National accreditation of Australian architecture programs
A five year course of post-secondary study (or equivalent) followed by approximately two years professional experience (3,300 hours) is the usual pre-requisite to the Architectural Practice Examination leading to registration in Australia. This typically takes the form of a three year bachelor degree followed by an accredited two year Master of Architecture degree, although other structures that are deemed equivalent may also be recognised.
The AACA manages the accreditation of architecture programs and administers the Architecture Program Accreditation Procedure on behalf of the architect registration boards. The Accreditation Procedure sets out the peer review process through which all architecture programs in Australia are assessed against the accreditation standard over five years or ten semester equivalence of learning cycle. The eight state and territory architect registration boards have statutory responsibility for the accreditation of architectural programs of study within their jurisdictions. Programs accredited in one jurisdiction are recognised in any other jurisdiction in Australia and New Zealand.
To be eligible for accreditation, schools of architecture must provide evidence that the relevant Performance Criteria of the National Standard of Competency for Architects are integrated within the curriculum and appropriately assessed in student work. The scope includes most of the Performance Criteria from the Design Unit of Competency and selected Performance Criteria from the Documentation, Project Delivery and Practice Management Units of Competency. The Performance Criteria requirements reflect the fundamental abilities expected of a graduate from an accredited program of study.