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NCARB Updates Exam Policies Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

Over 18,600 emerging professionals in the United States are currently studying for or taking the national licensing exam. Now the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) has updated their exam policies to protect the health and safety of test takers amid the COVID-19 pandemic. NCARB aims to continue monitoring the situation to update architects and emerging professionals.

Latest Statistics from NCARB Highlight Gender Equity in Architectural Licensure

The annual report of the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) has been published, revealing by numbers, the latest and most reliable statistics regarding licensed architects. The report showcases annual updates on the number of U.S. architects, the time it takes to earn a license, diversity in the profession, and many more topics regarding the practice.

NCARB Releases New Ethics Standards With a Focus on Harassment

On July 2nd, the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) released a new set of model ethical standards that they hope will be adapted by their regional licensing boards, in turn setting a precedent for ethical standards across the American architecture profession. While in the past, the NCARB’s ethical standards have largely addressed professional issues like the role of the architect to ensure public safety and his or her transparency when interacting with clients, the updated document focuses on personal concerns that often overlap with the workplace.

NCARB By The Numbers Report Shows Positive Trends for Diversity in Architecture


For years, there has been a lack of diversity in the field of architecture. Whether attrition numbers have been due to the lack of available information about promotion paths, firm hiring practices, or architects seeking out new career opportunities, this profession is one that has historically been stagnant in its representation. However, there is good news on this subject, as the National Council of Architecture Registration Boards (NCARB) revealed new data which shows that the profession is becoming more diverse and that the proportion of women staying in their careers is increasing.

NCARB Reports Number of Architects Up 10% Compared to a Decade Ago

The National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) has recently released new data surveying the number of licensed architects in the United States. Conducted annually by NCARB, the 2017 Survey of Architectural Registration Boards provides exclusive insight into data from the architectural licensing boards of the 50 U.S. states, the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. At first glance, the numbers reflect promising growth for the architecture profession. The number of architects licensed in the U.S. rose to 113,554, according to the survey, which is a 3% increase from 2016 and a 10% increase from the numbers reported a decade ago.

Even more impressive, when you compare the increase in registered architects to the U.S. population, the number of architects licensed has risen over 10% since 2008; while the total U.S. population has risen 8%, according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau. That equates to roughly 1 architect for every 2,900 people in the country. To put this into perspective, a medium-sized architecture firm of 50 people would theoretically have the potential to directly impact 145,000 people in the U.S.

Based on these statistics, one might assume that more architects naturally means more architecture, thus more influence from the profession in general. But that might not be the case. Read on for more data from NCARB's report and what it could mean for the profession as a whole.

A Simple Guide to Studying for the ARE 5.0

<a href=''>Underground Forest in Onepark Gubei / Wutopia Lab</a>. Image © CreatAR - AI Qing & SHI Kaicheng
Underground Forest in Onepark Gubei / Wutopia Lab. Image © CreatAR - AI Qing & SHI Kaicheng

After countless late nights designing in studio, facing the critics, laying out (and re-laying out) your portfolio, finally convincing someone to hire you, and working 50+ hour weeks... you’re still not an architect. Welcome to the examination portion of your professional journey, folks.

Beginning a multi-division examination with pass rates in the 50-60% range is a seriously daunting task. That’s without even mentioning the overwhelming amount of study materials and opinions floating around in cyberspace. Never fear, ArchDaily is here to help you navigate the tools and techniques available to you when cracking open the books and (hopefully) passing your first exam.

AIA Responds to Actions Taken by 25 States to Reduce Architectural Licensure Requirements

With a growing number of states choosing to rollback professional architectural licensure requirements, the American Institute of Architects (AIA) has issued a “Where We Stand” statement calling for the reinforcement of the practice, which they believe stand to “protect the health, safety and welfare of the public and shield consumers from unqualified practitioners.”

According to the AIA, over the past 5 years, legislative or executive actions have been taken in at least 25 states to impose the “least restrictive regulations” for professional licensure, with several states recommending the elimination of all licenses in the state.

NCARB By The Numbers Report Reveals Positive Trends for Diversity in the Architecture Profession

Courtesy of NCARB
Courtesy of NCARB

It’s no secret that the architecture field struggles with diversity. Both personal stories and deeper studies detail the profession’s lack of representation. But despite concerns suggesting diversity in the field remains stagnant, there’s good news: the latest data from the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) reveals that gender, racial, and ethnic diversity is slowly improving.

The 2017 edition of NCARB by the Numbers (NCARB’s annual data report) indicates that while the number of architects and licensure candidates holds steady, the pool of individuals is more diverse than ever before. Although there is still much room for improvement, this data provides an encouraging glimpse into the future of the profession.

The US States With The Most (and Least) Number of Registered Architects

As architects around the country gather for the 2017 AIA Convention in Orlando, the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) has decided to share some initial results from their 2016 nationwide Survey of Architectural Registration, specifically, the number of architects licensed in each state.

The data tracks both the number of resident licenses and reciprocal licenses (licenses for a particular state held by a resident of another state). The 2016 survey found that the number of architects working in the US has held steady, and that architects are working across state lines more than ever before. While the total number architects dropped slightly from the previous year (0.4 percent) to 109,748, the number out-of-state licenses grew a full 3 percent to 126,554.

New Agreement Allows U.S. Architects to Earn Reciprocal Licenses in Australia and New Zealand

For U.S. architects, working abroad will now be easier than ever, as the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) has announced a new mutual recognition arrangement with the licensing authorities of Australia and New Zealand. Effective as of January 1, 2017, the agreement allows architects to earn reciprocal licenses that authorize architects to work in the two countries.

These Videos Will Help You Pass Your ARE Structural Exam

For architects seeking NCARB licensure, few things are more daunting than the dreaded structural exam. But now, thanks to a series of videos from structural engineer Dilip Khatri, even those of us who spent more time doodling than paying attention in college engineering classes can acquire the skills needed to pass the structural section of the ARE.

Khatri, principal of Khatri International Structural and Civil Engineers, has a PHD in Structural Engineering from the University of Southern California and over 30 years experience in the profession, including over 20 years of teaching structural engineering. In the videos, he covers everything you’ll need to know for the exam, from test-taking strategy to shear and moment diagramming to complex problem solving, illustrating with the help of a sharpie pen.

The 2016 Edition of NCARB's Numbers Shows Increasing Diversity Among Architecture Professionals

The National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) has released the 2016 edition of its NCARB by the Numbers, an annual publication that provides insights into the number of U.S. architects, the pools of professionals working towards licensure, and diversity within the profession.

With recent streamlining and increased flexibility of architectural licensing programs, the time it takes to earn a license has decreased for the seventh year in a row, and the average age of licensure has concurrently dropped. On average, it takes just over 13 years to become an architect, from the time a student enrolls in school to the date they receive a license.

NCARB to Help Retire the Term "Intern" With Newly Named Experience Program

As of June 29, 2016, the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB)’s Intern Development Program will be renamed the “Architectural Experience Program," or AXP. Part of a wider change in the industry to retire the term “intern,” the decision was made after years of research and outreach by various committees, as well as feedback from “state licensing boards, industry leaders and emerging professionals.”

The program, developed by the NCARB, is meant to guide aspiring architects through their early career, helping them earn their license and practice independently. NCARB will continue referring to those working toward licensure as “aspiring architects” or “exam candidates.”

3 Universities Win 2015 NCARB Award to Develop Programs that Merge Education and Practice

The National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) has selected the architectural programs at Mississippi State University, Philadelphia University and the University of Florida as the recipients of the 2015 NCARB Award for the Integration of Practice and Education. The Award helps the selected universities develop "innovative curricula that merge practice and education." This year over $99,000 was awarded to the three programs to develop their proposed initiatives.

“What makes the NCARB Award different from other awards is that it is focused on fostering collaboration between the academy and practice,” said NCARB President Dennis S. Ward, AIA, NCARB in a press release. “This year’s proposals all go further to give students, practitioners, and others within the profession meaningful interactions that will raise awareness for the architect’s role and address issues that are central to practice.”

Learn more about three proposals after the break. 

NCARB Names 13 US Architecture Schools for Integrated Licensure Initiative

The National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) has named the first 13 accredited architectural schools to implement the "Integrated Path Initiative." Each selected school has proposed a pre-graduation curriculum that would provide students with the necessary mix of education, work experience, and opportunities to complete the Architect Registration Examinations (ARE) to achieve licensure before graduation. The initiative was spearheaded by NCARB to shorten the time it takes for US architects to get licensed.

The 13 accepted schools represent "a wide range B.Arch and M.Arch programs in nine jurisdictions, including both public and private institutions," says NCARB. These schools are:

12 Architecture Schools to Offer "Integrated Path" to Licensure Before Graduation

In an ongoing effort to ease the path to licensure, the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) has accepted proposals from 12 accredited US architecture schools to implement an "Integrated Path" to licensure. The initiative would give students the opportunity to complete the Intern Development Program (IDP) requirements and take the Architect Registration Exams (ARE) prior to graduation. Students would not be required to pass all ARE divisions in order to graduate.

“The programs in this inaugural class exhibited a high degree of creativity, and are focused on strengthening the relationship between schools, the practice community, and licensing boards,” said Licensure Task Force (LTF) Chair Ron Blitch, a Louisiana architect who is a former NCARB President and current member of the NAAB Board of Directors and the Louisiana State Board of Architectural Examiners.

NCARB's 2015 Report Projects Positive Future for the Architecture Profession

The National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) has released “NCARB by the Numbers,” their annual report featuring statistics important to the architecture profession in the US. NCARB’s research portrays a positive future for the profession, with statistics showing that diversity is growing, architects are becoming licensed at an earlier age and progressing through licensure paths more quickly than in previous years, and more architects are becoming licensed than ever before.

The 2015 report covers the causes and effects of the results, looking into the impact of location and education. A section entitled “Jurisdictions by the Numbers,” lays out standardized relevant information for viewers to investigate conditions in the architecture profession in each state. The report also includes an analysis of the role of NAAB-accredited programs in helping architects achieve licensure.

Learn more on the information in NCARB’s report after the break.

NCARB to Assist Brazil with Regulating Architectural Licensure

The National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) has formed an agreement with the Conselho de Arquitetura e Urbanismo do Brasil (CAU/BR) to “exchange information and share best practices” regarding the regulation of architectural licensure and professional standards.

“NCARB is pleased to be in a position to help Brazil strengthen and solidify its regulatory approach governing architects,” said NCARB President Dale McKinney, FAIA, NCARB. “We are also excited to learn from Brazil’s activities, including its effective national system of monitoring various aspects of architectural practice.”