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Architectural Assistant Apprenticeship - Architecture BA (Hons)

Overview

Building a great future

Our apprenticeship programme produces educated, trained, and registered professionals. You'll be able offer creative problem solving and strategic advice related to various types of building, arts, and construction projects.

Architecture is an extraordinary first degree to study. On this highly creative course, you'll learn to draw, model, write and, above all, solve problems which directly improve our society. The degree you'll attain will be Architecture BA (Hons).

The work of an architectural assistant the first step to registration as an architect is acquiring the RIBA part 1 qualification, enabling apprentices to continue their work in practice while studying a professionally-validated degree as an architectural assistant.

Architectural assistants work in organisations of varying sizes, from small practice to large multi-disciplinary organisations. They can be based at locations within project design teams, on site, or a combination of both.  Because their skills are transferable, they may work for other construction and design related businesses (e.g. property consultants, construction companies, planning authorities or interior designers).

In collaboration with other members of a project team, architectural assistants respond to client requirements by preparing, reviewing, and refining building design through various media such as 3D modelling, drawings, and model making.

Duration

The course is 4 years part-time.  Apprentices usually attend university one day per week for the 15 week first semester, and one day per week for the 15 week second semester.  The day at LSBU will always be known well in advance to enable apprentices to plan their working week in practice, and does not vary from week to week.

The full apprenticeship standard and assessment plan can be found on the Institute for Apprenticeships.

Apprenticeship Employment Guidelines
Apprenticeship Evidence Pack Guidance

Why Architecture at LSBU?

No.1  London modern university for research intensity in Architecture (Complete University Guide 2019).
Professional accreditation – the course is fully validated by the Royal Institute of British Architects and prescribed by the Architects Registration Board.
Experience - with roots in London Council School of Building (1904) and Brixton School of Building (1940), LSBU has been offering architectural education for over 100 years.
Top 5 amongst London competitors for overall satisfaction in Architecture (National Student Survey 2018).
Top 3 amongst London competitors for graduate prospects in Architecture (Sunday Times 2019).

Accreditations

Key course information - ordered by mode
Mode Duration Start date Location
Mode
Apprenticeship
Duration
4 years
Start Date
September
Location
Southwark Campus

Case studies

  • Oliver Andrew, BA (Hons) Architecture, alumni

    Oliver Andrew, BA (Hons) Architecture, alumni

    Since graduating from his BA (Hons) Architecture, Oliver has worked at a top London practice, been involved in freelance projects and won an international architecture competition.

  • The Architecture Studios

    The Architecture Studios

    The Architecture Studio space at London South Bank University (LSBU) has inspirational views across London and is used on our undergraduate and postgraduate architecture degree courses.

Modules

This is a highly creative course where design project work is the focus of our studio culture.

Year 1

Semester 1

  • Design 101 (20 credits)
  • Design 102 (20 credits)
  • Technology 1 (10 credits)

Semester 2

  • Design 103 (20 credits)
  • Technology 1 (10 credits)
  • Year 2

    Semester 1

    • Communication 1 (20 credits)
    • Cultural context 1 (20 credits)

    Semester 2

  • Communication 2 (20 credits)
  • Cultural context 2 (20 credits)
  • Year 3

    Semester 1

    • Design 201 (20 credits)
    • Design 202 (20 credits)
    • Technology 2 (10 credits)
    • Technology 3 (lectures only / 0 credits)

    Semester 2

    • Design 203 (20 credits)
    • Technology 2 (10 credits)

    Year 4

    Semester 1

    • Design 301 (20 credits)
    • Design 302 (20 credits)
    • Professional practice (10 credits)

    Semester 2

    • Design 303 (40 credits)
    • Technology 3 (coursework / 20 credits)
    • EPA portfolio and practice report (20 credits)

    Introduction to modules studied

    • Design The acquisition of design skills and knowledge is central to the programme of study, and these are learnt through studio activities and the completion of design projects. A creative as well as analytical approach to designing is encouraged using models, drawings, and computer graphics to explore design concepts. As the course comprises over 50% of its content as design, it should be understood success in this curricular area is central to the course.

      Studio activity also includes learning how to communicate ideas, both verbally and visually, to tutors, students, and fellow apprentices. The presentation of work and the feedback received is referred to as a crit, or review of your work.  The crit/review is an opportunity to explain an individual approach to the design process and to clarify ideas; attendance at all crits/reviews is essential. At the crit/review, everyone will receive verbal and written feedback from tutors and guest critics responding to the project that has been reviewed.  At interim and final crits apprentices will usually be given a crit sheet by the studio tutor to serve as a reflection of the work’s quality and to give guidance that must be responded to.
    • Technology Construction and environmental technologies are integral parts of the design process from conceptual idea to final proposal. At undergraduate level, the principles of these technologies are learnt and this knowledge then developed and applied to key design projects in the programme. The technology and environment syllabus is delivered in lectures, and then assessed by means of coursework as an integral but discreet part of design studio work.  Apprentices can use their knowledge of these technologies as a driver in their architectural thinking, or subsumed by other design influences.
    • Cultural context The cultural context input comprises History and Theory courses. The history and theory courses position the individual student experience within the wider subject area of architecture, establishing views regarding the role of architecture within culture, the ethical and rational critique of architecture, and the application of philosophical thought to architecture.

      As well as establishing rigour in thinking, critical investigation, the application and organisation of research, writing skills, and referencing, studies in the history and theory of architecture encourage students to be aware of precedent.  Precedent refers to the analysis of previous works of architecture, and how diverse design methodologies inform your own proposals in the studio. Historical and theoretical understanding allows students to judge the relative success of various design approaches against criteria including building performance, scale, form, social consequence, and historical significance.
    • Communications Communications involves both analogue drawing and modeling, and the acquisition of advanced digital design skills. Communications 1 introduces 2D and 3D analogue and digital drawing; Communications 2/Digital Media covers the basics of 3D computer modeling and fabrication, and is connected to development of a design project. The teaching of advanced digital drawing software is an essential part of employment in an architect’s office. Apprentices are required to supplement all taught workshops with extensive, self-managed practice in all digital technologies.
    • Professional practice All apprentices are introduced to professional practice through a series of lectures and case studies. The views of practitioners, and of representatives from the professional and statutory bodies are both represented in the lecture series. Apprentices are required to manage and appraise their own working practices with regard to their work. They are taught how to prepare a CV, and to search for work (where relevant).  Apprentices are also encouraged to participate in the RIBA Mentoring Scheme which will again be offered to FT3 and PT5 students (as well as apprentices) this year.

    Employability

    Taking this course and becoming an architectural assistant is a cost and time effective means to the first of three stages in becoming professionally qualified. The course is leads to the award of Architecture BA (Hons) and the professional award of RIBA part 1.

    We aim to develop apprentices’ understanding – and practical application – of the following issues:

    • architects are involved globally in creating a range of buildings and spaces, which not only house people and facilitate their activities but reflect the shared beliefs and values of their societies
    • the scope of architecture involves the conception, elaboration, and production of those spaces, buildings, cities, and landscapes forming the built environment
    • design as the central focus of the LSBU architecture programme where this is understood primarily as a critical, reflective, and analytical cultural practice.  Design has a reciprocal relationship with areas of specialist knowledge including histories and theories of architecture, constructional and environmental technologies, and professional skills
    • the value of a creative and focused education, and rigorous programme of study for apprentices from diverse backgrounds already working in practice and who wish to become professionally qualified architects
    • the intellectual capacity required to think critically, and the practical skills to develop and communicate design ideas through processes of thinking, making, and designing students engage with the material, social, and environmental issues of the contemporary world, drawing inspiration from that world and the world of imagination

    Employability Service

    By completing the apprenticeship route, you’ll have the advantage of having real-world work experience, working in a role related to your area of study. This will give you a competitive edge among other graduates when you complete your apprenticeship standard.

    During your studies – and for two years after you graduate – you’ll have access to our Employability Service, who can help you develop your skills through the Careers Gym workshops and presentations. Our JobShop advisers support students and graduates with finding the right job for them.

    We are University of the Year for Graduate Employment - The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2018.

    Placements

    Facilities

    • The Architecture Studios

      The Architecture Studios

      The Architecture Studio space at London South Bank University (LSBU) has inspirational views across London and is used on our undergraduate and postgraduate architecture degree courses.

    • Building Information Modelling (BIM) Centre

      Building Information Modelling (BIM) Centre

      LSBU is helping transform the construction industry through its Building Information Modelling (BIM) Centre. The BIM Centre acts as a hub for innovation, professional training and networking amongst practice experts in the built environmental sector. These facilities are used by students and for short courses.

    • Digital Architecture Robotic Lab

      Digital Architecture Robotic Lab

      This advanced digital manufacturing robotic lab is designed for high-quality research, as well as developing commercial applications for architecture, and features a Kuka robotic arm that can produce architectural components.

    Teaching and learning

    Learning on an apprenticeship offers a combination of academic education and practical training; it is learning informed and enriched by professional practice.  Apprentices are required to attend a combination of tutorials, workshops, lectures, seminars, and site or building visits (the latter other than those undertaken in the workplace).  The course is principally taught by staff in the division of architecture, although in some instances staff from other departments and disciplines are involved. Where possible, tutors and guests from outside the university are also invited to present lectures and provide specialist inputs to a particular subject area or project.

    Studio structure

    Central to the LSBU concept of postgraduate architecture education is the studio system, operating across part and full-time courses. The studios provide a framework for a range of relevant intellectual and practical specialisms to inform design work.

    View the 2018 exhibition catalogue.

    Entry requirements

    • A Level BBC or;
    • BTEC National Diploma DDM or;
    • Access to HE qualifications with 15 Distinctions 30 Merits or;
    • Equivalent level 3 qualifications worth 128 UCAS points (must include an art or design subject)
    • We require a portfolio of work to be submitted.
    • Applicants must hold 5 GCSEs A-C including Maths and English or equivalent (reformed GCSEs grade 4 or above).
    • We welcome qualifications from around the world. English language qualifications for international students: IELTS score of 6.0 or Cambridge Proficiency or Advanced Grade C.

    Non-academic entry criteria, for example requirements set by professional or sponsoring bodies:

    • confirmation of employment offer in architect’s practice registered as hosting L6 apprentices

    How to apply

    International students

    International (non Home/EU) applicants should follow our international how to apply guide.

    Instructions for Home/EU applicants
    Mode Duration Start date Application code Application method
    Mode
    Apprenticeship
    Duration
    4 years
    Start date
    September
    Application code
    5369
    Application method

    An Apprenticeship Standard is comprised of a programme of study, an End Point Assessment and on-the-job learning. This means that in addition to meeting academic requirements, you’ll  need to be employed in a role related to your apprenticeship. The process of applying depends on whether you have an employer to sponsor (and support) you.

    If you are employed and your employer has confirmed they will support your apprenticeship:

    You are welcome to submit an application via our online application system. You’ll need to provide details of your employment/employer as part of the application. You’ll also need to ensure you and your employer meet the requirements – find out who can be an apprentice to see if you meet the entry requirements and employer commitments to find out more about your employer’s role.

    If you are not employed:

    • You will need to find a job role related to the apprenticeship you wish to apply for, with an employer who is happy to support you. If you would like to find an employer to support your apprenticeship with LSBU, you can search which employers are currently advertising Apprenticeships via the National Apprenticeship Service website searching for ‘London South Bank University’ as keywords.
    • If there are no search results, this means there are currently no vacancies. We update our vacancies regularly, so please do check back regularly.
    • Many employers advertise their apprenticeship vacancies on their websites or via other portals. You could search for ‘find an apprenticeship’ online.
    • When you’re ready to apply, see the government's advice on how to write a winning apprenticeship application and make your application using our online application system.

    Further information for apprentices

    If you’re a prospective apprentice, you can find out more about who can be an apprentice on our student pages.

    Further information for employers

    If you’re an employer, you can find information about the employer commitments and further related information on the related pages for business.

    Fees and funding

    Funding

    The cost of the apprenticeship is paid fully by the employer (sometimes part funded by the government) through apprenticeship levy. The apprenticeship levy is a pot of money some companies pay into, which all businesses have access to spend on the training costs of apprenticeships. Companies fall into two categories: levy-payers (who pay into the pot) and non-levy payers (who do not). You can find out more in our Levy and Funding section, specifically for employers

    The apprentice does not contribute toward the cost of study.

    Bands

    Apprenticeship standards are all assigned a funding band by the Government – these funding bands are the maximum amount the Government will fund via the levy towards a given apprenticeship standard. There are currently 30 funding bands ranging from £1,000 to £27,000.

    Incentives

    Employers with less than 50 staff sending an apprentice aged 16-18 will have 100% of the training costs paid by the government. All employers who employ an apprentice aged 16-18 on the first day of teaching will receive a £1,000 incentive from the government. You can find out more in our Levy and Funding section, specifically for employers.

    Cost

    You can find out the funding band for an Apprenticeship Standard on the Government website. To find out how much we are charging, please get in touch with us at apprenticeships@lsbu.ac.uk

    Field trips

    Some modules include field with and site visits, which may be residential or outside the United Kingdom, ranging from three to five days. These are organised by the Division and students   are required to contribute towards the cost.  If there are any field trips or any course visits as part of your course, we will let you know in good time.

    Case studies

    Select a case study and read about practical project work, students' placement experiences, research projects, alumni career achievements and what it’s really like to study here from the student perspective.

    • Oliver Andrew, BA (Hons) Architecture, alumni

      Oliver Andrew, BA (Hons) Architecture, alumni

      Since graduating from his BA (Hons) Architecture, Oliver has worked at a top London practice, been involved in freelance projects and won an international architecture competition.

    • The Architecture Studios

      The Architecture Studios

      The Architecture Studio space at London South Bank University (LSBU) has inspirational views across London and is used on our undergraduate and postgraduate architecture degree courses.

    • Architecture end of year exhibition

      Architecture end of year exhibition

      The annual end-of-year Architecture exhibition is not only a showcase of skills but also a huge team effort in putting it together.

    • Building Information Modelling (BIM) Centre

      Building Information Modelling (BIM) Centre

      LSBU is helping transform the construction industry through its Building Information Modelling (BIM) Centre. The BIM Centre acts as a hub for innovation, professional training and networking amongst practice experts in the built environmental sector. These facilities are used by students and for short courses.

    • Architecture students' work showcase

      Architecture students' work showcase

      A showcase of BA (Hons) Architecture degree students' practical portfolio work, produced in years one, two and three of the undergraduate degree course (professionally accredited by the Royal Institution of British Architects (RIBA).

    • Sparking business ideas – the programme that allows students to test their ideas while they study

      Sparking business ideas – the programme that allows students to test their ideas while they study

      LSBU Architecture student Peter Oboko received funding, mentoring and office space to test out his ideas, enabling him to create a viable business

    Prepare to start

    There are steps the apprentices, the employer and the University need to complete before you start your course. Take a look at the steps to be completed in the New Students: Apprentices section. Employers may also like to look at our steps to offering an apprenticeship.

     
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    Contact information

    Course Enquiries - UK/EU and Employer-sponsor

    Tel: 0800 923 8888

    Tel: +44 (0) 20 7815 6100

    Get in touch

    Course Enquiries - EU/International

    Tel: +44 (0) 20 7815 6189

    Get in touch
     
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