Bachelor of Architecture: Degree Program Overviews

A Bachelor of Architecture (B.Arch.) degree program prepares graduates for entry-level work as architects. Learn more about B. Arch. prerequisites, program requirements, common courses, job outlook, average salary, and how to obtain a license.

Essential Information

A Bachelor of Architecture (B.Arch.) degree program can be completed in five years and is often structured like a graduate degree program. The prerequisites for a B.Arch. program typically include a high school diploma, submission of ACT or SAT scores, and a portfolio.

Students are required to complete core courses in the field during their first two or three years of enrollment. The final years are devoted to studio courses, which provide students with an opportunity to gain practical experience, and complete electives in architectural theory and history. Some architecture schools may also require that students choose a minor area of study.

A B.Arch. program may be designed in such a way that a student has to graduate into the final three years of enrollment. Only those students who have performed well in first and second year courses are admitted. During these final years, students explore the architecture of a specific locale or city, such as Rome, and complete studio courses that emphasize creativity, technical ability and collaborative work. A final project or thesis often concludes the degree program.

Bachelor of Architecture

These are professional programs. The focus during the first years of the curriculum is mainly on the basics of design, tools and materials of the trade, while the professional component of the degree addresses topics such as architectural design technology. Some common courses include:

  • Analysis of buildings
  • The environment and buildings
  • Architectural practice
  • Human factors in architecture

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

The employment of architects is expected to increase by 7% for the period between 2014-2024, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics ( The BLS also reports that the mean annual salary of an architect was $82,850 in 2015.

Licensure Information

A state license is required before a graduate of a bachelor's degree program in architecture can begin work. State licensure generally requires that candidates complete some training under the supervision of a licensed architect and pass the Architect Registration Examination. Some states may also require that continuing education classes be completed on an annual basis in order to keep the license valid.

Prospective students can now be confident they understand the requirements of a B.Arch. degree program and what opportunities will be available after graduation, including critical information on employment outlook, average salary, and licensing.

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