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Program Overview

Interior Architecture Review 2023

What is the Bachelor of Science in Environmental Design (BSED)? 

The BSED is a pre-professional degree plan educating students in the skills of multiscale design through varied coursework with emphasis on interdisciplinary opportunities. Through the degree program, students develop a well-rounded knowledge of design and design tools, while also honing their abilities for practice at all scales of design, from micro to macro. BSED offers a trans-curriculum degree with courses and studios currently offered in the Hines College’s architecture, interior architecture, and industrial design programs.

During their second year, after exposure to the many directions of design, second-year BSED students begin the process of determining their path forward. From this point forward, students choose coursework reflecting their specific interests and ultimate career aspirations. The BSED degree plan allows students more flexibility to customize their academic experience.

BSED is built around a trimester degree plan, requiring students to attend classes in the fall, spring, and summer semesters throughout their studies at the College.

What is the benefit of a trimester model?

Although a four-year program, BSED students have the opportunity of graduating in three years, meaning students qualify for fixed tuition through the University’s UHin4 program. The current Bachelor of Architecture (B.Arch.) degree plan is a five-year program and, therefore, does not qualify for UHin4. Please note, current second-year students opting to change their major to BSED during the 2023-2024 academic year can only complete the BSED program in four years.

BSED students can more easily pursue two-year graduate studies programs following their undergraduate program.

  • Master of Architecture (M.Arch.) – Students interested in obtaining a professional degree for future licensure may consider a Master of Architecture through the College’s two-year program. By pursuing the BSED and M.Arch., students can receive both bachelor's and master’s degrees in the same amount of time (five years) it takes students in the B.Arch. to complete their undergraduate degree.
  • Master of Arts in Architectural Studies (M.A.) – Students not interested in obtaining a professional degree may consider a Master of Arts in Architectural Studies. The M.A. is a one-year program. It offers concentrations in urban design, media and fabrication, sustainable design, and sustainable urban systems.
  • Master of Science in Industrial Design (M.S.) – BSED students who established a thrust toward industrial design and focused on related coursework during their studies are qualified to pursue a Master of Science in Industrial Design through the College’s two-year program.

The first summer semester for the BSED trimester program is summer 2024.

What career paths are possible with a BSED?

Not all students are interested in graduate studies. Once BSED students graduate from the three-year program, they are ready to go out and begin their careers. Because the program is flexible and offers students opportunities to engage in design from many different perspectives, students with a BSED can find employment in a wide range of areas and capacities.

  • Environmental designer
  • Architect
  • Urban Designer
  • Environmental Planner
  • City Planner
  • Landscape Architect
  • Product Designer
  • Commercial Real Estate Associate
  • Drafting Technician
  • Engineering Manager
  • Graphic Designer
  • Interior Designer
  • Project Manager
  • Sustainability Consultant 

Interested in the BSED degree plan? 

  • New Prospective Students (currently enrolled at UH or first-time UH students) – Attend a Hines College information session! You can also contact the College’s Student Services Office at 713.743.3463 or
  • Current Hines College Students – Contact your academic advisor to discuss the program further and how you can change your major. At this time, only first-year or second-year design students are eligible to change their major to BSED.