In the United States, most registration boards require a degree from an accredited professional degree program as a prerequisite for licensure. The National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB), which is the sole agency authorized to accredit professional degree programs in architecture offered by institutions with U.S. regional accreditation, recognizes three types of degrees: the Bachelor of Architecture, the Master of Architecture, and the Doctor of Architecture. A program may be granted an eight-year, three-year, or two-year term of accreditation, depending on the extent of its conformance with established educational standards.
Doctor of Architecture and Master of Architecture degree programs may require a preprofessional undergraduate degree in architecture for admission. However, the preprofessional degree is not, by itself, recognized as an accredited degree.
Kent State University, College of Architecture and Environmental Design offers the following NAAB-accredited degree programs:
- Master of Architecture 44 + the pre-professional (Bachelor of Science in Architecture 124) (total 168 credits)
- Master of Architecture 44 / Master of Business Administration dual degree + the pre-professional (Bachelor of Science in Architecture 124)
- Master of Architecture 44 / Master of Urban Design dual degree + the pre-professional (Bachelor of Science in Architecture 124)
- Master of Architecture + bachelor's degree from an accredited university in any academic field
The next accreditation visit for the accredited sequence is 2026; the last accreditation visit was in 2018 which provided for an eight-year term of accreditation, the duration of full accreditation permitted at that time. A professional program in architecture at Kent State University has been continuously accredited since 1962.
Licensing of Architects
In general, all states require registration, licenses or certificates for the practice of architecture. Laws governing such licensing vary from state to state. Typically, three elements are required to become a Registered Architect, education, experience and examination.
Education is governed by a set of organizations that comprise the NAAB. Most U.S. state registration boards require any applicant for licensure to graduate from a NAAB-Accredited program, obtaining such a degree is an essential aspect of preparing for the professional practice of architecture. While graduation from a NAAB-Accredited program does not assure registration, the accrediting process is intended to verify that each accredited program substantially meets those standards that, as a whole, comprise an appropriate education for an architect.
The National Council of Architecture Registration Boards (NCARB) is the national organization that administers both the Architecture Experience Program (AXP), experience, and the Architect Registration Exam (ARE), examination. NCARB is made up of the architects boards the states and territories of the United States. In Ohio, an architect may practice professionally upon satisfactorily completing all three elements of training as administered by the State of Ohio Board of Examiners of Architects.
The following documents are also available in the office of the Dean, Room 225 in the Center for Architecture and Environmental Design:
- Annual Statistical Reports 2011-2016 and 2014 Interim Progress Report
- 2011 Architecture Program Report
- The final edition of the 2012 Visiting Team Report, including attachments
- The 2012 final decision letter from the NAAB
- The 2009 NAAB Conditions for Accreditation and 2014 NAAB Conditions for Accreditation
- 2015 NAAB Procedures for Accreditation
- Kent State Architecture alumni pass rates on the Architect Registration Exam
Career Development Information
The Architecture Program recommends the following sources for information on careers in Architecture. Students are encouraged to discuss career plans with faculty and advisors, consider taking the ARCH 44611 Portfolio and take advantage of Career Fair Preparation Workshops and the CAED Career Fair each year. Please find additional career development information on the Architecture Experience Program page as it relates to licensure. You may also consider visiting Kent State Career Exploration and Development.