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Architecture and Lighting Design (M.Arch-MFA LD dual degree)

School Magazine

Since 2007, the School of Constructed Environments has offered a dual degree combining the Master of Architecture and Master of Fine Arts in Lighting Design (M.Arch/MFA LD). This unique track enables students to develop a keen technical and aesthetic awareness of the relationship between light and architecture.

Founding Principles

Students pursuing the M.Arch/MFA LD track expand their knowledge of form, program, site, materials, and structure and of the role of lighting in underscoring those qualities. Students in the program strengthen their representational skills, technical abilities, and understanding of the physiological and psychological aspects of lighting and architecture.

Design for Living

The M.Arch/MFA LD program engages architectural and lighting design as a medium for social responsibility. For example, electric lighting—increasingly the visible result of digital mediation—is emerging as a transformative construction material as buildings and entire urban sectors become information-bearing surfaces. Sustainable practices also rely heavily on solar exposure and daylighting strategies that can have profound consequences for the experience of built environments.

Through project-based learning, students pose questions and develop independent ideas, interests, and problem-solving skills. Seminars focusing on technologies, structural and technical analysis, biology, and design theory complement the studio coursework.

Resources for the Future

Assisted by Parsons' alliances with professional organizations and a distinguished faculty of prominent practitioners, theorists, historians, and critics drawn from New York City, students pursue professional internships and other partnerships with leading players on the global design stage.

Admission to the dual-degree program requires acceptance into both the M.Arch and the MFA LD programs. This program is accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB).


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