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Duke Undergraduate Admissions

Architecture and Notable Buildings


When Duke University was founded in 1924, the construction of its campus was the single largest Depression-era project in the United States. Two campuses emerged -- one built with Georgian red brick and the other with local stone and carved limestone details in the popular Collegiate Gothic style. Today Duke’s Georgian East Campus and neo-Gothic West Campus serve as the core of a 2,000-acre research, residential, academic and health care university.

A “University in the Forest”

With more than 200 buildings situated on 8,470 acres of land (of which 7,200 acres is forested) it's easy to understand why, at its founding, Duke was deemed a "university in the forest." The goals and principles of its master plan conserve natural areas and limit construction to maintain the natural environment surrounding the campus. Visit Duke and you will immediately feel immersed in a "Gothic Wonderland" within the forest.

  • Duke Chapel
    Duke Chapel

    A symbol of the university, Duke Chapel is at the center of the Gothic West Campus. Completed in 1932, the chapel is dominated by a 210-foot tower housing a 50-bell carillon. Washington Duke and his sons Benjamin and James are entombed in the Memorial Chapel. Duke Chapel hosts major university events, offers interdenominational worship services and contributes to the diverse campus religious life, which welcomes students of all faiths.

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  • Perkins Library
    Perkins Library

    Duke Libraries are the shared center of the University's intellectual life, connecting people and ideas. The William R. Perkins Library, together with the university Archives and the business, divinity, law and medical school libraries, comprise one of the nation's top 10 private research library systems. The Libraries’ services and resources include more than six million volumes, 18 million manuscripts, 168,000 electronic resources, 115,000 items in digital collections and tens of thousands of films and videos.

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  • Fitzpatrick Center
    Fitzpatrick Center

    The Fitzpatrick Center brings together faculty in four research initiatives: biology, photonics, materials and integrated sensors. The $97-million facility, which opened in 2004, also expands the Pratt School of Engineering‘s partnership with the School of Medicine by providing laboratories for collaborative research in health care, genomics and biotechnology.

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  • Cameron Indoor Stadium
    Cameron Indoor Stadium

    Considered the crown jewel of college basketball, Cameron Indoor was conceived on the back of a matchbook cover in 1935. Renovated in the late 1980s, Cameron underwent a series of improvements in 2009 to enhance the gameday experience. The Blue Devil men‘s and women‘s basketball teams benefit from Cameron‘s intimate seating arrangements for slightly more than 9,000 fans, including bleacher-style seats alongside the court reserved for students (nicknamed the Cameron Crazies). 

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  • Nasher Museum of Art
    Nasher Museum of Art

    The Nasher Museum of Art opened its new building designed by architect Rafael Viñoly in 2005, creating a major center for the arts on campus. The museum serves the university and the Triangle region with an ambitious schedule of traveling exhibitions and educational programs that foster multidisciplinary learning. The Nasher Museum also creates leading-edge exhibitions that travel to major venues around the country.

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  • West Quad Residence Halls
    West Quad Residence Halls

    The residence halls on the West Quad are organized into six residential quads, with secondary quads or courtyards providing more private spaces for the students in each group of houses. As part of the larger community of students, each quad is home to several smaller communities of students who are affiliated with either selective living groups or living-learning communities. Craven, Crowell, Few and Kilgo Quads each have a unique tower that provides an identity to its living group.

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  • Levine Science Research Center
    Levine Science Research Center

    Touted as a "building without walls" to foster collaboration across disciplines when it opened in 1994, the Levine Science Research Center (LSRC) is one of the largest single-site interdisciplinary research facilities in the U.S. The 341,000 square-foot facility is a multipurpose center housing classrooms, laboratory space and offices shared by multiple schools and dapertments.

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  • Baldwin Auditorium
    Baldwin Auditorium

    Built in 1927, the 900-seat auditorium gives historic East Campus its most unique architectural element that, like Jefferson's famous neoclassical Rotunda at UVA, pays homage to the ancient Pantheon in Rome with its classical front inserted on the main domed building. A $15 million renovation in 2013 transformed the interior space into a world-class modern concert hall, both visually stunning and acoustically state-of-the-art.

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The Duke campus sits within natural areas where tall pine, pine-hardwood, upland hardwood and bottomland hardwood trees are preserved.