Foundation lab discuss cowgill lobby exhibition.

Our Teaching Philosophy

How do we think about design education at Virginia Tech?


The Virginia Tech School of Architecture and School of Design offer professionally-accredited degree programs in Architecture, Industrial Design, Interior Design, and Landscape Architecture. In addition, research-oriented graduate programs are offered, leading to masters and Ph.D. degrees.

The architecture and design programs at Virginia Tech strive to create an environment where each student’s unique abilities and capacities can be activated, while challenging them with the standards of excellence and achievement that are inherent in their chosen discipline and profession. Studios and courses in our academic programs are taught by faculty members who are deeply committed to each student’s education in architecture and design.

locations of study

On the University’s main campus in Blacksburg, Virginia, the School maintains a wide array of facilities to support its educational programs. The professional programs in the School of Architecture and School of Design are studio-based, and, from the first year onward, each student will have his or her own dedicated desk in the design studio in one of the School’s buildings at which to conduct their work. The design studios are supported by computing, rapid prototyping, and digital fabrication facilities, as well as workshops and laboratories for woodworking, metalworking, plastics, ceramics, printmaking, textiles, and photography. A comprehensive collection of research and study materials are available in the Art & Architecture Library, including an extensive set of architect’s working drawings of significant buildings.

Opportunities for off-campus study are offered though the Washington-Alexandria Architecture Center in Old Town Alexandria, Virginia, the Chicago Studio, various internship programs, in which students can earn academic credit while employed as interns in professional practice, and a number of Study Abroad Programs, including the Europe studio residency program at the University’s Steger Center for International Scholarship in Riva San Vitale, Switzerland.

research opportunities

A broad range of possibilities exist for graduate and undergraduate students to become involved in design research endeavors, including history/theory inquiries, design-build projects, building science research, and digital fabrication work, as well as to engage in outreach projects serving local communities.


The mission of the School of Architecture and School of Design is to create a setting for the pursuit of theoretical, practical, and productive knowledge, embracing the duality of the education of an individual and the practice of a profession. The School takes a decidedly Modern position towards design and simultaneously seeks to understand the structure of historical development and culture. The School has a long-standing commitment to international and urban studies through its off-campus programs, including a number of Study Abroad options, the Chicago Studio, and the Washington-Alexandria Architecture Center.

The objective of the School of Architecture and School of Design is to produce graduates who will be leaders in their chosen professions and in the communities in which they live. The School seeks to provide a forum that cultivates vigorous dialogue and debate, enriching the interrelations between education and practice.