Inside Langford

College Overview

One of the premier design research institutions in the world, the College of Architecture at Texas A&M University offers an energetic environment for academic and professional success through a comprehensive catalog of prominently ranked graduate and undergraduate programs in architecture, landscape architecture, urban planning, construction science, land development and visualization.

The college is a haven for experimentation, discovering one’s strengths and unleashing the hidden capabilities of the human mind. Here students embark on a journey of self-discovery. They learn how to unlock their creative potential, become lifelong learners, intellectual leaders and knowledge creators.

The college is literally abuzz with creativity around the clock as its 3,200 plus students, 170 faculty and 70 professional staff engage in myriad design and multimedia projects focused on the transformation of the human environment. Space is in constant motion as students collaborate and concepts take form in sketches, paintings, computer simulations, models, photographs, sculptures and video.

Architectural installations and artwork are regularly erected, studied and deconstructed. The walls are papered with an ever-changing mosaic of project posters — pinned up, rigorously reviewed and taken down to make room for the next critique.

While some students choose to study alone in private nooks, computer labs or the college’s reference library, others collaborate in studios, classrooms or the coffee shop. There are lectures, seminars, workshops, design charrettes, gallery exhibits, concerts, film screenings, celebrations and special events — many planned and many impromptu.

A cacophony of busy power tools and sophisticated machinery echoes from the college’s woodshop where architectural models, furniture, artwork and other  special projects take shape while 3-D printers quietly conjure reality from abstraction.

On the nearby prairie, the whirl and hum of a CNC router and plasma cutter denote more substantial structures in the works at the college’s 12-acre Digital Fabrication Facility, referred to affectionately by students as the “Architecture Ranch.” Students here, at the school and in the surrounding community regularly tackle placemaking projects ranging from creating public artwork and planning park space to designing and building new homes.

Because the creativity and empathy with which each discipline is practiced has a profound influence on the quality of life in society, College of Architecture students are challenged to weave aesthetics, safety, function, financial feasibility, sustainability and environmental stewardship into the creative process.

Recognizing that no single professional track or narrow specialization can adequately prepare tomorrow’s building, design, planning and visualization professionals, the college is distinctive in offering a truly interdisciplinary curriculum. As one of the largest schools of its kind, housing all of the built environment disciplines, the college is uniquely suited to facilitate interdisciplinary collaboration and research.

Its rich and diverse research portfolio includes projects conducted in its four academic departments, through its multiple institutes, research centers and specialized laboratories, and in collaboration with other colleges and centers within the university and around the world. The college’s Institute for Applied Creativity, Institute for Sustainable Coastal Communities, and five formally organized research centers — the CRS Center for Leadership and Management in the Design and Construction Industry, the Center for Housing and Urban Development, the Hazard Reduction and Recovery Center, the Center for Health Systems & Design, and the Center for Heritage Conservation — expand the public knowledge base of the disciplines they serve while supporting six specialized graduate certificate programs.

Investing manpower and expertise to build a better Texas, for more than 20 years the College of Architecture has overseen the state’s Colonias Program, which partners with myriad agencies in efforts aimed at enhancing the prospects and quality of life for residents of the impoverished, relatively undeveloped villages or “colonias,” clumped near population centers on the U.S. side of the Texas-Mexico border. Additionally, the college’s Texas Target Cities program provides technical assistance on land use planning and design to small, low-resourced communities across the state.

Because we all live in a highly interconnected world, students pursuing an undergraduate degree at the college are required to spend a long semester away from Texas A&M University’s College Station campus, either engaged in a professional internship or studying abroad in one of the college’s well-established programs in Italy, Spain, Germany, the United Kingdom or elsewhere.

More than 15,000 graduates from the College of Architecture are part of the much larger worldwide Aggie Network of former students, defined not merely by where they went to school, but by their works as leaders of character dedicated to serving the greater good.