What else can I do with an architecture degree?

Architecture students have problem solving, technical and project management skills that will enable them to succeed in property, construction and a range of other careers.

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Architecture graduates go on to a range of professions, including town planning, quantity surveying and chartered surveying, and there are other options too for those who decide not to pursue a career as an architect. This guide should help you think about the skills you have, the jobs they can be applied to, and the options available.

Skills for your CV

The following is a list of key skills that architects develop while studying for their degrees. It also applies to architecture technologists, who are particularly concerned with the technical performance of buildings:

  • time and self-management
  • design skills
  • concise and accurate writing/communication skills
  • organisational skills
  • identify and predict trends and patterns
  • interpret and evaluate events, information, and ideas
  • computer literacy
  • project management
  • problem solving
  • up-to-date knowledge of the latest legal developments in their field.

Job roles and career areas you could work in

Many architectural graduates who decide not to qualify as an architect find jobs in the construction industry as design managers.

Architecture graduates tend to be perfectionists, as it is crucial for original plans to be faultless in order for a project to succeed. This means that they would do very well in careers that require mathematical precision, such as finance, accounting and computer programming.

They are also used to having to think laterally. If something doesn’t work on the build, they will have to think of ways of getting round the problem. This would make them ideal for roles in the armed forces, Civil Service, or education.

Other possible careers include:

What do architecture and building graduates go on to do?

Here’s what architecture and building graduates who finished their degrees in 2018 were doing around fifteen months after graduating, according to the graduate outcomes statistics reported by the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) in 2020.

Destination Percentage
Full-time employment 70
Part-time employment 6
Voluntary or unpaid work 1
Working and studying 10
Full-time further study 4
Unemployed 3

Source: HESA's higher education graduate outcomes statistics, 2020

Key areas of employment for fresh architecture and building graduates

These are the top five areas of work taken up by 2018 architecture and building graduates around fifteen months after graduating, according to the graduate outcomes statistics reported by the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) in 2020.

Areas of employment Percentage
Professional, scientific and technical 46
Construction 23
Real estate 7
Public administration and defence; compulsory social security 6
Education 3

Source: HESA's higher education graduate outcomes statistics, 2020

Which careers attract architecture and building students?

Construction, civil engineering and surveying was by far the most popular career choice for architecture, building and planning students identified by a 2020 survey of more than 71,000 students carried out by Cibyl, a research company owned by the same company as TARGETjobs. Just over a quarter (25.8%) of the architecture, building and planning students who participated in the survey said they were interested in this area. The most popular careers for this group of students were as follows:

Career Percentage
Construction, civil engineering and surveying 25.8% expressed an interest
Logistics, transport and supply chain 3.5
Engineering, design and manufacture 2.9
Energy and utilities 1.7
Banking, insurance and financial services 0.7

Source: Graduate Survey 2020

What salaries can graduates of architectural studies earn?

Want to know what graduates in your degree discipline typically earn in different locations? The Pay Index has provided TARGETjobs with a handy graduate salary tool showing just that.

Famous people with architecture degrees

Don’t worry if these career paths don’t immediately grab you, as there are plenty of other things to do after studying architecture. Take these famous people as examples:

  • Tom Ford – studied interior architecture before going into fashion design and film.
  • George Takei – the Star Trek actor studied at the University of California.
  • Samuel L. Jackson – initially studied architecture before turning to acting, including roles in Star Wars, the Marvel films and Snakes on a Plane.
  • Courteney Cox – before playing the role of Monica in Friends, she studied architecture and interior design.

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