Becoming an Architect
In Western Australia, the Architects Act 2004 requires that any person carrying out the practice of architecture under the title of “Architect” is to be registered with the Architects Board of Western Australia.
In WA, there are three pathways to registration. Which pathway an applicant takes depends on whether the applicant possesses a professional qualification in architecture or not, and if the professional qualification is from an accredited course or not.
To find out more about how to become a registered architect in Western Australia, click here.
Architectural Practice Exam (APE)
The purpose of the Architectural Practice Examination (APE) is to ensure that persons applying to be registered as an architect in any State or Territory in Australia have an adequate knowledge and understanding of the practice of architecture in Australia and a capacity to exercise professional skill.
The APE comprises three parts, as follows:
- Part 1 – Logbook and Statement of Practical Experience
- Part 2 – National Examination Paper
- Part 3 – Examination by Interview
Once all requirements of the three-part APE have been satisfactorily met, candidates can apply to the Architect Registration Board in the State or Territory in which they wish to practice, for registration as an architect.
Part 1: Eligibility – Logbook and Statement of Practical Experience
Candidates are required to record at least 2 years recent practical experience against specified competencies and include a Statement of Practical Experience, which is a brief synopsis of practical experience.
Click here for the APE Logbook.
Click here for the the Board’s Logbook Submission Instructions (Information Sheet 11).
Click here for the APE Parts 1 & 2 Application Form.
Part 2: National Examination Paper (NEP)
The National Examination Paper is a 70 minute “closed book” scenario computer-based exam conducted by the Boards in test centres nominated by the Architects Accreditation Council of Australia in each State or Territory. It consists of nine “scenarios”. Each scenario comprises five multiple choice questions with each multiple choice question having four possible responses, of which only one is correct.
The fee for undertaking Parts 1 & 2 of the APE is $363.25.
Part 3: Examination by Interview
Upon successful completion of Part 2 of the APE, candidates will receive an invitation to attend the Part 3 Examination by Interview.
Each candidate is interviewed by two Architects Board of WA examiners who are experienced practitioners, on the range of work and experience presented by the candidate. The duration of the interview is one hour.
The fee for undertaking Part 3 of the APE is $311.35.
Click here for the APE Part 3 Application Form.
APE Dates for 2020
Ordinarily, two rounds of the APE are conducted each year – Round One in April/June and Round Two in August/October.
However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Architects Accreditation Council of Australia (AACA) determined that Round One of the APE for 2020 would be postponed. Accordingly, the Part 2 National Examination Paper (NEP) which was originally scheduled to be held on Tuesday, 21 April 2020 was postponed until Tuesday, 18 August 2020.
Given the ongoing challenges posed by COVID-19, the AACA has now determined that the most practicable and fair way of implementing the Part 2 NEP, to maximise the opportunity for successful candidates of the APE to apply for registration as an architect in 2020, is for online delivery via remote proctoring for all candidates on Tuesday, 18 August 2020.
If you submitted a Part 1 & 2 application for Round One of the APE in 2020 and were advised that you passed Part 1, you will automatically be enrolled to sit the NEP online on Tuesday, 18 August 2020. The Board will be in contact with you by 12 June 2020 with details regarding the online delivery of the NEP.
If you were intending to apply for Round Two of the APE in 2020, applications for Parts 1 & 2 will open at 9am on 2 June 2020 and will close at 5pm on 16 June 2020. If you are successful with Part 1, you will then be eligible to sit the NEP online on Tuesday, 18 August 2020.
Candidates who successfully complete the NEP on 18 August 2020 will then be eligible to undertake Part 3 of the APE which is currently scheduled to proceed as planned in October 2020. Further details regarding the application dates for Part 3 and the dates for the oral interviews will be posted once they become available.
Please continue to consult this website, and the AACA website, regularly for updates and information regarding the APE in 2020 as it comes to hand.
In lieu of the APE Briefing Session which was due to be held on 27 May 2020, but was cancelled due to COVID-19 restrictions, please consult the below three documents which have been compiled by the Briefing session presenters:
Applying for Registration
Once all three parts of the APE have been successfully completed, candidates are eligible to apply for registration in Western Australia.
Applications for registration are considered by the Board at its monthly meeting. Note that the Board meets on the third Tuesday of the month (excluding December). Your application for registration must be received by the Board by 5pm on the second Tuesday of the month to be eligible for consideration at that month’s Board meeting. Applications received after this time will be considered at the following month’s Board meeting.
Click here for the Board’s Application for Registration as an Architect Form.
Each year, the Board presents two Architects Board Graduate Awards – one to a graduate from the University of Western Australia and one to a graduate from Curtin University.
The Award recognises the excellence of a top performing student who has recently graduated from each University and who is most likely to benefit from travel or further study.
Candidates for the Awards are nominated by the Faculty of each University and the Awards are judged by a selection panel comprising representatives from the relevant University and the Board.
Each prize is valued at $6,000.
For further information regarding the Architectural Practice Examination, the National Standard of Competency for Architects and pathways to registration as an architect, please visit the Architects Accreditation Council of Australia website.