University of Oregon
Department of Architecture

Programs in Architecture and Interior Architecture

Summer Architecture Academy (SAA)

The 2015 Summer Architecture Academy (SAA) dates are July 6 to July 31, 2015

SAA Application Requirements - May 15 Application Deadline

1) Complete the Summer Architecture Academy SlideRoom application no later than May 15. The SlideRoom application has a $55 non-refundable application fee.

2) For students under the age of 18, a waiver form must be completed by a parent or legal guardian and uploaded into the Summer Architecture Academy SlideRoom application. The waiver form can be downloaded here.

Applications will not reviewed until all required materials have been submitted.  Applications will be reviewed beginning in the day after the deadline with offers of acceptance sent after an initial basic screening for suitability on a space-available basis.  The academy is limited to 36 spaces and fills up quickly! Qualified students are accepted as long as space is available.  After June 15, call (541) 346-3656 for information about academy openings.

International Applicants can find more information regarding Visa/I-20 items by contacting International Affairs.

The University of Oregon Summer Architecture Academy is an intensive four-week experience that offers prospective architecture, landscape architecture, and interior architecture students a chance to “try on the field for size.” Download the Academy brochure for a portable reference document.

students reviewing architectural designsThe academy is open to students who are interested in undergraduate or graduate professional education in environmental design. Many know little about the design process; some are interested in developing their skills in preparation for the application process. The academy includes students of all ages: high school students, college undergraduate and graduate students, and people in career transition.

Professional degree programs in the environmental design professions require a tremendous commitment of time and energy. Summer Architecture Academy offers students a chance to sample a professional program before applying to or entering a professional architecture school. The academy provides an excellent means of acquiring both the basic information and the practical experience needed to make an informed career choice and to begin planning for an environmental design career. Students gain a broader view of the field while developing skills and portfolio materials as aids to preparing an application to a professional school. Workshops, lectures, demonstrations, and field trips complement daily design studios.

Program Highlights

  • Broaden your understanding of architecture as an area of study as a profession
  • Learn through a daily curriculum of design studio, media class and foundations workshop
  • Visit significant architectural sites in Portland
  • Earn 8 college credits for the successful completion of the three program courses
  • Develop high-quality work for inclusion in your college application portfolio
  • Experience college life by living and dining on campus and participating in a full range of extra-circular activities

Classes and workshops

students reviewing architectural designsAcademy Workshop Series/Design Context (2 credits)
Design Context exposes students to issues and methodologies associated with professional design careers of varied scales from graphic design to landscape architecture. It also introduces contemporary design theories and stresses critical inquiry in exploring the reciprocal relationship between western culture and its designed places and artifacts. Open only to Summer Architecture Academy students.

Academy Media for Design (2 credits)
Introduction to visual inquiry for designers; use of freehand and projected drawings and models in the design process. Demonstration and laboratory format. Complements Academy Workshop Series and Design Studio. Open only to Summer Architecture Academy students.

Academy Design Studio (4 credits) 
Intensive four-week introductory studio in architectural design. Series of design projects and exercises intended to familiarize students with fundamental concepts and principles of environmental design. Complements Academy Workshop Series and media for Design. Open only to Summer Architecture Academy students.

Monday through Thursday, classes start at 8:00 A.M. and last until 3:30 or 4:00 P.M. with a one-hour lunch break. There is one class on Friday.  

Studio-project work is often necessary in the evenings and on weekends.  Media stresses freehand sketching, technical drawing, and other media exercises in order to improve students’ visual and spatial understanding. The afternoon workshops are taught by faculty members and visiting specialists. Each workshop focuses on a particular topic and includes lectures and practical exercises. Past topics include Design Process, Site Analysis, Sustainable Design, Computers in Design, and Spatial Composition. Principles learned in the workshops are applied in studio work.

While enrolled in the academy, students have access to the Architecture and Allied Arts Library and Computer Lab. They may meet with and observe UO architecture students enrolled in advanced summer session design studios and sit in on selected A&AA courses.

Last minute changes do occur and the academy reserves the right to change the schedule at any time.

Field Trips

students examining creek and rocksField trips focus on planning, resource, and site issues related to the four regions of Oregon.  Field trips could include the coastal dunes and headlands, the high desert and Cascade mountains, the Willamette Valley corridor, and Portland’s urban core. The Portland trip includes visits to large and small professional-design offices. On-site sketching is an essential facet of the field trips.


The academy is coordinated by two faculty members, one of whom also functions as the director, and additional instructors as needed. Instructors are selected from the UO faculty and other young professionals in architecture, interior architecture, and landscape architecture. Faculty members and instructors offer insights into the career. In addition, admissions information on program selection and the application process is provided by the department for interested students.

Summer Architecture Academy Tuition and Fees

The tuition cost for the 2015 Summer Architecture Academy is $2,175. Tuition covers all instruction, field trip costs, photo ID and free bus pass. There is a non-refundable $55 Architecture Departmental Application fee.

Equipment and supplies are about $170 and are not included in the tuition cost. A supplies list will be emailed to admitted students. A pre-packaged kit is available from the DuckStore.

Room and board fees are not included in the tuition cost. 

For groups of 3 or more students coming together, we offer group scholarships of $200 per student. If you are part of a group, you must email the names of your group members to no later than May 15.


UO Housing:  Academy students need to submit a separate online application to apply for summer housing at the UO along with a $25 non-refundable application fee.

For the most current information, online application link, and deadlines, check the

Off-campus living Information and Resources.

Leisure Time

When classes are over for the day, academy students can take advantage of the summer’s long afternoons and evenings, often returning to studios after the evening meal to work on projects. But there are other enticements: concerts and plays, both on campus and at in Eugene; sporting events and festivals; miles of bike and jogging paths; and numerous public parks. The UO’s extensive athletic facilities—including running tracks, swimming pools, and various courts—are open to students. The fees for the use of the facilities are included in the price of the tuition.

Newly Accepted SAA Student Information


For more information about the Summer Academy Program, please contact: or 541-346-3656.

Eugene Campus

1206 University of Oregon
Eugene, OR 97403
Office: 210 Lawrence Hall
P: 541-346-3656
F: 541-346-3626

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UO Portland

70 N.W. Couch Street
Portland, OR 97209
P: 503-412-3718

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