Reza Nik Studio
an experimental architecture practice


A weekly piece reflecting on current thoughts, theories, research and sometimes creative writing.

[to be an architect]

I will be focusing on studying in the next 3 months in order to write the architectural licensing exam - the last step necessary to be able to legally call myself an “architect”. Not many people know the many steps architects have to go through in order to obtain their license in North America. It is quite a lengthy process and I think more people need to know this in order to value the work that we do. For the amount of years we spend training and studying, we are definitely not compensated enough when compared to other professional degrees. It doesn’t all happen overnight, and it usually takes about 8-10 years minimum. You really need to be in it for the long-game not in it for a quick buck!

I’ve had my fair share of skepticism and doubts over the years and cancelled writing the exams about 3 years ago while leaving “architecture”……but after completing all other steps in this long process, it’s time to run to the finish line, or at least I will make an attempt to… 🤞🏼

Steps to becoming an architect:

  1. Education: a professional degree from an accredited university (M.Arch) . Minimum 3-4 yrs undergraduate studies + 2-4 yrs Masters = 6-8 years

  2. Experience: must work as an intern architect for a total of 3720 hours in the various phases of an architectural project (schematic design, design development, construction docs etc.) = minimum 2.5-3 years

  3. Admissions Course: 3-day full-day courses run by the organizing body

  4. Examination: 4 exams over 2 days which can only be written once a year in November (unless writing the AREs, the American accepted equivalent which are more flexible in timing).

If you’re interested to learn more, you could check out the RAIC’s website


*day 187

Reza Nik