the final stePS SO you can call yourself an architect
* The information below is focused on current requirements in New Zealand only *
STEP 1: FIND OUT THE REQUIREMENTS
Each country has different registration requirements. Find out how registration works in your country, get online, and if you can, try to contact a local assessor. The requirements are thorough, but if you are practicing and engaged in what you do, shouldn't be prohibitive or scary.
If you don't think you 'fit' the 'normal' - reach out. There are often alternative pathways available to demonstrate your competence.
STEP 2: START STUDYING
The hardest part is starting - so you may as well just do it. There are a number of different ways you can start, from working through the requirements step-by-step, to focusing on themes and topics, or reading previous applications. First? Find out what you don't know, and focus on getting that experience.
STEP 3: FORM A STUDY GROUP
A study group is really more like a support group. They'll motivate you when you can't be bothered, throw the tough questions at you, and share their own experiences. Seek out others to share the journey with - your understanding of the profession will be richer for it.
STEP 4: Prepare your case study
In New Zealand, the case study is the 'foot in the door', a written assessment of a project or projects that you have been involved in, where you describe and critique the methods and processes used throughout the project life, with emphasis on best practice, ethics, relationships and decision making. Keeping notes on your project as you go can help keep things fresh.
Step 5: Sort out the Admin
There's no way around it: the admin involved in preparing and submitting your application is pretty hefty. You need to fill out multiple forms, have people witness your signature on them, and provide references - to name just a few. When you're stressed about finishing your case study the admin can get in the way - so just do it now!
Step 6: Nail the conversation
The final step in New Zealand is the conversation - your chance to sit down with two registered architects and have a professional discussion about various aspects of practice. During this process your competence as a professional will be assessed, which is as much about how you respond to queries and things you don't necessarily know, as it is about what you do know.