Milestones are competency verifications that help ensure that students are acquiring the skills and knowledge necessary to be certified for the accredited degree.

Passage into the year of the M.Arch is done through the M.Arch Milestone. Based on a portfolio review, this Milestone verifies that students have competency in each curricular area of the degree: Studio, History+Theory, Design Communications, Technology, and Practice.

The M.Arch Milestone asks students to self-evaluate their progress in a portfolio by considering individual strengths and weaknesses. The Portfolio is started in the first year of study and is regularly updated.

The essence of the M.Arch Milestone is synthesis: students demonstrate how Stream criteria have been brought together across courses and studios. Consequently, this Milestone amounts to constructing a case using an assemblage of evidence from courses and studios that demonstrates the student’s acquisition of skills and knowledge.

The Milestone Portfolio is prepared with a template designed to facilitate fair and consistent evaluation, but also give students a basis for a professional portfolio. Portfolios are reviewed, autonomously, by three studio instructors and at least one faculty member from each of the other four Streams.

The M.Arch Milestone results in one of five potential trajectories:

ADVANCE: Portfolios judged to demonstrate competency across 23 criteria (Studio: 5; Technology: 6; Design Communications: 5; History+Theory: 5; Practice: 3) advance to the final year.

RE-PRESENTATION: If the jury believes that evident deficiencies were the result of an inadequate portfolio, a student may be given one opportunity to revise and resubmit.

DIRECTED LEARNING: If the work is found to be generally competent but marginal in a few areas, the student advances to the final year with directed curricular options.

CORE SKILL STRENGTHENING: If the work is deemed to be substantially weak, the student will be required to take coursework in those areas, regardless of whether those courses were previously passed, with specific goals for improvement.

CORE SKILL FUNDAMENTALS: If the work indicates general unpreparedness to advance, the student will be required to re-enter the curriculum at a specific point and begin anew, regardless of previous grades.