Top Architectural Drafting Schools and Colleges in the U.S.

Learn about the top schools offering programs in architectural drafting. Read about the program options and school locations to help you make an informed decision. View article »

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  • 0:41 Miami Dade College
  • 1:35 Northern Virginia…
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School Information

Architectural drafting programs are most commonly found at 2-year community colleges and technical schools. Available as both as certificate and associate's degree programs, they often include multiple courses where students learn to use computer software programs to draft architect's designs. Miami Dade College and Northern Virginia Community College are the two largest schools in the country offering programs in this subject. The programs at both of these schools use the latest technologies to give students hands-on training in the production of plans and 3D models of buildings and other structures.

1. Miami Dade College in Miami, FL

In 2013, Washington Monthly magazine ranked Miami Dade College 28th on its list of best community colleges.

Miami Dade College in Miami, Florida is the largest institute of higher education in the U.S., enrolling more than 165,000 students each year. Its School of Architecture offers an Associate in Science of Architectural Design and Construction Technology that prepares students for careers in architectural drafting. Students take two courses in architectural drawing, as well as two courses in computer-aided drafting. Besides drafting, students also gain skills in writing specifications, selecting materials, preparing drawings and creating models.

The 66-credit program can be completed in two years and is designed to transfer to many 4-year schools for students who want to continue their education.

2. Northern Virginia Community College in Annandale, VA

Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA) in Annandale, Virginia, is the largest school in the state, as well as the second-largest community college in the country.

This school offers both a certificate in architectural drafting and an associate's degree in architecture technology. The 30-credit certificate program can be completed in one year and prepares students for careers as architectural drafters and engineering aides; the credits can also be applied to the associate's degree program.

The Associate of Applied Science in Architecture Technology program takes two years to complete and includes the same courses as the certificate program, as well as advanced classes in drafting and design. Architectural graphics, construction methodology, architecture history, sustainable environments and computer-aided drafting are just some of the classes that students can take in these programs.

Top Architectural Drafting Schools and Colleges

Other top architectural degree schools include:

College/University Name Distinction Location
Central New Mexico Community College in Albuquerque, New Mexico Where a philosophy of general education supports a well rounded curriculum Albuquerque, NM
College of Southern Nevada in Las Vegas, Nevada The most diverse and largest post-secondary institution in Nevada Las Vegas, NV
Indiana University-Purdue University - Indianapolis Which U.S. News & World Report ranked as one of the top 200 national universities in 2016 Indianapolis, IN
Palm Beach State College in Lake Worth, Florida Students can choose from 4 campus locations throughout Florida Lake Worth, FL
Pima Community College in Tucson, Arizona College's mission is 'to develop our community through learning' Tucson, AZ
Portland Community College in Portland, Oregon Which ranked #8 among community colleges for number of degrees awarded in 2015 by Community College Week Portland, OR
Salt Lake Community College in Salt Lake City, Utah Architectural drafting students can access required software from this school's Internet site Salt Lake City, UT
St Petersburg College in Clearwater, Florida Students in architectural design program can participate in a co-op work program Clearwater, FL

While Miami Dade College and Northern Virginia Community College are the two largest schools in architectural drafting programs, there are many technical schools and community colleges offering these programs across the country.

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