28 May 2008

How did you become an architect?

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Question How did you become an architect?


Answer To become an architect, we go to school a lot and practice architecture a lot.


All architects must graduate from college, complete an internship, pass an exam, practice and take continuing education.


College: All architects must graduate from an National Architectural Accreditation Board (NAAB) accredited university with a degree in Architecture or Architectural Engineering (usually 5 years).


Internship: After we graduate, we must intern with a registered architect (a mentor and sponsor) for at least 3 years, but often longer. We must document our experience with the national Intern Develop Program (IDP) which defines the skills we need to pass our professional licensing exam and be an architect.


Exam: When we finish the internship and receive approval to take the exam, we take a 12-vignette Architectural Registration Exam (ARE) which tests our design, building system, structural, historical and office management knowledge. When we pass the exam, the state issues a license and certificate to practice architecture. I have a license in Texas and Oklahoma.


Practice/CE: After an architect receives his/her license, he/she takes an oath to maintain public safety, health and well-being and must practice prudently and complete annual continuing education courses to retain his/her license.


You can check your architect’s record at the Texas Board of Architectural Examiners website.



It’s a lot of school and a lot of work, but it’s worth it! This rigorous and thorough education, internship, experience and regulation qualifies your architect to design your buildings and homes.

About the Author

Your Architect is Eric Faulkner -- an architect licensed in Texas & Oklahoma with 29 years experience in design, construction observation and life.