Bachelor of Architectural Design

Degree Type Bachelor
Duration 3 years full-time
or part-time equiv.
SATAC Code 314131
CRICOS 002782D

The blueprint for your future

Design goes far beyond the visual. It responds to possibilities and limits, to hopes and needs. It’s equal parts creative and calculated. 

Architectural design is about understanding landscapes and the way humans create places within them. Architecture, landscape architecture and urban design share the purpose of aiding society while creating structural works of art.

What will you do?

Our Bachelor of Architectural Design hones concrete skills and encourages big picture thinking. You will:

  • visit notable building sites, landscapes, gardens and exhibitions
  • gain high-level practical design and model-making skills
  • practise computer and hand based drawing techniques
  • explore relevant theory, history, tradition and innovation
  • consider issues of ecology and environment
  • learn how to formulate effective proposals.

Where could it take you?

Our graduates apply design skills in all sorts of rewarding careers, and take on specialised roles through postgraduate study. You might restore beautiful old buildings or be a micro-home master. You could create and preserve natural landscapes and life cycles. Perhaps you’ll design the next iconic skyscraper or opera house.

  • Entry Requirements

    Choose your applicant type to view the relevant admissions information for this program.
    I am a:

    Domestic applicants

    Not a domestic applicant?

    Admissions information

    SATAC Code 314131
    2018 CSP ATAR 65.2
    2018 CSP IB 24
    Guaranteed Entry Score - ATAR 80
    Deferment Yes - 2 year
    Intake February and July
    Enquiries Future Students team

    2018 Admissions Data for school leavers
    (raw ATAR, excluding any applicable adjustment factors)
    Lowest ATAR to receive an offer 61.7
    Median ATAR to receive an offer 74.35
    Highest ATAR to receive an offer 98.3
    Selection Rank
    (ATAR plus any adjustment factors)
    Lowest Selection Rank to receive an offer 65.2
    Median Selection Rank to receive an offer 79.65
    Highest Selection Rank to receive an offer 99.8
    Minimum eligibility score 65
    Additional criteria considered Selection rank only
    Selection Criteria
    Recent Secondary Education You must not have completed more than 2 years full time equivalent university study (48 units). You compete for a place with your Selection Rank (ATAR plus any applicable adjustment factors ).
    Assumed Knowledge SACE Stage 1 Mathematics (or equivalent), basic freehand drawing ability, computing skills
    Additional Entry Requirements
    For mid-year entry students, you will be required to enrol in summer school (~Jan to Feb) in order to complete the program within the program duration (3 years).
    Higher Education Study You must have completed at least six months full time equivalent higher education study (the number of courses and units will vary depending on your prior institution however at the University of Adelaide, this equates to 4 courses / 12 units). A Grade Point Average (GPA) is calculated for each separate program you have undertaken (apart from some double degree programs where the GPA is combined). You compete on the basis of your best GPA.
    Vocational Education and Training (VET) study You must have completed a Certificate IV or above from a Registered Training Organisation. Your application will be ranked according to the level of the award.
    Work and life experience You must be 18 years or over before 1 February 2019. If you have studied at higher education level in the last two years (for 2019 entry this means you were enrolled in either 2018 or 2017), you must not have accumulated more than a TOTAL of 2 years full-time (or part-time equivalent) higher education study (ie. including any study prior to 2017). If you meet this criteria, you will be ranked according to your result in the Special Tertiary Admissions Test (STAT). Your STAT result is not weighted between verbal and quantitative components. Indigenous applicants may be eligible for entry through the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Access Scheme. See Wirltu Yarlu for further information.
    Other Entry Pathways
    How to Apply
    SATAC Code: 314131

    Student Profile
    Applicant background Semester one/Full year intake 2018
    Number of students Percentage of all students
    (A) Higher Education study
    (includes a bridging or enabling course)
    3 3.3%
    (B) Vocational education and training (VET) study 3 3.3%
    (C) Work and life experience
    (admitted on the basis of previous achievement not in the other three categories)
    11 12.1%
    (D) Recent secondary education:
    • Admitted solely on the basis of ATAR
      (regardless of whether this includes the consideration of adjustment factors)
    33 36.3%
    • Admitted where both ATAR and additional criteria were considered
      (e.g. portfolio, audition, extra test, early offer conditional on minimum ATAR)
    N/A N/A
    • Admitted on the basis of other criteria only and ATAR was not a factor
      (e.g. special consideration, audition alone, schools recommendation scheme with no minimum ATAR requirement)
    N/A N/A
    International students 41 45.1%
    All students 91 100.0%

    International applicants

    Not an international applicant?

    CRICOS 002782D
    Intake February and July. Students commencing in July will be required to enrol in Summer school (Jan to Feb) in order to complete the program within the three year duration.
    Selection Criteria
    English Language Requirements
    Australian Year 12 Successful completion of an Australian year 12 qualification with a minimum pass in an accepted English language subject
    English Tests accepted by the University of Adelaide
    IELTS Overall 6.5 Reading 6 Listening 6 Speaking 6 Writing 6
    TOEFL Overall 79 Reading 13 Listening 13 Speaking 18 Writing 21
    Pearsons Overall 58 Reading 50 Listening 50 Speaking 50 Writing 50
    C1 Advanced Overall 176 Reading 169 Listening 169 Speaking 169 Writing 169
    Qualifications that meet minimum English requirements A range of alternative qualifications may meet the University’s minimum English requirements
    Academic Entry Requirements
    More Information
    Secondary School Qualifications Selection Rank (International) 75
    International Baccalaureate (IB) 27
    Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education (HKDSE) 18
    United Entrance Certificate (UEC) [Malaysia] 20
    General Certificate of Education (GCE) Advanced Level 7
    Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) 70%
    British Columbia Certificate of Graduation (Canada) 4.8
    Alberta High School Diploma (Canada) 80
    ISC & CBSE [India] 70%
    ISBE [India] 80%
    SAT (in conjunction with American High School Diploma) 1200
    AP (in conjunction with American High School Diploma) 7
    Abitur 3.4
    Thailand Certificate of Secondary Education 2.5
    Bang Tot Nghiep Trung Hoc Pho Thong 7.5
    STPM or Matrikulasi 2.78
    Kuwait General School Secondary Certificate 74
    The University of Adelaide College Foundation Program 74
    Eynesbury Foundation Program 360
    ANU Foundation Studies 66
    Monash Foundation Year 70
    Trinity College Foundation Studies Program 72
    UNSW Foundation Year 7.0
    University of Sydney Foundation Studies Program 6.7
    Western Australia University Foundation Studies Program 59
    University of Queensland Foundation Studies Program 4.2
    Non-Go8 Foundation Score 74
    SMA3 (in conjunction with National Final Examination Certificate) 80
    Other Qualifications Students who don't meet the academic requirements or who have other qualifications from the South Pacific Islands, Japan, Korea, Philippines or Taiwan may be eligible to apply for a Pre-University Pathway to prepare for or gain entry into the University's undergraduate academic programs. For additional information see Pathway Programs
    Additional Entry Requirements
    Applicants seeking advanced standing must submit to Student Recruitment and Admissions Services a portfolio of their own work (in hard copy or CD/DVD). 

    How to Apply
  • Fees and Scholarships

    Choose your applicant type to view the relevant fees and scholarships information for this program.
    I am a:

    Domestic applicants

    Not a domestic applicant?

    Annual tuition fees
    Commonwealth-supported place: $9,300

    More information on Student Contribution Amounts.

    International applicants

    Not an international applicant?

    Annual tuition fees (24 units) International student place: $33,000


    These scholarships, as well as many others funded by industry and non-profit organisations, are available to potential and currently enrolled students.

    Find a Scholarship.

  • Careers

    Career Readiness

    What is the pathway to becoming an architect or landscape architect?

    The career paths of architects and landscape architects are many and varied. High levels of skill and flexibility are needed in professions that are responding to global and local needs. To prepare for these exciting possibilities, the School of Architecture and Built Environment at the University of Adelaide delivers one undergraduate Bachelor of Architectural Design program that leads to two professional graduate degrees – Master of Architecture and Master of Landscape Architecture. Alternatively, the Bachelor of Architectural Design program provides a study pathway for students who wish to undertake the School’s graduate Master of Planning, Master of Planning (Urban Design) programs or the Master of Property.

    The Bachelor of Architectural Design followed by the Master of Architecture is recognised by the Australian Institute of Architects and accredited by the Architectural Practice Board of South Australia. These two programs can be completed in five years of study. A total of two years practical experience, at least one of which must be taken after graduation, and an examination by the Architectural Practice Board of South Australia are prerequisites to registration as an architect.   

    A similar pathway applies for aspiring landscape architects, with the Master of Landscape Architecture being recognised by the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects (AILA) and examined by the Registered Landscape Architects Board for registration.

    The Master of Planning and the Master of Planning (Urban Design) are available to graduates of the Bachelor of Architectural Design program and are accredited by the Planning Institute of Australia (PIA). These degrees have significant input from the School of Social Sciences and their content bridges both the natural and built environment. Also covered are issues of urban development and design and public interaction with the planning process and human concerns with the design and development of urban spaces.

    The Master of Property is available to graduates of the Bachelor of Architectural Design with a credit average or above and is accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. This degree is located in the School of Architecture and Built Environment but draws extensively on expertise from across the Faculty of The Professions with input from economics, law, finance and project management.

    It is important to note that while many
    Bachelor of Architectural Design graduates continue in either architecture and/or landscape architecture others follow a variety of career directions. The Bachelor of Architectural Design leads to careers which require skills in analysing and interpreting situations, the use of creative decision making approaches, and the formulation of proposals for change or conservation.

    Graduates of the Bachelor of Architectural Design are well equipped to continue on to a broad spectrum of future studies in other fields because of the program's emphasis on critical thinking, creative action, communication skills and digital technologies. These pathways could include teaching, health sciences, environmental law, international development, urban and regional planning, marketing and business.

    The University of Adelaide Careers Service prepares, inspires and empowers students to achieve successful career transitions and connect with industry.

    Graduate Attributes

    The objective of this program is to produce graduates with specific attributes as outlined in University of Adelaide Graduate Attributes.
    1. Deep discipline knowledge
    2. Critical thinking and problem solving
    3. Teamwork and communication skills
    4. Career and leadership readiness
    5. Intercultural and ethical competency
    6. Self-awareness and emotional intelligence

    Professional Accreditation

    Please note that to practise as an architect or landscape architect, you must complete a professionally accredited combination of degrees in your chosen discipline.

    We offer the following choices:

    • Bachelor of Architectural Design followed by Master of Architecture recognised by the Australian Institute of Architects and accredited by the Architectural Practice Board of South Australia.
    • Bachelor of Architectural Design followed by Master of Landscape Architecture recognised and accredited by the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects.
    • Bachelor of Architectural Design followed by either Master of Planning or Master of Planning (Urban Design) recognised and accredited by the Planning Institute of Australia.
    • Bachelor of Architectural Design followed by Master of Property recognised and accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.
    • Bachelor of Architectural Design followed by Master of Construction Management recognised and accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.

    Potential careers

    Asset Manager, Construction Manager, Draftsperson, Environmental Designer, Project Manager, Project Officer, Environmental Project Officer, Planning Officer / Urban Planner, Town Planning Engineer, Landscape Architect, Architect

  • Study Overseas

    A Study Overseas experience is an integral component to your academic journey at The University of Adelaide. The university is committed to offering its students the opportunity to study overseas through a range of degrees offered via Study Overseas, including student exchange, study tours, short study degrees, internships and placements. There are many exciting opportunities in Europe, Asia, the Americas, Africa, and Oceania ranging from a few weeks to a full academic year.

    To find available opportunities visit Study Overseas.

    Study Overseas Experience

    Your program has been designed to provide you with the opportunity to add a global experience to your studies. You can do this by enrolling in a semester exchange or the offshore studio course:
    • Year 2 - Semester 2 (exchange or offshore studio)
    • Year 3 - Semester 1 (exchange) below is a list of our international exchange partners:
    • Below os a list of our international exchange partners:
    • University of Guelph, Canada
    • Czech Technical University, Prague, Czech Republic
    • University of Stuttgart, Germany
    • Politecnico di Milano, Italy
    • Korea University, South Korea
    • Lund University, Sweden
    • University of Nottingham, United Kingdom
    • Texas A&M University, USA
    Example Study Plan for Student Exchange

    Partner & Country Course University of Adelaide Credit Units Year/ Level Core/ Elective

    Texas A&M University - USA
    405 Architectural Design IV (5 units)
    Design Studio 4
    (DESST 2519)
    6 2nd Year Core
    330 The Making of Architecture  (3 units)
    435 Integrated Systems (2 units)
    216 Computational Methods in Architecture (3 units)
    2 (DESST 2520)
    3 2nd Year Core
    250 Survey of World Architecture History II (3 units)
    History Theory 2 (DESST 2521) 3 2nd Year Core

    The offshore studio course available year 2 - Semester 2 is: 

    Course Year/Level Units Core/Elective
    Design Studio IV DESST 2519 Year 2-Semester 2 6 Core
    During Year 2, students will have the option to undertake Design Studio IV as an overseas study tour.  Previous study tours have been in China, Indonesia, the USA, Japan, Scotland, Italy, Malaysia, Korea, France, India, Vanuatu and Spain. Details are made available to students early in the year.  Please contact a student advisor in the School for more information.  
  • Degree Structure

    The multi-disciplinary core courses in the Bachelor of Architectural Design foster intellectual development, critical thinking and creative action. The program is intended as a framework within which to develop these skills for those individuals who have an interest in the environment and design and who wish to enhance buildings and human modified places with creative environmental design solutions.

    The majority of the teaching activities are based around the design studios, where topics are developed and discussed with studio leaders. These studio sessions are supplemented by courses in various other topics such as representation, construction, environment and history and theory.

    Representation introduces students to the latest computer and hand based drawing techniques. Construction uses specialist equipment for modelling and experimentation and the Environment course includes issues of ecology. History and theory engages with the traditions of the discipline to consider frameworks for contemporary design.

    Students can also apply for entry to an additional Honours year.

    Academic Program Rules

    The Calendar is a comprehensive handbook of the University's academic program rules.

    You can find the academic program rules for this degree under the Faculty of the Professions rules.

    Example Study Plan

    Indicative Study Plan
    Year level 1
    Core courses DESST 1503: Design Studio I
    DESST 1505: History Theory I
    DESST 1504: Representation I
    DESST 1506: Design Studio II
    DESST 1507: Construction I
    DESST 1508: Environment I
    Year level 2
    Core courses DESST 2516: Design Studio III
    DESST 2517: Environment II
    DESST 2518: Construction II
    DESST 2519: Design Studio IV
    DESST 2520: Representation II
    DESST 2521: History Theory II
    Year level 3
    Core courses DESST 3513: Design Studio V
    DESST 3514: Construction III
    DESST 3515: Representation III
    DESST 3516: Design Studio VI
    DESST 3517: Environment III
    DESST 3518: History Theory III
    NOTE: Current students should refer to the following link for study plans and enrolment details:

    Credit Transfer and Portfolio Requirements

    A submission of a portfolio, academic transcript and list of course syllabus are required for applicants who wish to seek credit transfer for studies completed at a tertiary institution (ie TAFE SA, other universities) to count towards the Bachelor of Architectural Design.

    The portfolio must be printed on A3 in hardcopy or submitted in electronic form. All CAD drawing files must be supplied as PDFs in a single document not exceeding 100MB. Applicants should consider the legibility and hierarchy of their images and text.

    The portfolio is used to assess design skills and knowledge and should demonstrate familiarity with a range of design processes and media. Representation media should ideally include, but are not limited to: Adobe Photoshop, In-Design, Illustrator, AutoCAD, Revit and other 3D packages, as well as hand drawing, sketching, painting, collage, model-making and photography of models.

    In addition to final rendered images, applicants should include information on the process of design development and construction documentation (if any). The folio may include material developed with others in an office/practice situation where this is clearly referenced and the applicant’s contribution explained.
  • Related Degrees

  • Further Information

    Please direct enquiries to the Ask Adelaide
    Phone: +61 8 8313 7335 (toll free 1800 061 459)

    The annual Open Day and Information Night events provide an excellent opportunity to see our campus, meet with academics, and discuss your study options.

The University of Adelaide is committed to regular reviews of the courses and programs it offers to students. The University of Adelaide therefore reserves the right to discontinue or vary programs and courses without notice. Please read the important information contained in the disclaimer.

Last updated: Friday, 7 Feb 2020