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Architect license requirements by state: A comprehensive guide

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By Next Insurance Staff
Nov 5, 2020 min read

If you’re wondering how to become a licensed architect, the process will vary considerably depending on where you live within the U.S. Continue reading to learn the architect license requirements by state so you can start the process well informed in what you need to do. We’ve also included some details about architect business insurance that can protect your business from risks once you’re up and running.

National Council of Architectural Board requirements

To earn a new architect license in most states, you must generally complete the following standard licensing requirements as set by the National Council of Architectural Registration Board (NCARB):

1. Earn a degree from an accredited program for your profession

NCARB requires a degree from a bachelor’s or master’s degree program accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB). A comparable degree or additional experience may be accepted to fulfill the education requirement, depending on the state.

2. Complete an approved experience program

In addition to education, NCARB requires experience in the field through the Architectural Experience Program (AXP) for general architects, which requires 3,740 hours of experience under the guidance of a licensed professional in the field. 

3. Receive passing scores for the national exam for the architecture area of emphasis

You must also pass the Architect Registration Exam (ARE) for general architects as per NCARB. The ARE has various divisions that test you in the areas of health, welfare and safety. It costs $1,410

4. Apply and pay for your architecture license

You will also need to submit an application and pay the required fees according to the laws of your state.

Select states also require special classes or exams that focus on location-dependent challenges for practicing architects in that state, such as arctic engineering training in Alaska. 

If you plan to apply for licensure in multiple states, the NCARB certificate gives you the flexibility to apply for licensure more easily through reciprocity. It promotes standards between the boards in all 55 U.S. jurisdictions so is part of the licensure process in many states. It can even help you get licensed in Mexico, Australia, Canada and New Zealand. 

Find your state below to learn the specifics about getting your initial architecture license.

Alabama 

In Alabama, you can be approved for an architect license without any additional steps if you have a certificate from the National Council of Architectural Registration Board. 

If you don’t have a certificate, you’ll need to graduate from a program accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board and have additional experience under the supervision of a qualified architect before you can take the exam. 

The application fees can’t exceed $250 and licenses are good through December 31 of each year. 

Alaska

Alaska requires a certificate from the National Council of Architectural Registration Board before you will be considered for the architect license exam. To earn the certificate, you will have to graduate from a qualifying architectural program and complete the required experience program.

The state also requires you to complete a board-approved Arctic course and to pay $300 in fees. 

Licenses are renewed on March 31 of even-numbered years and you must complete 24 hours of continuing education within those two years to remain eligible.

Arizona

Arizona requires architects to complete 60 months of education and/or experience to qualify for the required exam. You also must pay the $100 application fee. 

A non-accredited bachelor’s degree in architecture counts for 36 months while an accredited bachelor’s degree counts for 48 months and an accredited master’s degree counts for all 60 months. 

The state requests applicants include three reference forms from licensed architects you’ve worked under (including two supervisors) to demonstrate experience. You can write an explanation if you don’t have them. 

If you have an accredited degree, you can apply for the exam through the National Council of Architectural Registration Board. If you don’t, you’ll apply with The Arizona Board of Technical Registration. Once approved, you must take and pass the exam. 

You can apply for an exam waiver if you have a certificate from the National Council of Architectural Registration Board or if you have been licensed in another jurisdiction for 10 of the last 15 years.

Licenses are renewed on odd-numbered years on December 31. 

Arkansas

Arkansas requires you to complete all of the requirements set by the National Council of Architectural Registration Board including earning an accredited degree, completing the qualifying experience program and passing the exam. 

Additionally, you must read the Arkansas Architectural Act and Rules and Regulations, sign an affidavit provided by the board and pay a $250 fee. 

Each year, licenses must be renewed by July 31 and architects are required to complete 12 hours of continuing education.

California

California requires architects to meet the education and/or experience requirement totaling five years before they can qualify to take the required exams. You may qualify based on education alone, experience alone or a combination of both. Note that experience must be under a licensed architect in a U.S. jurisdiction. 

Once you qualify, you will need to apply to take the Architect Registration Examination and pay the $100 application fee. If you are approved and pass, you will then qualify to take the California Supplemental Examination.

Architectural licenses must be renewed every two years in the odd-numbered year on the last day of the licensee’s birth month. Renewals are subject to a $300 fee. You must also complete continuing education on disability access requirements. 

Colorado

Architects in Colorado can qualify to take the exam for licensure through education and/or experience. You must have 10 years of qualifying experience to forego education. If you have an accredited degree, three years of qualifying experience will be required. If you have a non-accredited four-year degree, five years of qualifying experience will be required. 

Once you qualify, you can apply to take the exam. If passed, you will get your license. 

For those who have a certificate from the National Council of Architectural Registration Board, you can apply for licensure directly with the state without re-taking the exam. 

Architect licenses must be renewed by October 31 of odd-numbered years. 

Connecticut

Connecticut requires architects to hold an accredited degree and complete the experience program required by the National Council of Architectural Registration Board to qualify for the licensing exam. If you don’t qualify but have experience and education you think is equivalent, you can apply with an explanation. The application fee is $72. If approved, you can apply to take the required exam. You must pass it to earn your license. 

If you already have a certificate from the National Council of Architectural Registration Board or have been licensed as an architect for at least 10 years in another state, you can apply without re-taking the exam. The fee is $100. 

Licenses are renewable annually, and each renewal must be accompanied by proof of 12 hours of continuing education and a non-refundable renewal fee.

Delaware

Delaware requires architects to complete the experience program required by the National Council of Architectural Registration Board to qualify to take the licensing exam. Once completed, you can apply with the board for the exam which comes with a $151 fee. Once the exam is passed, they will review your application for licensure. 

If you already have a certificate from the National Council of Architectural Registration Board or a license in another state, you can apply for your license via reciprocity without taking the exam. 

Delaware architect licenses expire on January 31of every even year. Architects must pay a renewal fee and submit proof of completion of continuing education requirements that include either one hour per full month of license registration (during the first renewal period) or 24 hours of approved CE requirements (for all consecutive renewal periods).

Florida

Florida requires architects to have a certificate from the National Council of Architectural Registration Board to get their licenses. The certificate requires you to earn an accredited degree in architecture, complete the qualifying experience program and pass the Architectural Registration Examination. To apply with the Florida board, you’ll have to pay a $175 application fee. 

If you are coming from another state and have a certificate or license there, you can apply for a certified endorsement in Florida, which will enable you to work in the state. 

Active licenses are renewed in every odd-numbered year, and renewal applications must be submitted with a renewal fee and 24 hours of continuing education, of which two hours must be completed in the Florida Building Code category.

Georgia

Georgia requires architects to have a record from the National Council of Architectural Registration Board to apply for the Architectural Registration Examination. You’ll need an accredited degree and at least three years of practicable qualifying experience. The fee for the application is $50. If approved, you must pass the exam for your license application to be reviewed and approved. 

If you have a certificate from the National Council of Architectural Registration Board, you can apply without re-taking the exam. 

Registrations must be renewed every odd year, and architects must complete 24 hours of continuing education within the previous two years.

Hawaii

To become a licensed architect in Hawaii, you need to pass the exam. To qualify to take the exam, you’ll need to meet the education and/or experience requirements. All applicants must complete the Architectural Experience Program which takes three years. The amount of additional experience you need will depend on your education. 

Without any education, you’ll need eight more years of qualifying experience. With a two-year degree, you’ll need five more years of qualifying experience. With a board-approved four-year degree in pre-architecture or science and arts, you’ll need two more years of qualifying experience. And with a bachelor’s or higher degree in architecture from a board-approved school, you won’t need any additional experience. 

If you have a license in another state or a certificate from the National Council of Architectural Registration Board, you can apply for your license without re-taking the exam but will have to meet the same experience requirements. 

The application fee is $150 if you need to take the exam and $100 if you don’t. 

Licenses expire on April 30 of even-numbered years and you must complete 16 hours of continuing education during each two-year-period.

Idaho

Idaho requires architects to pass the Architectural Registration Exam to become licensed. To qualify to take the exam, you must have a degree in architecture from an accredited school and must have started or completed the architectural experience program. If you don’t meet the above requirements but have eight years or more of qualifying experience, you may qualify via that route. 

If you are licensed in another U.S. state, you may qualify for your license through endorsement if the qualifications in the other state are similar. 

Idaho architect licenses are renewed annually, and licensees must complete 12 hours of continuing education each year.

Illinois

To earn your architect license in Illinois, you must pass the exam provided by the National Council of Architectural Registration Board. To qualify, you’ll have to meet education and experience requirements and submit your application. 

An accredited degree in architecture is required along with the completion of the architectural experience program which takes three years. 

Once you’ve met the qualifications, you can submit your application along with the $100 application fee. 

If you have a license in another state, you can apply via endorsement without taking the exam. 

Applicants must also submit an affidavit of understanding on the Illinois Architecture Practice Act of 1989 and the board’s Administrative Rules. Licenses must be renewed in every even-numbered year, and architects must complete 24 hours of continuing education to be eligible for renewal. 

Indiana

Indiana follows national standards for professional licensing requirements. You must pass the  National Council of Architectural Registration Board exam. However, to qualify for the exam, you need to hold a degree in architecture from an accredited school and must have completed the experience program. 

If you are licensed in another state, you can apply via reciprocity. 

Licenses must be renewed every odd year, and licensees must complete 24 hours of continuing education between renewal periods.

Iowa

To earn your architect license in Iowa, you’ll need to pass all divisions of the Architectural Registration Exam, but not anyone can take the test. You will first need to earn a degree in architecture from an accredited school and enroll in or complete the architectural experience program.  To apply, you’ll need to pay a $50 fee and then will pay $5 per month until renewal.

If you are licensed in another state, you must have a certificate from the National Council of Architecture Registration Board to apply via reciprocity. The application comes with a $200 fee. 

Licenses for individuals with last names A-K renew in even years, and licenses for individuals with last names L-Z renew in odd years. Licensees must complete 24 hours of continuing education between renewal periods.

Kansas

Kansas requires architects to pass an exam to get licensed. To qualify to take the test, you must complete your application, pay a $60 fee and submit proof that you meet the experience and education requirements. 

The requirements include a degree in architecture from an accredited school and a completed 3.740-hour experience program that includes 1,860 hours under architect supervision. Your proof can be a record from the National Council of Architecture Registration Board or transcripts and professional references. 

If you are licensed in another state, you can pay the $250 application fee and complete the application to apply via reciprocity. 

Licenses expire every two years and must be renewed within a three-month renewal window. Individuals with last names A-L renew in even-numbered years, while individuals with last names M-Z renew in odd-numbered years. All licensees must complete 30 hours of continuing education within each renewal period.

Kentucky

To become a licensed architect in Kentucky, you’ll need to pass all divisions of the Architect Registration Examination. To sit for the test, you’ll first need to get a degree in architecture from an accredited school. You’ll also need to enroll in the Architectural Experience Program. 

Once you’ve met the qualifications, you can apply for the test by completing your application and sending in the $100 application fee. 

All licenses must be renewed annually with proof of completion of 12 hours of continuing education each year to remain eligible.

Louisiana

Louisiana follows the National Council of Architecture Registration Board requirements for architect licenses. You’ll need a degree from an accredited school and proof of enrollment in the Architectural Experience Program. From there, you can submit your application to take the Architectural Registration Exam. Once you pass, your full request for licensure will be reviewed by the board. 

If you are licensed in another state and have a certificate from the National Council of Architecture Registration Board, you will need to have your record transmitted to Louisiana. The board will review your record and, if approved, will grant your license. 

Renewals occur annually and licensees must complete 12 hours of continuing education for renewal.

Maine

Maine requires architects to pass the Architectural Registration Exam to get their license in the state. To qualify to sit for the exam, you can take one of four pathways. 

If you have no formal, post-secondary education, you’ll need 13 years of qualifying experience. If you have a bachelor’s degree or higher in a field other than architecture, you’ll need 11 years of qualifying experience. For those with a pre-professional degree in architecture, you’ll need nine years of qualifying experience. And for those with a professional degree in architecture, you’ll only need to complete the three-year Architectural Experience Program or have qualifying equivalent office experience. 

You can get a license without taking the exam if you have a license in another state and have a valid certificate from the National Council of Architecture Registration Board or if your initial license requirements are deemed equivalent to the current requirements. 

Licenses expire annually, but Maine does not have any continuing education requirements for architects.

Maryland

Maryland requires architects to pass the Architectural Registration Examination to get their license. To qualify for the test, you need an accredited degree in architecture, a combination of education and work experience or 10 years of documented work experience for architects within the state.

Licenses are renewed every two years, and licensees must complete 24 hours of continuing education during each renewal period to remain eligible. 

Massachusetts

To get licensed, Massachusetts requires architects to have an accredited degree in architecture. Additionally, you must meet the other requirements set by the National Council of Architecture Registration Board including being enrolled in the Architect Experience Program and passing the Architect Registration Exam. 

If you have a license in another state and have a certificate from the National Council of Architecture Registration Board, you can apply without an exam via reciprocity. 

Licenses are renewed annually, and license holders must complete 12 hours of continuing education each year and pay the renewal fee.

Michigan

To get an architecture license in Michigan, you need a degree from a program accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board, a completed qualifying experience program and evidence of passing all sections of the required exam. 

If you are coming from out of state, you can apply without taking the exam if you have a certificate from the National Council of Architecture Registration Board.

Applications must be submitted online. Then, applicants need to fulfill all requirements within one year or the application will be closed. To renew a license, architects must complete 24 hours of continuing education every two years and pay a renewal fee.

Minnesota

Applicants for an architecture license in Minnesota will need to earn a degree in architecture from an accredited school or the equivalent as determined by the Education Evaluation Services for Architects (EESA). You must also complete the Architecture Experience Program and pass all six divisions of the Architect Registration Examination.  

With a certificate from the National Council of Architecture Registration Board, licensed architects from out of state can apply for licensure through reciprocity. 

Licensees must complete 24 hours of continuing education during each two-year renewal period, of which two hours must be in professional ethics. 

Mississippi

The license requirements according to The Mississippi State Board of Architecture follow those set by the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards. You must complete an educational program that is accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board and the Architect Experience Program. Then you must pass the National Council of Architecture Registration Board exam. 

For those who have already gained licensure out of state, you can transmit your credential to Mississippi to apply for direct licensure. 

Licenses are up for renewal each odd year, and licensees must complete 12 hours of continuing education in each calendar year (24 hours in each renewal period). 

Missouri

Missouri follows the National Council of Architectural Registration Board criteria when it comes to architect licensure. You must earn a degree in architecture from an accredited program, complete the qualifying experience program and earn passing scores on all portions of the Architect Registration Exam. 

For those who are licensed in another state, your application can be streamlined by transmitting your National Council of Architectural Registration Board certificate to the state board. 

Architects must renew their licenses every two years, and licensees must complete 24 hours of continuing education in each renewal period.

Montana

Montana architects who want to earn their license will need a degree in architecture accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board or the equivalent. Applicants must also submit proof of enrollment in an approved experience program under a licensed architect and establish a record with the National Council of Architectural Registration Board (NCARB). Once qualified, you can apply to take the licensing exam. It comes with a fee of $80. 

 If you hold an NCARB certificate in another state, you can apply with that credential. 

Renewals occur annually, and licensees must complete 12 hours of continuing education each year.

Nebraska

To earn your architect license in Nebraska, you’ll need to pass the Architect Registration Exam (ARE). But to qualify to sit for the test, you first need to earn a degree in architecture from an accredited school and enroll in a qualifying experience program. Once you qualify, you can apply and pay a $100 application fee. You’ll also need to pass a state-specific exam on Nebraska statutes and rules. 

If you’ve already passed the ARE in another state and have met the above requirements, you can apply without re-taking the test. 

You must renew bi-annually, with last names A-K renewing in odd years and L-Z renewing in even years. Nebraska typically requires 24 hours of continuing education, of which 16 hours must address the safeguarding of life, health and property. 

Nevada

Nevada requires architectural applicants to be at least 21 years of age to receive a license. Aspiring architects can meet the other licensing requirements by: 

  • Holding a current National Council of Architectural Registration Board certificate and completing additional seismic education, or
  • Holding a degree in architecture from an accredited college, completing a qualifying architect experience program and passing the Architect Registration Exam

Licenses must be renewed each year and must complete eight hours of continuing education annually, of which two hours must be in code-related learning opportunities.

New Hampshire

In New Hampshire, you must be 21 years of age and demonstrate a combination of education and experience totaling 13 years to apply for the architect license exam. Applicants must also provide a minimum of five professional references, and three of them must be licensed architects who have personally worked with the applicant. To apply, you will need to pay a $150 application fee. Once approved, you’ll need to pass all divisions of the exam. 

If you have a license in another state and a current certificate from the National Council of Architectural Registration Board, you can apply via reciprocity by completing your application and paying a $250 application fee. 

Licenses must be renewed every two years and license holders must complete 12 hours of continuing education annually (24 hours in every renewal period).

New Jersey

New Jersey requires prospective architects applying for a license to hold a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in architecture from an institute with an accredited architecture program, or education that the board deems equivalent. You must also complete three years of practical board-approved experience. After meeting the above requirements, you will qualify to take the exam. Also, candidates must attend an online, self-paced jurisprudence orientation session. 

Renewals are processed bi-annually in odd-numbered years. Licensed architects must also complete 24 hours of continuing education every two years, which includes 16 hours in health, safety and welfare and eight hours in Practice of Architecture.

New Mexico

In New Mexico, architects who want to get a license will apply directly through the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards. You must meet all standard national requirements including having a degree in architecture from an accredited program, completing an approved Architectural Experience Program and passing the Architect Registration Examination.

Once you complete the requirements, you can request to transfer all your profile information to the New Mexico Board of Examiners for Architects for consideration of a license. All licenses are good for two years and license holders must complete 12 hours of continuing education per calendar year, or 24 hours per renewal period.

New York

If you want to become a licensed architect in New York, you must be 21 years or older when you apply for the exam. You will also have a combination of education and practical work experience that equals eight years. Although, you can still qualify if you have 10 years of lawful practice outside of the state and no formal post-secondary education. 

Once you qualify to take the Architect Registration Exam, you must pass all portions. The licensure fee is $377 or $587 if you are applying via the pathway of 10 years of lawful practice. 

Renewal periods are every three years. To renew, licensees must complete 36 hours of continuing education every three years and pay the renewal fee.

North Carolina

As of 2016, North Carolina is a Direct Registration State with the National Council of Architectural Registration Board (NCARB), so all new general architect licensees must complete the initial application process directly with them. You will need to meet all the standard requirements including an accredited degree in architecture, completion of a qualifying experience program and passing Architect Registration Exam (ARE) scores. The application fee is $50. 

Once all NCARB requirements have been met, you can request a transfer of records to the North Carolina Board of Architecture for review and consideration of a new license. You can also skip the exam if you have completed it in another state and have proof. 

Architect license renewal periods are annually in July, and licensees must pay the renewal fee and submit proof of 12 hours of continuing education completed during the calendar year before the renewal year.

North Dakota

Architects in North Dakota are licensed through the North Dakota State Board of Architecture.  To qualify, you must submit the application fee of $150 along with a complete record from the National Council of Architectural Registration Board. 

The record will need to include the national uniform application, a degree from a National Architectural Accrediting Board-accredited program, proof of completion of an Architecture Experience Program and passing scores for all sections of the Architect Registration Exam (ARE). Applications via reciprocity are available for those who are licensed from out of state.

Architectural licenses are renewable every odd year for a fee, and there are no continuing education requirements for architects in North Dakota.

Ohio

To qualify for a new license in Ohio, architects must have an accredited degree in architecture or the equivalent as determined by the National Council of Architectural Registration Board. The Ohio Architects Board also requires candidates to meet all other national requirements by completing an approved experience program and passing all portions of the Architect Registration Exam. The application fee is $50.

If you are licensed in another state and have a completed record from the  National Council of Architectural Registration Board, you can apply for licensure without re-taking the exam for a fee of $250.

License renewals are in every odd year and must be accompanied by the renewal fee and proof of 12 hours of continuing education.

Oklahoma

To get a new architect license in Oklahoma, you must hold an accredited degree in architecture, complete the Architect Experience Program and pass all sections of the Architect Registration Exam. Once you meet the experience and education requirements, you can apply for the exam which comes with a $100 application fee. 

As part of the application process, you will also need to complete an open-book test of the Oklahoma Acts and Rules. Oklahoma offers several exceptions for when a license is not required of practicing architects. 

You can apply for a reciprocal license by providing proof of your license and qualifications in another U.S. jurisdiction. 

Once issued, licenses are renewable every two years. Candidates must also complete 24 hours of continuing education during each two-year renewal period.

Oregon

If you want to get your architect license in Oregon, you’ll need to meet all national education, training and exam requirements to obtain a National Council of Architectural Registration Board certificate. 

These requirements include earning an architecture degree accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board, completing an Architecture Experience Program and passing all sections of the Architect Registration Exam. Applicants must also pass an Oregon jurisprudence exam online with a score of 84% or higher. 

Once issued, licenses must be renewed every two years by completing 24 hours of continuing education within the prior renewal period and paying a renewal fee.

Pennsylvania

General architecture candidates with an accredited architecture degree who have completed an approved Architectural Experience Program and passed all sections of the Architect Registration Exam can apply for a new license directly through the online application portal for the Pennsylvania State Architects Licensure Board

Candidates without the required degree may still apply for a license but must demonstrate additional experience, apply directly to the board (not online) and pay an additional fee. All applicants must also provide a recent Criminal History Records Check for any states where they resided within the previous five years. 

Licenses are renewed on odd years, and there is no continuing education requirement in Pennsylvania.

Rhode Island

In Rhode Island, architect applicants must hold an architect degree accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board, be 21 years of age, complete the Architectural Experience Program and pass all sections of the Architect Registration Exam. When applying, a $60 fee will need to be paid. 

If you are licensed in another state, you can apply for a reciprocal license by transmitting your record from the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards.

At its discretion, the board may also ask applicants to submit to a personal interview. Once issued, licenses are renewed in odd years by payment of the renewal fee and proof of 12 hours of continuing education.

South Carolina

As of 2008, South Carolina requires all general architecture applicants to use the Direct Registration process through the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards to apply for a license. 

You will apply directly with the agency by providing proof of an accredited degree in architecture, successful completion of an Architectural Experience Program and passing scores on the Architect Registration Exam. 

Licensed architects from other states can apply through reciprocity. 

Licenses are renewed bi-annually in odd years, and licensees are expected to complete 24 hours of continuing education during each two-year renewal period.

South Dakota

In South Dakota, those applying for a new architect license are required to:

  • Complete an accredited architecture program and earn a degree
  • Pass the South Dakota take-home exam on laws and rules
  • Complete an approved experience program
  • Pass all sections of the Architect Registration Exam
  • Pay a $100 application fee 

Those who are licensed in another state can apply with their certificate from the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards to avoid having to re-take the exam or meet further requirements. 

Licenses are renewed every two years, and license holders are expected to complete 30 hours of continuing education in every two-year renewal period.

Tennessee

If you want to become a licensed architect in Tennessee, you will need to pass the Architect Registration Exam. To qualify to take the exam, you’ll first need to meet the education and experience requirements.

Tennessee recognizes architectural degree programs accredited by either the National Architectural Accrediting Board or the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Applicants who completed educational programs other than those may need additional experience. 

Regardless of the chosen degree program, applicants must also complete an approved Architect Experience Program. Once complete, you can apply to take the exam. You must pass all divisions to qualify for your license. Application by reciprocity is allowed. 

License holders must complete 12 hours of continuing education during their first two-year renewal period and 24 hours of continuing education for each subsequent renewal period.

Texas

Architect license applicants in Texas must complete an accredited architecture degree program or its equivalent as determined by the Texas Board of Architectural Examiners. You must also enroll in or have completed the Architectural Experience Program. Then you can apply for the Architect Registration Exam, which comes with a $105 application fee. 

If approved, you must pass all divisions of the exam. If you are licensed out of state, you can also apply via reciprocity. 

Licenses are renewable annually by completing 12 hours of continuing education and paying the renewal fee.

Utah

Utah sets standards for general architects that match those set by the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards. You’ll need to earn a degree in architecture from an accredited program and will need to enroll in a qualifying experience program. 

Once you’ve completed the above, you can apply for the Architect Registration Exam. The application fee is $105. You’ll need to pass all parts of the exam to qualify for a license in the state. 

Additionally, applicants must meet with the board for a personal interview if they request one. Renewals are processed in even years, and license holders must pay a renewal fee and complete 24 hours of continuing education during the renewal period.

Vermont

To qualify for an architect license in Vermont, you’ll need to:

  • Hold an accredited degree in architecture, complete an Architect Experience Program, submit a professional reference form and pass all portions of the Architect Registration Exam, or 
  • Combine a non-accredited degree and verified experience totaling nine years, complete an Architect Experience Program, submit a professional reference form and pass all portions of the Architect Registration Exam

Note there is an $80 application fee.

Once issued, licenses are renewed bi-annually in odd years, and registrants must pay a renewal fee and complete 24 hours of continuing education during the two-year renewal period.

Virginia

Architect license applicants in Virginia must hold a bachelor’s degree or higher in architecture and submit a degree verification form. The state also requires three architect reference letters to verify professional work experience and passing scores on all portions of the Architect Registration Exam. 

Candidates may also submit a certificate record in place of references and experience. Once issued, licenses are renewed every two years in the month in which they were issued. Architects must complete 16 hours of continuing education and pay a renewal fee to maintain the license.

Washington

Washington encourages general architect applicants with an accredited bachelor’s or master’s degree in architecture to apply through the Direct Registration process with the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards. After fulfilling all the requirements, including an accredited degree, completion of an Architectural Experience Program and passing scores on all portions of the Architect Registration Exam, applicants must complete the take-home Architect Law Review specific to the state of Washington. License via reciprocity is also available for those who are licensed out of state. To maintain eligibility for renewal, architects must complete 24 hours of continuing education during every two-year renewal period.

West Virginia

The West Virginia Board of Architects sets license requirements that follow the standards set by the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards. Candidates must hold an architecture degree accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board, complete a qualifying experience program and pass all sections of the Architect Registration Exam. 

Licensing is also available via reciprocity if you have a license in another state and have a certificate from the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards or the equivalent.  

Licenses are renewed annually in June, and architects must pay a renewal fee and complete 12 hours of continuing education annually to maintain eligibility for renewal.

Wisconsin

In Wisconsin, applicants for an architect’s license do not need an accredited degree. You can get your license via two pathways:

  • Complete an approved architecture degree program and submit two years of practical experience, or 
  • Submit seven years of practical experience in architectural work

Once the education and experience requirements are met, candidates must pay the $95 application fee, gather letters from five professional references (three of whom must be licensed architects) and submit passing scores on the Architect Registration Exam. Alternatively, applicants may streamline the process by submitting a completed record from the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards.

Once a license is issued, it must be renewed every even year, and license holders must complete 24 hours of continuing education during the renewal period to remain eligible.

Wyoming

Architects in Wyoming must apply for a new license by submitting a completed record from the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards that includes proof of a completed Architect Experience Program, passing scores on the Architect Registration Exam and transcripts from an accredited degree program.

Also, you’ll need to submit three professional character reference forms with the completed application, personal identification and the license fee. Application via reciprocity is an option if you have a license in another state. 

Licenses must be renewed every two years and all architects must complete 12 hours of continuing education during every renewal period.

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