The apparent differences in the appreciation of architecture between architects and 'lay' people has been the centre of considerable debate in the UK, and this has been further fuelled by royal interest. If architects truly have different standards of appreciation to non architects, then it is most likely that these standards of judgement are acquired within the schools of architecture during the period of architectural education. The paper describes a cross sectional study of the architectural preferences of students at two schools of architecture in five different stages of their education. Analysis of the students' evaluations of twenty-six examples of contemporary architecture suggests a developmental trend in architectural appreciation, showing differences in the type of architecture appreciated relating to the stage of the students' education. Further, the evaluations made by the students at the two schools become increasingly different from one another with each year sampled. These findings suggest a process of socialisation within the schools of architecture which instills an evaluative system specific to the school of training. The implications for architectural education are discussed. When taken as a whole the students' evaluations of architecture allow the development of a model of architectural preferences. When classifying the buildings according to their own personal preferences, the students gave a variety of explanations of why they appreciate the buildings they do. However, analysis of the associations between the buildings using Smallest Space Analysis (SSA) shows that the underlying structure of the evaluations is clearly based on architectural style. It is therefore possible that some training in architectural history/criticism may help non architects to appreciate their built environment more.The potential for further development and application of the model is considered.