Architectural Association School of Architecture

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AA School of Architecture, Bedford Square, London

The Architectural Association School of Architecture in London , or AA for short, is the UK's oldest independent school of architecture . It is one of the world's most renowned locations for architectural education and is considered a “laboratory” for new ideas and perspectives. Victoria Thornton OBE is the president.


The Association was founded in 1847 by the architecture apprentices Robert Kerr (1823-1904) and Charles Gray (1827 / 28-1881) who were looking for alternatives for their professional training. The up to then usual apprenticeship with a practicing architect was complemented by a training systemised by the students themselves. Kerr became the first president of the AA in 1847-48.

The strength of the training lies in the development of a theoretical discourse. The teaching is shaped by personalities from the field of architecture. The liberal approach led to radical innovations in the 1960s such as the Fun Palace by Cedric Price and the establishment of the Archigram group , which still has a lasting influence today.

Several winners of the Stirling and the Pritzker Prize emerged from the students and teachers of the AA .

After five years of study, one can obtain the AA diploma , which is only awarded by the Architectural Association and corresponds to RIBA Part-II.

The university does not take part in any international university rankings, which it justifies through its tradition of independence.

Well-known students and professors


  • John Summerson : The Architectural Association 1847-1947 , Pleiades Books, London 1947.

Web links


  1. ^ Marie Mercer: Top 10 Best Architecture Schools in the World 2015. In: Design Schools Hub. July 30, 2015, Retrieved June 18, 2020 (American English).
  3. ^ Edward Bottoms, Introductory lecture to AA Archives , February 2010

Coordinates: 51 ° 31 ′ 7 "  N , 0 ° 7 ′ 52"  W.