There are three main steps in becoming an architect. First is the attainment of a professional degree in architecture. Second is work experience through an internship, and third is licensure through the passing of the Architect Registration Exam.
Education and training. In most States, the professional degree in architecture must be from one of the 114 schools of architecture that have degree programs accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board. However, State architectural registration boards set their own standards, so graduation from a non-accredited program may meet the educational requirement for licensing in a few States.
Three types of professional degrees in architecture are available: a 5-year bachelorís degree, which is most common and is intended for students with no previous architectural training; a 2-year masterís degree for students with an undergraduate degree in architecture or a related area; and a 3- or 4-year masterís degree for students with a degree in another discipline.
The choice of degree depends on preference and educational background. Prospective architecture students should consider the options before committing to a program. For example, although the 5-year bachelor of architecture offers the fastest route to the professional degree, courses are specialized, and if the student does not complete the program, transferring to a program in another discipline may be difficult. A typical program includes courses in architectural history and theory, building design with an emphasis on CADD, structures, technology, construction methods, professional practice, math, physical sciences, and liberal arts. Central to most architectural programs is the design studio, where students apply the skills and concepts learned in the classroom, creating drawings and three-dimensional models of their designs.
Many schools of architecture also offer postprofessional degrees for those who already have a bachelorís or masterís degree in architecture or other areas. Although graduate education beyond the professional degree is not required for practicing architects, it may be required for research, teaching, and certain specialties.
All State architectural registration boards require architecture graduates to complete a training periodóusually at least 3 yearsóbefore they may sit for the licensing exam. Every State, with the exception of Arizona, has adopted the training standards established by the Intern Development Program, a branch of the American Institute of Architects and the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB). These standards stipulate broad training under the supervision of a licensed architect. Most new graduates complete their training period by working as interns at architectural firms. Some States allow a portion of the training to occur in the offices of related professionals, such as engineers or general contractors. Architecture students who complete internships while still in school can count some of that time toward the 3-year training period.
Interns in architectural firms may assist in the design of one part of a project, help prepare architectural documents or drawings, build models, or prepare construction drawings on CADD. Interns also may research building codes and materials or write specifications for building materials, installation criteria, the quality of finishes, and other, related details.
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook
To report a broken link or to suggest a new site for our online resource guide, please Contact Us.
Copyright @ 2005 - 2016
Use of this website is expressly subject to the various terms and conditions set forth in our
Other Proquantum sites:
Engineers Guide USA Health Guide USA
AssessorLinks, Juggling Cats, Doomsday Guide