From skyscrapers to airports, houses, schools, and factories, architects design structures both to inspire and to fulfill practical functions. Architects design buildings that meet the needs of their client, whether that is an individual, government entity, or business. They sketch designs on paper or software, provide cost estimates, and develop projections for the construction time needed to meet a client’s specifications. Architects also lead construction teams, directing workers in the construction of the architect’s plans, so communication skills and the ability to create drawings and documents others can interpret is extremely important. Architects split their time between working in offices, where they meet with clients, develop designs and collaborate with other architects and engineers, and work sites, where they check on project progress. Architects typically work at least 40 hours a week, with many spending additional hours to meet deadlines. Self-employed architects may have more flexible schedules. Completing a five-year bachelor of architecture degree is typically the first step toward becoming an architect and many choose to pursue a masters as well, typically taking 1 to 5 additional years of school. After finishing their education, architects must complete a paid internship and pass the Architect Registration Exam.
What they do:
Plan and design structures, such as private residences, office buildings, theaters, factories, and other structural property.
On the job, you would:
Prepare scale drawings or architectural designs, using computer-aided design or other tools.
Plan or design structures such as residences, office buildings, theatres, factories, or other structural properties in accordance with environmental, safety, or other regulations.
Direct activities of technicians engaged in preparing drawings or specification documents.
Engineering and Technology
building and construction
Arts and Humanities
music, dance, visual arts, drama, or sculpture
Math and Science
arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics
talking to others
thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem
noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it
People and Technology Systems
thinking about the pros and cons of different options and picking the best one
figuring out how a system should work and how changes in the future will affect it
Ideas and Logic
come up with lots of ideas
create new and original ideas
communicate by speaking
listen and understand what people say
add, subtract, multiply, or divide
choose the right type of math to solve a problem
see hidden patterns
People interested in this work like activities that include creating, designing, and making your own rules.
They do well at jobs that need:
Attention to Detail
You might use software like this on the job:
Computer aided design CAD software
Autodesk AutoCAD Civil 3D
Trimble SketchUp Pro
Data base user interface and query software
Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud EC2
bachelor's degree or master's degree usually needed
Get started on your career:
New job opportunities are less likely in the future.