Photo: Control of Lighting


Illumination Design

Master of Architectural Science

Our entire visual experience depends on light. It has an important impact on the function and aesthetics of architectural spaces. There is growing demand for lighting specialists to oversee the implementation of sustainable and innovative solutions for large-scale architecture and property projects, as well as to develop and specify high-calibre lighting products.

This program offers strong technical education in human visual perception, methods for quantifying light, lighting technologies and sustainability. Using biology and physics, the coursework gives you a deep appreciation of the ways that light shapes the human experience of the built environment. This is complemented by practical curriculum to prepare students for a career in the lighting industry.

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Illumination Design

  • We're ranked 1st in Australia and ranked in the top 15 in the world for architecture and the built environment.

    2017 QS University World Rankings.

Indicative Course Progression

Credit points required per semester: 24
Indicative progression based on a 72 credit point master’s degree with a Semester 1 enrolment.

Our Students

Jo Reed

Master of Architectural Science (Illumination Design)
Director, Electric Gecko Pty Ltd

“Working as an electrical contractor, I was always being asked to provide advice on lighting. This was an area that was not covered during my apprenticeship. Not satisfied with my lack of knowledge, I undertook a year-long course called Principles of Lighting Design. This increased my desire for more knowledge and expertise. Undertaking the Master of Illumination Design was a natural progression.

This degree has allowed me to expand my electrical contracting business into one focused primarily on lighting, offering a design and installation solution.

It’s a significant point of difference in the electrical contracting and lighting design professions, allowing me to design with a focus on functionality and ensuring my solutions can be implemented effectively and maintained. ”

Dianna Abdalla

Master of Architectural Science (Illumination Design)
Senior Lighting Designer, Lighting Art & Science

“The master’s in illumination design is well known in the lighting design industry. It is the only course available that offers insights into design and, more importantly, a comprehensive look at the technical aspects behind it.

I had been working as a lighting designer for a few years and decided that to develop my knowledge and career, I would need to undertake further studies. The opportunity to study in other fields that work in conjunction with lighting design such as air quality, project management and acoustics, appealed to me.

Completing this degree has given me additional confidence when advising on anything lighting related. Also, understanding the fundamentals of current technology has given me a platform to better understand future technologies.

This degree has provided me with the platform to enter into a senior design role and hopefully progress from this point.”

John William Armstrong

Master of Design Science
(Illumination Design)

By studying Illumination Design, I can explore my creative side and gain an understanding of how lighting and architecture are related. One day I hope to start my own lighting design firm, and I know that having this qualification from the University of Sydney will hold me in good stead.

Our Program Director

Dr Wendy Davis

Wendy is an active researcher in topics related to lighting and colour, with a particular interest on quality and desirability issues in emerging and next-generation energy efficient lighting technologies. With a colleague at the NIST, she developed the Color Quality Scale (CQS) to evaluate the colour rendering properties of light sources for general illumination.

Study at Sydney

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