An architect is an integral part of a team that is responsible for the design, layout, and plan of both new buildings and old ones. Architects might also oversee the entire layout of a group of buildings or an entire area. Often architects are given general ideas from clients, they in turn, create plans and designs that will turn those ideas into safe, structures that are not only visually pleasing but also adhere to safety codes and standards.
Additionally, an architect is given a set budget to work with and must make certain that the finished building is safe, well built, and does not violate any codes or regulations. The architect focuses on the design and once it is approved, building contractors turn those plans into reality by performing the actual construction of the structure. Architects also work with engineers and surveyors to ensure that all safety standards are being kept and utilised. Engineers are instrumental for ensuring that he structure is designed in a manner that makes certain no future safety hazards will occur. Regular inspections during the building process will ensure that codes and regulations are being followed. The architect is responsible for the project from beginning to completion.
Those interested in becoming an architect should have a strong awareness of buildings and building design. An attention to scientific principles, good computer skills, and excellent logical and mathematical abilities and reasoning are required. In addition to practical mathematical skills, an architect should also have the ability to work well with others and possess leadership skills. Remaining calm under pressure and working well with deadlines is invaluable to a successful architect’s career. Additionally, architects must stay current and up to date with social, environmental, building, and architectural trends.
Training for a career as an architect involves several parts or stages. First you would need to obtain an undergraduate BA or BSc degree that takes three years full time, this is referred to as Part 1. Once you’ve completed Part 1, you will proceed to Stage 1 that consists of one year’s architectural experience. This would be a paid position. After Stage 1, you would be required to obtain a BArch, Diploma or MArch. This takes two years to achieve and is referred to as Part 2 and completes five years worth of educational architectural training. It is important to ensure that any course you take is fully recognised by the Architects Registration Board. After completion of Stage 1, you would then complete another year’s worth of paid training with an architectural company, this is referred to as Stage 2, and this completes two years of paid experience. The final section is known as Part 3 and requires passing a professional architectural exam. After passing your exam you will then qualify for registration as a Chartered Member of the Royal Institute of British Architects.
Architects typically work regular workdays Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m to 5:00 p.m. You might be required to work different schedules. It is also important to check in regularly with the Architects Registration Board. Salaries for Part 2 architects are approximately between £25,000 and £35,000 per year. Architects that become fully qualified can earn between approximately £50,000 per year. With experience, this can increase to £75,000 per year.