Opportunities open to students graduating with a preprofessional Bachelor of Science in architecture degree (not requiring state architecture licensure) include:
facilities planning and design
graphic, interior, or industrial design
urban planning and design
real estate development
Students have also obtained positions with public agencies and development firms, and have worked as paraprofessionals with both small and large architectural offices. Many of these alternatives do not require architectural
licensure, but may require additional training or certification. See Career Services for more information.
Most students completing the accredited first professional master of architecture degree become licensed architects who practice in architectural firms, pubic/governmental agencies, or corporations. Common practice
roles within an architectural team include design, project management, facilities planning, site planning and design, structural design, technical research and specifications, document production, contract administration,
urban planning and design, interior design, marketing, and project finance.
The architecture profession offers the flexibility to practice in either a broad or narrow range of expertise. For example, some architects focus on residential work, designing new houses or planning the renovation
of older ones. Others focus on design and construction of factories and laboratories, retail stores or schools. Still others pursue careers as project managers or structural designers. Architects often design products
other than buildings; many design commercial and/or consumer products.
Employment of architects is strongly tied to the activity of the construction industry. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment of architects is projected to grow 7 percent from 2014 to 2024, the
average for all occupations. Strong growth is expected to come from nonresidential construction as demand for commercial space increases. Current demographic trends also support an increase in demand for architects.
As the population continues to live longer and baby-boomers begin to retire there will be a need for more healthcare facilities, nursing homes, and retirement communities. In education, buildings at all levels are getting
older and class sizes are getting larger. This will require many school districts and universities to build new facilities and renovate existing ones.
Skills gained in this program include:
Researching, analyzing, and interpreting information (which is often highly technical) during project work
Verbal and written communication skills, including the ability to give presentations to clients
Ability to conceptualize and understand spatial relationships
Project management, focusing on knowledge of materials, resources, personnel, and logistics
The ability to define and address complex problems
An awareness of the multifaceted circumstances surrounding a project, including cultural influences, environmental, social, and political concerns
Understanding the importance of combining aesthetics with utility
Assessment of a wide variety of facilities
Knowledge and awareness of the construction industry
Negotiation with vendors and clients
Design skills, including the ability to visually communicate ideas to others
Creativity when addressing complex problems
Computer skills, most specifically computer-aided design (CAD), word processing, spreadsheets, and project management software
Architectural Licensing and Registration. All states, the District of Columbia, and three U.S. territories (Guam, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands) require individuals to be licensed (registered)
before they may call themselves architects or contract to provide architectural services. Many architecture school graduates work in the field even though they are not licensed or while they are in the process of becoming
licensed. But they may not call themselves an architect.
All of NCARB's 54 U.S. jurisdictions have an experience requirement that must be documented and completed before one becomes licensed. This time between fulfilling the education requirement and getting licensed
is referred to as an architectural internship. NCARB's Intern Development Program (IDP) guides aspiring architects through this process and is the
standard accepted means of completing the experience requirement in almost all U.S. jurisdictions.
Interns in architectural firms may help design part of a project. They may help prepare architectural documents and drawings, build models, and prepare construction drawings on CAD. Interns also may research
building codes and write specifications for building materials, installation criteria, the quality of finishes, and other related details.
After completing the on-the-job training period, intern architects are eligible to sit for the state-licensing architecture exam. The Architect Registration Examination® (ARE®) assesses candidates for
their knowledge, skills, and ability to provide the various services required in the practice of architecture. The ARE has been adopted for use by all 54 U.S. Member Boards and the Canadian provincial and territorial
architectural associations as a registration examination required for architectural registration. For more information on the ARE®, visit NCARB. Licensing examinations are offered
in New York by the State Education Department's Office of the Professions.
The New York State architect license, in combination with the preprofessional Bachelor of Science in Architecture, will not transfer to most other states. Without the NAAB accredited professional Master of Architecture
degree, an individual may not be permitted to sit for the licensure exam or practice in at least 35 states. In addition, the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) requires an accredited professional
master of architecture degree for membership certification and license reciprocity. A growing number of architects voluntarily seek certification
by NCARB, which can facilitate an individual's licensing to practice in additional states. According to 2014-2015 US Department of Labor data, approximately one-third of all licensed architects had NCARB certification.
Architects find it increasingly necessary for NCARB certification to gain license reciprocity in order to compete for the best jobs and projects in other States. Certification is awarded after independent verification
of the candidate's educational transcripts, employment record, and professional references. NCARB certification is the primary requirement for reciprocity of licensing among State Boards that are NCARB members. Nationally,
the preferred method for licensure is to complete an accredited professional Master of Architecture degree program.
After becoming licensed and gaining experience, architects take on increasingly responsible duties, eventually managing entire projects. In large firms, architects may advance to supervisory or managerial positions.
Some architects become partners in established firms, while others set up their own practices. Graduates with degrees in architecture also enter related fields, such as graphic, interior, or industrial design; urban
planning and design; real estate development; engineering technology; and construction management.
Project or site manager
Real estate developer
Work settings include:
Architecture/urban planning/engineering firms
Building material manufacturers
Colleges and universities
Computer representation/modeling firms
Environmental management firms
Federal government agencies
Museums and art galleries
Property management firms
Public and private architecture practice
Real estate development corporations
State government agencies
Salary Information Salaries range greatly from one occupation, position, and work setting to another. Upon completing an accredited professional master of architecture degree, individuals are required to
work full time as a professional intern architect for a minimum three years before earning eligibility to take the Architect Registration Examination (ARE). According to the U.S. Department of Labor's 2014-2015 Occupational
Outlook Handbook, the median annual earnings of wage and salary for architects was ,090 per year. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less.
The lowest 10 percent earned less than ,600, and the top 10 percent earned more than 8,230. Earnings of partners in established architectural firms may fluctuate because of changing business and market conditions. Many
firms pay tuition and fees toward continuing education requirements for their employees. About 1 in 5 architects were self-employed in 2014.
Nearly all architects work full time. Many work more than 50 hours per week. Self-employed architects may have more flexible work hours. Visit the U.S. Department of Labor website for additional career information related to Architecture.
Post-baccalaureate Opportunities Post-baccalaureate educational options at UB include the opportunity for application to the accredited professional Master of Architecture (M.Arch.) or the accredited professional
Master of Urban Planning (M.U.P.) degrees. Additional post-baccalaureate programs include a dual Master of Architecture plus Master of Urban Planning (M.Arch. + M.U.P.), a dual Master of Architecture plus Master of
Business Administration (M.Arch. + M.B.A.), and a dual Master of Architecture plus Master of Fine Arts in Media Arts Production (M.Arch. + M.F.A.). In conjunction with University at Buffalo Urban and Regional Planning,
University at Buffalo Architecture offers SUNY's only advanced graduate certificate (Adv Crt) in historic preservation, and a joint proposal for a MS Arch real estate development concentration is awaiting final approval
from SUNY and the NYS Education Department. Contact the Buffalo School of Architecture and Planning for graduate admissions information .