Leaders in the architectural profession repeatedly argue that the best education for an architect is one that begins in a program like HWS’s Architectural Studies major.
“We need to go beyond the basic design, construction methods, and architectural history courses and require students to study broadly in the liberal arts and sciences.”
– Harold L. Adams, FAIA, RIBA
Three paths to become a licensed architect
Path I: HWS Liberal Arts major in Architectural Studies [4 + 3 years]
Hobart and William Smith’s B.A in Architecture Studies (4 years) + Professional M.Arch. at your choice of graduate schools (3 years)
Path II: University Pre-Professional major in Architecture Studies [4 + 2 years]
University’s Pre-Professional B.S./B.A. in Architecture Studies (4 years) + Professional M.Arch at the same University’s graduate school (2 years)
Path III: University’s Professional B.Arch. [5 years]
Undergraduate education is professional training and student does not attend graduate school (5 years)
Following all three paths, you would work under a licensed architect for 3 years and then take the Architects Registration Exam to become licensed.
If you choose Path I and come to Hobart and William Smith Colleges for your studies in architecture, you will get the broadest education of the three options. A full 2/3 of your coursework will be in disciplines outside architecture. HWS’s major provides the most options for graduates. Our graduates go into a variety of fields related to design and the built environment, from landscape architecture to historic preservation to real estate development, the Architecture Studies major at HWS provides the skills and knowledge to pursue a variety of careers in design. Plus, you’ll meet more people, be able to participate in study abroad, internship, and service-learning opportunities because you have more freedom over your education. You’ll also have a social life outside of architecture and be able to participate in co-curricular activities that engage your other interests.
HWS architecture majors are prepared to pursue many different careers. After HWS, you will have many options:
Training in architecture is great prep for any career path that involves innovation, creative entrepreneurship, and big-picture goals
- architectural scholarship
- landscape architecture
- interior design
- urban design
- industrial or product design
- graphic design
- urban and regional planning
- green building materials development
- historic preservation and cultural resource management
- architectural journalism
- construction and facilities management
- real estate development
If you choose Path II, a “4 + 2” program at a large university, only 1/3 of your coursework will be in courses outside of architecture. That means that 2/3 of your time, you’ll be studying architecture. Plus, when you graduate after four years, your options for graduate school will be either to stay at the same university with the same faculty and same facilities for two years or apply to M.Arch. programs at other schools, programs where you would most likely have to study for 3 years because most graduate programs will not accept transfer credits from your undergraduate education.
If you choose Path III, a 5-year B.Arch. program, you will study little else outside of architecture. Less than ¼ of your courses will be outside of your architecture major coursework.