High School: Academic Coursework

Academic Courses

As becoming an architect requires a college education, you should focus on courses that will prepare you accordingly; this will include four years of English and mathematics.  As is possible, pursue honor courses and advanced placement (AP) courses.

While the mathematics requirement varies among architecture programs, many require or encourage you to take calculus.  Pursue or take the highest-level math course your high school offers and even consider taking it at an area community college prior to entering college; be sure the course will transfer.  Take high school physics instead of biology or chemistry.

Also, take art, drawing, and design classes rather than architectural drafting or computer-aided design (CAD).  Your interest in architecture may have surfaced from a drafting course, but art courses will be more helpful in your preparation to become an architect.  Art, drawing, and design courses develop visual aptitude and literacy, while expanding your ability to communicate graphically.  Take a freehand drawing course or a three-dimensional course such as sculpture or woodworking.

Do your best with every academic course you take!  While grades are not the only criterion by which college admissions offices judge applications, they certainly are one of the more important ones.

Besides academics, what can you do to begin your preparation for a career in architecture?  Consider the following: (a) exploration of the built environment, (b) visits to architecture firms and schools, (c) participating in a summer program sponsored by an architecture program, and (d) participating in an after-school program.  All of these provide you a head start on the path to becoming an architect.

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