Architectural Education is Work

(BA/BSc/DipArch/MA/MSc/MArch) Architecture is a vocational degree: you have to work in practice to become an ‘Architect’.

arch_school_conf2It’s that time of year again… © Rémi Carreiro for The Varsity

“High fees, debt, the fear of debt, low wages, poor working practices and educational models that reflect aspects of practice based on individualism and competition rather than collective action and mutual support have put intolerable pressure on those students who can still study and has excluded many more” – Robert Mull, architecture director and dean of University of Brighton (Dezeen).

We believe that students shouldn’t be thinking about how to become ‘good’ architects but instead using the opportunity of university to challenge the current practices of architecture and developing alternatives.

  • To what degree is your education promoted as either part of, or outside of, the industry?
  • Will your tutors promote critical thinking?
  • Will you be taught to ask, “What ‘good’ values / ethics should be pursued by the profession”?
  • Will you be encouraged to compete with your peers?
  • Will you feel inclined to boost your own ego?
  • Will your education affect your health?
  • How much will your time and effort be valued, both before and after university?
  • Who, or which company, will fund your end of year show?
  • Will your education prepare you for professional work?
  • Is your choice of university based on networking opportunities for future employment?
  • Will your employer value your personal development?
  • How big is, and will be, your student debt?

Architectural Workers have a manifesto and a list of demands. If you are interested in joining as a student, email us. If you’re returning to study for your Part II/III, how did you find your experience in practice? Fill in our anonymous survey.

We have all been through architectural education and practice and many of you may have experienced discrimination based on ability, age, class, gender, and race. It’s time to do something about it. We can collectively develop alternative forms of work.

Our ambition is to form university branches of of Architectural Workers to help secure better working conditions, alongside a more ethical practice. Defined by you.

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