Best Free Online Courses & Classes in Architecture 2020

Free Online Courses & Classes in Architecture are the perfect way to stay on top of the latest developments in architecture and design. With flexible schedules, helpful instructors, and affordable tuition, these courses can be taken from anywhere with an internet connection. From exploring 3D modeling and drafting techniques to learning about green building methods and modern construction technology, online architecture classes offer a wide range of topics for students to explore. Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned professional, there is something for everyone in these free online courses!

The best free online architecture classes provide comprehensive instruction that covers essential topics such as drawing plans using CAD software, understanding building codes, identifying materials needed for a project, assessing zoning laws and regulations, developing cost estimations, designing efficient lighting systems and much more.

Many online courses also provide an overview of popular architectural styles such as modern, neoclassical, postmodern and contemporary architecture. By mastering the fundamentals of these various architectural movements, learners can then move on to more advanced topics such as sustainable building practices, urban planning and civil engineering. The key is to find a course or class that provides comprehensive instruction while remaining engaging and informative.

In addition to the theoretical aspects of architecture, many free online classes focus on practical design techniques and professional tips for success in the field. Learners can explore 3D modeling software programs such as SketchUp Pro or Autodesk Revit , in addition to learning how to work with a variety of different drafting tools.

By the end of these courses, students should have a better understanding of how to create aesthetically pleasing and functionally sound designs that meet all safety requirements.

No matter what level you are at in your architectural career, there is something for everyone when it comes to free online classes & courses in architecture. With the right resources, anyone can develop the skills necessary to become an expert in the field. Start exploring today and find out how these courses can help you reach your goals!

Architectural Online College Courses 2023

1. Making Architecture at IE School of Architecture & Design

By convening lectures in both the IE School of Architecture and Design’s design studio as well as various locations around Segovia, Spain, this course provides an extraordinary opportunity to explore an architect’s creative and professional processes. In addition to utilizing the environment to generate innovative concepts, attendees will gain valuable skills related to composition, form-making and shaping.

2. Practices for Sustainable Architecture at Philadelphia University

Kick-starting this course is a concise overview of the context, motivations, frameworks, and principles required to generate sustainable design. To equip you with adequate skills for constructing and running an effective green building, students will be taught basic techniques followed by eco-villages and green cities.

3. Principles for Sustainable Design at Philadelphia University

Through this course, students explore sustainability with an eye to the past in order to establish a fundamental set of rules and concepts that serve as the foundation for building more sustainable cities going forward.

4. Engineering: Building with Nature at TU Delft

This engineering class is the perfect opportunity to understand how we can build with sustainable materials and gain an insight into basic principles of engineering. By studying this course, you will learn about ecosystem-based design concepts that are applicable in water and coastal systems. Unleash your creative potential by learning a new way of building!

5. The Art of Structural Engineering: Bridges at Princeton University

As you delve into the complexity, cost-effectiveness, and beauty of colossal structures such as bridges, another engineering course may capture your interest. With its concentration on some remarkable bridges built since the industrial revolution era, it demonstrates how engineering can be an artistic pursuit too.

6. Principles of Designing for Humans at University of Michigan

By providing us with access to social theories, particularly psychology, this course enables us to gain a comprehensive understanding of human interaction within design. With improved insight into the emotional and societal components that drive user experience, this class equips us with more effective solutions for creating seamless digital experiences.

7. Architecture Studio: Building in Landscapes at MIT

Architectural professor Jan Wampler guides students through this MIT-level course on landscape building. Students will gain the necessary tools to develop continuity between built and natural settings, analyze climate factors for a specific site, as well as create sketches and models which effectively depict design decisions. With Professor Wampler’s guidance you’ll be able to constructively build within any given context!

History of Best Architecture Courses 2023

1. History of Chinese Architecture at Tsinghua University

If you have a keen interest in the East’s culture and architecture, then this course is perfect for you! It may be lectured in Mandarin, but English subtitles are available. You will gain knowledge on Chinese Architecture fundamentals as well as how the Ming and Qing dynasties influenced imperial palaces, pagodas, religious sites and gardens aesthetically & structurally.

2. A Global History of Architecture at MIT

To comprehend architecture, we must examine its past. We cannot merely focus on the linear narrative; rather, it is important to hone in on certain “moments” of architectural development. The incorporation of iron materials into construction, religious movements and transformations in political systems have all shaped our understanding of the built environment through history’s lens.

3. Frank Lloyd Wright and the 20th Century at Open Online Academy

Upon finishing this course you’ll become well-versed with Frank Lloyd Wright’s progression and have a comprehensive comprehension of some of his essential buildings. Delving into organic architecture, you can recognize the basis for East and West culture amalgamation and how it reshaped 20th century design.

4. Exploring architecture, buildings, and monuments through the ages at Alison

Unlock a world of innovative and inspiring architecture with this free online course! Reviewing everything from Roman Empire buildings to Baroque masterpieces, you’ll gain an understanding of renowned 19th-century edifices as well as modern structures from the 20th century. Don’t miss out on your chance to learn more about captivating works crafted by our predecessors – enroll today!

Theory of Architecture Courses

1. Four Facets of Contemporary Japanese Architecture: Theory at the University of Tokyo

Kickstarting a four-part series, our class takes you through the captivating and ever-evolving world of Japanese architecture. With insightful conversations from renowned figures such as Arata Isozaki, Hisao Kohyama, and Kengo Kuma–viewing their magnificent structures while understanding their creative ideas will sure to be an experience like no other!

2. The Architectural Imagination at Harvard

In this course, you will learn how to understand architecture. You will learn how to look at buildings and see them as cultural expressions and technical achievements. You will also learn about the history of important buildings. From learning about basic principles of architecture, you will develop your understanding of the social and historical contexts behind major works of architecture.

3. The Search for Vernacular Architecture of Asia at The University of Hong Kong

Vernacular Architecture is the subject and study of buildings, landscapes, and sites that are not designed by professional architects but “ordinary” practitioners. It explores this practice as an expression of local identity, indigenous traditions, native materials and offers a better understanding of the built environment.

4. Contemporary Architecture at Open Online Academy

This course will look at some of the ideas, ideologies, and projects that have influenced architecture in recent years. We will discuss the work of some important architects and how their work has helped shape the way we build today.

5. Modern Japanese Architecture: From Meiji Restoration to Today at Tokyo Tech

By examining the architectural developments of Japan over a span of 150 years, this course will explore how their culture and history have informed current materials and structural designs in Japanese Modernist and postmodern buildings. We’ll gain an appreciation for how far we’ve come in material innovations as well as appreciate the influence that Japanese history has had on architecture today.

2023 Best Colleges for Architecture in America


Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyMIT is a leader in architecture education, offering top-notch courses, research opportunities and extracurricular activities to its students. The school’s Architecture department is the oldest in the United States, offering degree programs from bachelor’s to doctorate levels.

Cornell University:

Ranked among the top schools for architecture, Cornell’s College of Architecture, Art and Planning offers courses that explore the latest materials, techniques, theoretical frameworks and design practices. The school also provides a range of research opportunities for its students.

Harvard University:

Harvard has an impressive collection of buildings from various architectural periods making it an ideal learning environment for architects. Its Graduate School of Design offers intense courses in architecture and landscape architecture, taught by some of the world’s most renowned architects.

Columbia University:

Columbia is consistently ranked among the top schools for architecture and its Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation offers a range of courses from bachelor’s to doctorate levels. The school also provides excellent research opportunities to its students.

University of Southern California:

USC offers a unique mix of courses in architecture, planning and landscape design. It also provides research opportunities to its student architects, enabling them to explore the latest materials, techniques and theoretical frameworks in the field. USC’s architecture school is known for its strong industry links and connections with leading professionals.

University of Pennsylvania:

The University of Pennsylvania has a top-notch architecture program that offers students a mix of theoretical and practical courses in the subject. In addition, Penn’s School of Design provides its students with access to research projects and other opportunities to gain hands-on experience in the field.

Princeton University:

Princeton is a leader in architecture education and its School of Architecture offers courses focusing on the latest materials, techniques, theoretical frameworks and design practices. The university also provides research opportunities for students to explore the field further.

Rice University:

The Rice architecture program is designed to foster creativity and innovation among its students. It offers an impressive range of courses from undergraduate to postgraduate levels, and provides research opportunities in areas such as urban design, historic preservation and sustainability.

Yale University:

Yale is widely known for its architecture program which offers courses on a range of architectural topics including materials, techniques, theoretical frameworks and advanced design practice. The school also facilitates research projects that enable students to explore the field further.

University of California, Berkeley:

The Department of Architecture at UC Berkeley provides a comprehensive education in architecture and urban design. It offers courses that explore material innovation, history and theory as well as opportunities for research projects in the field.

These are just some of the best free online courses & classes in architecture available today. With the right resources and guidance, you can find the perfect course to advance your career in architecture.

University of Washington-Seattle Campus:

University of Washington-Seattle Campus offers a range of courses to help students advance their careers in architecture, construction management and infrastructure development.

The Certificate in Construction Management covers topics such as planning and budgeting, safety and quality control. The MS in Construction Management adds courses on laws and regulations, energy infrastructure, procurement and more.

For those who want a more comprehensive education, the Master of Infrastructure Planning and Management provides courses on risk analysis, emergency management and epidemiology.

With these courses, students can gain the skills necessary to become a valuable asset in the architecture industry. ​

University of Nebraska-Lincoln

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln offers an online Master of Science in Architecture degree with a specialization in interior design.

This 36-credit program provides students with the opportunity to study topics such as behavioral and social factors in environmental design, architectural preservation, special needs environments, and contemporary housing issues.

The curriculum includes requirements to complete a field research or internship program, as well as write a thesis in order to graduate.

While courses are offered asynchronously, students must remain active and complete their degree requirements on time in order to progress towards graduation.

With this comprehensive degree, students can gain the skills necessary to become leaders in the architecture industry. ​

University of Florida

The University of Florida offers a 36-credit Master’s in Sustainable Design program that combines architecture, construction, preservation and design, as well as urban planning.

Applicants should have a baccalaureate degree and some prior professional experience; however, given the interdisciplinary nature of this program, prior design work is not necessary.

This cohort program starts in August and provides courses such as Ecological Issues in Sustainability and International Sustainable Development.

During the first two semesters, students will benefit from a studio experience and work on their capstone research project proposal for the final semester. Online students must make two trips to campus and one international trip (with accommodation costs covered by tuition).

With a successful completion of this program, students can gain the necessary knowledge and skills to become leaders in the architecture industry.

University of Arizona

The University of Arizona offers two relevant online programs for aspiring architects. The Bachelor of Science in Sustainable Built Environments encourages students to explore sustainability through courses in algebra, biology, chemistry, statistics and physics.

During the upperclassmen years, they cover topics such as energy use and design before undertaking an internship or capstone project. Many graduates go on to pursue advanced degrees in architecture.

The Master of Real Estate Development program, popular with urban planners, real estate agents and architects, provides an understanding of real estate and finance so that graduates can develop properties responsibly.

With a successful completion of either program, students can gain the necessary knowledge and skills to become leaders in the architecture industry.

Southern Illinois University Carbondale

Southern Illinois University Carbondale (SIUC) offers a highly regarded online Master of Architecture (M.Arch.) degree accredited by the National Architecture Accrediting Board (NAAB).

Applicants must have completed at least 126 hours of credit in their undergraduate program. This cohort-based program is comprised of 42 graduate credits, and can be completed in as little as 16-20 months.

Coursework is both asynchronous and synchronous, with occasional on-campus session requirements of no more than one weekend per month. Curriculum topics cover a wide range of areas such as global traditions in architecture, architectural theory, and environmental behavior studies in architecture.

With successful completion of this program, students can gain the necessary knowledge and skills to become leaders in the architecture industry.

Philadelphia University

Philadelphia University offers an online Master of Science in Sustainable Design (MSSD) program that can be completed in two years with a full-time plan of study.

Students accepted to this program will take courses such as adaptive design, green materials and life-cycle assessment, and the principles and methods of sustainable design.

Through access to the Center for Sustainability, Energy Efficiency and Design (SEED), MSSD students will also gain specialized training in green product integration and sustainable building design.

To graduate from the program, each student must complete a nine-credit self-directed thesis project. With successful completion of this program, students can gain the necessary knowledge and skills to become leaders in the architecture industry.

Lawrence Technological University

Lawrence Technological University offers an online Master of Architecture (M.Arch.) degree with a concentration in architectural design and practice. This 15-month program is accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB) and consists of courses in design theory, professional practice, ecological issues, and research methods. Upon successful completion

of the program, students are eligible to sit for the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) Architectural Registration Examination, which allows them to become licensed architects.

All courses required for the M.Arch. degree can be completed online, with the exception of a Critical Practice Studio class that must be taken on campus during summer semester.

This class consists of five intensive weekend sessions, including a field trip. With successful completion of this program, students can gain the necessary knowledge and skills to become leaders in the architecture industry.

Chatham University

Chatham University’s College for Continuing and Professional Studies offers an online Master of Science in Interior Architecture (MSIA) degree that can be completed in as little as one year with a full-time plan of study. This 30-credit program emphasizes design theory, and is intended for students who already have an undergraduate degree in architecture or interior design .

Students can apply for the Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) program to earn credits for their portfolio or by passing a challenge exam. Online students also have the option of defending their thesis in residence at the university. With successful completion of this program, students can gain the necessary knowledge and skills to become leaders in the architecture industry.

Evaluating Online Architecture Degrees

When evaluating online architecture degrees, it is important to make sure the program is accredited by a trusted and respected organization. Additionally, research the professor credentials and course content to ensure that they are up-to-date with modern industry standards. Furthermore, take into consideration any additional requirements such as in-person classes or portfolio reviews.

Finally, consider the cost of the program, including tuition and fees, to make sure it is within your budget. With these considerations in mind, you can find an online architecture degree that meets your specific needs and helps you become a leader in the industry.


Q.What is the best online architecture degree?

A.The best online architecture degree depends on your individual needs and goals. Research accredited programs, professor credentials, course content, additional requirements such as in-person classes or portfolio reviews and cost to find the right fit for you.

Q. How long does it take to complete an online architecture degree?

A.The length of time it takes to complete an online architecture degree varies depending on the program and individual student’s learning pace. Most programs range from 1 to 3 years, but some can take up to 5 or 6 years depending on the number of credits required for graduation.

Q. Is an online architecture degree accredited?

A.Most reputable online architecture degrees are accredited by a trusted and respected organization such as the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB). Make sure to do your research on any program you’re considering, to ensure it meets the necessary standards for accreditation.

Q. What is the best free online course in architecture?

A.The best free online course in architecture varies depending on individual needs and goals, but many programs offer introductory courses for free to give potential students an idea of what to expect from a program before committing to it. Additionally, some universities or organizations offer select classes for no cost as well.

Q. Are there any free online architecture classes?

A.Yes, there are many free online architecture classes available to help students gain knowledge and skills in the field. Examples include a Free Online Introduction To Architecture class from Coursera and an Elementary Building Design Principles class from MIT OpenCourseWare. Additionally, many universities and organizations offer select classes for no cost.

Q. What online architecture courses are available?

A.There are a wide range of online architecture courses available, ranging from introductory classes to advanced topics such as sustainability or digital fabrication. Courses cover topics such as History of Architecture, Building Design Principles, Construction Documentation & Estimation, Building & Site Design, and Structural Design. Additionally, there are specialty classes such as Landscape Architecture or Urban Planning.


With the right online architecture degree program and a little bit of research, you can become an expert in this field and build a successful career. Online courses provide you with the flexibility to learn at your own pace and can help you gain the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed in this competitive industry. With these considerations in mind, choose the right program for your needs and get started on your new career today.

Leave a Comment