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Apply to Master of Architecture, Master of Landscape Architecture, Master of Urban Design

View of Sumers Hall with Brookings Hall in the background at dusk.

Thank you for your interest in the Sam Fox School’s graduate architecture programs at Washington University in St. Louis! Please contact our staff with questions you may have about enrollment in the following programs:

  • Master of Architecture (MArch)
  • Master of Landscape Architecture (MLA)
  • Master of Urban Design (MUD)
  • MS in Advanced Architectural Design (MSAAD)
  • MS in Architectural Studies (MSAS)

Applications will not be considered until all required items have been received by the Office of Graduate Admissions for the Graduate School of Architecture & Urban Design.

Application Instructions + Information

  • Personal and academic information.

  • Two personal statement essays. See instructions within the application.

  • A resume/curriculum vita (to include education and employment history, honors, awards, and extracurricular activities).

  • Three letters of recommendation, to be completed by individuals who know the personal and academic qualities of the applicant (preferably—although not necessarily—academic instructors). When the candidate lists the recommenders and their correct email addresses in their application, the recommenders will be contacted, and their responses will be submitted through the online application. In the case of recommenders who are affiliated with academic institutions, the letters—which are expected to be genuinely written by the recommenders—must be written on school/university letterhead. All letters must include signatures (i.e., not just typed names).

  • A nonrefundable $85 application fee. Note: The $85 application fee will be waived for applicants who complete their online application by December 14. Beginning December 15, the application fee is $85, and must be paid online by credit card.

  • Official transcripts. Upload to your online application a digital copy (PDF format) of transcripts from all colleges and universities attended.
    NOTE: In summer 2023, enrolling students will receive a request for official transcripts to be sent to us directly from their previous college or university, which must include the name of the degree that was awarded and the date when the degree was conferred. More specific instructions will be provided next spring.

  • Portfolio. A digital portfolio showing examples of design work or work in the visual arts must be uploaded to our online application system. Please review the formatting and technical instructions below carefully.

    The work represented in the portfolio—whether it includes drawings, photographs of architectural models, or artwork (including various types of media such as paintings, sculpture, ceramics, or photography)—should be the best examples of the applicant’s efforts.

    Applicants who have not studied architecture previously should submit at least 10-12 examples of work in the visual arts and—if available—in the constructive arts (for example, photographs and drawings from small, three-dimensional built projects such as furniture, kiosks, or decks). The overall intention is to show work that demonstrates potential for accomplishment in further creative study.

    Applicants who have pursued formal studies in architecture or landscape architecture must include examples of their design work related to those areas, but are also welcome to include examples of other artistic endeavors.

    Important: Applicants submitting work done collaboratively, either in school or in the profession, should indicate that the work was not entirely completed through their own efforts and should be as specific as possible about the extent of their personal involvement in such projects.

    Portfolio Formatting/Technical Requirements

    • Please submit the portfolio as a single PDF document, with a maximum file size of 20 MB and a maximum resolution of 150 dpi. All work should be produced in high-resolution digital images.
    • Prepare the file for computer monitor viewing (i.e., horizontal orientation), with text that is at least 8 points large so that it is legible when viewed full-screen.
    • Applicants may submit a maximum of 25 pages (note: 2-page spreads count as one page). Front and back cover pages are allowed and would increase the maximum page limit to 27.
    • The layout of the portfolio pages should be clear, with brief descriptions for each piece or project.
  • GRE scores (optional). GRE scores are not required; however, we will accept score information if you have taken the test and are interested in sharing it with us. Although GRE scores are not required, please note that student performance as shown in academic transcripts will be given very close attention in the candidate review process. We are looking for students with high academic ability and accomplishment. If you have GRE scores you would like to report to us, please use our institution code (6929) to ensure official test score reports are available to us from the testing service.

  • If you attended a Chinese university you must have your Student Record and Qualification Certificate verified (in English) by the Center for Student Services Development (CSSD), formerly named CHESICC. Links to the CSSD online verification report can be sent to Aaron Akins at If the CSSD verifications include copies of your transcripts you do not need to separately submit a hard copy of your transcript.

  • For international applicants: you must provide English language proficiency test scores. See below for details.

  • September: Application for admission becomes available on the Sam Fox School website.
  • December 14: The $85 application fee will be waived for applicants who complete their application by this date.
  • January 15: Application deadline. This is the last day that applications can be submitted online, as well as the due date for receipt of all materials.
  • Early March: Offers of admission are communicated to candidates.
  • Mid-March: Candidates receive their financial aid awards.
  • April 15: Due date for candidate decisions; admitted students who plan to enroll must submit their $400 enrollment deposits.

As part of the application review, we are required to verify that each nonnative English speaking applicant has sufficient English language proficiency to succeed in the academic program.

The English proficiency test requirement is waived for citizens of Australia, Cameroon, Commonwealth Caribbean nations, Ghana, India, Ireland, Kenya, Liberia, New Zealand, Nigeria, Singapore, Uganda, the United Kingdom, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. It may also be waived for students who have completed three or more years of study in an English-medium academic program in any of the above countries, Canada, Hong Kong, South Africa, or the United States.

If you are required to provide proof of English proficiency, the application will prompt you to self-report English proficiency scores that are less than two years old. Official scores should be sent to Washington University in St. Louis at the time of application. We accept the following English proficiency tests:

TOEFL IBT (preferred)
Minimum Score: 90
Send scores electronically through ETS to school code 6929
Minimum Score: 6.5
Send scores electronically to Washington University in St. Louis Graduate Admissions
Duolingo (exception)
Minimum Score: 115
Send PDF or link with scores to

MArch 3

MArch 3 applicants are asked to demonstrate satisfactory completion of one course each of elementary calculus and college physics prior to enrollment. These courses ensure adequate preparation for the architectural structures sequence that is required of all MArch 3 students. Through the portfolio, MArch 3 applicants are asked to demonstrate ability and experience in freehand drawing and/or two- or three-dimensional basic design exercises.

MArch 2

Placement in the MArch 2 program is based on design portfolio evaluation and the extent of the applicant’s undergraduate architectural studies. Prior to admission to the MArch 2 program, students must be able to waive at least two of the following courses or may be required to take summer courses:

  • Building Systems (A46 445)
  • Structures I (A46 447A)
  • Stuctures II (A46 448A)
  • Architectural History I (A46 4280)
  • Architectural History II (A46 4284)
  • Environmental Systems II (A46 439)

For more information about course waiver requirements for the MArch 2 program, click here.


MLA applicants must demonstrate satisfactory completion of at least one college-level course in the natural sciences and at least one college-level course in the visual arts, such as drawing, sculpture, graphics, and/or basic design. Applicants with an accredited degree in landscape architecture or architecture may be admitted to the MLA 2 program, thus entering the program in the second year of study. Note that the Admissions Committee reserves the right to place students in the program that it deems appropriate, on the basis of portfolio evaluation, transcript evaluation, and overall preparation.

To gain admission to a joint degree program involving another division of the University (e.g., Social Work, Business, Construction Management, Computer Science & Engineering, or Public Health), students must submit separate applications to—and gain admission from—both programs. Each program makes admission decisions independently. Visit the Dual & Joint Degrees page for more info.
For information on cost of attendance, as well as scholarship and financial aid opportunities, please click here.

Scholarship support from Washington University is the most common form of financial support, with 94% of our graduate students—both domestic and international—receiving awards. It is our intention to provide an outstanding education at a manageable cost to prepare candidates for a productive professional career.

To receive consideration for scholarship awards, it is necessary to 1) indicate in the online application that you want to apply for scholarship funding (see the Financial Support question in the program information section of the online application) and 2) complete an appropriate financial aid form as described on the Graduate Scholarships & Financial Aid page on our website. The deadline for submitting the financial aid/scholarship application is February 15. Note that in addition to scholarship consideration, domestic candidates (U.S. citizens and U.S. Permanent Residents) are typically offered Federal loan opportunities to supplement scholarship funding.

An application for financial assistance (i.e., scholarships) will not influence decisions for admission to the Graduate School of Architecture & Urban Design. In other words, there is no penalty for seeking aid. However, failure to apply for scholarship aid by the February 15th scholarship application deadline could jeopardize or significantly reduce the chances of receiving such awards. Scholarship funding is limited; priority will be given to scholarship applications received on or before February 15.

Visit the Financial Aid & Scholarships page for more info.

Washington University encourages and gives full consideration to all applicants for admission, financial aid, and employment. The University does not discriminate in access to, or treatment or employment in, its programs and activities on the basis of race, color, age, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, veteran status, disability, or genetic information. Applicants with a prior criminal history will not be automatically disqualified from consideration for admission. Inquiries about compliance should be addressed to the University’s Vice Chancellor for Human Resources, Washington University, Campus Box 1184, One Brookings Drive, St. Louis, MO 63130.