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How to Become an Architect

Become architect

How to Become an Architect

Architects are professionals who design different types of structures all over the country and sometimes even the world. From business buildings to football stadiums, architects will handle all sorts of different jobs throughout their entire career. While on the job, these professionals will be responsible for quite a few tasks. The budget of the project must be developed and kept in mind when the design for the structure is being created. The objectives and requirements will also need to be identified by architects based on what their client wants.

[divider]Quick Facts [/divider]

  • Median Salary $72,550/year or $34.88/hour
  • Education Requirements Bachelor’s degree
  • Professionals Employed 113,700
  • 10 Years Job Outlook 24%
  • 10 Years Job Growth 27,900

In addition to this, they will need to prepare drawings to present to the client and determine what impact the structure will have on the environment. Once the design criteria have been met, the final construction plans will be finalized. From here, the design team and architect will need to figure out what the building codes are in the area, any zoning laws in the area and fire regulations as well. Changes will need to be made throughout the planning process, which means professional architects need to be able to adapt.

Are you considering a architecture career? If so then you may be venturing down the road of a highly competitive yet rewarding profession.

An architecture job  is certainly not an easy one. It is, however, a very important job because without the work of talented architects, our civilization would not be much of a civilization. Architects are those that put forth the creative talent and the legwork needed to design buildings and various other structures such as bridges, stadiums, and the like. When you see a truly brilliantly designed building, you can rest assured that you are looking at the amazing work of a highly creative architect.

Creativity, while a noble attribute, is not the prime attribute of a professional architect. Such brilliantly skilled individuals are also responsible for making sure the design of the building adheres to high standards of safety and appropriate functionality.

In comparison to other careers, relatively few people work as architects and this is likely due to the specialized skills. Roughly 140,000+ professionals work as architects. Most work for private firms and a slim percentage work in the government sector. One of the more surprising facts about a architecture career is roughly 1/5th of all architects are self-employed.

One thing that those hoping to work as an architect will find appealing is the fact that very few people have the background, education, and skills to work as an architect. As such, those that pursue this profession will likely find it quite stable once you have become well established.

A architecture career is not a difficult path to follow. However, it does require a series of definitive steps to be taken in order to effectively enter the field. Such steps are worth it because architecture jobs can be a truly rewarding career to be a part of.

How to Become an Architect

A high school GED is the first thing that needs to be achieved. After this, candidates must complete a 4-year program for their bachelor’s of architecture. Once this is achieved, career seekers should try to find an apprenticeship to take while they are in a 2-year program for their master’s in architecture. After completion, they can apply for a license and start looking for jobs.

Of course, architecture is a learned skill and that means you will need to attend some sort of architecture school. There are degrees offered on the undergraduate level and the Master’s level. Is it necessary to hold a Master’s degree in architecture in order to succeed in this field? The answer to this is debatable. Some have succeeded greatly with a Master’s degree and others have succeeded without one. Ultimately, it is up to the individual to select the appropriate path based upon their own individual needs and background.

Regardless of whether or not you have a Master’s Degree, you will need to acquire a license to work as an architect in the United States. In order to acquire a license, you must have an accredited professional degree from some sort of architecture school, a training period or extensive period of interning, and pass all required tests in order to be licensed. Even after you have acquired a license, this may not be the end of the proverbial road for your requirements to work as an architect. You may need to continue your education in certain areas in order to have your license is renewed. Don’t worry. If you are a skilled architect then you likely will not have a difficult time meeting all requirements to be properly licensed.

How to Find the Right Architecture Degree

There are now a rising number of universities and colleges that offer architectural degrees. Although this is also a good thing, the huge number of choices can make it especially difficult to choose which school to get your degree from. So for all you aspiring architects who still have no idea on where to go, here are a few helpful tips on how to go about choosing the right architect school.

There are actually several types of architecture degrees offered by various schools and deciding on what specific degree to get can help you narrow down your choices. The first option is to get a 5-year Bachelor of Science degree in Architecture. The second is to enter into a B.S. degree on another course and move on to specialize on Architecture in your Master’s Degree. M.S. degrees on Architecture will usually last for about 3 – 5 years. Those who took the first option can also opt to advance their education by taking the M.S. degree as well. Although getting an M.S. degree takes a lot more time, they usually have a huge edge in the architecture job market over the B.S. degree holders.

Architects can only be licensed if they graduate from an accredited degree program. In Canada and the US, architectural schools are accredited by the Canadian Architectural Certification Board (CACB) and the National Architectural Accrediting Board, respectively. So if you plan to get licensed, make sure that you find a school that offers duly accredited degree programs. You can easily find this list of schools online.

Architecture schools in the country also follow a ranking system. A single board evaluates accredited schools according to their performance. The best way to look for the country’s top ranking architecture schools is by looking at general college and university program rankings. There are also certain manuals such as America’s Best Architecture and Design Schools that independently review and rate architecture schools according to a certain set of criteria. Apart from that, you can also try visiting prospective schools and ask advice from people who go there.

Architectural classes online can be a great introductory course to take. Online courses can introduce you to basic theories and principles and even give you credits that you can carry on as you take your actual B.S. degree in the future. There are also online classes offered for those who want to take more advanced classes after their B.S. and M.S. degrees. Some will require you to attend conferences and seminars before you earn a certificate or a degree from these online courses.

If you do not want to spend too much time earning a B.S. degree, then you can always enroll yourself in an architecture training program. Technical and art schools for instance, can teach you practical skills such as home and architectural design and drafting. There are accredited and non-accredited architecture training programs all over the world that you can select from.

Architect Average Salary

The salary of each individual heavily depends on which choices they make. Someone who owns their own business could end up making quite a bit of money, but they could end up losing money some months as well. Architects that work for established companies can end up making quite a bit of they deal with a lot of high-paying clients on a regular basis. The average earnings of most of these professionals are around $75,000 and can increase with each additional year of experience.

Most people in this career end up starting their own business. This does take a lot of time, energy and dedication; so it might not be for every person in this field. People that want to work for companies that are already established can find opportunities all over the world. There are always buildings that need to be designed for various organizations, from government to small businesses.

Aside from the passion for this type of work, one of the main reasons why people choose to be architects is because of its very good pay. However, an architect’s salary can also be influenced by a number of different factors. So if you are interested in this kind of profession, read on and learn about a few important things about an architect’s salary and the different factors that can possibly affect those values.

First off, an architect’s salary can be dependent on geographical location. There are certain counties and even certain states within the country that pay these professionals more than in other areas. Professionals working in cosmopolitan areas may be paid higher than those who are working in the suburbs.

Secondly, salary can also be dependent on an architect’s educational background and work experience. Usually, those with higher degrees and those with special training and certifications have more value in the job market compared to the B.S. degree holders. Apart from that, architects with longer experience in the field may also receive higher compensation as well.

Compensation can also depend on the kind of company or firm that you are working in. Well-established names will naturally offer better and higher pay than those that are not known in the industry.

And lastly, pay is also dependent on the kind of field you are specializing in. For instance, an interior designer with a good length of experience can earn up to $98,000 a year.

Fresh B.S. degree graduates usually start out with a salary range of $41,000 – $120,000 per year. For the M.S. degree holders however, they may earn more because of their advanced educational attainment. M.S. degree holders can start out with an average annual salary of $47, 263. Architects in the U.S. earn an average of $76,750 annually or $36.90 per hour.

Architects with over 20 years of experience earn an average salary of $100,723 per year. According to the Design Intelligence Compensation Survey in 2015, 20% of these experienced professional earn as high as $142,200 per year.

Those who specialize in Interior Designing with the same number of experience are said to earn an average annual income of $97,800, with 20% of them earning up to as high as $145,333 per annum.

Mean salary for a B.S. Architecture Degree holder rose from $39,333 in 2008 to $41,012 in 2015. M.S. Architecture degree holders on the other hand, have risen from $42,985 to $47,263 on the same year. These figures are still expected to increase over the coming years.

The architecture job in the United States has been greatly affected by the economic slowdown and plummeting real estate values. However, the U.S. Department of Labor has reported that the demand for these professionals is still expected to rise far more than other occupations in the industry during the next ten years.

Tips for Prospective Architects

The job outlook for this career is expected to grow in the next several years. Competition may increase because of the demand that companies have as a result of the economy getting better. Individuals who have a lot of experience and knowledge of this industry can end up prospering quite a bit. There are career opportunities constantly opening up and those willing to travel can really take advantage of them.

Networking is very important and should be taken advantage of by those who are interested in making the most of their architect career. There are a lot of great schools to go to, make sure the one that is chosen is accredited. Try to get advice from someone who has been in business as an architect for a while and possibly start an internship as early as possible.