Professor with StudentAs you pursue a bachelor’s degree within the College of Architecture and Planning (CAP), you’ll engage in a common course of study with all other first-year students in the college.

You’ll build a broad and solid foundation in the disciplines of architecture, landscape architecture, and urban planning—regardless of which of the three directions you’re planning as a major. Studying this way underscores our belief that a comprehensive overview enriches your career while also addressing discipline-specific issues. At the end of your first year, you may apply to one of our majors in the college.


Choose 1 of 3 Tracks

We offer three entry tracks—fall, spring, and summer (or accelerated)—through which you may be admitted into the First-Year Program.

Fall and Spring Studio Paths

Your Own Studio Space

As a CAP student, you’ll be given your own work and study space in a fully equipped studio. You’ll be assigned projects that encourage you to apply concepts and principles through creative exploration.

Best for students just out of high school, the Fall Studio Track begins in the fall semester and runs through the spring semester, and the Spring Studio Track runs from spring through summer.

Applying early to Ball State increases your opportunity for entry into the Fall Studio Track. Regardless of your track, the curriculum is the same.

Course Curriculum

The First-Year Program consists of seven professional courses and allows students to choose liberal arts courses that are part of the University Core Curriculum.

The following tables highlight the course work required for the fall, spring, and summer studio paths. For full descriptions, consult the course catalog.

Fall Semester (15 Credit Hours)

Course Number

Course Title

Credit Hours

CAP 101

Environmental Design and Planning 1 3

CAP 161

Design Communications Media 1

2

ARCH 100, LA 100, PLAN 100 (select 2)

Intro to Architecture, Intro to Landscape Architecture, Intro to Urban Planning

2 each

University Core Curriculum Courses (x2)

3 each

Spring Semester (15 Credit Hours)
Course Number Course Title Credit Hours
CAP 102 Environmental Design and Planning 2

3

CAP 162 Design Communications Media 2

2

ARCH 100, LA 100, Plan 100 (select 2)

Intro to Architecture, Intro to Landscape Architecture,
Intro to Urban Planning

2 each

University Core Curriculum Courses (x2)

3 each

Spring Semester (15 Credit Hours)
Course Number Course Title Credit Hours
ARCH 100, LA 100, PLAN 100 (select 2) Intro to Professions 2 each
University Core Curriculum Courses (x4) 3 each
Spring Semester (15 Credit Hours)
Course Number Course Title Credit Hours

CAP 101

Environmental Design and Planning 1

3

CAP 161

Design Communications Media 1

2

ARCH 100, LA 100, PLAN 100 (select 2) Intro to Architecture, Intro to Landscape Architecture,
Intro to Urban Planning

2 each

University Core Curriculum Courses (x2)

3 each

Summer Semester (6 Credit Hours)
Course Number Course Title Credit Hours

CAP 102

Environmental Design and Planning 2

3

CAP 162

Design Communications Media 2

2

FCS 135 or FIN 101

Personal Finance (core curriculum)

1

Accelerated Studio Path

calendarCAP follows a summer semester schedule that differs from the university’s schedule.

Students who have completed 30 hours of college study may apply for the accelerated entry path, an intensive program that compresses the first-year professional course work into two, five-week terms during the summer.

Summer semester (16 Credit hours)
Course Number Course Title Credit Hours

CAP 101

Environmental Design and Planning 1

3

CAP 102

Environmental Design and Planning 2

3

CAP 161

Design Communications Media 1

2

CAP 162

Design Communications Media 2

2

ARCH 100

Intro to Architecture

2

LA 100

Intro to Landscape Architecture

2

PLAN 100

Intro to Urban Planning

2

Advanced Placement

Students transferring from an accredited architecture, landscape architecture, or urban planning program may be eligible to begin our programs at the second-year level or higher. Contact us to discuss your options.

Select Your Major

The First-Year Program is designed to give all majors a strong foundation while helping you choose your major through career exploration and interactions with faculty and industry leaders in each field.

Once you’ve successfully completed the First-Year Program, you’ll declare a major in one of the following:

Admission into the second year at CAP is subject to departmental enrollment review. If too many incoming second-year students declare majors in a particular department and exceed the department’s limits, students will be advised about other available degree programs.

CAP Student with Faculty

Program Faculty

Even before you declare your major, you’ll get to study with our faculty in studio and lecture courses. From the start, you can connect with professors with a wide range of professional education and experience, areas of expertise, and diverse philosophies and points of view. Meet the CAP faculty.

Computer Requirements

You are not required to buy a laptop for the First-Year Program, but you will be asked to purchase a computer once you declare a major. If you don’t already have a laptop, consider waiting to buy one until after you complete the First-Year Program. Each major offers computer requirements based on its own needs. See specifics for: