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Right space

education Updated: Feb 22, 2012 09:35 IST
Hindustan Times
Architecture

The lowdown
Architecture deals with planning and design of buildings and structures. Architects are involved in designing a variety of structures, such as houses, apartments and colonies, offices and industrial complexes, hospitals, hotels, airport terminals, stadiums, shopping and commercial complexes, schools, etc. They provide professional services to individuals and organisations not only regarding new constructions but also for alterations and renovations. Further specialisation in the field can be in industrial design, urban design, landscape architecture, town planning, environmental planning, transport planning, and even disaster management. These post graduate courses are open to BArch degree/diploma holders. The prospects for archtects are very good. Architects will always be in need as the demand outstrips supply, especially with the need for quality infrastructure in a growing economy

Clockwork
9.30am: Reach office
11am: Discuss status of a project with colleagues
Noon: At the drawing board. Sketch out ideas
2pm: On the computer; transfer paper sketches onto the computer
3pm: Hold meetings with clients and colleagues to discuss the project
5pm: Discuss outcome with seniors; re-do or finalise sketches
7pm: Leave for home if work is complete

The payoff
Pay packages depend on the type of employment taken up. Private consultancy in architecture can fetch the highest returns. As a starter, you can expect a salary of Rs 20,000 a month and in two to three years, about Rs 40,000

Skills/TRAITS
* Good creative and aesthetic sense
* Eye for detail
* Understanding people’s needs is at the core of this profession
* You should be a creative artist with an interest and bent towards designing
* Ability to sketch a freehand plan is beneficial while explaining intricate details of the structure of clients
* You should have sound knowledge of the real estate sector, which comes in handy while working on projects that deal with urban planning

Getting there
Anybody who has studied math in senior school can apply for admission. BArch is a five-year programme. Most schools and colleges select students through a written test. On completion of the bachelor’s programme, you can study architecture at the postgraduate level also
* Entrance test for BArch programmes: CBSE conducts a nationwide test, All India Engineering Entrance Examination. Most colleges also accept the National Aptitude Test for architecture, conducted by the National Institute of Advanced Studies in Architecture

Institutes and URLs
* School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi
www.spa.ac.in
* Centre for Environmental Planning and Technology, CEPT University, Ahmedabad
www.cept.ac.in
* Sushant School of Art and Architecture, Gurgaon
www.sushantschool.org

Pros and cons
* Allows you to combine science with art and design
* Allows you to stay interested as every project is a new learning experience
* Allows you to live out your design dreams
* It’s challenging as well as satisfying work
* You get to travel a lot
* The profession does not really allow for flexibility, part-time or work-from-home options
* Not a regular nine-to-five job

Architecture gives you an opportunity to think rationally and also gives you scope for using your imagination. With the need for urban spaces growing, architects have a huge role to play KT Ravindran, professor of urban design, School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi