Path to Licensure

 
AIASF, in conjunction with the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) and the California Architects Board (CAB), are here to help you turn your goals into reality with the guidance and resources you’ll need to advance from student to practicing architect. To become an architect in California, you’ll have to earn a license by completing CAB’s specific requirements which is a combination of education, experience, and examination. Although each candidate’s path to licensure may differ, all will complete the process with the necessary knowledge, skills, and ability to be a licensed architect who practices in a way that protects the health, safety, and welfare of Californians. A candidate who provides evidence of having completed the following requirements is eligible to receive a license to practice architecture:
  • Be at least 18 years of age or the equivalent of a graduate from high school;
  • Five years of architectural educational experience or the equivalent as specified in the Board’s regulations;
  • Architectural Experience Program (AXP) or the Canadian Provincial Internship in Architecture Program (IAP);
  • All divisions of the Architect Registration Examination (ARE) and California Supplemental Examination (CSE).

The Architect Registration Examination (ARE), developed by the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB), is the national computerized architectural licensing examination that consists of multiple divisions. The ARE assesses a candidate’s knowledge and skills to provide various services required in the practice of architecture. No single examination can test for competency in all aspects of architectural practice; the ARE is not intended for that purpose. The ARE concentrates on the professional services that affect the public's health, safety, and welfare. The ARE 5.0 consists of the following five exams: Practice Management, Project Management Programming & Analysis, Project Planning & Design, Project Development & Documentation, and Construction & Evaluation.

View AIASF's 2020 ARE programming schedule here. Visit our calendar here to search for and register for upcoming classes.

 


Annual AIASF ARE Pact Program

"Now I'm a full licensed architect! Thanks to the ARE Pact and the AIA."
- 2017 ARE Pact participant

"It got me started on the path."

“Compared to my friend in other cities that have taken up to five years to pass them all, this had given me amazing momentum.”
– 2017 ARE Pact participant

AIASF’s ARE Pact program offers the perfect incentive to get licensed: take all exams required by NCARB for licensure within 12 months and you will receive a full refund of your $1,000 enrollment fee.

Enrollment in the Program Includes

  • A peer study group assigned by AIASF;
  • A team leader and coach assigned to your group;
  • Free admission to monthly class sessions;
  • Study materials for the group and more to assist you in successfully passing the Architect Registration Examination® (ARE®).

2021 Pact enrollment will open at the beginning of the calendar year


With questions, please email Karsen Maruca, Program Manager, at kmaruca@aiasf.org.

In addition to the Architect Registration Examination (ARE), the California Architects Board (CAB) requires the California Supplemental Examination (CSE) for licensure. The CSE ensures that candidates are able to demonstrate minimum standards of competency and necessary architectural knowledge and skills to respond to the unique requirements and conditions in California.

Candidates are required to demonstrate entry-level competence in the areas outlined in the CSE Test Plan. A competent entry-level architect is able to perform the responsibilities incumbent upon themselves in providing professional architectural services to the public. Additionally, a competent entry-level architect must understand the integration of architectural practice and the architect’s responsibilities as they relate to practice in California.

Upcoming AIASF CSE Review Classes

Four-part CSE review classes in 2020 will be held in the spring, summer, and autumn.

2020 SUMMER SESSIONS:

Session 1: Tuesday, August 18, 1:00 – 4:00 pm
Session 2: Friday, August 21, 1:00 – 4:00 pm
Session 3: Friday, August 28, 1:00 – 4:00 pm
Session 4: Tuesday, September 1, 1:00 – 4:00 pm

This CSE seminar is a four-part lecture series that provides a detailed overview of all knowledge areas in the latest edition of the California Supplemental Exam test plan. Materials covered in the first session include project approval processes, agencies having jurisdiction, land use and environmental regulations etc. The second session will be on Title 24 and other building codes and regulations. Materials covered in the third session include general architectural practice issues, Pre-Design services, AIA document B101: Standard Form of Agreement Between Owner and Architect etc., while the final session will cover bidding and negotiation, AIA document A201: General Conditions of the Contract for Construction and other construction laws issues. For any questions about the CSE seminar content and architectural licensing, send a message to awoo@cseeducational.com. Learn more and register here.