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Architecture at Palm Beach State College is a complete pre-professional Associate of Arts program.  Graduates are eligible to apply to limited-access Architecture programs at NAAB (National Architectural Accrediting Board) certified institutions. In the state of Florida this group is composed of Florida Atlantic University, Florida International University, the University of Miami, the University of South Florida, Florida A&M University, and the University of Florida.

The Architecture Department is located on the Boca Raton campus.

Palm Beach State College is an open enrollment institution. Program candidates can register for classes upon acceptance into the college. It is recommended that students complete all College Preparatory classes prior to registering for classes in the Architecture sequence. Difficulties with registering for ARC courses at any point should be referred to the Architecture Department at the link or phone number provided below.

As much as is possible, all Architecture classes are offered both days and evenings, Mondays through Thursdays, every term, subject to meeting minimum numbers of registrants. Registering at the earliest time a student is eligible is recommended.

Since application deadlines to an upper division program are in Spring terms for entry into the following Fall terms, every effort is made to offer courses to facilitate completion of Design 4 in a Fall term preceding the Spring deadline the student is targeting. Students are expected to attend all classes scheduled for their respective courses. Students who have trouble with registration and do not attend class pending registration, will not be accommodated.

Becoming an Architect

Overview: Architecture is a profession and the term Architect is a legal designation. No one may legally use the term unless they are registered under a specific jurisdiction (such as the State of Florida). Registration follows a long and specific path to completion.

Architects are responsible for the health safety and welfare of the public. As such, according to guidelines developed by those in the profession, it has a prescribed path of education, testing, experience, and a Code of Ethics.

Education: In the State of Florida (and other states), a course of study most often begins with a pre-Architecture program as part of an Associate of Arts degree. During that program, basic information and skills are acquired. (These are not to be confused with the vocational skills in drafting and construction programs.) In addition, a portfolio of design projects and related works is assembled as part of an application process into a professional program. The professional education begins in the third year of college and is a limited access program. Competition centers around grades, portfolios and, in some cases, essays. Acceptance leads to a course of study for a 5 year Bachelor of Architecture Degree or a 4 year Bachelor Degree from an Architecture program plus a 2 year Master of Architecture Degree. A notable exception is the hybrid form which combines a non-Architecture undergraduate degree with entry into the Architecture education process at a prolonged graduate (Master Degree) level. Being awarded a professional degree will make a candidate eligible to take the professional exams.

In Florida, varying professional degrees can be obtained at Florida Atlantic University, Florida International University, the University of Miami, the University of South Florida, Florida A&M University, and the University of Florida. Information on the specifics of the degrees and qualified programs in other states can be obtained by contacting the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB) at their site.

Professional Exams: The Architectural Registration Exam (ARE) is a multi-dimensional set of exams meant to test on subjects such as (but not limited to) design, structures, history, professional practice and other technical issues that can vary by state (most notably in the cases of hurricane or seismic components). It can be taken in parts and over a specified time frame. Information on the specifics can be obtained by contacting the National Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) at their site.

Experience: The profession has designated the Intern Development Program (IDP), with its compartmentalized and quantified requirements, as the experience component of the registration process. Under certain circumstances and limitations, the process may start while in college and continue through to its completion when the skill and experience meets a threshold quantity as certified by a member-in-good-standing of the profession. Information on the process and requirement specifics can be obtained by contacting NCARB as listed above in Professional Exams.

Registration and Professional Status: The State of Florida maintains the registration process through the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR) located in Tallahassee. Information on the process of qualifying can be obtained by contacting them at their site.

Schedule of Classes

AA Degree Program Curriculum: Leading to a NAAB-accredited Professional Architecture Degree Program (typically a 5-year Bachelors Degree, a 4+2 Masters Degree, or a hybrid graduate degree) at selected universities. In Florida, those programs are offered at Florida Atlantic University, Florida International University, the University of Miami, the University of South Florida, Florida A&M University and the University of Florida.

The following is a recommended sequence of study for a beginning full-time student. For questions on issues related to alternatives or exemptions, contact the department chairperson.

Architecture Course Sequence




Co-req or


Introductory Semester        
HSC 2100  (Gen Ed/Health and Foreign Language - recommended) Health Concepts and Strategies none none 3
SPC 1017  (Gen Ed - req'd) Fundamentals of Speech Communication none none 3
GEA 1000  (Gen Ed/Social Science - recommended) Principles of Geography and Conservation none none 3
TOTAL       9
First Pre-professional Semester        
ARC 1131C  (req'd) Architectural Graphics 1 none none 2
ARC 1301C  (req'd) Architectural Design I none ARC 1131C and
ARC 1701
ARC 1701  (req'd) Architectural History 1 none none 3
BSC 1050  (Gen Ed/Natural Sciences- recommended) Environmental Conservation none none 3
TOTAL       12
Second Pre-professional Semester        
ARC 1132C (req'd) Architectural Graphics 2 ARC 1131C
(unless exempted)
none 2
ARC 1302C  (req'd) Architectural Design II ARC 1301C ARC 1132C and
ARC 2201
ARC 2201  (req'd) Theory of Architecture ARC 1301C none 3
MAC 1105  (Gen Ed/Mathematics - req'd) College Algebra see catalog see catalog 3
TOTAL       12
Third Pre-professional Semester        
ARC 2303C Architectural Design III ARC 1302C ARC 2461 4
ARC 2461 Materials and Methods ARC 1302C none 3
ENC 1101 (Gen Ed/Comm - recommended) College Composition 1 none none 3
MAC 2233 (Gen Ed/Math - req'd for ARC 2501) Survey of Calculus MAC 1105 none 3
TOTAL       13
Fourth Pre-professional Semester        
ARC 2304C Architectural Design IV ARC 2303C ARC 2501 4
ARC 2501 Architectural Structures ARC 2303C none 3
ENC1102 (GenEd/Communications)       3
PHY 2053 (Gen Ed/ General Physics - req'd for Architecture - no lab)       4
TOTAL       14


Other Recommended or Required classes: ARC 1702 (Architectural History 2) may be required by some schools. An introductory CADD class may also be required. Such requirements must be verified with the school in question. To complete the General Education program, Humanities requires an additional 6 credit hours and Social sciences; requires 3 additional credit hours.

Total Pre-professional requirements in Architecture - 32 credit hours

Total Gen Ed requirements - 36 credit hours


The Architecture program at Palm Beach State College schedules a juried event we call ArchAttack in the Fall and Spring terms during Final Exam weeks. The event is scheduled for two days. The first day is for presentation and grading of Graphics and other selected course projects. The second day is for Design project presentations and grading. Schedules will be available at the beginning of each respective term.

Students in all Design classes and selected other Architecture courses are required to attend and participate in the proceedings. Attendance by all other candidates (especially beginning students) is strongly recommended and may also be required by the respective professor. Architecture courses not participating in the event will complete their programs and final exams on the last day of classes prior to finals week. Any conflict with final exams in other disciplines will take precedence but must be coordinated with the respective Architecture professor to assure timely participation in front of a jury.

Professors and guest jurors (professionals from the community and other dignitaries) will be invited to participate by serving on the Design juries on the second day. As is customary for Architecture projects, all students will present a brief but comprehensive summary of the basis on which their design projects were developed, to personally introduce their projects for grading (by their own professor) and commentary (by professors and guest jurists).

An open invitation is extended to everyone at Palm Beach State College and other interested parties to attend and view the projects.

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