SO WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN AN ARCHITECT AND A CHARTERED ARCHITECTURAL TECHNOLOGIST?
The services that they would provide for a domestic project are broadly very similar. As a broad brush attempt to differentiate, architects are generally more ‘design led’ with greater interest, experience and training in the aesthetic and spatial qualities of a project. Whereas architectural technologists have often had more experience and training in the science and technology of building, e.g. how and why they are constructed in a certain way, using certain materials.
Not surprisingly, they are in great demand, especially now that people are more concerned about the environment and the need for buildings to be eco-friendly and energy efficient.
1. Entry requirements
You’ll usually need a degree in architectural technology, or a related subject like the built environment.
Your degree course needs to be accredited by the Chartered Institute of Architectural Technologists (CIAT).
You may be able to work your way up from a qualified architectural technician (TCIAT) role.
You could get into this job through a degree apprenticeship.
2. Skills required
- drawing skills and the ability to picture objects in 3D
- management skills for leading projects
- the ability to analyse data and read technical plans
- computer aided design (CAD) skills
- maths skills
- teamworking skills
3. What you’ll do
You’ll work on the design plans of building projects like home extensions and sports stadiums. You’ll oversee projects from start to finish.
Your day-to-day task might include:
- assessing clients’ needs and planning work
- collecting and reading technical data
- creating building plans using CAD software
- checking construction plans for possible design problems
- leading the design process and team
- advising clients on environmental and legal regulations
- managing contract bids and tenders
- giving advice to clients and the construction team on which materials and processes to use
- checking progress and inspecting completed building work
- advising and reporting on the maintenance and future use of completed building work
You’ll work for private architects’ practices, housing associations, property developers, and building and construction companies.
Starter: £20,000 to £25,000
Experienced: £30,000 to £40,000
Highly Experienced: £60,000 or more
You may earn more if you’re self-employed.
These figures are a guide.
5. Working hours, patterns and environment
You’ll usually work 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday, although you may sometimes have to work extra hours to meet deadlines.
You’ll be mainly office-based, but you’ll also visit clients and construction sites. Travelling to sites and meetings may mean spending time away from home.
You may need to work outdoors in all weathers.
6. Career path and progression
Once you have at least 2 years’ work experience, you can work towards chartered membership of the CIAT (MCIAT).
With experience you could move into management, work as a consultant or set up your own practice.
You could also work in universities or research.
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