Architects design new buildings and the spaces around them, and work on the restoration and conservation of existing buildings.
1. Entry requirements
You'll need to complete:
- a 5-year degree in architecture recognised by the Architects Registration Board (ARB)
- 2 years' professional experience
Entry requirements vary, so check these with course providers directly. You'll also usually need a portfolio of your drawings, sketches and photographs to get onto a course.
The ARB has information on courses.
If you're already working in an architectural practice but can't study full-time, you could do the RIBA studio (previously called the RIBA examination for office-based candidates).
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has more information on becoming an architect.
2. Skills required
- design and drawing skills
- a methodical, logical approach
- analytical skills
- excellent maths skills
- communication and negotiating skills
- IT skills
3. What you'll do
You'll create designs for clients and you'll oversee building projects from start to finish.
Your day-to-day tasks could include:
- creating detailed technical plans using computer-aided design software
- creating a plan, following building laws and safety regulations
- working towards budgets
- managing construction
- choosing materials
- checking building work and progress
Starter: £27,500 to £35,500 (qualified)
Experienced: £34,750 to £44,000 (senior architect)
Highly Experienced: up to £90,000 (associates, partners and directors)
These figures are a guide.
5. Working hours, patterns and environment
You'll usually work 35 to 40 hours, Monday to Friday.
You'll work in an office or studio. You'll often travel to sites and have meetings with clients, planning departments and builders. When visiting sites, you'll wear protective clothing.
6. Career path and progression
If you're working for a private architectural firm, you may be able to move up to become a partner or associate.
In public sector roles, with experience you could move into a lead architect job.
You could also work on projects as a freelance consultant, or set up your own business.
You may get opportunities to work overseas.
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Last updated: 26 July 2017