laurentian is one of the largest bilingual universities in Canada providing distance education in both English and French.
The Laurentian M.Arch program is a unique one. The Master’s degree in Architecture focuses on the study of the northern community’s needs and the design of building systems for northern climates. The program focuses on experiential learning through design-build and community-design projects. It is taught completely in English.
Duration: 2 years full time
Eligibility: All applicants to the MArch Program must have a pre-professional architecture degree (i.e. BAS, BES, BEDS, etc.).