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Architectural technician

Architectural technologist

Architectural technicians specialise in presenting building designs using technology. They provide technical guidance to clients and liaise with construction design teams to bring new structures to life. As an architectural technician, you’d be working with architects to help develop building models, ahead of construction taking place.

Average salary*

£20000

-

£48000

Typical hours per week

38 - 40

How to become an architectural technician

There are several routes to becoming an architectural technician. You could complete a university or college course, an apprenticeship or apply directly to an employer for work.

You should explore these routes to becoming an architectural technician, to find out which is the right one for you. Although some of these options have certain qualification requirements, many employers are more interested in people who are enthusiastic, willing to learn and can follow instructions.

You may need a Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) card to work on a construction site.

University

You can become an architectural technician or an architectural technologist by completing a Higher National Diploma (HND) or foundation degree in architectural technology, or in another subject related to the built environment. Your course should be approved by the Chartered Institute of Architectural Technologists(CIAT)

You’ll need 1 - 2 A levels, or equivalent, for a foundation degree or HND.

> Equivalent entry requirements explained

> Find a university course

> Funding advice

College/training provider

You could complete a college course to become an architectural technician, such as a Level 3 Certificate in 3D Design, a Level 3 Diploma in Built Environment Design, or a T level in Design, Surveying and Planning.

You may need:

  • 4 - 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent (level 3 course)
  • 4 - 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths (T level).

If you hold a relevant Higher National Diploma (HND) or Higher National Certificate (HNC) you may be able to become fully qualified as a chartered architectural technologist. Other trainees may first need to qualify as an architectural technician as part of their progress to full chartered status.

> Equivalent entry requirements explained

> Find a course near you

> Funding advice

Apprenticeship

You could complete an apprenticeship to become an architectural technician or architectural technologist.

An apprenticeship with an architectural practice or construction company is a good way into the industry. You could train to become a digital engineering technician or do an advanced apprenticeship in built environment and design.

You’ll need 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, for an advanced apprenticeship.

Apprenticeships are open to anyone over the age of 16. As an apprentice, you’ll be fully employed by your company and expected to work a minimum of 30 hours a week. Your time will be split between on-the-job experience and a college or training provider.

> Find an apprenticeship near you

> Guide to apprenticeships

Work

You could apply directly to an architectural company if you have an interest or previous experience in this type of work. You could start your career as an architectural assistant and complete qualifications part-time to help you become an architectural technician or technologist.

Work experience

Work experience is essential to gaining employment within the construction industry. You could gain this at school, or by working weekends and holidays with a company or relative who works as an architectural technician. Potential employers will always be pleased to see work experience listed on your CV.

Find out more about work experience

Skills

Additional skills which may benefit anyone considering a job as an architectural technician include: 

  • A freehand drawing ability
  • Computer skills
  • Strong mathematical skills
  • Strong organisational skills
  • An eye for detail and design
  • Understanding of building technology
  • Awareness of how buildings and spaces are used
  • Communication skills.

What does an architectural technician do?

An architectural technician is responsible for supporting an architectural project from concept to completion. They help to provide technical building models, created using current technology and traditional methods.

The different demands of an architectural technician mean that every day is different. Duties include: 

  • Collating and organising technical building information from architects
  • Preparing designs using CAD (computer aided design) software and traditional drawing methods
  • Making site visits
  • Investigating and offering technical advice on factors that affect building developments, including user needs, site and building surveys, and regulatory requirements
  • Monitoring designs for health and safety and contributing to risk assessments
  • Coordinating detailed design information
  • Preparing specifications for construction work
  • Preparing drawings, plans, and documents for statutory approvals
  • Obtaining tenders for construction work
  • Preparing applications for approval by regulatory bodies
  • Contributing to meetings and document preparation
  • Researching new design processes, building legislation and technology.

How much could you earn as an architectural technician?

The expected salary for an architectural technican varies as you become more experienced.

  • Newly trained architectural technicians can earn £20,000 - £26,000
  • Trained architectural technicians with some experience can earn £26,000 - £35,000
  • Senior architectural technicians can earn £35,000 - £48,000.*

Hours and salary depend on location, employer and any overtime you may do.

* Salaries have been collected from multiple industry sources and have been updated as of 2019


Jobs

Check out the latest architectural technician vacancies:

As these are external websites, the number of vacancies related to your preferred role may vary. New opportunities will be posted as they come up.

Career path and progression

As an architectural technician, you could progress in your career to become an architectural technologist, which requires a slightly broader range of skills. In this role, you’ll become more involved in the design and construction process and in contract management.

You could specialise to work as a building modelling information (BIM) technician or continue studying to become a fully qualified architect.

Progression Opportunities

Explore the progression opportunities below

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