• Home
  • Academics
  • Certificate Programs

Certificate Programs

For those who wish to concentrate in a specific area of study, the Department of Architecture offers graduate certificates in Architectural Acoustics, Health & Wellness Architecture, Historic Preservation, Participatory Design, and Urban Design. 


Architectural Acoustics 
The Certificate in Architectural Acoustics will be earned primarily by architecture and architectural engineering students who have shown a major interest in this specialize field which relates to room acoustics, architectural noise control, mechanical and electrical system noise control, and electro-acoustic systems

Total Credit Hours for Completion: 12

To receive the Certificate in Architectural Acoustics students must complete 12 hours from the courses listed below, including either ARCH 520/720 or ARCH 521/721.

Course Options:

• ARCH 520/720 Architectural Acoustics (3 credits)
• ARCH 521/721 Electro-Acoustic Systems (3 credits)
• ARCH 629 Acoustics Studio (3 credits)
• ARCH 600 Acoustic and Theatrical Design Considerations for Performance Facilities (3 credits)
• ARCH 530 Environmental Systems I (3 credits)
• ARCH 531 Environmental Systems II (3 credits)
• ARCH 608 Architectural Design V and other architectural studios - participation in studio or providing assistance to studio students designing a venue where architectural acoustics is important (6 credits)
• ARCH 700 Directed Readings (Individual Research) (3 credits)

Please direct questions about the Graduate Certificate in Architectural Acoustics to:
Robert Coffeen, Lecturer in Architectural Acoustics, rcoffeen@ku.edu



The Designbuild Certificate program aims to provide students with hands-on, material-based, experiential learning opportunities, anchored by the internationally acclaimed and award-winning Studio 804 and a constellation of award-winning designbuild studios and courses on furniture design, product design, material investigations, and digital fabrication. 

While it has been estimated that many architecture and design schools in the United States now have some form of hands-on experience, the KU Architecture & Design remains one of the nation’s leaders in designbuild education. Pioneering this philosophical tradition, the School is home to Studio 804, a two-semester advanced designbuild studio that has been the recipient of numerous design awards and publications, including a monograph titled “Studio 804: An Architectural Experience”, published by Artifice Books. Studio 804, known for its regionally inspired and innovatively sustainable design approach, has designed numerous LEED Platinum and Passivhaus buildings. 

In addition to Studio 804, the School offers multiple ARCH 509 studios, the umbrella for designbuild studios such as Dirt Works Studio, a theory-laden, material-focused studio, and Dotte Agency, a public interest designbuild collective. Beyond designbuild studios, the School offers furniture design, digital fabrication and robotics, and material investigations courses. 

Questions regarding the Designbuild Certificate should be directed to: Chad Kraus, Associate Professor of Architecture, ckraus@ku.edu


Historic Preservation 
Working with historic buildings and neighborhoods, related legislation, and adaptive-reuse of historic structures are essential parts of the professional practice of architects, planners, and art historians. Their work often requires the repurposing and reuse of the existing building stock, which is a critical part of sustainable development. As well, the documentation, preservation, and interpretation of history as represented through historic buildings and landscapes is a vital aspect of any community’s civic pride. This Graduate Certificate of Historic Preservation is designed to provide students with the essential professional knowledge and skills in taking care of the historic buildings and historic townscapes.

This Certificate is also open to students in American Studies, Anthropology, Art History, Geography, Museum Studies, World Regional Study Programs, Urban Planning, and the Global Awareness Certificate Program. The Certificate is available as a Continuing Professional Education (CPE) opportunity for outside professionals as well.

Total Credit Hours for Completion: 12

Core Courses:

• ARCH 646    American Architectural Survey (3 credits)
• ARCH 647    Historic Preservation Theory (3 credits)
• ARCH 648    Historic Preservation Planning (3 credits)
• ARCH 649    Historic Preservation Technology (3 credits)

If needed, any of the above courses could be replaced with ARCH 700: Directed Readings focusing on the specific subject area.

Please direct questions regarding the Graduate Certificate of Historic Preservation to:
Dr. Kapila D. Silva, Professor of Architecture, kapilads@ku.edu and Amy Van de Riet, Historic Preservation Technology Course Coordinator, amy.vanderiet@ku.edu.


Health & Wellness Architecture 
Completion of requirements for the Certificate in the Architecture of Health and Wellness vary according to each student’s situation. Students in the M.Arch program would enroll in ARCH 731 as a fourth-year students and complete the certificate requirements by taking ARCH 807 and 808. Students from outside the school could take ARCH 730 and 731 then enroll in either ARCH 807 or 808 to complete an internship or research project.

Courses include:

• ARCH 730 Environmental Psychology of Health and Wellness, Introduction to research methods and theory of healthy environments (3 credits)
• ARCH 731 Architecture of Health, Introduction to health care facilities and systems (3 credits) 
• ARCH 807 Health and Wellness Internship, Seven-month paid internship  in an architecture firm that specializes in health care planning and design (6 credits)
• ARCH 808  Health and Wellness Capstone Studio, Final studio in the Master of Architecture Curriculum (6 credits)

For further information contact Dr. Kent Spreckelmeyer, Professor of Architecture, kents@ku.edu  


Participatory Design 

The Graduate Certificate of Participatory Design (formerly Public Interest Design) is designed to provide students with the essential professional knowledge and skills in a truly community-engaged design process.  This Certificate is also open to students in Design, Urban Planning, Public Health and other disciplines.  This program has ties to the Center for Service Learning where opportunities to participate in events, apply for service-learning mini grants for small project / research development, and volunteering to participate in service learning are available.  The Certificate is available as a Continuing Professional Education (CPE) opportunity for outside professionals as well.

Total Credit Hours for Completion: 12 credits 

Core Courses: 

•ARCH 700: REQUIRED: Directed Readings in Participatory Design is an introduction to participatory methods, theories and case study examples of participatory design (3 credits, asynchronous/online—summer course offered
•ARCH509, ARCH608 or ARCH8XX   For Architecture Majors: each year, one/more of these listed Design Studios may have been pre-approved** as a designated participatory design studio. When signing up for the studio section, inquire with contact below. (6 credits)
•ARCH600/DESNXXX: Each year, several community-engagement courses are offered through the architecture and design departments.

Seek advising for which courses are available and apply for this certificate program. Please direct questions regarding the Graduate Certificate of Participatory Design to Professor Shannon Criss, Department of Architecture, scriss@ku.edu 


Urban Design 
The Urban Design Certificate the program allows students to concentrate on topic related to urban design by focusing on urban theory, history, and design.

Total Credit Hours for Completion: 12

Any combination of the following courses can be taken:

•ARCH 665 Architecture–History of Urban Design (3 credits)
•UBPL 735 Urban Planning–Site Planning (3 credits)

• ADS 560 Topics in Design (3 credits)
• ARCH 608 Architecture–Architectural Design V  (6 credits)
• ARCH 680 Design Workshop III: Ideas and Methods in Planning & Design (3 credits)
• ARCH 681 Design Workshop IV: Designing Sustainable Futures (3 credits)

• UBPL 522 History of the American City I (3 credits)
• UBPL 722 History of the American City II (3 credits)
• ARCH 600 Special Topics in Architecture * (3 credits)
• ARCH 700  Directed Readings (1-3 credits)
• ARCH 799 Independent Study (1-3 credits)
*Varies each semester 

Questions regarding the Urban Design Certificate should be directed to:
Dr. Marie-Alice L’Heureux, Associate Professor of Architecture, malheur@ku.edu