Bachelor of Architecture
NFQ Level 8 major Award Honours Bachelor Degree
If you are a person that combines creative imagination and analytical rigour; if you are a good observer; and if you are inspired by the prospect of changing the world we live in, then UL’s problem-oriented approach to architecture may just be right for you. Architecture requires a lot of dedication, and is a very hands-on course that relies on constructional understanding, based on lots of model making and material experiments.
Why Study Architecture at UL?
The School of Architecture at the University of Limerick offers a 5-year undergraduate degree in architecture. The objective of the School is to educate architects with a strong set of integrated skills, balanced with a clear understanding of the environment - built, existing and imagined - and vital to professional practice. The Royal Institute of Architects of Ireland (RIAI) has awarded full accreditation to the architecture programme at UL. Studying architecture in an accredited programme is the first step towards becoming a registered professional architect.
The School of Architecture embraces all parts of an architect’s education; it is a place where the study of architecture is undertaken with passion and inventiveness, an open and transparent society of mobile thinkers. The School of Architecture teaches an architecture that is integrated with Environmental and Structural engineering, as disciplines that set us free from the limitations of our own knowledge and help us to achieve a balance with the environment by focusing human abilities.
What you will study
Training as an architect is engaging in a process of ‘learning by doing’ with the course curriculum structured around the design studio. The design studio is a creative laboratory where learning is developed through experimentation and reflection. Woven into the design studio will be courses of study in structures (structural engineering), environmental science (environmental engineering), history (of architecture, society, technology), and philosophy, sociology, law and management (professional practice).
The course is designed to equip you with a broad range of skills fundamental to becoming an architect. These skills include hand drawing, sketching, model-making, photography, computer-aided drawing, audiovisual and verbal presentation, as well as core skills including conceptualising and designing, problem-solving and working with other people.
|Year 1||Semester 1||Semester 2||Summer|
|AR4001||Design Studio 1a||AR4002||Design Studio 1b|
|AR4011||Gravity & Reaction 1||AR4012||Gravity & Reaction 2|
|AR4021||Representation / Drawing 1||AR4022||Representation / Drawing 2|
|AR4031||History & Theory of Architecture 1||AR4032||History & Theory of Architecture 2|
|AR4041||Assembly & Techniques 1||AR4042||Assembly & Techniques 2|
|AR4051||Environmental Systems and Forces 1||AR4052||Environmental Systems and Forces 2|
|Year 2||Semester 3||Semester 4||Summer|
|AR4073||Design Studio 2a||AR4004||Design Studio 2b|
|AR4013||Gravity & Reaction 3||AR4014||Gravity & Reaction 4|
|AR4023||Representation / Drawing 3||AR4024||Representation / Drawing 4|
|AR4033||History & Theory of Architecture 3||AR4034||History & Theory of Architecture 4|
|AR4043||Assembly and Techniques 3||AR4044||Materials 1|
|AR4053||Environmental Systems and Forces 3||AR4054||Environmental Systems and Forces 4|
|Year 3||Semester 5||Semester 6||Summer|
|AR4005||Design Studio 3a||AR4006||Design Studio 3b|
|AR4015||Gravity & Reaction 5||AR4016||Gravity & Reaction 6|
|AR4025||Representation / Drawing 5||AR4026||Representation / Drawing 6|
|AR4035||History & Theory of Architecture 5||AR4036||History & Theory of Architecture 6|
|AR4045||Assembly & Techniques 4||AR4046||Assembly & Techniques 5|
|AR4056||Environmental Systems and Forces 5||AR4055||Visual Culture 1|
|Year 4||Semester 7||Semester 8||Summer|
|AR4007||Design Studio 4a||AR4008||Design Studio 4b|
|AR4019||Professional Practice - Contracts||AR4058||Profession & Society|
|AR4317||Advanced Construction 1||AR4068||Advanced Construction 2|
|Year 5||Semester 9||Semester 10||Summer|
|AR4099||Design Studio 5a||AR4010||Design Studio 5b - Thesis|
|AR4319||Advanced Construction 3||AR4310||Advanced Construction 4|
Applicants are required to hold at the time of enrolment the established Leaving Certificate (or an approved equivalent) with a minimum of six subjects which must include: Two H5 (Higher Level) grades and Four O6 (Ordinary Level) grades or four H7 (Higher Level) grades. Subjects must include Mathematics, Irish or another language, and English.
Note: Grade F6 in Foundation Mathematics also satisfies the minimum entry requirements. Foundation Maths is not reckonable for scoring purposes.
A Special Mathematics examination will be offered at UL following the Leaving Certificate results for those students who did not achieve the Mathematics requirement.
Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, an exception has been made this year for entry to LM099 Architecture. The portfolio is no longer required for Leaving Certificate entry for 2020 to LM099 Architecture.
Entry to LM099 Architecture will be solely assessed on Leaving Certificate points for school leavers for 2020 entry.
Applications are particularly welcome from mature candidates (at least 23 years of age on the 1st of January of the year of enrolment). Mature applicants must apply through the Central Applications Office (CAO) by 1 February.
Careers open to you with a degree in Architecture include:
- Architect (private practice and local authority)
- Landscape Architect
- Architecture Critic/Writer
- Tutor/Lecturer in Architecture
- Academic Researcher
- Model Maker
- Historical Buildings Consultant/ Conservation Officer
As a graduate of this course, you will be in a position to start working in an architect’s office. This is the path followed by most graduates. However, architecture studies are broad, encompassing technical skills, design, art, history and presentation skills and some graduates do move into other areas including policymaking or public administration, business or urban design, photography or other arts, furniture or model making, research, and writing, or pursue further studies.
The Building Control Act 2007 introduced registration for architects in the Republic of Ireland, The Royal Institute of Architects of Ireland (RIAI) maintains the professional register – “The best way to qualify as an architect eligible for RIAI Membership and admission to the Register for Architects is to get a degree from a recognised school of architecture, followed by two years of approved practical experience. generally takes seven to nine years.” – Refer to the RIAI website www.riai.ie for further details.
Recognised degree courses in architecture take five years of full- time study. Many students take a year out for practical experience between the third and fourth years. So the whole process, from start to full professional qualification, generally takes seven to nine years.” – Refer to the RIAI website www.riai.ie for further details.
Want to find out more about possible careers with this degree? Click Here
Graduate Profile - Naomi Panter B.Arch
As a UL Architecture graduate, I am currently working on the Smarter Travel Demonstration City project here in Limerick. It is a €9 million European project and is run as a collaborative design group made up of the Limerick Local Authority and the University of Limerick. Over a five-year period, the group will design and build the necessary infrastructure for smarter travel to improve how we move around Limerick city. As a SAUL (School of Architecture UL) graduate, I have been equipped with the design, graphics and communication skills to work in such a collaborative office. As architect and multimedia coordinator for this project, my day-to-day work varies from infrastructure design to graphic design and behaviour- change campaign design. I work with architects, engineers, urban planners, photographers, videographers and meet different people every week.
After graduating from SAUL, I became Creative Media Coordinator on the newly established 'Uncommissioned Reports' series for the SAUL Press. The first issue based on my architecture thesis 'The Loop - The Social Responsibility of Public Space,' became the template for recording the spatial and material quality of schools. This paper was presented to the Minister for Education and Skills and led to SAUL being commissioned by the Department of Education and Science for the Limerick Schools Inventory Pilot Project in 2012.
In the summer of 2009, I won the Mayor's Prize for the concept design of Limerick's new City Library. I also worked on the 'One City' research project, with the SAUL Intelligence Unit funded by the Limerick Local Authority and the Mid-western Regional Authority, proposing a new spatial and administrative approach for Limerick City and County as a whole. During the summer of 2010, I worked on the 'SNN+' project with the SAUL Intelligence Unit in the AEDES Campus Berlin to propose alternative futures for Shannon Airport. During my final year in UL, I was a member of the SAUL team that won the European Design Competition 'Hafen City', while working on location in Hamburg, Germany.
I also continue to design and write in my own time. Designing in collaboration with SAUL graduate Marian Dinneen, our 'Egression Point' proposal was shortlisted in April 2013 as a finalist in the DocoMomo 'Central Bank in the 21st Century' ideas competition. There are always many design competitions running nationally and internationally.
The first day I arrived at our SAUL (School of Architecture UL) studio I sensed I would enjoy my time in Architecture School. The Studio embodies everything that the school and the education stand for. The Architectural education here is not about divulging information individually, rather it is about sharing knowledge, opinion and ideas amongst our colleagues. Within the studio there are always lectures and tutorials taking place, however, the essence of what our education here is about, lies in the conversations and debate (sometimes heated!) that occurs alongside our timetable. All the architecture students, from freshers to 5th year, working in the same space really solidifies the school’s diverse social atmosphere - I find that we learn from each other as much as we do from our lecturers!
I have had an incredibly wholesome experience here and have always felt encouraged to explore and to test things. After the 3rd year, I decided to take a year off from school and gain some experience within a practice. I travelled to Sydney Australia and worked for 6 months as an architectural assistant. Personally, I feel it was really beneficial to pause academically and further my education through a practice and through travel also. The experience away has allowed me to return to SAUL with a fresh vigour and renewed confidence!!