Picking a college or university isn’t easy, as students must weigh a host of factors including location, cost, curriculum, faculty, extracurricular opportunities, and more when making their decision. At its annual meeting earlier this month in Seattle, the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA) rolled out a new website that aims to be a resource for students interested in pursuing graduate or undergraduate degrees in architecture.
Studyarchitecture.com features a range of resources—from a list of schools offering accredited architecture degrees to videos explaining what to look for in undergraduate and graduate programs—while spotlighting news and student work from architecture schools across the country. A road map–style to-do list helps prospective students organize their search, determine the type of program they'd like to undertake (five years in one place or a four-year undergraduate degree with a two-year master's, for example), and what types of career opportunities different academic paths can yield. The site also includes a quiz that students can take to help narrow down schools. Questions include whether students plan to work while in school; if they intend to study abroad; if topic areas such as energy, urbanism, and art and design are of interest to them; and whether they would prefer their college or university to have resources such as a wood shop, metal shop, or 3D printers.
The launch comes at a moment when the nature of architectural education is shifting. In January, NCARB announced that its Intern Development Program (IDP) would be renamed to the Architectural Experience Program (AXP), addressing a recent semantic shift dropping the word "intern" from the professional lexicon as a way to describe individuals who are working in the field while pursuing licensure. The organization also recently streamlined the Architecture Registration Exam (ARE), which students can now take before finishing their IDP requirements so long as they've completed an accredited architecture program. And this past August, NCARB announced its plans to partner with more than a dozen universities to make the AXP a part of the curriculum and allow students to take the ARE prior to graduation.