Guide to Starting Architecture School

architecture school


Beginning architecture faculty generally is a daunting prospect and none extra so than additionally leaving dwelling for the primary time, to reside on a campus …in a model new metropolis …with a bunch of full strangers …it may be get very (quickly) anxious!

However the excellent news is that you just’re to about begin what must be essentially the most thrilling part of your training to this point, and if we might return and do it another time, we’d in a heartbeat. 

However as there’s no signal of that occuring, right here we wish to share our experiences and supply recommendation to potential and new architecture college students which are simply beginning or a minimum of eager about embarking on the journey to turn into an architect.

Which for many who are not sure if architecture is the best profession path, then our article on “is architecture worth it” must be helpful in serving to with that call.

On this publish we are going to cowl:

  • The issues it’s essential to know earlier than beginning.
  • Suggestions for entering into architecture faculty.
  • The best way to put together for architecture faculty.
  • The issues each architecture pupil ought to have.
  • What architecture faculty is like.
  • The issues architecture college students must know.
  • The best way to be good, succeed and survive architecture faculty.
  • The best way to get forward in architect faculty.

Architecture College Handbook

woman covering her face with white book

Earlier than we start and to offer additional assist, we now have an in depth architecture faculty information accessible here and under.

Obtainable as an eBook publication, this information gives a step-by-step information ranging from the very starting with choosing an architecture faculty, via to making ready in your first design critique and efficiently delivering an excellent presentation.

The things you need to know before beginning

What’s architecture college?

It may be complicated when referring to the time period architecture faculty, and when taking a look at faculty and college programs, it could actually nearly appear to be you’re going backwards. However that is simply merely one other and extra widespread approach of claiming architecture course or class.

The outcomes are identical, however the strategies differ when in comparison with different topic programs, which is especially as a result of its comparatively full time nature and so therefore the ‘faculty’ ethos.

The architecture faculty itself usually occupies its personal building on campus, the place there will probably be separate studio’s for annually group (some will be combined), workshops, lecture theatres, seminar rooms, media rooms, café, lounge, and workplaces. It’s basically its personal self-contained unit …a small faculty.

That is fairly uncommon when in comparison with different programs on campus, that are more likely to have lectures in quite a lot of totally different buildings and areas.

Pursuing architecture is based on passion

Learning architecture is just not a straightforward course (however it’s rewarding), and if you’re on the lookout for one thing that’s, then architecture might be not for you. There are many different programs that provide a extra half time examine based mostly situation.

Architecture requires dedication and funding from its college students, and this may solely come from the scholar’s ardour for the topic and the motivation to turn into an architect. As with out this, you’ll not get via the extent of labor and invested time required.

Architecture faculty is just not essentially anymore educational than another faculty or college course, and there are a lot of which are extra so, but it surely does require an enormous funding of time and devotion.

You probably have a ardour for the topic, which is hopefully why you’re studying this within the first place, then it’s additionally extraordinarily gratifying and rewarding, and can go away your non-architecture pals wishing they had been additionally doing it …ours did!

A good salary takes time

This ardour can also be what will get you thru what’s professionally talking, an preliminary gradual climb to an excellent wage that’s worthy of the training course of.

Nevertheless salaries will nonetheless be comfortably above nationwide averages, but it surely does take time to get considerably above this. For that reason it’s your enjoyment of the topic and your eventual skilled title, that will get you thru and retains you transferring ahead.

For extra info on architecture salaries, try our wage information right here: Architects salary guide

Having fun with your occupation is a privilege that not many have, and it’s an extremely fortunate place to be in particularly when in comparison with different professions.

Tips for getting into architecture school

man and woman sitting on chairs

Today for many architecture faculties, it isn’t mandatory to check the stereotypical prolonged maths and science topics. As with advancing know-how within the studio; architecture is way freer and fewer straight laced than it was.

So when in highschool, decide artistic topics that you just take pleasure in and construct up a portfolio to indicate your drawing, making and design skills. Architecture faculties are on the lookout for a ardour and need to create, they don’t count on you to have the ability to discuss and calculate metal depths and sizes utilizing your maths and physics {qualifications}.

That mentioned, if that’s your curiosity then nice, maths and physics are nonetheless very related, it’s simply not the one possibility for pursuing an architectural training.

The understanding of structure is taught, and in an actual scenario is a part of a collaborative course of with different professionals focusing on this space.

We now have a information on how to decide on an architecture faculty that discusses this in additional element right here: Guide to Finding the Best Architecture School for You

Lastly, don’t simply go away your portfolio to paper and digital displays, get artistic, and show your mannequin making abilities. It is a key a part of pupil life, and if you’re already doing this earlier than you begin, then it exhibits an elevated need and skill.

For extra steering on this, we now have a full breakdown on easy methods to put together an architecture portfolio right here: Architecture portfolio guide

How to prepare for architecture college

There isn’t any secret to this, and we’d firstly say loosen up, finding out architecture is enjoyable and it shouldn’t (for essentially the most half) be anxious.

A wonderful guide to learn that we suggest to each architecture pupil is “101 Things I Learnt At Architecture School”. This gives an exquisite and infrequently light-hearted method to speaking about architecture faculty environments and outcomes, with fairly a couple of actually useful ideas.

This additionally options in our tools record: Essential Tools for Architecture Students, which convey us onto the tools you’ll want.

The things each architecture student should have

We now have written an in depth information here, masking every little thing it’s essential to think about in your first 12 months and those to observe. Nevertheless we’d advise {that a} good sketch guide, set of pens and a scale ruler will get you thru your first day, then as you progress, most of what’s on our record step by step turns into a necessity.

Which while there are a good few gadgets to think about and purchase, a number of them will final you the length of your finding out and into your profession.

What’s architecture faculty like?

Architecture faculty is way more like an off-the-cuff class room surroundings than lots of your non architecture pals will expertise, with their extra formal timetable of each day lectures.

When engaged on a venture (and to be able to do properly), architecture faculty requires much more time invested into it.

However don’t suppose that it’s all onerous work, it’s an immensely enjoyable topic to check, that after getting gotten to know everybody, solely will get higher with the alternatives to check with pals.

By way of the initiatives and assignments you’ll work on, Archdaily has a wonderful little article here that breaks down the traditional initiatives your professors will give to you.

Things architecture college students ought to know…

Backup your work

Simply forgotten however vitally necessary is backing up your work, study to do that on the finish of every day for those who can, and carry an exterior onerous drive to repeat your recordsdata over to.

When you don’t already personal one, then we suggest you learn our patrons information earlier than you make your buy: A guide to buying the best external hard drive

Make models

Don’t underestimate the facility of fashions, they’re immensely participating and infrequently do a much better job of explaining a scheme than a picture can.

Experiment with totally different supplies, textures and strategies; don’t simply keep on with white card fashions.

Don’t a let bad mark convey you down

All of us get a foul mark every so often, and it’s very straightforward to let this have an effect on your confidence.

There are nonetheless numerous initiatives all year long, so take the positives, study out of your errors, and use them to your profit you within the subsequent one.

Create freely and be experimental

Architectural faculty could be probably the most artistic and free considering alternatives to design inside that you just’ll ever have.

So experiment and check every little thing. There will probably be an abundance of assets and information at your fingertips, use all of it and take up it!


In or out of architecture faculty, architecture is all about perseverance and willpower; don’t hand over when you end up struggling.

…A very good architect learns, and strikes on.

Work within the studio

One of the helpful issues you are able to do as a pupil is to work within the studio with everybody else. Nothing compares to the studio environment, from each a working viewpoint however extra importantly socially.

Everybody within the studio is working in the direction of the identical aim, and so bounce of one another, and assist out when and the place you’ll be able to, it should strengthen your work.

The under documentary (“Archiculture”) “takes a considerate, but crucial have a look at the architectural studio, providing a novel glimpse into the world of studio-based, design training via the eyes of a bunch of scholars ending their ultimate design initiatives. Interviews with main professionals, historians and educators assist create essential dialog round the important thing points confronted by this distinctive educating methodology and the constructed surroundings these future architects will create.”

The best way to be good, succeed and survive in architecture faculty


As new college students you’re out of the blue given the liberty of self-directed examine, the place you’re in full management of whether or not you attend your lectures, seminars and/or tutorials.

Clearly for those who’re absent greater than you’re current, then this can trigger alarm and actually isn’t going to make it straightforward to move.

Nevertheless it is rather straightforward to overlook the odd day or two with none direct consequence, and that is what it’s essential to attempt to keep away from.

Even only a day can put you behind or trigger you to overlook some very important info, it’s essential to just remember to are on time and current at every little thing …until there’s a real excuse, through which case converse to your professors and attempt to get what you missed.

Simply being there, will be actually helpful.

Be open to criticism

What you’ll quickly notice is that architecture is extraordinarily subjective and you’ll by no means get everybody on board together with your work and opinions.

This doesn’t imply that it’s the unsuitable resolution, or that you’ve got missed one thing that you just shouldn’t have. It’s merely another person’s notion of what they suppose the architecture must be, and this must be used to your benefit.

Not getting irritated and upset by the eventual negativity is an actual ability, and when you’ve acquired it, it’s best to use it to additional affect your design course of.

Ask them why and what’s it about your venture that they don’t like …get specifics and use their feedback to your benefit.

Healthy diet

For many college students, faculty and college is the primary time they’re away from dwelling and having to cook dinner for themselves, and it’s too straightforward to not eat appropriately.

Attempt to not survive on takeaways and vitality drinks, eat proper and also you’ll discover you carry out higher.

Be social outside of architecture

One of many greatest ideas for surviving architecture faculty is to have time away from it, be a part of a sports activities or passion membership and communicate together with your different pursuits, and for those who don’t have any, discover some.

It’s shocking how a lot better you are able to do with a break

Pay attention

Paying consideration is up there with attendance, it’s an apparent one if you wish to do properly.

Consider what’s round you and hear to what’s being informed to you.

Journal subscriptions

Subscribing to a bodily and/or on-line journals is a wonderful solution to keep in contact together with your trade and stay up-to-date, not solely with present design developments, but in addition new and amended legal guidelines and laws.

The best way to get ahead in architect college

Get Concerned

It’s one factor turning as much as the studio every day, however one other to be concerned and affect the way it works.

Being a consultant in your 12 months group or being a part of the architecture pupil committee can profit you significantly, and likewise present the chance to get to know your professors and tutors higher.

As you progress via the varsity you might also get given the chance to tutor the youthful college students.

Journeys and examine excursions

It’s too straightforward to slack off and never attend or find time for these. However bodily experiencing architecture as an alternative is unimaginable highly effective.

It opens you as much as the expertise of scale, mild and environment. Buildings are designed for use and so go and use them.

Bond with academics

There are at all times a couple of college students that exit of their solution to “bond” with all of the professors and tutors, everyone knows those!

While this isn’t for everybody, these college students, whether or not it’s calculated or not, are very often those that do properly.

Not due to favoritism (though there could also be a little bit of that) however as a result of there’s a lot to study from each the within and outdoors of architecture faculty.

Having an off-the-cuff dialog with a tutor over a beer, is totally totally different and infrequently extra helpful than the formal studio surroundings.


After we had been college students this by no means crossed our minds, and networking at this stage typically simply means your folks.

However architecture faculty is filled with likeminded creatives and thinkers, and so discuss and get to know everybody you’ll be able to. You by no means know the way it could profit you sooner or later.

Drawing and sketching

While you’re a pupil it’s the good time to develop your drawing and sketching abilities, as first 12 months college students you can be strongly inspired to attract every little thing, with many programs having a life drawing unit.

With the ability to talk with a drawing isn’t important, however is extraordinarily helpful.

Keep away from all nighters

You need to keep away from “all nighters” in any respect prices; you’ll discover that in architecture faculty these are nearly handled as a badge of honor.

Nevertheless what they present is that the scholar or college students who’re in that scenario have both not labored onerous sufficient through the semester, or have grossly underestimated the extent and quantity of labor required.

There are at all times the occasional conditions the place there have been some final minute design modifications, and this simply needs to be handled, however on the entire they present a failure to plan and work.

This then additionally has a knock on impact the subsequent day when you find yourself required to current your work with no sleep. …which is a recipe for catastrophe!

Archdaily have a lighthearted article all about this here

Final word

The training assets we offer on this web site are right here to information and allow you to via what will be at instances a really troublesome course of.

Nevertheless these difficulties are sometimes the results of the unknown, which is the place we goal to fill the hole via shared firsthand information, based mostly on actual expertise and experience.

We wish to want you good luck together with your new architecture faculty, and in case you have any questions please don’t hesitate to get involved.

…for extra studying, yow will discover our complete architecture school guide on the under hyperlink: