The Journey to Becoming an Architect in India

Becoming an Architect in India

Introduction to the Architectural Profession in India

Architecture is one of the most ancient professions in India. Since the times of the Indus Valley Civilization, it has become one of India’s most respected and sought-after careers. Architects must know a variety of disciplines, such as engineering, mathematics, urban planning, and design. To become an architect in India, one must first obtain a Bachelor’s degree in Architecture from a recognized Indian university. 

After gaining sufficient experience, you can pursue a Master’s degree or take up advanced courses related to architecture, such as structural engineering or urban design. Once you have completed your Master’s degree or advanced courses in architecture, you can apply for registration with the Council of Architecture (COA). This is a statutory body that regulates the profession of architecture in India. Registration with COA will allow you to practice as an independent architect or work with a firm or organization.

The Journey to Becoming an Architect in India

Educational Requirements

Becoming an architect in India requires a Bachelor of Architecture (B.Arch) degree from an accredited institution. This typically takes five years of full-time study and includes coursework in mathematics, physics, engineering, building science, history of architecture, studio art and design theory. After completing the B.Arch program, you can pursue further education with a Master of Architecture (M.Arch) degree or other specialized postgraduate programs such as urban design or landscape architecture.

Professional Requirements

In addition to a degree in architecture, aspiring architects must complete the National Aptitude Test in Architecture (NATA). The NATA evaluates your knowledge of design principles and architectural concepts, visualizing ability, and problem-solving skills. After that, you will receive the National Aptitude Test in Architecture Certificate (NATA-C). For registering as an architect, this certificate is required for all state registration boards across India. 

Consider taking up internships with leading firms during your studies or after graduation. Most states also require architects to have experience before they can apply for registration as an architect with their local board. Once registered with the local board, you can practice as a professional architect within that state or union territory. 

Institutions and Programmes for Becoming an Architect in India

To become an architect, one has to complete a five-year Bachelor of Architecture (BArch) degree programme from one of the recognized universities or institutes in India. Some options could be-

School of Planning and Architecture

IIT Roorkee

CEPT University

National Institute of Technology Calicut

Anna University

The Council of Architecture (COA) is India’s regulatory body for architecture education and practice. It is responsible for approving institutes and programmes that offer architecture degrees. As per the regulations set by COA, there are currently 33 recognized universities offering BArch programmes across the country. Apart from these universities, there are also numerous private colleges and institutes which provide BArch courses. 

Only some of these institutes are approved by COA, so their degrees may not be valid for professional practice. Therefore, it is essential to check the approval status of any college or institute before enrolling into its BArch programme. After completing the BArch degree programme, aspiring architects must register with COA by appearing for their National Aptitude Test in Architecture (NATA). This test assesses a candidate’s drawing skills and other abilities related to architecture, such as sense of proportion, aesthetic sensitivity etc. After clearing NATA, one can apply for professional COA registration and start practising as an architect in India. 

Exploring Different Career Paths Within Architecture

Urban planning involves designing and implementing plans for cities and towns, ensuring livable and safe places to live. Urban planners work with governments and other organizations to ensure they meet all regulations while being aesthetically pleasing. 

Another popular career path within architecture is designing public spaces. These architects work on creating outdoor areas that people can enjoy while also meeting their needs for safety and comfort. They often collaborate with landscape architects or engineers to make these public spaces. 

Architectural conservationists are another type of architect specializing in preserving historical buildings or sites from destruction or damage. These individuals work closely with local governments or organizations to ensure these buildings remain intact for future generations. They also help educate people on caring for these historical sites. 

Finally, landscape architects specialize in creating outdoor areas such as gardens, parks, or trails. They make beautiful outdoor spaces that people can use for leisure activities or enjoy looking at them. Landscape architects often work with other professionals, such as engineers or architects, when creating these outdoor areas to meet all safety regulations while still being aesthetically pleasing.

Tips for Securing an Internship or Job In Architecture

  • Develop a strong portfolio – A strong portfolio is essential to show off your skills and abilities as a potential architect. It should include drawings, sketches, designs, and other relevant projects demonstrating your talent.
  • Network – Networking is vital when looking for internships or jobs in architecture—contact architects and industry professionals who can provide valuable advice or connections.
  • Research local firms – Research local architecture firms to find out if they offer internships or jobs. Make sure the firm fits your interests and skill set.
  • Be persistent – Keep going if you get a response right away. Follow up with potential employers regularly until you get a response.
  • Take advantage of online resources – Utilize online resources such as websites, forums, blogs, and social media to learn more about internships or architectural jobs.

Benefits and Challenges in Architecture


As an architect, you’ll be able to work on significant projects. You’ll work with specialist software, high-end design tools, and more. The job also offers excellent potential for growth as there is always a demand for talented architects. Furthermore, architects typically enjoy higher salaries than many other professions.


One challenge is the cost of getting your degree and completing your training. Architecture school is expensive, and most students need to take credit to pay for their education. Additionally, it cannot be easy to find internships or entry-level jobs when first starting as an architect due to the competitive nature of the field. Finally, it can take years to start seeing real success as an architect, so patience is vital when pursuing this career. 

Make the decision today to pursue your dream and start on the journey to becoming an architect!

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