School heads welcome call to scrap the Parts 1-3 system
Heads of the UK’s schools of architecture have welcomed calls to end the Parts 1-3 architectural education system
The heads of the UK’s schools of architecture have welcomed the findings of a new report which calls for the end of the Parts 1-3 architectural education system and a break with Europe-wide qualifications.
Presented to the SCHOSA annual conference last week, the landmark Pathways and Gateways document by the independent UK Architectural Education Review Group (UKAERG) recommends a new ‘simple, fair, and reliable’ gateway to becoming an architect.
The report – which will be submitted to Terry Farrell’s government-backed review of architecture policy – calls for a single access point to the profession, the ditching of the Parts 1-3 nomenclature, and a shift in the focus of UK architecture regulation from possession of equivalent awards to demonstrating equivalent competence.
These reforms, the group claims, would allow higher education institutions to develop ‘more distinctive programmes, tailored to the needs and aspirations of students and graduate employers’.
SCHOSA chair Alex Wright, who also chaired the UKAERG, said: ‘There is an urgent need for additional flexibility to suit the needs of students and the profession. The review group found a broad consensus now exists around the need for change and hopefully this report will be a significant step in helping to mobilise that consensus.
‘The aim is to promote flexibility, variety, and equity in the system. It’s in the interests of the universities and the profession to attract the most talented students and provide them with a range of possible careers within architecture and beyond it.’
Among the other demands is a break from the European Union’s professional qualifications directive which, according to the report, ‘appears to be moving in the opposite direction’ of UK needs for a more flexible framework.
A revised professional qualifications directive is expected to be published this year, setting out a Europe-wide standard for the length of architectural education and training.UKAERG said EU universities – where undergraduate architecture is funded, unlike in the UK – had promoted a restrictive framework ‘misaligned with the requirements of the English and wider UK higher education sector.’