Architects design and plan office buildings, homes and other structures. Architects will typically meet with clients to figure out requirements for the structure, prepare the specifications for the structure, complete scaled drawings of the structure, estimate the time, equipment, and materials needed for the job, and visit the job site to oversee construction. They can work on public projects or private projects and single rooms or entire buildings. Not only can they work on indoor projects, they can also transition into landscape construction and work on outside projects as well.
Even though architects may visit construction sites to check on progress, they usually spend most of their time in their office. For a self-employed architect, this could be a home office. Most architects work full-time with long hours.
Architect Job Education Requirements
The first step in becoming an architect is completing a Bachelor of Architecture degree program. This degree program typically takes about five years to finish. Some students will go on to get a master's degree in architecture, which is an additional one to five years of coursework.
Next, those studying to become an architect must complete a paid internship lasting at least three years long. While there, interns can expect to help design projects, complete drawings, and build models.
Finally, anyone wanting an architect job must be licensed in the state where he or she is working. To get a license, the person must prove they've completed the education and internship requirements, and then pass the Architect Registration Exam. Most states will also require continuing education classes to keep the license current.
Architect Job Market
Cities will always need new buildings for work, home, and play, so the demand for architects isn't going to slow down anytime soon. In fact, the job market for architects is expected to grow 17 percent over the next 10 years. However, there are also a growing number students entering into this job field. Those familiar with the latest technical skills and with a background as a construction architect often have an advantage.
Architect Job Salary Information
The median annual salary for an architect is around $73,000. The bottom 10 percent earn around $44,500 while the top 10 percent can earn more than $118,000. Although about one in five architects are self-employed and enjoy more flexible hours, those who work for larger firms will often receive tuition reimbursements towards their continuing education classes.