Architecture - positive changes need to be absorbed by the education system
Defining architecture in precise words is a difficult task. The field of Architecture has always been a true reflector of the prevailing socio economic and cultural trends that exist within a society. Not only designs of buildings, but even the planning of towns and cities is also found to be influenced by various parameters such as religious practices and rituals, customs, political system, trade and commerce; therefore it can be rightly said that architecture is like a mirror of the society. Architecture is one of the most popular and earliest professions of the world and has been in the service of humanity since time immemorial. In recent times, Architecture has undergone a process of evolution throughout the successive stages of social development, and today also, it continues to.
Architecture can be termed as art of space designing. Three basic guiding factors of architecture are utility, aesthetics and stability. Other social influences also play an important role in the evolution of architectural form.
Architecture is a Social Art
Architecture and society have been closely related for years. It reflects the changes that take place in a given society as social, economic and cultural trends are documented in the form of architecture. Architecture evolved when man started living in caves or, maybe, when he first felt the need of the shelter. Man has a natural instinct to live in a group which has led it to live in a society. Man’s necessity to live in a shelter has given rise to architecture. Thus there are strong and complicated relations among Man, Architecture and the Society and it needs proper understanding. Unlike any other art form, architecture is designed to be used for mankind such that it has been always build with people in and around it. Political systems as well as trade and commerce also have their effect in the type of architecture that gets developed. In all walks of life, advancements made by that society are seen through architecture.
Architecture is the Art and Science of a Built Environment
Architecture is both an art and a science of built environment. It is art in designing the structure and science in the construction of the structure. The ratio of art and science in architecture has always been a topic of various debates and discussions; though it can be safely said that the both are equally important.
Architecture Education - positive changes need to be absorbed by the education system
‘Council of Architecture’ (COA) – a statutory body of Government of India under Ministry of Human Resources - regulates architectural Education in India . Minimum Standards of Architecture Education were earlier framed as a part of section 21 of Architect’s Act, 1972. It is mandatory for every school of architecture in India to follow the minimum standards enlisted. Every Architecture graduate has to register him/herself with the Council of Architecture and after that he/she gets the license to practice as an Architect.
There are a total of 413 colleges of architecture in India that are mainly:
- Government institutions
- Having grants from governments
- Self financing institutions
The services offered by an architect are very specialized these days. The larger cross section of the society now has to be served by an architect. This positive change needs to be taken into consideration immediately by the education system so that the architecture graduates are equipped to serve the society rationally. Starting from decade of nineties India has seen the dramatic increase in the economy and that necessitated more professionals to cater to its need. The number of schools of architecture in India has increased. The fact that more number of architects are employed by the construction industry itself proves that there is a need to further increase the number of schools of architecture.
The profession teaches you to be creative and it is then when your hobbies gradually turn into your professional pursuit.
Eligibility Criteria for Admission to Architecture Colleges in India
- Students with more than 50% marks in aggregate in 12th examination of new 10+2 scheme of Senior School Certificate Examination or equivalent with Mathematics as subjects of examination at the 10+2 level
- Students with 10+3 Diploma (any stream) recognized by Central/ State Governments with 50% aggregate marks
- Students with International Baccalaureate Diploma, after ten years of schooling, with not less than 50% marks in aggregate and with Mathematics as compulsory subject of examination
National Aptitude Test for Architecture (NATA)
As per the Minimum Standards prescribed by Council of Architecture (CoA) under the Architects Act, 1972, admission of candidates to first year of 5-year B.Arch. degree course is through an aptitude test - National Aptitude Test for Architecture (NATA). The Aptitude Test in Architecture consists of 2 papers: (i) Test - I – Aesthetic Sensitivity - 100 marks - duration of test:
- Test - I – Aesthetic Sensitivity - 100 marks - Duration of test: One hour
- Test - II – Drawing - 100 marks - Duration of test: Two hours
The National Aptitude Test in Architecture (NATA) measures the applicant’ aptitude for a specific field, i.e. Architecture. The test measures drawing and observation skills, sense of proportion, aesthetic sensitivity and critical thinking ability that have been acquired over a long period of time, and that are related to specific field of study, i.e. Architecture.
Job Prospects in Architecture
The basic training of an architect enhances the creativity in a person and equip him/her with technical knowledge. Therefore a person with the degree of architecture can work in a field where creativity is required and/or technical analytical work is necessary.
Thus he can pursue either a career or higher studies (post graduation courses) in India and outside India as well In the following field of architecture:
- Urban Design
- Urban Planning
- Environment Architecture
- Eco architecture
- Construction management
- Project management
- Heritage Conservation
The list can be a long one as every year new fields come up and new courses are being approved by the Council of Architecture.
With the infrastructural development in the country, the need of an architect is bound to increase many folds in future. The development authorities in a city do not sanction the plan and drawing of any piece of architecture unless it is designed and signed by a licensed architect. The concept of the smart city cannot be accomplished unless an architect is the member of the team. We cannot retain the quality of our heritage without architecture, the costing and estimation of the project is not possible without an architect.
Being architect is a boon because the profession offers financial stability with ample of time to lead peaceful lifestyle.
Best wishes to all those who wish to join our family of architects.
Author: Dr. Ujwala Chakradeo
An Architect and Urban Planner of repute, Dr. Ujwala Chakradeo is the Principal of W.E.S’ Smt. Manoramabai Mundle College of Architecture, Nagpur.