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Top architecture schools

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Holly Hemmings

Updated Feb 19, 2024
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Top Architecture Schools in 2020 main image

The recently released QS World University Rankings by Subject features 241 of the top higher education institutions to study architecture. 

The subject rankings are based on four indicators: academic and employer indicator, citations per paper and H-index citations (a way of measuring the productivity and published work of a scientist or scholar). You can find more details about the methodology behind the subject rankings here. 

Read on to discover more about the best architecture schools in each region. Alternatively, if you would like to explore the top architecture schools further, view the full table here. 

QS World University Rankings by Subject – Top universities to study architecture 

Rank 

University 

Location 

University College London - UCL 

United Kingdom 

Massachusetts Institute of Technology - MIT 

United States 

=3 

Delft University of Technology 

The Netherlands 

=3 

ETH Zurich 

Switzerland 

Manchester School of Architecture 

United Kingdom 

Harvard University 

United States 

National University of Singapore 

Singapore 

Tsinghua University 

Mainland China 

University of California Berkeley 

United States 

10 

Politecnico di Milano 

Italy 

Top universities for architecture in the US and Canada

Of the 241 schools featured in the architecture subject rankings, 39 of these universities are found in the US, including 12 featuring in the top 50 worldwide – the largest amount in any one country. Aside from those in the top 10 (shown above), other high-ranking universities in the US include Columbia University (15th), Georgia Insititute of Technology (=18th) and University of California Los Angeles (=18th). 

Heading north to Canada, there are seven universities featured in the subject rankings for architecture. Although none of these are featured in the top 10, the University of British Columbia does well in the citations per paper and H-index indicators and ranks 32nd overall. Other Canadian universities in the top 100 are University of Toronto (43rd) and McGill University (51-100). 

Top universities for architecture in Europe

The UK is home to 18 of the best architecture schools in the world, with two of these schools featuring in the top 10 in the subject rankings for architecture. Outside of the top 10, we have University of Cambridge (11th) and The University of Sheffield (32nd). Ireland’s University College Dublin scored particularly well in the citations per paper and H-index indicators, ranked 101-150 this year. 

In France, there are four entrants this year - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne and Université Paris-Est Créteil Val de Marne, both ranking 151-200, and Université Grenoble Alps and Université PSL, both ranking 201-240. Spain has six ranked universities this year with Universitat Politèctina de Catalunya (22nd) and Universidad Politècnica de Madrid (26th) both ranked within the top 50 and Universitat Politecnica de Valencia (51-100) ranked within the top 100. 

Germany also scores well this year, with nine universities ranked in the architecture subject rankings this year including Technische Universität Berlin (18th) and Technical University of Munich (24th). 

Italy also performs well in the architecture subject rankings with nine ranked universities, two of which are in the top 50; Politecnico di Milano (10th) and Politecnico di Torino (28th). Switzerland’s two entrants, ETH Zurich (3rd) and EPFL (13th) are both within the top 20 in the world. 

Over to the Netherlands now, where there are five universities in the architecture subject rankings with Delft University of Technology in the top three worldwide and Eindhoven University of Technology (51-100) in the top 100. Three of the world’s best architecture schools can be found in Sweden: KTH Royal Institute of Technology (26th), Chalmers University of Technology (46th) and Lund University (51-100). Norway is home to two of the world’s top universities for architecture: Norwegian University of Science and Technology (51-100) and Oslo School of Architecture (201-240). 

Belgium has five entrants this year, with KU Leuven ranked 33rd, and Portugal has four top universities for architecture including University of Lisbon and University of Porto (101-150). Austria’s two entrants, Technische Universität Wein (51-100) and Graz University of Technology (101-150) both ranked within the top 150 in the world. Lithuania’s single entrant, Vilnius Gediminas Technical University, is ranked 151-200. 

Top universities for architecture in Australia and New Zealand

Of Australia’s 17 universities in the subject rankings for architecture this year, four universities rank in the top 50 worldwide: The University of Melbourne (23rd), RMIT University (25th), The University of Sydney (31st) and The University of South Wales (40th). 

New Zealand has three entrants in the rankings this year; The University of Auckland (51-100), Massey University (151-200) and Victoria University of Wellington (151-200). 

Top universities for architecture in Asia  

Mainland China contains the most ranked universities in Asia this year, with 16 universities in the architecture rankings. Of these, six are featured in the top 50, including Tsinghua University (8th), Tongji University (12th) and Tianjin University (30th). 

Singapore has three entrants including National University of Singapore (7th) and Nanyang Technological University (36th) in the top 50. Israel has one entry this year, Technicon – Israel Institute of Technology, which ranks 151-200. Taiwan also has three entrants: National Cheng Kung University (101-150), National Taipei University of Technology (101-150) and National Taiwan University of Science and Technology (151-200). 

Japan has an impressive 10 universities in the architecture subject rankings including The University of Tokyo (17th) and Tokyo Institute of Technology (47th). South Korea also performs well, also with 10 entrants this year; the highest-ranked being Seoul National University (28th). Thailand has one university in the subject rankings, Chulalongkorn University (101-150) and India and Indonesia have three. Malaysia has seven, including Universiti Teknologi Malaysia in the top 100. 

Hong Kong SAR contains four top universities, including The University of Hong Kong (14th) and The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (16th). 

Top universities for architecture in Latin America  

Latin America is represented by 16 institutions in the architecture school rankings. 

Chile and Columbia both have three universities featured in the architecture subject rankings this year, with Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile (36th) and Universidad Nacional de Colombia (51-100) ranking the highest respectively. 

Of Mexico’s three entrants, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México came in top place, scoring well for employer reputation and ranked 51-100 overall. Argentina only has a single entry in the architecture school rankings, Universidad de Buenos Aires, which ranked 51-100. 

Brazil has five entrants in the rankings this year, including Universidade de São Paulo (44th): the only entrant in the top 50. 

Top universities for architecture in Africa

The University of Cape Town is South Africa’s top university this year for architecture, ranked 101-150 worldwide. 

Egypt has three universities featured in the rankings this year, Cairo University (151-200), Ain Shams University in Cairo and Alexandria University, both ranked 201-240. 

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