Architectural career development involves you regularly practicing your drawing so as to enhance your skills, keep-up your model-making skills, take passion in publications or TV programmes about buildings and to maintain update on the current trends in architecture and design. Widening contacts in the industry through work experience, academic departments, and local representatives of professional bodies and associations. Holding membership to one of the professional bodies; which usually provide free student membership, provides access to professional journals and information about vacancies.
As regards to career development, most large firms provide structured training and encourage professional status. Attending internal and external training courses, related seminars and conferences effectively keep up to date current issues and refreshing knowledge.
Chartered architects are expected to complete at least 35 hours of continuing professional development (CPD) every year to maintain their competence. In the UK, the critical part of the RIBA’s CPD curriculum comprises of ten topics. Chartered architects need to take at least two hours of study in each of these areas every year to enhance the architectural career development. These areas include:
- being safe – health and safety
- climate – sustainable architecture
- external management – clients, users, and delivery of services
- internal management – practice, business, professionalism, and management
- compliance – legal, statutory framework and regulatory and processes
- procurement and contracts
- designing and building – structural design, technology, construction, and engineering
- where people live – communities, urban or rural design and the planning process
- context – the historic environment and its setting
- access into all – universal or inclusive design.
Architectural Career Prospects
Achieving chartered membership of RIBA and undertaking agreed levels of CPD are key parts of architectural career development and will fasten your growth into more senior posts.
In the UK, architects with more than five years of the chartered membership who have demonstrated excellent achievement in architecture may be awarded Fellow of RIBA status and entitled to use the affix FRIBA. Architects in Scotland can find effective career development information through the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland (RIAS).
Larger private practice firms usually give more chances for advancement. In the public sector, architectural career development is influenced by the practice and responsibilities of public institutions. With experience, some architects make their own practices.
Having an interest in working abroad, you can find further information from the International Union of Architects.