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    Hey everyone, I've thought lots about this and decided to stop replying to questions posted on this thread (at least on a consistent basis) - as I've just concluded my final year of architecture studies and I'm acutely aware of how out-of-date a lot of my experience of the application system now is! Hopefully the questions and answers contained within here are of use to future applicants, thanks to everyone for making this a great thread!
    Architecture-er



    Note for people new to the TSR forums, if you quote this original post (using the button in the bottom-right) when asking your question then I'll get an alert, it'll mean I see your question far quicker

    Summer exams are looming on the horizon, and there's a distinct smell of caffeine in the air...

    Thankfully I'm on placement, and as such have nothing to do in my evenings! Therefore I invite everyone considering architecture and wondering about preparing for first year to AMA, and I'll do my best to help

    Can't 'really' offer much in-depth knowledge about universities other than my own, but subject/career specific questions are a-ok. Additionally, if any other Part I/II/III students want their names listed here as sources of uni-specific help, then quote me and I'll add you onto the original post!

    A Youtube channel that may be of use
    (courtesy of Archi Student)
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    Im' thinking of applying to study architecture, I'm doing as at the moment Art, History, Maths and Physics. I'm not very strong in maths and my physics is pretty hopeless. Do I need to be good at maths and physics? I love art and history. Can I still do architecture?
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    (Original post by Arketec)
    Im' thinking of applying to study architecture, I'm doing as at the moment Art, History, Maths and Physics. I'm not very strong in maths and my physics is pretty hopeless. Do I need to be good at maths and physics? I love art and history. Can I still do architecture?
    It'll depend to a certain extent on the university degree. Bath, for example, is quite maths-based in 1st year, but it's really just laying the groundwork so you can do basic environmental calculations and gain an appreciation for how a structure is loaded if you want, there's never been any real reason to do any of it in our projects (unless your entire project somehow hinges on whether a specific cantilever is possible or not).

    You could do any of it with the basic C1, M1 modules under your belt, the course has to cater to people from various countries where their curriculums might've been different,
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    Thanks, I'm pretty hopeless at maths and starting to think I should do history or art history instead. My main reading interest is architectural history and tbh I read more than draw.
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    (Original post by Arketec)
    Thanks, I'm pretty hopeless at maths and starting to think I should do history or art history instead. My main reading interest is architectural history and tbh I read more than draw.
    Mm, with architecture you really have to know that you want it, in my opinion. If you're quite aspirational, but then don't do too well you can easily get stuck in some 9-5 design & build office where money saving dominates any sort of creative freedom.

    Obviously if you do well, or money isn't your entire 'raison d'etre' then architecture can be a fantastic career, but from what I've seen so far people can walk somewhat of a knife edge. But I suppose that's the same for any career.

    But just don't think that because you're bad at maths doesn't mean you aren't capable of studying architecture what're your predicted/achieved grades so far?

    p.s. make sure you quote me, or I won't get an alert that you've posted
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    (Original post by Architecture-er)
    Mm, with architecture you really have to know that you want it, in my opinion. If you're quite aspirational, but then don't do too well you can easily get stuck in some 9-5 design & build office where money saving dominates any sort of creative freedom.

    Obviously if you do well, or money isn't your entire 'raison d'etre' then architecture can be a fantastic career, but from what I've seen so far people can walk somewhat of a knife edge. But I suppose that's the same for any career.

    But just don't think that because you're bad at maths doesn't mean you aren't capable of studying architecture what're your predicted/achieved grades so far?

    p.s. make sure you quote me, or I won't get an alert that you've posted
    For physics I'll probably get a D I'm going to drop physics and do philosophy AS if I do. For maths I think it'll be a C (if I'm lucky). For art and history I'm
    looking at A's for both subjects, that's at AS level. I should do better next year. I enjoy art: I love painting. I'm better at history and thinking maybe I'll do that at university. I quite see myself working for the national trust. At least then I'd be surrounded by the buildings I love and the history I'm devoted to.

    I don't really know much about contemporary architecture.

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    (Original post by Arketec)
    For physics I'll probably get a D I'm going to drop physics and do philosophy AS if I do. For maths I think it'll be a C (if I'm lucky). For art and history I'm
    looking at A's for both subjects, that's at AS level. I should do better next year. I enjoy art: I love painting. I'm better at history and thinking maybe I'll do that at university. I quite see myself working for the national trust. At least then I'd be surrounded by the buildings I love and the history I'm devoted to.

    I don't really know much about contemporary architecture.

    Well nobody knows 'that' much about contemporary architecture in Year 12, but it definitely sounds like you prefer the historical aspects, good luck with your exams!
    Keep me posted with how it goes
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    Will do.
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    (Original post by Architecture-er)
    Obviously if you do well, or money isn't your entire 'raison d'etre' then architecture can be a fantastic career, but from what I've seen so far people can walk somewhat of a knife edge. But I suppose that's the same for any career.
    What do you mean by that phrase???:eek:
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    (Original post by Just.Alex)
    What do you mean by that phrase???:eek:
    If you're a bad architect then you'll probably end up in a boring job - it's compounded by the fact that the profession is more aspiration-driven than most since there's so much study of 'top' architects, so to not be part of that upper cohort will be felt more keenly :dontknow:

    At least, that's what I've seen so far, from my time in placement
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    Hello,

    Currently in Year 11 and I've wanted to be an architect for years, but that was before I knew anything much about it and now I'm thinking that perhaps it isn't for me? I want to study Economics, Politics, Geography and French at A Level, and I have no idea for a degree - it ranges from Architecture to Mental Health Nursing or Economics. I know about the RIBA system of becoming a chartered architect and I don't want to get myself into that 'mess' before I fully know that I want to become an Architect. I love reading about contemporary architecture - from Norman Foster (who was born in my town/village) to Calatrava. I just don't know, and I'm not good at creative drawing, more at the technical aspects, and I really hate maths and physics (although I got an A in my maths GCSE and an A and B up to now in Physics).

    Help??? :confused:

    Thanks
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    (Original post by loejucy)
    Hello,

    Currently in Year 11 and I've wanted to be an architect for years, but that was before I knew anything much about it and now I'm thinking that perhaps it isn't for me? I want to study Economics, Politics, Geography and French at A Level, and I have no idea for a degree - it ranges from Architecture to Mental Health Nursing or Economics. I know about the RIBA system of becoming a chartered architect and I don't want to get myself into that 'mess' before I fully know that I want to become an Architect. I love reading about contemporary architecture - from Norman Foster (who was born in my town/village) to Calatrava. I just don't know, and I'm not good at creative drawing, more at the technical aspects, and I really hate maths and physics (although I got an A in my maths GCSE and an A and B up to now in Physics).

    Help??? :confused:

    Thanks
    Little note, if you click the quote button on my post (bottom right in a beautiful shade of orange) then I'll get a notification that you've replied

    ~~~

    Wow, well there's only so much I can do to help, after all you've known yourself for 15 years, and I've only had 10 minutes!

    I assume your school provides some sort of career advice service, I'd definitely check that out (though mine wasn't very helpful in helping me choose it did have good lists of what it's possible to do, it helped expand my horizons a bit beyond the typical shortlist of 'science', 'medicine', 'astronaut'.

    If you're still uncertain about your career desire when it comes to choosing your A-levels, you might be best off choosing subjects which carry a certain amount of flexibility to them, so you don't narrow your options too early. It'd still be a good idea to try and shortlist your preferred degrees so that you pick A-levels that enable you to take the greatest number of degree options. Similarly, if you still don't know what you want to do when you're considering university then a general degree might be safer than a vocational degree such as architecture, law or medicine.

    For example, you could study French with Politics without having to end up as the French Ambassador, and simply aim for a management role in a French company, or a British firm that has specific trading links with France or french-speaking countries, or sod France altogether and do whatever takes your fancy afterwards. Don't know the numbers, but a lot of graduates end up doing jobs that have nothing to do with their degrees, though probably less so with the charter careers that require a lot more dedication.

    I'm deliberately trying to avoid giving specific advice about whether to take architecture or not because the idea of dictating someone's future like that scares the cats out of me, but I think high achievers (which are the majority of users on TSR) have a far harder time choosing what they want to do simply because there's so much choice. What were all your GCSE results, if you don't mind me asking? I can tell you how I came to study architecture as well so you can compare us, if that would help
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    Hello, my name is Karlo and I am from Croatia. My country will enter EU this summer ( I wrote this only because non EU residents have different requirements as I heard). I want to study Architecture in UK. At the moment I study business here in Croatia and I will get my undergraduate diploma next year and I want to study architecture afterwards and I need biiig help

    I am planning to take A level but I am not sure which subjects should I take and when to apply

    I don’t have any portfolio or any art work at the moment but I am going to take art classes intensely after this summer (I will learn there to draw, paint etc.)

    I would appreciate if you could write top 5 arch universities and which books should I buy and read.

    I am highly motivated to come to UK and study architecture, is it possible?


    Thank you very much!
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    Why are you very motivated to study architecture in the UK? There are few jobs here at the moment, particularly in architecture and loads of people going after them and it is likely to stay that way for the foreseeable future. It is also very cold here for most of the year which is not comfortable, if it was easy for me to go somewhere warmer I would be more than happy to leave the UK.
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    (Original post by Stewie2011)
    Why are you very motivated to study architecture in the UK? There are few jobs here at the moment, particularly in architecture and loads of people going after them and it is likely to stay that way for the foreseeable future. It is also very cold here for most of the year which is not comfortable, if it was easy for me to go somewhere warmer I would be more than happy to leave the UK.
    Because I think that the UK has the best architectural universities in the world such as Cambridge, UCL, Bath, AA etc. and i really don't know where else should i study architecture, maybe US? I don't mind rain nor cold as long as I am happy with the chosen university and I am not worrying about finding a job thx
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    (Original post by Cro_Arch)
    Hello, my name is Karlo and I am from Croatia. My country will enter EU this summer ( I wrote this only because non EU residents have different requirements as I heard). I want to study Architecture in UK. At the moment I study business here in Croatia and I will get my undergraduate diploma next year and I want to study architecture afterwards and I need biiig help

    I am planning to take A level but I am not sure which subjects should I take and when to apply

    I don’t have any portfolio or any art work at the moment but I am going to take art classes intensely after this summer (I will learn there to draw, paint etc.)

    I would appreciate if you could write top 5 arch universities and which books should I buy and read.

    I am highly motivated to come to UK and study architecture, is it possible?


    Thank you very much!
    Karlo
    Hi Karlo

    The 'best' A-levels to take are Art, Maths, Physics and Geography, which give you a solid base in artistic, technical and social aspects of Architecture. Most universities won't demand A-levels in any of them, though if you don't take Art then there's a high probability that you'll be asked to show a portfolio when other applicants who have taken Art won't.
    If you do take the A-levels I've listed above then you might be asked to get an A*/A in some of them, but that doesn't mean you have to take that A-level in the first place. Obviously the more appropriate your A-levels are, the more enthusiastic you'll look, and so you'll be more likely to get an offer.
    Instead of Geography/Physics you could take a language, or whatever else you want to do, it's fairly free.

    The best architecture schools (in the UK) are probably Cambridge, Bath, The Bartlett (UCL), The Architecture Association (note that the funding for this school is different), and Cardiff.

    For first-year reading I would recommend these books by Simon Unwin, "Analyzing Architecture" and "Twenty Buildings Every Architect Should Understand".

    For heavier reading I would recommend "Atmospheres" by Peter Zumthor, and "The Ethical Function of Architecture" by Karsten Harries, though these are a bit more complicated to understand if you've not yet started studying architecture or speak English fluently, I didn't understand half of Karsten Harries' book myself :laugh:

    Another good option for architecture applicants are the Taschen Basic Architecture books, which are basically biographies of key architects and their work. There's 37(?) of them though, so I'd just look at a few which catch your fancy, perhaps Frank Lloyd Wright, Alvar Aalto, Corbusier, The Bauhaus and Renzo Piano would be considered 'cornerstones' of the early 20th century and the birth of modernism. Since we're technically in the post-modernist era at the moment, doing some reading about the architecture movement before this one might help, but it's also good just to read about their work and have a few names to know a bit about
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    (Original post by Architecture-er)
    Little note, if you click the quote button on my post (bottom right in a beautiful shade of orange) then I'll get a notification that you've replied

    ~~~

    Wow, well there's only so much I can do to help, after all you've known yourself for 15 years, and I've only had 10 minutes!

    I assume your school provides some sort of career advice service, I'd definitely check that out (though mine wasn't very helpful in helping me choose it did have good lists of what it's possible to do, it helped expand my horizons a bit beyond the typical shortlist of 'science', 'medicine', 'astronaut'.

    If you're still uncertain about your career desire when it comes to choosing your A-levels, you might be best off choosing subjects which carry a certain amount of flexibility to them, so you don't narrow your options too early. It'd still be a good idea to try and shortlist your preferred degrees so that you pick A-levels that enable you to take the greatest number of degree options. Similarly, if you still don't know what you want to do when you're considering university then a general degree might be safer than a vocational degree such as architecture, law or medicine.

    For example, you could study French with Politics without having to end up as the French Ambassador, and simply aim for a management role in a French company, or a British firm that has specific trading links with France or french-speaking countries, or sod France altogether and do whatever takes your fancy afterwards. Don't know the numbers, but a lot of graduates end up doing jobs that have nothing to do with their degrees, though probably less so with the charter careers that require a lot more dedication.

    I'm deliberately trying to avoid giving specific advice about whether to take architecture or not because the idea of dictating someone's future like that scares the cats out of me, but I think high achievers (which are the majority of users on TSR) have a far harder time choosing what they want to do simply because there's so much choice. What were all your GCSE results, if you don't mind me asking? I can tell you how I came to study architecture as well so you can compare us, if that would help

    Thank you,

    I also have another question - if I want to be an architect, but I want to move to another country (possibly more than one foreign move), do I have to train separately in that country again? Or does my RIBA carry on to that country? If I do have to train, how long does this take?

    Thanks
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    (Original post by loejucy)
    Thank you,

    I also have another question - if I want to be an architect, but I want to move to another country (possibly more than one foreign move), do I have to train separately in that country again? Or does my RIBA carry on to that country? If I do have to train, how long does this take?

    Thanks
    There is the EC Directive 2005/36/EC for EU Member States. However, you will need to register with the governing body in that country (for example, in France, the Order of Architects) which will typically involve taking an examination or an interview to verify your credentials. You will also obviously need to be fluent in the language to get through the registration procedure.

    Outside of Europe it becomes more complicated AFAIK. But to be honest, the general visa requirements / work permits are going to present you with more headaches than the professional registration if you wanted to move to say, the US or Australia.
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    (Original post by loejucy)
    Thank you,

    I also have another question - if I want to be an architect, but I want to move to another country (possibly more than one foreign move), do I have to train separately in that country again? Or does my RIBA carry on to that country? If I do have to train, how long does this take?

    Thanks
    I would agree with jrhartley, as a recognised (and possibly the most reputable) architecture institute, being RIBA-accredited should allow you to be accepted in other countries.. I don't know the specifics though since I've not got to the point where I'd consider it :dontknow:

    Plenty of architects work abroad when they've been RIBA-trained, though. So it's certainly possible
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    Hi! I am a prospective AA student and I am looking for accommodation close to the AA. I would like to share a flat with students from this school. If anyone is interested in forming a group to look for an apartment, or anyone has a free room, please write me message and we will get in touch!! cheers!
 
 
 
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