Wentworth Institute of Technology
Department of Architecture
The Architecture program at Wentworth embraces the art of making. We are committed to the traditional role of the practitioner and master builder: to design and construct buildings that contribute to society and enrich people's lives. To that end, the curriculum promotes research and design based on the linkages between conceptual frameworks and the tangible nature of architecture. Through rigorous investigations into the history, theory and material culture of the built environment, students engage design as a fusion of the art and science of building.
Wentworth's location in Boston provides a wonderful setting for architectural education. As one of the oldest cities in the United States, students experience the cultural richness and a diverse tapestry of both traditional and contemporary buildings. They learn about the opportunities and the responsibilities inherent in the architect's role as form maker of the built environment while discovering the profound impact of architecture on individuals, communities and societies. We think of Boston as a laboratory where students explore and test their ideas - they are constantly out walking and traveling through the city sketching, drawing, diagramming, photographing and experiencing architecture. Wentworth Institute of Technology has approximately 3,800 full-time students and the architecture program enrolls approximately 580 of those students pursuing both undergraduate and graduate degrees. Starting in freshman year, students have a dedicated space and a desk in one of our open and well-lit studios.
The faculty represents a broad range of interests and expertise, bringing insight and real world experience into the studio-based education. The program also offers opportunities to engage diverse cultures and building traditions through travel-based learning in national and international settings. Focusing on the tangible and material realities of design and building, our students are trained to think critically in order to articulate a well-grounded position in architecture that prepares them to become leaders in the field. Ultimately, the program provides graduates with the insight, skills, and perspective to pursue meaningful careers in architecture and design. When they start the program, every student receives a 15" Macbook Pro laptop with all the necessary 3D modeling software to help them develop the digital skills necessary for design studio. These skills will be put to use in a shop that has 3d printing capabilities, laser cutting and CNC machines that promote ideas of digital fabrication and assemblage. Finally, students have 2 semesters of professional co-op work placements as well as semester long study abroad opportunities in both Berlin, Germany and Girona/Barcelona, Spain.
Wentworth's undergraduate, pre-professional NAAB-based program grants a Bachelor of Science in Architecture (B.S. Arch.) at the end of the four-year (8 semester) sequence of study. The first three semesters provide a broad introduction to the field of architecture and serve as the common core for all concentrations that happen in the 5 subsequent semesters. Lecture courses convey an overview of the discipline (history, theory, technology and practice) while studio courses are based on a model of experiential learning focusing on design fundamentals, graphic skills and a conceptual understanding of building tectonics. The department's emphasis on both the art and the science of architecture is stressed throughout this introductory curriculum. The next five semesters of the Bachelor of Science in Architecture program build on the skills and knowledge of the first three semesters, while introducing students to more complex and varied studio topics including tectonics, site and environment, comprehensive design and urban design. In addition students study topics such as sustainable building practices, structures, environmental systems and professional practice. Studio content is closely coordinated with co-requisite courses, encouraging students to make connections between subjects and to develop a well-synthesized approach to design. The architecture program at Wentworth offers three areas of concentration that allow students to pursue a particular focus or point of emphasis in their study of architecture. Students express their preference of concentrations at the end of their first semester in sophomore year. Adaptive Interventions This concentration investigates architecture as a discipline with a primary focus is on interventions into contingent existing conditions. Adaptive re-use, regenerative urbanism, sustainability, critical regionalism and related strategies are addressed at scales ranging from the individual building to the urban environment. Emerging Technologies This concentration explores the material nature of architecture, the craft of building, and the role of emerging technologies as they inform the design process. It emphasizes the broad architectural and cultural implications of technology, and advances an ethos of research through making. Urbanism This concentration focuses on the influence of the arts and humanities, ecology and landscape, economics and politics, and society on design at the urban scale. It challenges students to explore the representation of complex social, cultural and ecological systems as a form of research and offers students the skills and insights necessary to collaborate across disciplinary boundaries and to provide leadership in reshaping our cities. In addition to our one-year, NAAB accredited, first professional Master of Architecture degree for undergraduate students who have finished our four-year Bachelor of Science in Architecture degree, we offer NAAB accredited two-year and three-year graduate programs. Our graduate students develop rigorous explorations into the field of architecture through the creative process of making. Course work is wide-ranging, exposing students to professionals in the field of architecture. With an emphasis on developing critical thinking skills and expertise in the design studio sequence, studio projects address tectonic, social, and environmental themes at multiple scales. History, Professional Practice and Theory courses ensure the development of fundamental intellectual knowledge sets. Students practice iterative making in order to synthesize present day critical themes of inquiry and discovery to become forward thinkers for the future. Building on these fundamental areas of knowledge, Special Topics Studios and Architecture Electives investigate the creative processes of architecture through representation and fabrication. Students explore their ideas through complex model making and physical production. Our faculty share their expertise and insights with the students. They bring with them a broad range of academic, research-based and professional practice expertise. In addition, advanced level studios and electives are sized in small groupings so as to cultivate meaningful teacher student dialogue. Our open space studios foster an environment of collaboration enhancing engagement and exchange of ideas with peers and faculty.
- Art & Design
- Building Technologies
- Digital Fabrication
- Ecological Design
- Graphics And Visualization
- History, Theory, Criticism
- Industry Collaborations
- Materials And Construction