Master of Architecture

School of Arts & Sciences, Fremantle Campus

Architecture enhances people’s lives through the creation of meaningful human environments. Many key challenges of contemporary society—such as sustainability, housing affordability, ageing-in-place, city living and community building—often involve spatial issues. Architecture applies a holistic way of thinking and acting to combine creative design processes and technical skills with understandings of human, cultural and environmental issues.

Notre Dame’s new Master of Architecture program provides a unique education, in the heart of Fremantle. In ethically, socially and environmentally responsible architecture where you are part of a small cohort of creative, critical–thinking students, embedded in architectural practice.

The strength of this program lies in its unique combination of the following:

  • a small diverse cohort
  • high-quality teaching approaches
  • tailored practice placements
  • socio-spatial design studios that tackle contemporary issues
  • working within a studio-based, creative-practice research culture
  • situated and engaged within the Fremantle community.

The Design Studio is the central component of the curriculum where you apply your knowledge, creativity and strategic problem-solving skills in the design of built environments.

During practice placements, you apply your professional and technical learning in local practices under the supervision of a Registered Architect.

The curriculum focusses on diverse graduate employment opportunities and is mapped to the Australian National Standard of Competency for Architects.  In addition to gaining professional competencies, you develop highlevel strategic research agility, resourcefulness and design innovation that opens up opportunities within traditional and non-traditional career pathways.

The personal experience of studying architecture at the Fremantle Campus is enhanced by the historic, artistic and architectural context of the city. Within the program there are opportunities to undertake studies in the Kimberley, Sydney and overseas.

  • Program description

    Program Code 5152

    Students entering this post-graduate program will already have a bachelor-level qualification in architecture, interior architecture or equivalent knowledge base.

    Places are limited so you will be part of a small cohort of creative, critical thinkers committed to being part of a profession that enhances people’s lives through the creation of meaningful human environments.

    Full time and part time enrolments are possible.

    The program covers four key areas:

    • Design studios, technologies and applied skills: Socio-spatial design studios are central to the Fremantle Master of Architecture Program. The studios provide opportunities for you to apply your knowledge, creativity and strategic problem-solving skills in the design of built environments.
    • Technology in practice and professional practice: Placements with our professional partners will enable you to work under the direct supervision of an architect in practice, in tandem with your on-campus studies. These placements will offer a range of work-integrated learning experiences in which you can collect evidence to meet the Australian National Standard of Competency for Architects. This integrated approach to delivery ensures the program provides you with relevant and up-to-date professional learning.
    • Contexts: theory and research of architecture: you will develop high-level strategic research agility, resourcefulness and design innovation that will open up opportunities within traditional and non-traditional career pathways. You will engage in traditional and creative-practice research, disseminated through exhibitions, stakeholder engagements and design competitions.
    • Core Curriculum: Notre Dame’s Core Curriculum is a distinguishing characteristic of its undergraduate and postgraduate education. You will undertake the course Ethical Issues in Professional Life: Architecture and explore the relationship between moral philosophy and applied ethics in the profession. Throughout the program, you will be challenged to consider critical issues such as power and privilege, identify positive professional values and behaviours, and reflect critically on your impact on people and places, preparing you to be ethically, socially and environmentally responsible professionals.
  • Program structure

    The program structure for the two-year program is as follows:

    Year One:

    Semester One

    • ARCH6000   Architectural Design Studio 3: Public Projects
    • ARCH6001   Architectural Contexts: Urbanism & the living city
    • ARCH6003   Technology in Practice: Practicum A

    Winter Term

    • ARCH6002   Architectural Design Studio: Contextual Projects

    Semester Two

    • ARCH6005   Architectural Design Studio: Heritage Contexts
    • PHIL6020      Ethical Issues in Professional Life
    • ARCH6004   Technology in Practice: Practicum B

    Year Two:

    Semester One

    • ARCH6006   Advanced Research Studio: Community Building
    • ARCH6007   Architectural Research Methods
    • ARCH6008   Professional Practice Practicum

    Winter Term (or Summer Term)

    • Architectural Placement (optional)

    Semester Two

    • ARTS6000    Literature Review OR ARTS6005 Special Project (Professional Writing)
    • ARCH6009   Advanced Practice-Led Research Studio OR ARCH6010 Independent Research Project
    • ARCH6011   Practice Management Practicum

    See the Master of Architecture course descriptions.

    View the schema of the program structure.

    Full details of the Master of Architecture program requirements are contained in the Program Regulations.

  • Embedded in professional practice

    This program is embedded in professional practice and designed for creative and strategic-thinking students of architecture, looking to tackle contemporary issues while simultaneously gaining academic and practical experience. The program timetable is ideal for those seeking to study while working in the field.

    You’ll learn in socio-spatial design studios on Campus and on tailored practice placements in architectural firms across Fremantle – home to many of Western Australia’s award-winning architectural projects.

    You’ll spend time working at architectural practices where you’ll apply your professional and technical learning under the supervision of an Architect.

    Professional placements are curated to suit your interests providing a breadth of experience for your CV.

  • Admission requirements

    Students with a bachelor-level degree in architecture, interior architecture, or its equivalent knowledge base, will enter into the two-year Master’s program. The application process will include an interview based on a portfolio of bachelor-level work, including any relevant professional work.

    Advanced standing and/or recognition of prior learning may be available towards this program by application to the Dean, or delegate, and in accordance with the University’s General Regulations.

  • Accreditation

    We are an accredited Master of Architecture program for Australia. In Australia architectural programs are accredited through a process run nationally by the Architects Accreditation Council of Australia (AACA) and the relevant state-based Architects Board.

  • Program learning outcomes

    Students meeting the award requirements for this qualification should be able to:

    1. Competent: Apply the knowledge and skills necessary for the profession of architecture across design, documentation, project delivery and practice management in compliance with the Australian National Standard of Competency for Architects (NSCA).
    2. Creative: Apply analytical, critical and creative thinking, within spatial, social and environmental contexts, to the design of contemporary architectural projects.
    3. Innovative, strategic, sustainable: Use advanced problem-solving strategic and technical skills to create innovative sustainable solutions to environmental issues and challenges.
    4. Ethical: Apply professional and ethical decision-making that fosters social, environmental and community responsibility, with sensitivity to cultural diversity, within the practice of architecture and the built environment.
    5. Philosophical: Apply broad philosophical thinking that informs practical action and decision-making in response to a range of complex socio-spatial design problems.
    6. Inclusive Communicator: Apply advanced technical, visual, written and verbal communication skills to support inclusive and participatory engagement with specialists, stakeholders and communities in local, regional and international contexts.
    7. Collaborative: Operate as an active, responsible and collaborative member within multi-disciplinary teams and demonstrate professional leadership skills in the built environment.
    8. Agile Researcher: Apply strategic agility, forward-thinking and creative research skills to advance architectural design research that critically appraises and reflects on national and international discourses and practices.
  • Fees and costs

    This Program has the following loan scheme(s) available for eligible students:

    The FEE-HELP loan scheme assists eligible fee-paying students with the payment of all, or part, of their tuition fees, not including additional study costs such as accommodation or textbooks. Your FEE-HELP debt will be indexed each year in line with the Consumer Price Index.

    Some scholarships may be available.

  • More information

    For a discussion about whether this program is right for you, contact Dr Lara Mackintosh or Katherine Ashe.

    For general information on the Master of Architecture, please call our Prospective Students Office on +61 8 9433 0533 or email

    All international enquiries should contact the International Students Office on

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