7 Reasons NOT TO Study Architecture – The Worst Things About Architecture School | SAS Podcast 12

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What is the worst part about studying architecture?

Well, I’ve got 7 reasons not to study architecture. But, come on. I love architecture as much as the next student. Learn how to overcome these problems to become the best architecture student you can.

Here are 7 reasons why you’ll hate architecture school and 7 ways to overcome it.

I hope you enjoy the show! Feel free to discuss anything in the comments below. I try to respond to every comment 🙂

Hey! My name’s Kyle.

From a sample of 25,000 students that applied to enter architecture school:
15.30% of them were accepted.
8.50% of them made it through to the second half of their education.
2.04% of them were awarded a degree in Architecture (post-graduate)
0.78% of them ended up working a job in architecture.

Successful Archi Student is a platform for architecture students to learn off one another to become the LESS THAN 1% of students who end up being successful in the profession.

On the podcast, you’ll hear from practicing architects, other successful students and myself, Kyle, a third year architecture student from South Australia.

Doing so, you’ll learn the tips and tricks to excel past the rest of your cohort and build the skills needed to take your work to another level.

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Episode 12 Transcript. 7 Reasons NOT TO Study Architecture – The Worst Things About Architecture School


This is the Successful Archi Student’s Podcast episode 12.

Hey guys, welcome to the 12th episode of the Successful Archi Student Podcast. I’m happy for you guys to have joined me today. And I want to talk about something that’s gonna kind of trip you out here because I want to talk about the seven worst things about architecture school. The seven reasons not to study architecture. And you might be thinking, Why the hell would I make a video on that one, I’m trying to promote this idea of studying architecture. And for those that for those of you that know me, I absolutely love architecture. And for me to make a video like this, you might be thinking, what, what in the hell is this guy doing? But there is a reason for doing so. It’s not going to be some negative video where I complain about seven things that I absolutely hate. No, these are, these are kind of seven misconceptions about architecture school and the things that people often hear, and the things that drive people away from actually studying it.

Where I don’t want this video to be negative and impactful in that way, I want it to kind of change your mind and change your perspective on the things that you think that you originally have no control of. But in reality, you have the power to influence these things and change the way that you perceive them.

For example, the first reason why you shouldn’t study architecture is because you get a lot Lack of sleep, you become sleep deprived, you know, and if you’ve been following the Instagram and Facebook page, you’d see that I create a lot of memes about sleep deprivation and lack of sleep. But, it’s just a misconception. And the thing that we perceive to be true to architecture students, the matter of the fact is, is that we’re the ones that are depriving ourselves of sleep. And it doesn’t matter if you’re studying architecture or philosophy or neuroscience, it doesn’t matter what you’re studying. If you’re putting yourself in a situation to be deprived of sleep, then that’s going to be the reality of it. And if you’re finding yourself depriving yourself of sleep well, in architecture school, you’ve lost all your, you’re obviously doing something wrong. And it might be in the sense that you’ve got some bad habits where you stay up on social media at night, or you might be leaving your work to the last minute where you have to cram it in into the last week. And so really, when you narrow it down, it’s not really the fact that architecture is causing this sleep deprivation. It’s really Really the fact that a lack of discipline and lack of time management is causing this. And so obviously, the way to get around this is to manage your time better, create different routines and habits in your life. Maybe if you want yourself to have eight hours of sleep every night, you need to make it a routine to go to bed at nine o’clock and wake up at five in the morning, every morning. So that’s the first reason why not to study architecture. It’s the misconception of having a lack of sleep and depriving yourself of sleep, when in reality, you can avoid this if you just manage your time properly, and you have some discipline in the way that you study and not lead your projects to the last minute.

The second reason why not to study architecture is the fact that there’s a lot of group work and this is hard because it’s like, it could either be on your good list or your bad list of things about architecture school. For me, I find that group work can be extremely suckish especially if you’ve got someone in your group who doesn’t show up or you’ve got what you’ve always got someone that doesn’t show up. You’ve always got to someone that doesn’t put in any work, you’ve always got someone that rocks up late to every time you guys want to meet up. But again, this is a bit of a misconception, there is a lot of group work, yes, but then there’s also a lot of solo work where you’re working on your own things. And this might be something that you enjoy more, or you might more enjoy spending time with other people socializing and communicating in a group. But the fact of the matter is, is that it’s whatever you perceive it to be, if you’re telling yourself you hate group work, because these people always like, maybe it’s something that you’re doing to cause them to be late or to not rock up. You know, sometimes it’s out of your influence. But most of the time, there is something that you can do to influence how your group work ends up going. I myself used to think that I had no control over what grade my group would get in a group assignment. But then I realized that you can take charge of your group and you can become a leader and that doesn’t mean bossing people around it means communicating with people effectively and, and really motivating people to do well. And so I understand that not everyone has this leadership skill, but that’s Something you can work on and that’s the great thing about architecture school it’s it’s a place where you can work on communicating with others and socializing and, and becoming a leader. And so then obviously, there’s two ways to see this is that you’ve got shitty groups that never rock up and don’t do the work that they’re told to do. Otherwise, you’ve got the other side where you can work on your leadership skills and it gives you an opportunity to face challenges and improve yourself because of that. And so that’s probably one of my greatest things about architecture school probably my one of my favorite things is that challenge of group work because I’m not usually an extroverted person. I love working by myself, I love being locked up in my room just to work on something for 16 hours. But having the challenge of dealing with other people and motivating others to be honest, not on the same level as me, but they’re obviously already at the same level as me, we all know the same technical information, but some people might not be as motivated as the other and so to have motivate people and push people to become the best person they can be. I really enjoyed having that challenge because of architecture school.

The third reason why not to study architecture or the third worst thing about architecture school is the lack of jobs upon graduating. And again, bit of a misconception. A lot of people say how there’s, it’s such a hard industry to get into. And there’s such a low demand and low and low demand of jobs and a higher supply of graduates that are looking for jobs. And so where it may be more difficult to get into architecture then say, a trade or, you know, working as a bricklayer or something where there is a high demand of jobs that are needed, and a low supply of people looking for those jobs. It raises the point that you need to create these job opportunities for yourself rather than waiting for them to come to you rather than sitting at home. Wondering why you haven’t gotten a job. After graduating, well, you need to go out and talk to people you need to go networking you need to go push yourself outside of your own comfort zone to meet these people and get yourself out there. And so when there is a lack of jobs, this gives you the opportunity to either work for yourself or create something for yourself. Otherwise, push yourself to become that person that is interacting with others and getting your name out in the industry. You know, when I graduate can’t find a job. It’s not usually a lack of jobs out there in the field, there’s a there’s an actual abundance of jobs out there. There are always employers looking for employees. But most of the time, it’s a lack of initiative or it’s a bit of a laziness that the graduate doesn’t want to go out and spend the time to find the right job and create those opportunities for themselves. And so then obviously, it’s not a bad thing about architecture school. If you’re motivated and you’re ready to go job searching upon graduating.

That obviously leads us to the fourth reason why not to study architecture, which is alcoholism and drug abuse. No, I’m joking, but not really, this is kind of a valid point here. A lot of students say that they resort to alcoholism because of architecture school, and they’ll go out every weekend and drink themselves to death because of the high amount of stress and anxiety they have from architecture school. But I think this is like genuinely like a valid thing for me to talk about. Because if you’re finding yourself getting stressed out and anxious because of architecture school, to the point where you have the need to resort to alcohol, well, you need to have something to fill that hole of alcoholism, rather than going out and drinking on the weekends. Maybe you need a side hobby or a passion for something that fills that hole. And so we’re I don’t want to get too much into depth here, because I could probably talk about this for a very long time, I do suggest, if you find yourself drinking too much like I used to do, then find something that you’re truly passionate about that replaces that habit of drinking. So, there’s a fourth reason why not to study architecture because you will resort to alcoholism, and drugs. Which leads us to number five.

The fifth reason why you shouldn’t study architecture, which is there’s just so much damn stuff to carry to school, you know, especially on presentation day, you might have two models and your poster and your folio and you might have some sketches as well to pin up and then you’ve got your pencil case and your notebooks and your sketch pads and your rollers and the list goes on and on and on the things that you need to carry. For someone like me, I don’t drive a car, I ride a motorbike. So when I get on my motorbike, I sit down and have all these straps on Me and I’ve got, you know, three different bags with stuff sticking all out of it. And you know, that’s one of the reasons why I don’t like architecture school because you’ve just got so much damn stuff to carry. And I’m sure you guys can agree with me on that, because we have a lot of work and a lot of stuff to bring. And, you know, obviously don’t have a way around this except I recommend don’t riding a motorbike. Instead, drive a car or take the bus or something.

Number six, the sixth reason why not to study architecture is the fact that you get redo’ed. Now imagine working on your project to the point where you’ve spent days on it, or weeks on it, and you’re putting all this hard work, and then you go to present it to your teacher, and he gets out a red pen and puts a cross through it and says, redo.

Now I myself have never experienced this. I’ve only seen and heard about this, because in Australia, we don’t have redo’s. I’m sure in places like the United States, you don’t have redo’s. But in countries like India and Indonesia, I believe that you have these things called redo’s, where a teacher will just put a cross through your work and tell you to redo it, because it’s not good enough. Now Honestly, I have so much sympathy for you guys that have reduced because I’ve never experienced it. And I’m thankful that I haven’t. But the fact is that, you know, they could be kind of good for you, in the sense that if your works not good enough, and you go to present it to a client, that’s exactly what the clients going to say they’re going to be like, no, redo it, you know, and that’s what architecture is about. It’s about, you know, grabbing the things that aspirations of your client and then putting them on paper and putting them into functional plans that a designer can use to build it. But if it’s not what the client aspires for their project, then they’re going to obviously want you know, the best project they can get. And the client doesn’t want something that’s totally different from what they’ve wanted. You know, they want it to be excited. As what they imagined it to be in their head. And so yeah, if you can’t design to be like that in the first stage, which most of the time you have to go over your designs, you have to, you know, revise all the work that you do, especially in the profession, especially in architecture school as well. And the fact that you have readers, it’s kind of the exact same as that in the real world, where you’ve got the client who’s asking you to redo your work, because it’s not exactly as they imagined it to be. And you know, that’s fine. That’s what architecture is about. as frustrating as it can be. And, you know, as it as it is one of the worst things about architecture school, it’s also a good thing because you’re getting the perspective of somebody else on your design work. And to be able to understand that and to design appropriately for that to revise your work is so important, and I think it it kind of is helpful to have reduce as much as I’m thankful. I don’t have them but again, it’s just your perspective. If you if you think of it as a good thing, then it becomes a good thing. But if you’re thinking of it as something that frustrates you, and you’re wondering why when you think you might have the perfect project, obviously, that your teacher or your client doesn’t think the same as you and so to understand their perspective on your work, you know, it’s a good understanding to have because you’ve got another opinion on it. And, you know, design work is very subjective. So, it is obviously a good thing to have. Now, that was a bit of a mouthful. But yeah, that’s my take on redo’s and that’s the sixth reason why you shouldn’t study architecture, when really you should.

Number seven, this is the final reason why not to study architecture is the fact that it costs a lot. Again, this is a big misconception. And the way to counter this is actually by not buying dumb shit. You know, if you’re only buying the essentials, it’s really not that expensive, except a lot of architecture shoes. You know, I post a lot of memes about this as well. So I’m guilty of this, but a lot of students and myself think that is that it is extremely expensive. When in reality, you know, you don’t have any textbooks, you know, law students spent over a grand on textbooks. And when we go to spend, probably you can buy all the architectural equipment you need for under $200. In Australia, probably under $100. Realistically, except the fact is we go and we spend, you know, $140 on a drawing board instead of buying one online for $30. And, you know, we go out at lunch at university every day and spend $12 on dumplings and rice. When really you can make it at home for $1.50. So, I think that it really isn’t that expensive if you buy smart rather than buying dumb shit.

And so there you have it, guys, there are seven reasons why you shouldn’t study architecture, when really, I believe you should study architecture because it’s a great profession to get into And there are so many reasons why you should study architecture as opposed to the seven reasons why you shouldn’t which are really reasons you should. Did that make sense? Probably not. Anyways, thank you guys for watching. I’ll see you in the next video. Make sure to subscribe, like and comment. Please let me know what your worst things about architecture school are, leave them in the comments, let me know what is your biggest thing that you hate about architecture school, and I’d like to hear from you and I’ll reply to you, and I’ll see you in the next video of the Successful Archi Student’s Podcast.


If you have a project you want to delve in to and discuss, or you have some useful tips for other students you think would be helpful, please, send me an email to kyle@successfularchistudent.com and get in touch about it!
Otherwise, direct message me on Instagram @successfularchistudent and I’ll be keen to set up a skype call.

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