Architecture is an essential part of our society – it’s the foundation on which our cities, structures, and buildings are designed and constructed. Becoming an architect requires many years of education and a great amount of knowledge, but the real question is what A-levels do you need to study and become an architect? There is no set answer to this, as different architectural colleges have their own criteria and requirements. However, there are some common A-levels requirements and criteria. In this article, we’ll take a look at what A-levels you need for architecture and how you can prepare for study in this field.
Knowledge and skills
When it comes to A-levels for architecture, the most important thing to remember is that knowledge and skills are key. While some universities and colleges place emphasis on specific A-levels, what is ultimately important is that you have the necessary knowledge and skill-sets. These may include design, technology, problem solving, communication, sketching, and drawing.
Knowledge of mathematics is also highly beneficial, as architecture requires a good understanding of linear equations, geometry, and trigonometry. As such, some architects recommend studying A-levels in mathematics, science, and technology.
In addition to this, having a good knowledge and experience of CAD (Computer Aided Design) is also beneficial. This will be advantageous when it comes to designing and constructing buildings.
Most colleges will require applicants to have obtained a minimum of two A-levels, although some may require three or more depending on the desired degree. Generally speaking, colleges will look for qualifications in relevant subject areas such as design and technology, mathematics, physics, engineering, or the arts.
It’s also important to remember that many architecture courses require applicants to complete the Professional Experience and Education (PrE-E) programme. This includes an accredited full-time year of practical experience in architecture.
For those looking to study a Masters in Architecture, many universities require applicants to have achieved a 2:1 or higher in their Bachelor’s degree.
In addition to A-level qualifications, many high-level colleges and universities require applicants to submit a portfolio of work that is related to architecture. This should demonstrate your knowledge and understanding of the subject, and should include sketches, drawings, and concept work.
Portfolios should be concise and demonstrate an aptitude for the subject. It should demonstrate an understanding of the principles and materials used in architecture, as well as your own creative interpretation of these.
Relevant Work Experience
Most architecture courses involve a great amount of theory, as well as hands-on experience. Therefore, having some relevant work experience will be beneficial, as it will help to demonstrate your commitment to the subject.
Relevant work experience can include internships at architectural offices or firms, as well as volunteering placements. In addition to this, engaging in shadowing activities or taking part in community projects can also be beneficial.
Organisation and Time Management
Organisation and time management are two of the most important skills for any architecture student. As such, it is important to demonstrate these in your A-level studies.
Organisation skills such as the ability to manage deadlines and submit accurate and timely work are essential for architecture degrees. It’s important to develop a good understanding of these skills prior to commencing study.
Study Habits and Work Ethic
Good study habits and a strong work ethic are essential for any prospective architecture student. It is important to demonstrate a passion and commitment to the subject, as well as displaying a desire to learn and progress.
It’s important to keep on top of readings, assignments and examination prep, as well as being organised and prioritising work. It is also important to manage expectations and stay motivated, as architecture courses can be demanding and challenging.
Presentation Skills and Communication
Architecture courses require excellent presentation skills and communication. Therefore, it is highly beneficial to practice and refine these skills prior to commencing university or college study.
Presentation skills should include the ability to communicate effectively in person, as well as by other means (e.g. using digital technology). It’s important to be able to demonstrate a clear and articulate understanding of the subject, as well as having a good understanding of visual aids.
Research abilities are essential for any degree, but particularly architecture. As such, a great way to demonstrate your interest and knowledge of the subject (prior to commencing study) is to research and explore relevant topics.
This can include research into professional and architectural techniques, styles, and materials, as well as understanding how these are used in the built environment.
To conclude, there’s no definite answer to what A-levels are required for an architecture course. There are a variety of skills and qualifications that could be beneficial, including mathematics and sciences, design and technology, CAD, practical experience, portfolios and presentation skills.
However, the most important thing to remember when embarking on an architecture course is to have a passion and commitment to the subject, as well as a strong work ethic and dedication to learning.