Building Technology offers students the opportunity to explore critical topics for the future of the built environment and natural resources. Our program explores ways to use design and technology to create buildings that contribute to a more humane and environmentally responsible built world. Strategies employed toward these ends include integrated architectural design strategies, resource accounting through material flow analysis and life cycle assessment, building and urban energy modeling and simulation, human comfort analysis, control design and engineering, and other technologically-informed design methods. Students interested in any of these strategies will be challenged to address topics of clear and important relevance to the future of the built environment through creative and analytically rigorous approaches.

Research areas supervised by the faculty address innovative materials and assemblies, emerging and nontraditional building materials, low-energy and passive building energy strategies; innovative analysis and modeling of historic structures; and various issues of energy and material resources at the urban scale, including urban environmental sensing, the urban heat island effect, and urban metabolism. Students entering into the program are able to engage with active and ongoing research projects while pursuing their own intellectual and career agendas. These projects change regularly and individual faculty are the best resources for finding current research position opportunities.

Degree programs in Building Technology


Main Degree Programs

The Building Technology discipline group offers four main programs. For detailed information on each degree, click on the appropriate link:

Advanced Degrees in Related Fields

Students may earn a degree in an engineering or science discipline while performing research under the direction of Building Technology faculty. These students must fulfill the course requirements of their home department. Students from Civil and Mechanical Engineering and from the Technology and Policy Program have participated in Building Technology research projects in this way.

Some students have elected to complete the degree requirements for both the SMBT and a Master of Science in another discipline and have earned two degrees; this requires substantial course work and a thesis acceptable to both disciplines.

Some students wish to combine studies of building technology with training in architectural design. Those students already holding a professional architecture degree may apply to the SMArchS program and specify a concentration in building technology.

Additionally, students seeking a professional architecture degree may apply to the Master of Architecture (MArch) program and focus on building technology via required and elective courses as well as a thesis topic; and students may apply for admission to both the MArch and SMBT Programs. Students admitted to both programs will join each in sequence rather than simultaneously, completing the degree requirements of one before beginning the other; the SMBT and MArch degrees cannot be awarded simultaneously due to the demands of the SMBT thesis research and architectural design studio.