This one-year interdisciplinary post-professional degree program is tailored for advanced students and midcareer professionals. Students focus on research and design through mentored study and a range of elective offerings. The MAAD degree is STEM designated.

Three areas of concentration are offered that reflect the diversity of emerging domains within architecture, allowing for a rigorous course of study that has an advanced level of specialization, but is also highly cross-disciplinary.

Digital Craft

The Master of Advanced Architectural Design (MAAD) Digital Craft concentration focuses on contemporary digital design technologies and digital craft. It provides students with both broad and in-depth exposure to contemporary topics:

  • parametric design and advanced computation
  • digital fabrication and robotic technologies
  • interactive technologies and responsive environments
  • building information modeling (BIM)
  • advanced simulation and visualization
  • history and theory of digital design
  • experimental and emerging technologies​​​​

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Urban Works

MAAD Urban Works offers advanced training in urban research, design, and scholarship that enables students to directly address the urban challenges of the 21st Century.  Students lay the groundwork to join and form experimental practices that bridge client-driven work with municipal agencies, nonprofit advocacy, and entrepreneurial ventures.

  • Learn innovative research and visualization techniques, GIS mapping and communications strategies, and contemporary urban theories and concepts.
  • Develop design strategies to respond to demands for social justice, ecological vitality, and economic resilience within the contemporary city.
  • Interact directy with city agencies, nonprofit organizations, and urban and architectural practitioners.
  • Undertake a year-long design-research project that results in a final work, such as a book, exhibition, or app.

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History, Theory, Experiments [HTX]

The MAAD History, Theory, Experiments [HTX] concentration offers an intense year of advanced study in architectural and urban history, theory, and criticism, culminating in an independent research project based in experimental methods and digital platforms:

  • Explore a research topic of your choosing on the built environment.
  • Gain mastery of your chosen subject under the guidance of a thesis supervisor.
  • Explore methods and platforms drawn from experimental and digital humanities.
  • Develop your research into a publication, exhibition, website, or app.
  • Prepare for a career in architectural teaching, curation, digital humanities (digital conversation and curation), criticism, journalism, or doctoral study.

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Requirements for Admission

Professional degree in architecture, or equivalent. See submission requirements »

General Inquiries:
Email: architecture@cca.edu

Leah Kandel
Program Manager
Master of Architecture
Master of Advanced Architectural Design
lkandel@cca.edu
415.551.9245

Postal Address
Graduate Architecture Programs
California College of the Arts
1111 Eighth Street
San Francisco CA 94107-2247

Architecture Staff
See a complete staff list for the division of Architecture »