The School of Architecture offers the Associate in Arts degrees with concentrations in Architecture and Interior Design. Upon completion, graduates transfer to upper-division programs at state institutions and elsewhere.
For students desiring intensive training leading to employment in a variety of occupations in the above fields, the School of Architecture offers the Associate in Science in Architectural Design and Construction Technology, Building Construction Technology and Interior Design Technology. In addition, students can also graduate with a College Credit Certificate as a computer-aided design assistant and as a computer-aided design operator.
The disciplines of architecture and interior design are very similar in relation to the type of learning that students must acquire in the two years of study at the College. There are also widely diverging outcomes regarding the different areas of specialization in advanced courses. These disciplines are task- driven and task-intensive. Consequently, assessments are done in every studio class on a continuing basis, project by project, and at pre-determined stages during the semester.
The core of the Architecture and Interior Design programs is comprised of the Design Studio courses. Design problems are given to students with a specific set of parameters and time frame. A series of progress benchmarks are established and the students are assessed as they complete those steps. A studio set-up allows for individual attention to each student and constant feedback from the instructor and other students as they work individually and in teams. Other important areas of study include courses in graphic expression and representation, computer-aided technical drafting, history and theory, technical courses in construction materials, structures and environmental technology.
Building construction students learn to interpret construction working drawings to derive practical information necessary to initiate a construction job. Courses in cost estimating, financial and legal aspects, and building codes are also included. The disciplines of architecture, construction and interior design have a long-established history. Many basic principles to these disciplines are as applicable today as they were in the past. Learning these principles and assimilating current professional practices demand discipline and hard work from the students.
In order to transfer to upper-division programs or to seek employment, students must produce a portfolio of work. This portfolio is made up of work from all four levels of design courses and some graphic courses as well. This way, the portfolio demonstrates not only the best work produced by the student, but also the progress made over two years, which shows the intellectual and creative development of the students. A specific portfolio class is offered, where students utilize state-of-the-art digital photography and computer graphics to produce outstanding portfolios.