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UK Architecture and Environmental Design Courses

Gain skills and expertise that can be used both in architectural practice and environmental design consultancies

An architecture and environmental design degree studies the basic principles behind environmental issues that need tackling through architecture. The need for state-of-the-art buildings and renewable energy has never been greater than in the 21st century, and an environmental design and architecture degree will offer you a chance to be part of an increasingly large group of architects looking to make a difference through design.

Architecture and Environmental Design application

Throughout your course, you will learn how to effectively research, analyse and interpret information, conceptualise plots of land, use graphic design effectively and address complex local and environmental issues, providing students with the understanding and knowledge needed to become an architect in this unique area of the profession.

To study an architecture course, students must first complete a three-year undergraduate degree in the subject, which in turn gives membership to RIBA, the Royal Institute of British Architects. Then a two-year qualification on a BArch, Diploma or March degree follows (it varies depending on the choice of university), before another two years of professional training prior to your final exams.

Types of Architecture and Environmental Design Degree

Bachelor’s in Architecture and Environmental Design

A Bachelor's in Architecture and Environmental Design is a versatile degree that combines creativity and practicality. The course teaches students how to design and create buildings and spaces that are aesthetically pleasing and environmentally sustainable. Students learn about architectural principles, construction techniques, and how to use technology like CAD software. 

With this degree, graduates can pursue careers as architects, urban planners, or environmental designers, shaping the future of our cities and spaces while considering the planet's well-being. It's a dynamic field that blends art, science, and sustainability.

  • Course Duration: 3-4 years
  • Course Fees: £18,000 to £35,000
  • Entry Requirements: A levels – BBB to AAB (120 to 136 UCAS Tariff points). International Baccalaureate – 120 to 136 UCAS Tariff points from the IB.

Master’s in Architecture and Environmental Design

A Master's in Architecture and Environmental Design delves into the intricate relationship between architecture and sustainability. This advanced degree empowers students with a profound understanding of eco-conscious design, honing their research acumen and creative prowess. The curriculum emphasises the integration of sustainable materials, energy-efficient technologies, and innovative urban planning strategies. Graduates emerge as visionary architects, sustainability consultants, or urban design experts, wielding the power to influence the development of environmentally responsible and aesthetically captivating structures. Pursuing a Master's in Architecture and Environmental Design signifies a commitment to shaping a greener, more harmonious future in the realm of construction and design.

  • Course Duration: 1-3 years
  • Course Fees: £20,000 - £40,000
  • Entry Requirements: A level- AAA. Required subjects: English, maths and physics or double science. IB score: 36 IB requirements Mathematics: Analysis and Approaches - 5 at Higher Level or 6 at Standard Level or Mathematics: Applications and Interpretation – 5 at Higher Level.

PhD in Architecture and Environmental Design

A PhD degree is the highest level of education you can achieve in this field. It involves in-depth research and a lot of critical thinking. You'll be diving deep into topics like sustainable building and urban planning. Basically, you'll become an expert in how architecture affects the environment. Graduates often become leaders, educators, or researchers in this field, helping to make architecture more eco-friendly. Getting a PhD in this area shows that you're really dedicated to making buildings and cities better for the environment.

  • Duration: 3-5 years
  • Course Fees: £20,000 to £35,000
  • Entry Requirements: A relevant master's degree, a well-defined research proposal, proof of English language proficiency, letters of recommendation, and academic transcripts.


All universities provide a variety of scholarships for architecture and environmental students. Below is a small selection; speak to an SI-UK consultant to learn more.

Bartlett Promise Master's Scholarship (UCL)

  • Description: This scholarship is specifically designed to support students from underrepresented backgrounds in The Bartlett, which is UCL's Faculty of the Built Environment. 
  • Benefits: The scholarship covers full tuition fees and provides an allowance of £15,364 to cover living and study expenses for the standard duration of the programme at UCL. Additionally, recipients receive ongoing academic and career support.
  • Eligibility: Eligibility criteria may vary, but candidates from underrepresented backgrounds in built environment studies are typically encouraged to apply.

The Vice Chancellor’s Postgraduate (PGR) Scholarships (London Metropolitan Scholarships)

  • Description: These scholarships are offered for PhD programmes in the School of Art, Architecture, and Design at London Metropolitan University.
  • Benefits: The specific benefits and coverage may vary depending on the scholarship and the university's policies. Check the official scholarship website for the most up-to-date information.
  • Eligibility: Eligibility criteria for these scholarships may vary based on the specific scholarship within the School of Art, Architecture, and Design.

Jobs and Careers

Here are some of the most popular jobs and careers in the field of architecture and environmental design in the UK:

  • Architect: Architects design and plan buildings and structures, ensuring they are functional, safe, and aesthetically pleasing. 
  • Urban Planner: Urban planners design and manage cities and communities to ensure sustainable growth, efficient land use, and environmental conservation.
  • Landscape Architect: Landscape architects design outdoor spaces, such as parks, gardens, and urban plazas, focusing on aesthetics, ecology, and functionality.
  • Interior Designer: Interior designers create functional and visually appealing indoor spaces by selecting furnishings, colour schemes, and layouts that suit their clients' needs and preferences.
  • Environmental Consultant: Environmental consultants assess the impact of construction projects on the environment and advise on sustainability measures and compliance with regulations.
  • Sustainability Consultant: These professionals help organisations implement sustainable practices, including energy efficiency, green building design, and environmentally friendly materials.
  • Building Surveyor: Building surveyors inspect, evaluate, and report on the condition of buildings.
  • Construction Project Manager: Project managers oversee construction projects, ensuring they are completed on time, within budget, and in compliance with design and safety standards.
  • Historic Preservationist: Preservationists work to protect and restore historic buildings and landmarks, preserving their cultural and architectural significance.
  • Environmental Policy Analyst: Analysts in this field research and develop environmental conservation and sustainable development policies, influencing governmental and organisational decisions.

These careers offer a range of opportunities for those interested in architecture and environmental design in the UK, each with its unique focus and responsibilities.


Entry-level positions may start at around £20,000 to £30,000 per year, while experienced professionals can earn significantly more, ranging from £40,000 to £70,000 or more annually. High-demand areas like London tend to offer higher salaries, but they come with a higher cost of living.

Where can I study Architecture and Environmental Design in the UK?

To learn more about the best architecture and environmental design courses in the UK, find details on the top ten ranking Architecture universities in the Guardian University Guide 2024 below:

  1. University of Cambridge
  2. Cardiff University
  3. University College London
  4. Loughborough University
  5. Ulster University
  6. University of Edinburgh
  7. University of Sheffield
  8. University of Liverpool
  9. University of Nottingham
  10. UWE Bristol

Study Architecture and Environmental Design in the UK

If you are interested in learning more about studying architecture and environmental design in the UK, arrange your free consultation with SI-UK today. Don't forget the Premium Service will guarantee you at least one offer from a UK university.

Architecture and Environmental Design FAQ

Is the UK a good place to study architecture?

The UK offers a compelling environment for studying architecture courses. Renowned universities like the University of Cambridge and the Bartlett School of Architecture at University College London provide top-tier degrees. The UK's rich architectural history, diverse cities, and exposure to various design styles make it an ideal place to learn.

Is environmental design the same as architecture?

Environmental design and architecture are related but distinct fields. While both involve designing spaces, architecture primarily focuses on buildings' structural and aesthetic aspects. In contrast, environmental design emphasises sustainable and functional design, encompassing broader concepts like urban planning, landscape design, and the ecological impact of spaces.

What is the duration of environmental design courses in the UK?

The duration of environmental design courses in the UK can vary. Undergraduate degrees typically span three to four years, while postgraduate degrees, such as a Master's in Environmental Design, generally take one to two years to complete.

What are the most popular job positions available in the field of environmental design in the UK?

In the UK, various job positions are available in the field of environmental design. Popular roles include Environmental Consultant, Urban Planner, Landscape Architect, Sustainable Designer, and Green Building Specialist. These roles involve designing and implementing environmentally friendly and sustainable solutions in various contexts, such as urban development, infrastructure, and architecture.

What are some top organisations that hire graduates after an environmental design degree in the UK?

Graduates with environmental design degrees in the UK have opportunities to work with esteemed organisations. Some notable employers include Arup, Foster + Partners, Atkins, and AECOM. These firms are renowned for their commitment to sustainability and offer diverse roles in environmental design, providing graduates with a chance to contribute to cutting-edge projects and positively impact the environment.

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