CIEE Global Architecture + Design in Berlin, Germany


Germany: Berlin


Program Overview

Berlin offers an exceptional setting for architecture and design students to discover current and future social, economic, and technological trends. Together with the latest thinkers and practitioners, you'll explore avenues of innovation, technology, and thought in an academic environment that stresses collaboration and exchange.

Given it's near total destruction at the end of WWII, and subsequent division during the latter half of the 20th century, Berlin is a fascinating, exceptional canvas for urban design. What other city offers architects and urban planners the opportunity to repurpose and conceive of new spaces for a capital that is literally rebuilding itself from the ground up?

Through design workshops and lectures, site visits and collaborative studio work, you'll tackle key issues facing globalized urban environments drawing inspiration from a city that is shifting and growing in a constant state of reinvention.

With Global Architecture + Design in Berlin you will:
* Take courses at the internationally renowned Technische Universitat Berlin, one of the largest and most prestigious research and education institutions in Germany
* Attend the Future Cities Design Studio, which will address the emerging discipline of global urbaneering inspired by ONE Lab
* Enjoy excursions to architectural sites throughout Germany, including Moritzplatz, a new creative center in Berlin, and Betahaus, a co-working space for the creative industries
* Study Spreefeld, a cooperative of 16 people, many of them architects, who are creating a new sustainable way of living
Hear from, and interact with, visiting faculty and professionals during a series of lectures, critiques, and in-class visits

The CIEE Difference

Collaborative Projects

Come together and create. Work one on one and in small groups with local TU architecture students to analyze a current, real-world design challenge, develop potential solutions, and present a final proposal. When possible, you'll also meet with working architects involved in the actual project assigned. These projects give both you and your German peers the opportunity to work across cultural lines, sharing new ideas and perspectives. You'll also have the opportunity to connect with your peers in the other CIEE Global Architecture and Design cities to share knowledge, develop projects, and debate common questions.


Attend open lectures and design critique sessions conducted by Technische Universitat professors, visiting lecturers and other teaching staff. These lectures and sessions build on material covered during excursions and coursework. Local architects, historians, and researchers also occasionally speak to the class, bringing a real world connection to subjects being discussed. At the same time, you will be virtually connected to your peers and faculty at the other CIEE Global Architecture and Design cities to view all global lectures and workshops.


Linking the eye, hand, and mind. Visits to important Berlin buildings and locations help your understanding of German architectural history and theory and incorporate those considerations when working on classroom and studio assignments. Examples of site visits include: the pop-up garden and green sales point, Prinzessinnengarten; the development around the Hauptbahnhof; Tempelhof Airfield/Park; and the Pigeon House at Potsdamer Platz. Overnight excursions to surrounding areas like Hamburg, Dresden, and Munich illuminate a diversity of regional styles and histories. And an excursion to one of the other CIEE Global Architecture and Design cities Barcelona or Prague in the middle of the semester allow you to meet and collaborate with your peers.


We believe in the power of collaboration. That's why we developed this program in partnership with LEED-certified, award-winning architect and urban designer Maria Aiolova, our new Academic Director for CIEE Architecture and Design programs. Maria is an award-winning educator, architect, and urban designer based in New York City. She is co-founder of Terreform ONE and chair of the ONE Lab NY School for Design and Science.

Academic Program

The Global Architecture + Design curriculum in Berlin consists of three main components: a Future Cities Design Studio; Seminar; and Science, Engineering and Technology Workshops. Students may opt to take a CIEE elective course.

Courses will be taught in English by CIEE-contracted faculty who will also facilitate collaborative projects with local professionals and peers. Field trips to visit historical sites, new buildings, and environmental initiatives enhance students' understanding of cities in transition.

Academic Culture

Utilizing an approach that is both interdependent and interdisciplinary, students are encouraged to inquire, debate, collaborate, conduct experiments, and rethink the potential of today's architects and designers. The aim is to develop a language of technological design that can create immediacy between individual responsibility and the current global environmental crisis. Environmental problems are a crisis of human alienation from the natural world, and the initiative explores ways in which design can alleviate this unfortunate separation. What is required to comprehend globality today is a close study of specific places, cities and cultures. In order to create an educational experience that breeds cosmopolitanism, Global Architecture + Design in Berlin works with elements of history and tradition just as it takes full advantage of new technologies and the opportunities of global exchange.

Nature of Classes

All courses are CIEE courses and for CIEE students only.

Language of Instruction: English


Fall, Spring, Academic Year

Degree Level

Bachelors Degree (Undergraduate)

Subject Areas

  • Architecture
  • Culture
  • Design
  • Engineering
  • Geography
  • Sustainable Development
  • Urban & Regional Planning
  • Visual Arts

Cost in US$:

Please check the CIEE website for current program pricing.

Program Fees Include:

We want to make sure you get the most out of your experience when you study abroad with CIEE, which is why we offer the most inclusions in our fees.
- Tuition and housing
- Pre-departure advising and optional on-site airport meet and greet
- Full-time program leadership and support
- Field trips and cultural activities
- CIEE iNext travel card which provides insurance and other travel benefits

Experience Required


    - Overall GPA 2.75 - Students must be majoring in Architecture, Environmental Design, Industrial Design, Interior Design, Landscape Architecture, Sustainability studies, Urban Design or minoring in these areas and have completed 2-3 semesters of design studio or a project-based course in their major.

This Program is open to

Worldwide Participants.

Typical Living Arrangements

  • Apartment/Flat
  • Home-stays
  • Independent living

Participants Travel


Application Process Involves

  • Letters of Reference
  • Other
  • Transcript
  • Written Application