Top tips to survive architecture school

17:19 Unknown 3 Comments

Now that I am in the final semester of 5th year Architecture, I feel qualified to impart some personal experiences for my fellow architecture geeks. Here are top 5 tips to ace architecture school with some Ted Mosby quotes.

1. Get in the groove
Find your motivation. 'Assetize' your talents. Make your incredible hand drawings or your outstanding model making skills your unique selling point to market your ideas effectively to your audience. If you are passionate about photography, use it as a design and representation tool. Always experiment and learn new things.

Conducive work environment. Listening to indie music or working in dim background noise helps me concentrate. The studio is a huge resource of knowledge and inspiration - you learn from peers and tutors. 'You go faster alone, you go further with a team.'

2. Keep time
Every project begins with site study and research. Very often students get too indulged in theoretical research for weeks till design time is greatly compressed and rushed. Set aims, budget and timetable so your project can be delivered by a deadline.

A common mistake is to do everything that comes to your mind or suggested by others. Architecture is an art of curation. An impactful portfolio is precise, cohesive and speaks for itself. A focused 20-page work is more effective than a wishy-washy 50-page work.

3. Use university resources
Get the most of your buck to enhance your student experience. Use the technology workshop, studio space, careers and academic advisers, music room, library and gym.

Quoted from AJ,  your tutors are an invaluable source of wisdom and ideas - use them lots. Ideas don't knock on your door, be active in seeking opinions and critique. Do whatever it takes to make your ideas work. Initiative is a key trait employers look for in a candidate.

4. Build network
Strengthen a strong relationship with your peers and tutors who may be your future business partners or clients. Expand your social circle to non-architects, your connections may lead to work recommendation. An online networking site such as LinkedIn is great to connect with potential employers and latest industry news.

5. Most importantly, be Healthy!
The practice of architecture studies can strain the physical and emotional health - staring at the computer for too long; sniffing glue when making models; chasing the deadline with loads of energy drinks and sleepless nights.

A healthy mind and body generates productive work. Exercise, eat balanced meals, substitute coffee and alcohol with tea, and practice good working habits. Seek emotional support from the university wellbeing services if you are feeling depressed.

Despite how insane architecture drives you, it will be the best journey you will ever take! Rock on!


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