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    Hiya,

    I've wanted to study architecture for a while now but am afraid that within university I might decide that it's not for me (seeing as it is 7yrs at uni).

    I have A*s in Geography, Maths, Fine Art and all three sciences from GCSE -and doing Geography, History, Fine Art and Maths at A level.

    I have heard that it is a hard course and a lot of preparation is needed in order to study it.

    Any advice on how to prepare for architecture at uni or the positives of studying it, much appreciated.

    Thank you
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    Hi,

    Architecture is an amazing course however you need to have a love for it. If you think its great for money when qualified you are mistaken. However is you love practical design then its great.

    Though the 7 years sounds long, it doesn't have to be like that, to get a Ba or Bsc it is still only 3 years and then you have that qualification and can get a job. It normally then entails working for one year and then if you want to do your Masters then it is a further 2 years and then one more year working, a final exam then you can call yourself an architect. So yes, its a long time however if after 3 years you decide it isn't for you, you still have a prestigious degree.

    If you can get any work experience or even see an architects office then that will help you make your mind up of is it for you. Studying includes lots of hours of work however the work is normally enjoyable and you can work with music on or with a group of friends as it is normally more on the arts side. I love architecture, if you have any specific questions, feel free to ask.
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    As someone who graduated from architecture a little while ago who has been working in practice for a couple of years, I would say that architecture at university is enjoyable, although you have to sacrifice a lot of the more conventional aspects of university life. For example nobody on my course who was involved in any societies got firsts, and very few people with 2.1s did much outside of architecture, most people who were in society's or did sports failed before finishing the course or scraped 2.2s). Also, by second year, people doing architecture were doing well to be going out once a month, whereas all of my friends from outside the course were still going out twice a week.

    That's university, but what's important is what it gets you long term, and that is where architecture really falls down as a good career/life choice. Unless you are literally at the most senior level (i.e. having your own practice or a senior partner of a bigger practice) you will have essentially no real creative input (you might get to help pick the finish of a door or the height of a skirting board, if that turns you on?). To get to that senior level you need to be in the right place, at the right time, and do an awful lot of brown nosing and long hours. So, if you do make it to that level, before you're 40 odd, well done, enjoy your 60-70 hour week and being shafted from all angles by contractors, clients and people above you. Oh and the pay is rubbish too, and even then only 5% of your time will be spent on design, the rest will be spent going to dull meetings with project managers, and dealing with endless bureaucracy and admin.

    This all said, I think doing art a university is pointless, and for someone as clever as yourself is clearly not going to be stimulating, logical or academically rigorous enough for the most part.
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    (Original post by Farchitect)
    As someone who graduated from architecture a little while ago who has been working in practice for a couple of years, I would say that architecture at university is enjoyable, although you have to sacrifice a lot of the more conventional aspects of university life. For example nobody on my course who was involved in any societies got firsts, and very few people with 2.1s did much outside of architecture, most people who were in society's or did sports failed before finishing the course or scraped 2.2s). Also, by second year, people doing architecture were doing well to be going out once a month, whereas all of my friends from outside the course were still going out twice a week.

    That's university, but what's important is what it gets you long term, and that is where architecture really falls down as a good career/life choice. Unless you are literally at the most senior level (i.e. having your own practice or a senior partner of a bigger practice) you will have essentially no real creative input (you might get to help pick the finish of a door or the height of a skirting board, if that turns you on?). To get to that senior level you need to be in the right place, at the right time, and do an awful lot of brown nosing and long hours. So, if you do make it to that level, before you're 40 odd, well done, enjoy your 60-70 hour week and being shafted from all angles by contractors, clients and people above you. Oh and the pay is rubbish too, and even then only 5% of your time will be spent on design, the rest will be spent going to dull meetings with project managers, and dealing with endless bureaucracy and admin.

    This all said, I think doing art a university is pointless, and for someone as clever as yourself is clearly not going to be stimulating, logical or academically rigorous enough for the most part.
    That is so useful thank you so much. Out of curiosity where did you study?
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    (Original post by tfaulkner)
    Hi,

    Architecture is an amazing course however you need to have a love for it. If you think its great for money when qualified you are mistaken. However is you love practical design then its great.

    Though the 7 years sounds long, it doesn't have to be like that, to get a Ba or Bsc it is still only 3 years and then you have that qualification and can get a job. It normally then entails working for one year and then if you want to do your Masters then it is a further 2 years and then one more year working, a final exam then you can call yourself an architect. So yes, its a long time however if after 3 years you decide it isn't for you, you still have a prestigious degree.

    If you can get any work experience or even see an architects office then that will help you make your mind up of is it for you. Studying includes lots of hours of work however the work is normally enjoyable and you can work with music on or with a group of friends as it is normally more on the arts side. I love architecture, if you have any specific questions, feel free to ask.
    Thank you! I have done 2 work experiences which were completely varied. A few questions....
    1) how much art influence is there within architecture
    2)where did you study
    3)how big are your classes
    4) advice for creating a portfolio?
    5)any additional readin you recommend

    Sorry there is a lot
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    (Original post by Collinsino)
    Thank you! I have done 2 work experiences which were completely varied. A few questions....
    1) how much art influence is there within architecture
    2)where did you study
    3)how big are your classes
    4) advice for creating a portfolio?
    5)any additional readin you recommend

    Sorry there is a lot
    In response to your questions

    1) it depends where you study and i think the difference between a Ba and a Bsc will change the art influence slightly. I enjoy the art side more so i try to bring that within my work and for that reason all places i applied to were more on the arts side being all Ba's or Barch.
    2) i currently study in Nottingham however am moving in a few months to either the Architectural Association, Glasgow, Newcastle or sheffield. Depends on finance.
    3) classes vary, however normally about 100 are in a year group but it depends where you go. Do you have any ideas yet?
    4) Be as creative as possible. Have some a few drawings of buildings in there, maybe a few 3D models if you have any. My portfolio was heavily architecture based however i know others that are much more conceptual art. If you would like to see my one for the entry into the first year then send an email and i will send it across.
    5) I don't know many books hugely to recommend, i read anything i can get my hands on. I would suggest getting a few on areas of architecture you are interested on, but try to know your architects and architecture that you like for when it comes to interviews, and know the course inside out.

    Please ask anything you wish to
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    Do the one that offers the best job prospects....So basically not Art.
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    i don't mean to be rude but genuinely i'm struggling to see why someone would spend £9,000 a year to study art at university?
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    (Original post by stirkee)
    i don't mean to be rude but genuinely i'm struggling to see why someone would spend £9,000 a year to study art at university?
    yeah fair enough. I enjoy it a lot but dont think it will get me any where honestly
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    (Original post by tfaulkner)
    In response to your questions

    1) it depends where you study and i think the difference between a Ba and a Bsc will change the art influence slightly. I enjoy the art side more so i try to bring that within my work and for that reason all places i applied to were more on the arts side being all Ba's or Barch.
    2) i currently study in Nottingham however am moving in a few months to either the Architectural Association, Glasgow, Newcastle or sheffield. Depends on finance.
    3) classes vary, however normally about 100 are in a year group but it depends where you go. Do you have any ideas yet?
    4) Be as creative as possible. Have some a few drawings of buildings in there, maybe a few 3D models if you have any. My portfolio was heavily architecture based however i know others that are much more conceptual art. If you would like to see my one for the entry into the first year then send an email and i will send it across.
    5) I don't know many books hugely to recommend, i read anything i can get my hands on. I would suggest getting a few on areas of architecture you are interested on, but try to know your architects and architecture that you like for when it comes to interviews, and know the course inside out.

    Please ask anything you wish to
    That is great thank you so much. Would I be able to private message you if that is ok?
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    (Original post by Collinsino)
    yeah fair enough. I enjoy it a lot but dont think it will get me any where honestly

    you would literally be throwing money away
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    (Original post by stirkee)
    you would literally be throwing money away
    yeah good to know this sooner rather than later
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    I would say that architecture is a worthwhile degree, a lot of my friends study it and even though it is difficult, it is so interesting
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    (Original post by Farchitect)
    As someone who graduated from architecture a little while ago who has been working in practice for a couple of years, I would say that architecture at university is enjoyable, although you have to sacrifice a lot of the more conventional aspects of university life. For example nobody on my course who was involved in any societies got firsts, and very few people with 2.1s did much outside of architecture, most people who were in society's or did sports failed before finishing the course or scraped 2.2s). Also, by second year, people doing architecture were doing well to be going out once a month, whereas all of my friends from outside the course were still going out twice a week.

    That's university, but what's important is what it gets you long term, and that is where architecture really falls down as a good career/life choice. Unless you are literally at the most senior level (i.e. having your own practice or a senior partner of a bigger practice) you will have essentially no real creative input (you might get to help pick the finish of a door or the height of a skirting board, if that turns you on?). To get to that senior level you need to be in the right place, at the right time, and do an awful lot of brown nosing and long hours. So, if you do make it to that level, before you're 40 odd, well done, enjoy your 60-70 hour week and being shafted from all angles by contractors, clients and people above you. Oh and the pay is rubbish too, and even then only 5% of your time will be spent on design, the rest will be spent going to dull meetings with project managers, and dealing with endless bureaucracy and admin.

    This all said, I think doing art a university is pointless, and for someone as clever as yourself is clearly not going to be stimulating, logical or academically rigorous enough for the most part.
    You'd get on well with jrhartley. He used to moan about the profession so much it made me wonder why he was bothering in the first place.

    I don't know whether it is stupid or naive or both to go into your year out expecting to have much creative input at all. I suppose it is just the schools who enjoy leading students into thinking that they spend their entire time designing but the bottom line is that pre 30 you are incredibly young as an architect. Your design skills compared to someone aged 50 who also has a better knowledge of how to make the thing actually stand up, materiality, client negotiation etc. are nothing. There's still a hell of a lot to learn.

    Maybe you are at a rubbish practice. To say you get no design input at all makes me think that you'd be at somewhere like Fosters or Gensler which look boring places to work anyway. You are a tiny cog there. The practice I work at is about 40 or so staff and even the newly qualified part 3 students are getting some sort of fun out of picking finishes for the final design of a secondary school. One of them has shown she can do all the boring detailing, door schedules etc. in her Part 2 and first year of part 3 and is now one of the most senior people on the job and heading client/contractor meetings. She's worked hard but isn't a brown nose, she just does what is asked of her very well within normal working hours. There are part 1 staff and part time CAD monkeys like me who still have a lot to learn but I think its silly to make out that all practices consign you entirely to door schedules until you're 35. Learn new software or something in your part time and actually show them you're worth being given more responsibility instead of moaning.

    Again, small to medium size practices don't seem to work ridiculous hours at least at the 2 I've worked at. All the horror stories of 70 hour weeks have come from people at KPF, Fosters and Bjarke Ingels. The latest I have known people to stay is from 8AM until 11PM and that was on 2 occasions over the course of 3 years. Every other time they worked 09:30-17:30. If anyone was working later it was those senior people who spent more time designing too. It all depends on who you work for IMO. Yes you can get shafted from pillar to post by clients, contractors and bosses but is that not the case for 3/4 of jobs anyway?

    The pay isn't great but it isn't rubbish. You get out what you put in. What peeves me off is people coming out of part 2 expecting to be on 30k + because they have good 'design' skills, can make something look pretty on InDesign and knock up a house on AutoCAD. If you can get a niche skill like advanced training in Revit, can detail correctly, speak another language, get more experience outside university semesters then you might be more attractive to employers than the hundreds of others who leave the 50 or so schools of architecture with identical skill sets. Your earnings would go up quicker too.

    I think the whole negativity around the profession has only the unis to blame though. Everyone goes into the system having being sold the dream that they will spend their lives designing in a shiny office and someone will do the dirty work. The view of what architects do is skewed so people obviously come out of university a bit peeved when they find that they have to do boring tasks and learn and work their way up (or start your own practice if you can get a bit of experience first). To be honest it's probably the same in every profession though. Unless you have lots of money or daddy can get you a place as an associate at his own practice then you have an equally slow start in law, medicine etc.
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    (Original post by Collinsino)
    Hiya,

    I've wanted to study architecture for a while now but am afraid that within university I might decide that it's not for me (seeing as it is 7yrs at uni).

    I have A*s in Geography, Maths, Fine Art and all three sciences from GCSE -and doing Geography, History, Fine Art and Maths at A level.

    I have heard that it is a hard course and a lot of preparation is needed in order to study it.

    Any advice on how to prepare for architecture at uni or the positives of studying it, much appreciated.

    Thank you
    Hey, I currently study architecture at Manchester School of Architecture and it's a really good course. I was like you too, and I really loved art and it was my favourite subject by far. At Manchester there's a lot of design based projects and it is quite arty, there's a lot of room to be creative.
    In terms of doing a respectable degree that's creative, architecture is the only good option. However when I'm studying things like the construction side and other boring bits, it does make me question whether I made the right choice. I often regret not doing art.
    At the end of the day, go with your gut instinct. If you love art and only art, then go for it. However if you love being creative but still want other subjects mixed in too, then go for architecture


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    Hi guys! Im currently studying architecture in Sheffield (3rd year). Do any of you know when is the best time to apply for part 1 year out? and how does the application process look like? Im starting to get really stressed about my next year and our uni fails a bit at explaining stuff thanks for help!
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    (Original post by olaszwedo2)
    Hi guys! Im currently studying architecture in Sheffield (3rd year). Do any of you know when is the best time to apply for part 1 year out? and how does the application process look like? Im starting to get really stressed about my next year and our uni fails a bit at explaining stuff thanks for help!
    When you say "apply for part 1 year out" are you talking about the live office at Sheffield? Otherwise the "year out" is getting a job as a Part I Architectural Assistant position at an architectural practice. Some practices start recruiting at the start of Easter for graduates to begin in May/June. Most start after Easter, but you have to be in a position to go to interview at short notice, so don't send out your CV until you know you have an interview-ready portfolio. It doesn't have to all be complete work - they will understand that you are working on your final project - but the portfolio should be well presented and show a range of work and skills. Remember though, Part I Architectural Assistant is a JOB, not work experience. You should be paid at least the National Minimum Wage, but at the end of a three year degree you should be earning more than just the legal minimum...
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    (Original post by SebastianMesser)
    When you say "apply for part 1 year out" are you talking about the live office at Sheffield? Otherwise the "year out" is getting a job as a Part I Architectural Assistant position at an architectural practice. Some practices start recruiting at the start of Easter for graduates to begin in May/June. Most start after Easter, but you have to be in a position to go to interview at short notice, so don't send out your CV until you know you have an interview-ready portfolio. It doesn't have to all be complete work - they will understand that you are working on your final project - but the portfolio should be well presented and show a range of work and skills. Remember though, Part I Architectural Assistant is a JOB, not work experience. You should be paid at least the National Minimum Wage, but at the end of a three year degree you should be earning more than just the legal minimum...
    If you're planning on working in London, then upwards of £24k isn't unheard of for Part Is.
 
 
 
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