Becoming a Registered Architect – My Journey

Most people do not realise that it takes roughly the same time to become a registered architect as to a registered doctor.

In general, there are three major steps to becoming a registered architect;

Firstly, one must undergo a three-year undergraduate architecture degree (which is so easy looking back at it now). After countless hours of working overnights on university assignments, most people will take at least a year off university upon graduation to work as a student architect to gain some practical experience.

We then must return to university and complete another 2 years of postgraduate architecture degree. Guess what? After this long journey, one still is not considered as a registered architect but simply a graduate architect.

After graduating with a post graduate degree, a person will have to work for a registered architect (if you are lucky enough to find a job straight after you graduate) for at least 2 years, complete their log book, write an essay, sit for a paper test, and pass their oral interview to become a registered architect.  This sum up to be at least 7 to 8 years long process and that is if you do not fail or get distracted at any stage.

It is not an easy process to become a registered architect. I recall half of my class dropping out during the first semester of my undergraduate degree as most people couldn’t stand the stress and demand of this field.

Well before I completed my 2 years working experience with Barbara, she had been encouraging me to go for my registration test as she thought that I was ready for it. This is now my third year working with her. After working on several bigger projects and taking up contract admin role with less supervision from her, I honestly feel that I am now ready for the test. In June & July, I will be taking a short course – PARC, to prepare for my registration test in August.

Fingers crossed and wish me luck!


Howard Siow


M.Arch (MELB) Hons, RAIA

BY Projects Architecture



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