The Student Room Group

Architecture - yes or no

I've decided I wanted to apply for architecture at a top university, but it doesn't look like it's going to work out for me. I need to make an art portfolio and I'm really not that good at art. I've also done really bad in my maths mock exams, so I can't apply for Cambridge like I was hoping to. So right now, I have no art portfolio and a not so great maths grade. I might give up at this rate, but I've invested so much in this pathway and I can't believe I've (possibly) wasted all my time. I still want to pursue architecture, but is there a point if my art and maths aren't great? Be brutally honest please - my teachers have been too nice.
Reply 1
Heyo,
Don't know about your situation fully so ill just share my experience))
I didn't make a portfolio at all until my last year, after having never done art at all, and all the interviewers cared about was the journey and processes, like not the skill, cuz im crap at this, but I managed to squeeze into UAL. So if you want to do this, like capital W want, you have the time, so go for it.
Hope this helps))
Reply 2
Original post by BbGb
Heyo,
Don't know about your situation fully so ill just share my experience))
I didn't make a portfolio at all until my last year, after having never done art at all, and all the interviewers cared about was the journey and processes, like not the skill, cuz im crap at this, but I managed to squeeze into UAL. So if you want to do this, like capital W want, you have the time, so go for it.
Hope this helps))

Thank you so much!! I'll try my best🫡
Reply 3
Original post by marsoo
Thank you so much!! I'll try my best🫡

you got this!
Reply 4
Ye u rly don't need to be amazing at art (in the traditional hand painting, drawing, etc sense) to do well in architecture. Although you will be assessed on the visual quality of your work, software will be doing most of the heavy lifting (unless you choose to hand draw uni work) Look at RIBA Presidents Medals work (best student work in the country), almost none of it uses traditional art techniques it's all about knowing how to use rendering software and Photoshop to get the result you want

Having a good eye for design and some observational and perspective drawing skills would be useful for coming up with designs and though so try and work on that alongside your portfolio

Btw maths (at least in the architecture course I did) was easy, GCSE level max, so don't worry about that either. Its not like engineering, you won't need to derive climate calculations or structures calculations or anything from scratch, it's all in reference books or tables
Original post by marsoo
I've decided I wanted to apply for architecture at a top university, but it doesn't look like it's going to work out for me. I need to make an art portfolio and I'm really not that good at art. I've also done really bad in my maths mock exams, so I can't apply for Cambridge like I was hoping to. So right now, I have no art portfolio and a not so great maths grade. I might give up at this rate, but I've invested so much in this pathway and I can't believe I've (possibly) wasted all my time. I still want to pursue architecture, but is there a point if my art and maths aren't great? Be brutally honest please - my teachers have been too nice.


Apply to the unis that don't require maths - there are lots of them:

https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/showthread.php?t=7361710
Reply 6
Original post by marsoo
I've decided I wanted to apply for architecture at a top university, but it doesn't look like it's going to work out for me. I need to make an art portfolio and I'm really not that good at art. I've also done really bad in my maths mock exams, so I can't apply for Cambridge like I was hoping to. So right now, I have no art portfolio and a not so great maths grade. I might give up at this rate, but I've invested so much in this pathway and I can't believe I've (possibly) wasted all my time. I still want to pursue architecture, but is there a point if my art and maths aren't great? Be brutally honest please - my teachers have been too nice.

Hello ! I'm in a very very similar position. I've recently switched from Politics to Art in the attempts to develop my portfolio and now have a years worth of work to catch up on over the summer. You have plenty of time (i.e. the summer) to work at your portfolio and it doesn't even have to be 'art' persay, but photographs and anything creative at all. Those mocks were not the be all and end all, and in my case I've been averaging at A/B, B in maths and physics all year (need an A* to get into UCL) but the teachers should ensure that your predicted/UCAS grades are the highest standard of work you have shown. Additionally, if your teachers were to give you a lower UCAS grade than you were wanting, explain your situation and they will hopefully move it higher as to not prevent you applying where you want to apply later down the line. Furthermore, consider that somewhere like Cambridge will be extremely competitive so ensure you spend the summer attending work experience and reading etc, I'd recommended Springpod as its free and you can write all about it on your personal statement. Don't give up now ! Keep working hard as it'll be like a fat hug for your future self. Hope that helps !
Original post by imoge e
Hello ! I'm in a very very similar position. I've recently switched from Politics to Art in the attempts to develop my portfolio and now have a years worth of work to catch up on over the summer. You have plenty of time (i.e. the summer) to work at your portfolio and it doesn't even have to be 'art' persay, but photographs and anything creative at all. Those mocks were not the be all and end all, and in my case I've been averaging at A/B, B in maths and physics all year (need an A* to get into UCL) but the teachers should ensure that your predicted/UCAS grades are the highest standard of work you have shown. Additionally, if your teachers were to give you a lower UCAS grade than you were wanting, explain your situation and they will hopefully move it higher as to not prevent you applying where you want to apply later down the line. Furthermore, consider that somewhere like Cambridge will be extremely competitive so ensure you spend the summer attending work experience and reading etc, I'd recommended Springpod as its free and you can write all about it on your personal statement. Don't give up now ! Keep working hard as it'll be like a fat hug for your future self. Hope that helps !

Please be aware that different unis specify different things for the portfolio so it is likely that you will have to adapt your portfolio for each uni. For example, when my DS applied, Manchester didn't want any photography but Nottingham did.
Reply 8
Original post by imoge e
Hello ! I'm in a very very similar position. I've recently switched from Politics to Art in the attempts to develop my portfolio and now have a years worth of work to catch up on over the summer. You have plenty of time (i.e. the summer) to work at your portfolio and it doesn't even have to be 'art' persay, but photographs and anything creative at all. Those mocks were not the be all and end all, and in my case I've been averaging at A/B, B in maths and physics all year (need an A* to get into UCL) but the teachers should ensure that your predicted/UCAS grades are the highest standard of work you have shown. Additionally, if your teachers were to give you a lower UCAS grade than you were wanting, explain your situation and they will hopefully move it higher as to not prevent you applying where you want to apply later down the line. Furthermore, consider that somewhere like Cambridge will be extremely competitive so ensure you spend the summer attending work experience and reading etc, I'd recommended Springpod as its free and you can write all about it on your personal statement. Don't give up now ! Keep working hard as it'll be like a fat hug for your future self. Hope that helps !

Thanks! Just to clarify, is physics compulsory for the course at UCL???

Other than that, good luck to you too!!
Original post by marsoo
Thanks! Just to clarify, is physics compulsory for the course at UCL???

No it's not. Have a look at the link I gave you in post #6 regarding A levels required for architecture.

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