Architects design and shape the built environments we inhabit, creating the cities, buildings and structures in which human activity takes place. Inasmuch, we entrust them with enormous cultural and social responsibility. To meet this architects not only require sound judgement and expertise but also a thorough understanding of the interplay between form, materials and construction methods, usage, management and economics, urban planning, sustainability and human‐environment interactions. We want to get students excited about architecture and foster in them the individual traits, creativity and communicative skills that modern architectural practice work requires. As such, we have designed our courses to equip graduates with the skills and commitment necessary to meet the complex architectural challenges of our time and to be capable of developing the kind of integrated and sustainable design concepts demanded by tomorrow’s built environment.
The MA in Architecture builds on the BA course over four semesters. During this period the expertise and skills students have already gained are not only developed further but also complemented through an additional specialisation. The following specialisations are available as course options: Corporate Architecture / Conservation of Historic Buildings / Energy Efficient Construction / Financial and Project Management The MA is designed to help students develop theoretical, analytical, design and practical skills. In the first three semesters students complete the basic modules and one specialisation; the fourth semester is set aside for dissertation work. The modules, design and construction, presentation, history and theory, urban planning, project management and mechanical and electrical engineering as well as usage‐focussed design projects form the core of all the specialisations. Specialisations consist of two usage‐focussed design projects plus a supplementary module. Students are also free to select combinations of modules from different specialisations.
Corporate Architecture concerns the identity of buildings. Exhibitions, biennials and publications on contemporary architecture are heavily influenced by projects such as the Prada stores, Niketown, the Mercedes‐Benz Museum or the Allianz Arena. All of which are examples of architecture that convey a sense of their own unique brand image. In this respect, architecture acts as a communicative medium since it conveys a company’s values and self‐perception both outwardly and inwardly. The term corporate architecture was first coined in the 90s and has since become a wellestablished concept that now characterizes creative and conceptual design throughout a vast array of design projects being undertaken across the profession. Corporate Architecture not only takes in the kind of scenographic space and architectural design we are familiar with from exhibitions, trade‐fairs or other built mediums but also acts as an interface between visual communication, marketing, design, IT, sociology and town and regional planning. Indeed, that architecture can act as a driver to regional development has provided, at the very latest, a recognised orthodoxy since the completion of Frank Gehry’s Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao. Corporate Archi¬tecture can help establish sustainable and meaningful projects for global development.
Form Follows Content
As a Faculty we draw on 15 years experience within Cor¬porate Architecture, and as part of a long‐term collaboration with the Koeln¬messe GmbH have been carrying out both practice work and research into how architectural design can best be used as a medium to communicate the identities of corporations and products alike. Projects of this kind are conceived, developed and realized within workshops that form an integral part of tuition within the faculty. Recent examples of work that have found public resonance include: http://c‐i‐a‐d.org The specialisation Corporate Architecture forms part of the MA at the Cologne Institute for Architectural Design (CIAD) and is linked to the Research Center Corporate Architecture at the Cologne university of applied sciences. The Institute is also home to eponymously named interdisciplinary focus group. As part of an MA in Architecture this specialisation means graduates benefit from very practise‐focussed qualification that provides them with a strong USP, particularly when combined with the external recognition and support provided by doing interdisciplinary research within this area. Professionals with extensive expertise within their own fields teach a broad spectrum of subjects, with lecturers specialising in ‘theory, concept and design’, ‘IT’, ‘CAD and production’ currently being joined by specialist tutors for ‘Materials and Product Design’ and ‘Light and Scenography’. In addition to which, outstanding visiting professors, lecturers and other staff also ensure students enjoy excellent supervision. The Institute of Design also provides students with an infrastructure that is ideally suited to work and study: In addition to dedicated studio space, the faculty possesses a Plot and CAD laboratory and a workshop equipped with a CNC milling machine and cutter. Consequently, the technical equipment required to deliver high‐quality prototypes or small series one‐offs is always available to students. The specialisation Corporate Architecture is designed for students who have completed a diploma or bachelor degree and who possess good design, drafting and conceptual skills.
Individual innovative solutions
A diverse range of career opportunities are available to graduates with a specialisation in corporate architecture. These take in creative and applied arts as well as architectural design, both in the field of marketing, enterprise and urban development. Close links to practice and research means students benefit from an cross‐disciplinary network and close dialogue with our partners, thus enabling them to gain valuable insights into agencies, businesses or architectural firms and to make a smooth transition into the profession.
The MA in Architecture qualifies graduates in accordance with the UNESCO / UIA Directive as internationally‐accredited architects. This defines them as general architects with a particular expertise in one specialist area.
Courses start annually at the beginning of the Winter Semester. Candidate selection for the MA in Architecture is conducted in August. To apply, please send a written application addressed to the Faculty of Architecture. Entry requirements for the MA in Architecture are: A BA or diploma in architecture or similar at ECTS grade C or, if not applicable, an overall „good“ (2.5) mark or above. The grade average requirement is waived for candidates who can demonstrate at least one years practical work experience. A creative portfolio to be presented at interview will provide proof of aptitude for your chosen specialisation.