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July 8, 2013 / NextStepU

Major Monday — Architecture

iStock_000016358748MediumDo you want to study a subject that balances science and art? Do you enjoy building models or constructing something of your own design? Do you want to create a building from your own ideas? If you do, then you might want to consider architecture as a possible major in college. Architecture majors use design, history, drafting and planning in order to create a building.

Education
According to the College Board, architecture is offered at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. In order to prepare for the program, it is a good idea to take classes like studio art, drafting/technical drawing and computer/graphic arts in high school. Some typical college classes for architecture majors include architectural design and theory, building methods and materials, site design and construction technology.

What to know before you apply
Before deciding on a particular program, you should know about your prospective professors’ backgrounds. Knowing what types of buildings they have designed will help you decide whether you want to study with them. Also, you should know about the school’s facilities and whether you will have access to the design studio when you need it. Finally, you should be aware of whether the specific program concentrates more on the art side or the engineering side of architecture. You should know from the beginning exactly what you will be learning and whether it correlates with your personal interests.

Salary
A degree in architecture can prepare you for many careers, including architects, interior designers and urban and regional planners. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average yearly salary for architects was $79,300 in 2011, while interior designers earned $52,810 per year. Urban and regional planners earned an average yearly salary of $67,350 in 2011.

For more information about choosing a career check out NextStepU.com/Careers.

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