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How many years of college does an architect require?

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I’m 14 years old, live in Massachusetts, I like to experiment with things and build, I like graphic design and art, I play 3 sports, my father is a contractor/ carpenter, and I like a little challenge. #architecture

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7 answers

andy’s Answer

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Hi Nathan,
At 14 you should start taking drafting classes and in a couple years start working summers in construction. That helps your understanding of architecture outside of just school and if you could love it. Try to understand all aspects of construction besides just the art and academic. You need to find out what people love about the profession and what people hate. You need to find what tasks you like and what you think you maybe good at.

Being an architect is a lot and you need to love it and be a entrepreneur in it.

And yes, 5years for a bachelors of architecture, then ncarb internship hours for about two years, then you can sit for your license exams.





Thankyou!!! Nathan T. Translate
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Jackie’s Answer

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Hi Nathan!

All the Above Answers are good ones. But I would add that choosing architecture is more than how many years of school it takes. Every state has different requirements. And you should definitely check out NCARB's website and resources for those looking into licensure both as a student and young professional. But more importantly I would challenge you to start thinking about what you're passionate about, what you care about, and what problems you want to solve. Design thinking (that you learn in architecture school) is a powerful tool to be able to think creatively outside of the box for every small and big problem (or as some would call them, opportunity!) There are SO Many paths to architecture, and SO Many schools to chose from. I would do some reflection and thinking about where you want to go, or what you want to learn more about and explore, and find schools that let you do just that!
Wishing you the best!

Jackie recommends the following next steps:

  • Ask yourself what you care about?
  • Look around and see what issues or problems you want to do something about?
  • Research schools and all the requirements for admission for each?
  • Check out NCARB's website about Education Requirements. https://www.ncarb.org/become-architect/study-architecture/accredited-programs
  • Reach out to a guidance counselor, or talk to a recent grad or newly licensed architect and hear about how school was for them! (It's MUCH different than our parent's generation!)
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David’s Answer

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For Architecture major for most college/university, there are 2 program 1. is 5 year architecture program and the 2. is 4+2 architecture program. Majority College/University Architecture programs requires 5 years just for the Bachelor professional degree but the 4+2 architecture program will be the Master of Architecture professional degree. Both programs are good and will permit you to get your architects license. So now it is your decision to pick if you want to just be okay with the Bachelor degree or you want to grab the Master degree while it you at it which you will be just spending additional years or years and half to complete. Both degrees, the Master of Architecture 6 year degree and the Bachelor of Architecture 5 year degree are professional degrees that will permit you to become Registered, but like said do you want to move up or knock out while you are doing it already or you going to plan to come back for the next level.

You can also consider Civil Engineering or Engineering Technology or Engineering as well where you can still do graphic design and art.
Thankyou!!! Nathan T. Translate
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Thomas’s Answer

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The previous responses seem to mostly answer your questions. But something many people overlook is that licensure varies by state.

In New York, you can get your license with an unaccredited degree, but it requires more time working after graduation. In Massachusetts, you need an accredited degree. Go here: https://www.ncarb.org/get-licensed/licensing-requirements-tool? and under "Requirements", click "A professional degree from a NAAB accredited school is required," Or the tab under that which is just the inverse.

Know the difference between: BS.Arch, B.Arch, M.Arch.
What I did, is went to a state school for a BS.Arch, and then a private school for my M.Arch, which saved me a lot of money instead of going to a private school for all 5 or 6 years.

And yeah, take tech electives (INCLUDING AutoCAD) in HS, but focus on art. Most architecture schools require a portfolio when applying. They want to see that you're creative and artistic (doesn't have to be drawings of buildings. Be weird and creative in your art).
Thankyou!!! Nathan T. Translate
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Riley’s Answer

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To be an architect, you will need to earn at least a bachelor's degree (4 years) in Architecture, which will probably require you to take the necessary tests to be licensed. Then, you will most likely need about 3 years of internship work before you can be a successful architect.
Thankyou!! Nathan T. Translate
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Jordan A.’s Answer

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There are basically three routes you can take in college to become a licensed architect. Option 1 is a 5 yr professional degree. Option 2 is a 4 yr non professional architecture degree plus a 2 yr master's degree. Option 3 is an unrelated 4 yr undergrad degree and 3.5 year master's degree.
After college you still would need to complete 3 yrs of internship hours and pass all six divisions of the ARE.
Best of luck in whatever you do!

Jordan A. recommends the following next steps:

  • Check out the NCARB Website: https://www.ncarb.org/become-architect/basics
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Rachel’s Answer

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Hello Nathan,
To be become a registered architect you first should attend an accredited school. There are 5 year accredited Bachelor of Architecture programs or 4 year bachelor programs (unaccredited) that can be paired with a 2 year Masters of Architecture accredited program.
Thankyou so much!! Nathan T. Translate
Anytime, Nathan. Please let me know if you have other questions. Happy to help. Rachel Migliacci Translate
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