Often one hears comments like 'so and so building was built by so and so - a great architect in the past century' or 'this building is an example of - 15th century Arabian architecture.' From these comments, it might be said that architecture is linked with buildings. This is partly true for architecture is defined as the art and science of building. Architecture is not just restricted to buildings, it covers much more.

How To Become An Architect: Architecture is studied both in the universities and polytechnics. In the case of universities you'll be required to sit for - Maths, Physics and English in the ~ME. The fourth subject would be selected from either Fines Arts, Technical Drawing, Chemistry and any other Arts or Social Science subject depending on the University. In addition, one re- quires at least 5 O'Level credits in the 3 core subjects above and any 2 of the others.

These days in the universities, both the first degree (i.e. Bachelor degree) and the Masters is combined. So a course in architecture runs for 6 years, with a qualification of MSc (Masters of Science) or MED (Masters of Environmental Design), depending on the university.

Upon completion there are certain exams you'll take before you are qualified as a professional. Two bodies: the Nigerian Institute of Architecture (NIA) and Architecture Registration Council of Nigeria (ARCON) see to the affairs of architects in Nigeria.

The number of exams a person takes depends on one's qualification and is decided by Educational Board of me NIA. For instance, an MSc holder in architecture from a NIA recognised-university will only take one exam - the Professional Practice Exam, (PPE) a year after graduation. On becoming a professional architect you are given a seal that is specific to you. This you’ll impress on all your designs.

Apart from the academic requirement, you must have the flair for creativity and always thinking about new ideas. Although architecture affords a person independence, it also trains one to be sub missive to the Will of the customer, even if it is against a person's ideas.

An .architect is trained to meet deadlines, so one requires a high degree of self-discipline. Just like architecture IS neither arts nor science, so is it not only about building. Architects could go into the production of machines, toys, packaging, model making of cars, houses e.t.c.

The Muslim Architect: Before submitting to the Will of customers, a Muslim architect is to submit to the Will of his Lord and Creator, Allah who is Al Musawwir (the Fashioner) and Al Bari (the Maker). A Muslim architect is of immense importance in a community. For instance when designing a house he/she will take into consideration the direction of the qibla, so that one doesn’t face the qibla while toileting. The rooms will be constructed such that while one is sleeping one follows all Islamic sleeping positions, like not backing the qibla. Apart from houses, mosques will be beautifully constructed facing the qibla.


This article was culled from the publications of Deen Communication Limited
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