The Master of Architectural Design educates the next generation of forward-looking global architects who have the necessary cross-cultural awareness, social and environmental responsibility, creative and critical capability, technical competence and professional attitude to enable ongoing and future transformations in the globalised building environment.
Combining an international perspective with insight into China's rapid urbanisation, the programme includes both architectural design studios and humanistic and technical modules. A student-centred learning environment offers opportunities for design-driven research and individual experimental enquiry to foster your conceptual design skills as well as research skills in preparation for both professional practice and PhD-level studies.
Students graduating from the programme qualify for Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) Part 2 validation, which is the second out of three stages in the formal educational process required to register as a professional architect in the United Kingdom.
Why should I study Architectural Design at XJTLU?
- Graduate from the only postgraduate architecture programme in mainland China validated by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) for the RIBA Part 2
- Gain hands-on experience through internships and design studios taught by practitioners from local and international firms, focussing on a number of key themes including urban development and regeneration, sustainable living, and digital design and fabrication
- Engage with the local Chinese context while maintaining an international perspective
- Learn from international academic staff with opportunities to contribute to current research projects and papers and to work as teaching and research assistants
- Earn a University of Liverpool degree that is recognised by the Chinese Ministry of Education.
Knowledge and skills
By the time you graduate from the Master of Architectural Design, you will have:
- the ability to generate complex design proposals - showing understanding of current architectural issues and originality - and, when appropriate, to test new hypotheses and pursue creative experiments
- competence in a comprehensive range of visual, oral and written media to test, analyse, critically appraise and explain design proposals
- the ability to creatively evaluate materials, processes and techniques that apply to complex architectural designs and building construction, and to integrate these into practicable design proposals
- critical understanding of how knowledge is advanced through research to produce clear, logically argued and original written work relating to architectural culture, theory and design
- an understanding of the context of the architecture and the construction industry, including the architect’s role in the processes of procurement and building production, and legislation
- problem solving skills, professional judgement, and the confidence to take the initiative and make appropriate decisions in complex and unpredictable circumstances.
The fifth edition of the yearbook of the Department of Architecture presents student works created during the academic year 2017-2018. The yearbook exemplifies the model for architectural education, for which the department was commended by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA). The yearbook is a showcase of the creative culture that has guided our students in taking their first steps as responsible and creative architectural designers in both Chinese and international contexts.
Additional learning activities
The programme includes 200 hours of Additional Learning Activities per semester, most of which are chosen individually by students. They should normally be spread equally over teaching semesters and the summer and winter breaks. An individual student-learning plan will be established at the outset of each semester with the academic advisor. Examples of ALAs include:
- Postgraduate English (LAN901 . Mandatory, if required by the programme director)
- Postgraduate English (LAN902. Mandatory, if required by the programme director)
- Chinese language (CLT901-906. Mandatory for international students)
- Graduate teaching assistantship
- Graduate research assistantship (if available)
- Graduate practice placement/internship
- Participation in Level Three or Level Four lecture-and-seminar based modules in the built environment cluster
- Participation in Level Three or Level Four modules from other XJTLU departments or the Language Centre
- Selected topics in design tools and methods
- Selected topics in advanced digital design
- Selected topics in architectural research methods
- Selected topics in architectural representation
- Independent studies with an ARC tutor
- Scholarly presentation of a research paper
- Publication of a paper in a peer-reviewed architecture-related journal
- Personal and employability skills (MAN903)
Graduates from this programme have an appropriate foundation for employment in the architectural profession at an advanced level. Graduates enjoy excellent employment opportunities in the building and creative industries, in local and international architecture firms, as well as in architecture administration, research and higher education institutions. The programme also provides a solid foundation for pursuing a PhD.
The Department of Architecture fosters a constantly growing professional network in architecture and related fields. Being located close to the metropolitan area of Shanghai, with its dynamic architecture job market that attracts many international firms, means we can assist you to pursue job opportunities, internships and work placements in China and abroad.
Teaching and research assistants
Our students are eligible for positions as graduate teaching and/or research assistants at XJTLU, working up to 10 hours per week. These can contribute towards Additional Learning Activities and include a salary.
RMB 160,000 for the entire two year full-time programme.
University tuition fees cover the cost of your study with us.
If you are a graduate of XJTLU, the University of Liverpool or Xi’an Jiaotong University, you will automatically receive a discount of 20 percent of the tuition fee.
Masters students have the option to pay tuition fees in instalments each semester. You can also choose to pay the fees upfront at the time of registration, in this case a discount of five percent of the total fees will be offered.
You will be asked to indicate how you would like to pay the fees when you confirm your acceptance of the unconditional offer.
XJTLU offers a generous scholarship of up to 50 percent of the total tuition fee for all full-time masters programmes based on academic merit. Should you wish to apply for XJTLU master scholarship, please submit a scholarship application letter in your application stating the reasons why you should be considered.
Minimum entry requirements
Upper second class (2:1) honours
- 211 Project; Top 100 of 2019 Shanghai Ranking--75 percent or above
- Non 211 project; Non Top 100 of 2019 Shanghai ranking – 80- 85% percent or above, depending on your Undergraduate institution
Note: Shanghai Ranking of The Best Chinese Universities is subject to annual update http://www.zuihaodaxue.com/zuihaodaxuepaiming2019
Chinese applicants are not required to take the MoE postgraduate entrance exam.
3.0 Cumulative GPA (out of 4) or 3.2 Cumulative GPA in the final two years of your undergraduate programme
Equivalent academic qualifications
An undergraduate degree (UK 2:1 or equivalent) in BArch, BEng in Architecture, BA (Hons) in Architecture or equivalent. Applicants are required to submit a portfolio of their own creative works as a student and a practicing architect/intern (indicating where and when the work was done, who the tutor/supervisor was, who was part of the team and what the applicants' role was in the team, A3-size, typically 10 to 30 pages, in PDF format). An internship in an architecture-related practice is recommended, but not required. We might accept applicants with substantial work experience or an outstanding portfolio even if their grades are lower than the minimum entry requirements.
English language requirements
If English is not your native language or if you have not studied in English at degree level, you will need to provide evidence of your English proficiency. You should normally possess one of the following qualifications:
- IELTS: 6.5 (minimum of 5.5 in all sections)
- TOEFL iBT: 90 (minimum of 21 in any skill)
If you miss the English language requirements by 0.5 – 1.0 of an overall IELTS band but meet the language requirements for the Pre-sessional English (PSE) courses (including minimum component scores or equivalents), you may be accepted onto the PSE course subject to Programme Director’s approval. Upon successful enrolment on the PSE course, you will be able to change your XJTLU Master’s offer letter to ‘Unconditional’ for English level.
If you are a conditional offer holder, you can also send an email to [email protected] to apply to take the onsite Password English language test provided by XJTLU in lieu of an IELTS/TOEFL or its equivalent.
Please note that the Password Test is only available to students who have been issued a conditional offer to study at XJTLU. The University provides one Password Test opportunity for each conditional offer holder. Based on the score, students may be admitted or may be required to take and successfully complete the five- or eight-week intensive English presessional course.
Additionally, students who are admitted onto a Master’s programme by taking the Pre-sessional English (PSE) Course are required to complete English language modules listed on the Programme Specification on a pass/fail basis as part of their Additional Learning Activity plan during their studies at XJTLU.
Christiane M. Herr is the Programme Director of the MArch Des programme. Her international study and work experience from Germany, Australia, Hong Kong, Taiwan and mainland China is a characteristic of the diversity of backgrounds of teaching staff on the programme. Christiane's research interest focuses on cross-disciplinary and cross-cultural design as well as digital design and architectural technology. Christiane is currently the President of CAADRIA (Association for Computer-Aided Design Research in Asia) and Executive Board Member of the ASC (American Society for Cybernetics). Christiane is member of the IASS (International Association for Shell and Spatial Structures) and CTBUH (Council for Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat). In the MArch Des programme, she leads design studios and modules focusing on tall buildings and structural design, integrating a strong digital design component.Dr Christiane M. Herr Associate professor, Programme director, Master of Architectural Design, Programme Director (ARC), Bachelor of Architectural Engineering
How to apply
Applications should be submitted via our online application system:
- Click/tap the APPLY link
- Create an account or log in to your existing account
- Complete your application
Once your application account is successfully created, enter all the information required in the application form carefully and make sure the information you provide is correct, complete and up to date. Upload the required documents to the corresponding fields.
You may log-in to view your application form at any time. If you need to provide any additional supporting documents after you submit the application online, please send the documents to [email protected](with your application ID, name, and applied programme name).
For further details of how to successfully apply to study at XJTLU, please visit the how to apply page.