Department of Architecture, BRAC University celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2012.It started its journey in spring 2002 with 15 students and 3 members of the faculty. However, over the years, it has grown and now has 230 students and 16 full-time well-qualified members of the faculty. The department offers a 203 credits undergraduate degree in architecture, and by now it has produced 83 graduates through its 5-year degree program.
The objective of the department is to ensure high quality education. The size of the student intake is limited to 25-30 only. The admission process is based on competition. Within the short span of time, the department has earned a reputation for high quality architectural education with the help of teachers of exceptional academic and professional background. The design studios, the vital part of the curriculum are taught by 2 to 3 teachers. Thus excellent 1:10 teacher-student ratio is maintained. The external faculty members who are highly qualified and renowned in their respective fields teach design studios and courses on various architecture related subjects, such as painting, photography, sculpture and music appreciation.
The academic atmosphere is characterized by rich co-curricular activities and a lively cultural life. It includes the Angan lecture series, Arch.KIDS and the student cultural forum “Moitree”. Angan lecture is a regular lecture series which invites different scholars to conduct lecture on his/her field of interest. These types of lectures help the students to introduce with intellectuals and encourage widening their knowledge. “Arch.KIDS” is an outreach program for children. The idea originated with letting our future generation know about our environment and the architecture that occupies this environment. The objective is to explore their levels of creativity through designing spaces.
The department also organizes exhibition of the students’ work and design charrettes. These develop inter-university communication and further the interest of the students to strive for excellence. Practical training is a part of the curriculum. Students are required to complete a semester of professional training in architectural offices. The training is trans-boundary in nature. Besides Bangladesh, the students undergo this training in India, Singapore, Hong Kong, Malaysia and U.S. A. The department enjoys the privilege of students and staff exchange with several European Universities under EMMA (Erasmus Mundus Mobility with Asia). It has a MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) with the School of Architecture, University of Illinois at Chicago, for student/staff exchanges.
The department arranged several study tours at different places in Bangladesh under different course curriculum. These tours help the students to understand, experience the subject and appreciate their field of study more and open themselves to many possibilities. The students are highly encouraged by the department to participate different community –led projects, workshops.
Very recently, Department of Architecture introduced a new certificate program in Construction Management. 13 students have successfully completed the program in the first batch.
The department undertakes research programs in different areas. It has done so in association with the Research and Education division of BRAC, the British Council, the University of Manchester, Loughborough University, Hoge School Van Amsterdam etc. The students are encouraged to work on research projects to get them acquainted with the real world. The department also offers consulting services for various organizations. Prototype design of cyclone shelter for BRAC, interior design of university facilities, disaster resilient housing at Noakhali for IUCN and post disaster housing reconstruction in the Sidr affected areas are some examples.