Prospective Student FAQs

Can I visit campus and meet with someone to get more information about majors in the college of architecture and urban studies?
Yes, absolutely! It’s probably the best way to learn more about Virginia Tech and, more specifically, the programs in the College of Architecture and Urban Studies. You can explore the campus, talk with faculty and current students, and hopefully, ask lots of questions. Each program offers tours, so check our Visit Us page for more information. These tours are a great way to really dig into the area of study you are interested in.

There are also other options to visit Virginia Tech. For high school students, Undergraduate Admissions offers great opportunities to visit campus and experience Virginia Tech firsthand. For prospective graduate students, the Graduate School offers its own tours of campus. You can find more information and sign up for a tour on their website. 

How many years does it take to get an architecture degree?
The professional degree program in architecture is accredited by the National Architectural Accreditation Board and takes five years to complete. Upon completion, students receive the professional bachelor of architecture (BArch) degree and are prepared for future licensure after completing the Intern Development Program (IDP), and passing the licensure exam.

What’s it like to study architecture or design?
Each summer, the School of Architecture + Design offers a week-long workshop called Inside Architecture + Design for students entering 9th through 12th grades. It is a hands-on introduction to architecture, landscape architecture, industrial design, and interior design taught by our faculty and based on our college curriculum. It is the perfect opportunity to get a preview of what it would be like to study any of these disciplines at Virginia Tech.

Is a portfolio required for admission to programs in the school of architecture + design?
Not for undergraduates. Our foundation design laboratories (ARCH 1015, 1016) provide the design fundamentals needed to be a successful designer. Admissions are primarily based on a student’s grade point average and SAT or ACT score. A portfolio is required for graduate studies, so be sure to check the submission requirements specific to each degree.

If you have questions regarding the admission requirements, please contact the Undergraduate Admissions Office at admissions@vt.edu; or visit their website.

Is a portfolio required for admission to programs in the School of Visual Arts?
Yes. Portfolio requirements differ between graphic design and studio art. For complete information about both, go to the School of Visual Arts website.

What would I study as a Public and Urban Affairs major?
The Bachelor of Arts in Public and Urban Affairs is an interdisciplinary social science degree with a professional focus. It offers students interested in urban issues and public policy the opportunity to study these areas within a liberal arts tradition, and also to develop pre-professional skills in planning, policy analysis, and public management. Faculty members with backgrounds in economics, environmental studies, geography, history, sociology, political science, planning, and engineering work together to provide students with a sound understanding of how communities (large and small) work, and how to facilitate positive change within them. Students may choose from five concentrations: urban planning and policy, public policy, global development, public and non-profit management, and environmental affairs.

What does the college offer at their location in Switzerland and where is it?
Study Abroad is an important part of the majority of our students’ educational experiences. The Steger Center for International Scholarship is the town of Riva San Vitale in Ticino, the Italian-speaking canton of Switzerland, which is close to major northern Italian cities such as Milan. The center is home to a number of study abroad opportunities, and in particular, many architecture students in the college choose to participate in a study abroad trip during their fourth and/or fifth years.

How can I find out about financial aid?
Several options for financial aid are offered through the Virginia Tech Office of University Scholarships and Financial Aid.