At a Glance
|Degree Level||Bachelor's degree (5-year program)|
|Licensure/Certification||Varies by state|
|Experience||3-year internship required for licensure|
|Job Outlook (2018-2028)||8% growth (for all architects)|
|Median Annual Salary (2020)*||$48,756 (for grads with less than 1 year experience)
$55,103 (for grads with 1-4 years experience)
Sources: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, *PayScale.com
Median salaries for professionals holding a Bachelor of Architecture (B.Arch) degree depend upon a number of factors, including job title, city, and number of years of experience. According to PayScale.com in February 2020, B.Arch graduates with less than a year of experience earned a median of $48,756, while those with one to four years of experience earned a median of $55,103 annually. The following information provides a breakdown of the salaries among degree holders by job title and location. This data is from February 2020.
Salaries by Job
As with most careers, wages for architects increase as these professionals gain experience and take on more responsibility. Entry-level architects start as paid interns with a decent wage. As time goes on, they may become project managers or a specialist in a specific aspect of the architectural process.
Some common job titles and their median annual salaries (according to PayScale.com) include:
- Architectural Intern - $45,975
- Design Architect - $60,714
- Architectural Designer - $52,947
- Architecture Project Manager - $75,056
- Project Architect - $71,763
- Architect (excluding naval and landscape) - $66,054
Salaries by City
Most major cities are either densely populated and face architectural challenges or are known for their tourism industry and want to create spaces that attract guests. Sometimes these major cities have elements of both. As a result, architects may get paid a higher wage than in other locales, but there is strong competition for jobs, since experienced professionals are preferred.
Some common cities and corresponding salaries (according to PayScale.com) include:
- Chicago - $65,816
- New York - $66,895
- Boston - $68,696
- Los Angeles - $70,696
- San Francisco - $80,357
Job Outlook for Architects
Job opportunities for architects (excluding landscape and naval) were expected to grow by 8% between 2018 and 2028, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The need for architects to construct and renovate residential and commercial buildings as well as build more healthcare facilities, schools, and environmentally-friendly structures will continue to promote job growth.
B.Arch Program Overview
A Bachelor of Architecture program is a professional degree that takes 5 years to complete. Students who complete this program and a required paid internship of about three years are qualified to sit for the Architect Registration Examination. Program coursework teaches students how to draw plans and build models and designs.
Typical courses include:
- Architectural history and theory
- Computer-aided drafting
- Construction methods
- Building design
Most graduates with a Bachelor of Architecture degree can expect to earn a median salary greater than $65,000, but this varies with experience, job title, and location. Graduates can also expect positive job growth in the field.