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Why and How to Become an Architect?

Updated on May 8, 2012

What does an architect do?

An architect is an individual who is licenced to designs or organizes space. They design homes, buildings, office spaces, etc. They undergo training, usually college and possible internships, to become licenced. It is necessary to draw and sketch for architects.

Salary Range

It is sometimes difficult to have a steady income for architects. Architects have projects that get dropped, then the client could find another architects plans to use for their project.

The lowest 10% earn less than $41,320.

The middle 50% range between $53,480 and $91,870.

The high 10% earn more than $119,220.

How to become an architect?

In most states to practice architecture, you must have a degree. A bachelors is usually the first step in getting licenced. Now in getting a degree, some colleges require internships for their architecture students during the school year. This might be a hassle to your eyes, but some states require architects to go through an internship in order to be licenced. So this might kill two birds with one stone.

After you have your bachelors and, if necessary, an internship, next is the examination. Every state requires that the Architect Registration Examination (ARE). This exam has many different areas to be tackled and the answers can differ from multiple choice to graphical questions.

Once you have fit these requirements, which do vary by state, you can then apply for licensure. While waiting to be licenced after graduation, it is best to work in the field under a licenced architect to learn from and study under.

What then?

Once you are a licenced architect, look into your state requirements. You might be required to continue your education such as taking more classes or achieving another degree.


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    • Beth100 profile image

      Beth100 5 years ago from Canada

      Up here in Canada, the process for earning your Architecture degree are a bit different as well as the payscale. It does require a bachelor's degree in either Science or Art and then progression to a Masters in Architecture. From there, it progresses to an internship plus joining the Association.

      If the number of years spent in university is daunting to a student, they could opt out and take the Architectural Technology diploma at a polytech. With this diploma, the AT is allowed to design architectural spaces include small buildings (up to a maximum square footage and height), residential buildings, industrial and corporate spaces.

      Just a thought for those who want to practice design in the architectural field without committing many years to study in university.