Students still have to complete the brutal 5 year course which is often made longer as tutors regularly tell hard-working students to 'repeat the year'. RIBA still does nothing to avoid the injustices experienced by thousands of students who are failed for any lame reason. Architecture schools LOVE to fail anyone whose designs or personality they don't favour and no questions are ever asked.
Marking project work, since the course's inception in the 1950s has been, and still is a roulette system in which tutors pluck numbers from the sky, and students have no readdress against brutal decisions that will adversely affect the rest of their lives.
Meanwhile others sail through the entire course never touching pen to paper as it is possible to have someone else produce your designs and drawings and hand them in as your own. Cheating is rife and occurs in every architecture schools and is even condoned. For some unknown reason the schools refuse to test that a student is able to produce his/her own drawings. The RIBA 'validates' these joke courses.
I studied in the 1980's and the experience just about bankrupted my parents who were school teachers and it just about tore our family apart as, after three years, their enthusiastic, creative, academically able child came home a wreck.
I can't imagine how bad it is now. Basically it isn't worth getting into horrific debt to do this useless, barbaric course. Since its inception in the 1950s 'little hitler' tutors have been marking project work based on no set criteria, plucking marks from the sky and only teaching through criticism which some confuse with verbal abuse.
I was failed at the end of 3rd year and told casually to 'repeat the year' despite having a real aptitude for it (well two architecture firms employed me during a recession and told me this). Sadly my experience is a common one. Architecture schools love to fail students whose designs or personality they don't favour. Stay clear if you want to stay sane. However, if you are wealthy just employ an architect to do your drawings and hand them in as your own and gain a degree without touching pen to paper - plenty do.
Architecture schools are allowed to discriminate (consciously or unconsciously) because they NEVER a have to justify their marking decisions for project work, which is highly subjective. Students are failed for any lame reason, even just because they are not seen to be suffering enough. Honestly the current education system is so twisted some tutors will everything in their power to ensure some students NEVER become architects. Questioning students are sometimes singled out and punished.
Marking project work based on a set criteria and setting up an appeals procedure would at least stop tutors so readily abusing their power.
Fees are a problem but the university course is more of a problem. Studying architecture is highly subjective, marks are dished out based on no set criteria and students are not tested what they are taught (techical drawing is NEVER taught). Also cheating is rife. Cheats pass (by handing in work produced by student boyfriends/girlfriends further up the school or by qualified architects who they have commissioned to carry out the work), while hard-working, capable student's fail. Schools NEVER even test that a student can produce their own drawings. I am not making this up. Read this blog 'theappealofarchitecture'.
Comment on: Does architectural education need an overhaul?
I've written about my experience at architecture school in the uk. It's the only degree that I know where hard-working, clever, creative people are failed at the end of third year and leave with no qualification. Yet it happens all the time. The first degree should be a more general degree and the subjective design element kept out of it. Only in Part 2 should the course focus seriously on design. My book, The Appeal of Architecture (available on Amazon) gives a unique insight to how the architecture schools in the uk operate goto http://theappealofarchitecture.blogspot.co.uk/ It's free the 1st Sat of each month.