AACA Skills Assessment

The Architects Accreditation Council of Australia (AACA) is an apex assessing body in Australia that assesses the applicant’s application who wants to register as an architect with a state or territory Architects Registration Board in Australia. The AACA – Overseas Qualification Assessment (OQA) process determines whether a candidate’s overseas academic qualification is comparable to a current Australian-accredited qualification in architecture. If an applicant’s qualification is comparable, he/she will be eligible to apply for the Architectural Practice Examination (APE), if meeting the eligibility criteria (including practical experience). Applicants are required to complete their APE successfully before applying for registration as an Architect with the Architects Registration Board.

Stage 2 Overseas Qualification Assessment 

Stage 2 is a competency-based assessment including the submission of 2 to 4 architectural projects, a summary statement to the 2021 National Standards of Competency For Architects In Australia (NSCA), and a Competency Assessment Interview. Applicants can only apply if they have previously completed the OQA stage 1 assessment. 

Eligibility To Apply For AACA Skills Assessment 

Applicants who want to apply for registration as an architect with the Architects Registration Board need to meet the following eligibility criteria:-

  • Applicants must possess a 5 year full-time equivalent Architectural qualification awarded by an institution outside Australia or have been awarded a qualification that grants permission to a graduate to register as an architect in the home country of the awarding institution. 
  • Applicants must have evidence of a minimum of 6 months of relevant professional experience.
  • Applicants must provide evidence of English language proficiency. 

The Competency Assessment:- 

Applicants can demonstrate how their qualification helped them understand the competencies required to meet the relevant Performance Criteria (at a graduate level) of the 2021 NSCA through the submission of a Portfolio, NSCA Summary Statements, and Project Proformas and participation in a Competency Assessment Interview (Online). It is a minimum standard required of a graduate from an accredited program of architecture in Australia.

An applicant’s Portfolio must include 3 to 4 architectural projects of academic and professional work as a reference document to support the NSCA Summary Statement. 

  • Applicants must include the complex projects in their Portfolio. A complex project is especially a medium or larger scale project, which requires the knowledge and skills to deliver the resolution and integration of complicated aspects including siting, planning, structure, materials, composition, configuration, and services. 
  • A complex project is desired in its ordering and organisation of various occupancy and special purpose user requirements and requires the integration of social, cultural, environmental, and technical issues. 
  • When mentioning only residential projects in the Portfolio, one project must include at least four or more dwellings since single-dwelling projects are not considered to be a complex project. 

Applicants must submit the NSCA Summary Statement to address the 13 Topic Areas as outlined and address the relevant group of Performance Criteria. These statements must refer to the projects presented in the Portfolio. To support the application, refer to the NSCA 2021 Explanatory Notes and Definitions on the AACA Website. 

Applicants must prepare Project Summary Proformas to provide an overview of each project and their involvement in any professional projects that are included in the Portfolio. 

13 Topic Areas Required In NSCA Summary Statement:-

Evaluation of client project requirements and project brief
Communication With Stakeholders
Analysis and integration of the project in its wider context 
Translation of project brief into a functional design concept through spatial planning 
Environmental responsibilities 
Integration of environmental and social science research to optimise the project
Developed design
Construction documentation 
Relationship of the structure, construction, and materiality to the brief and the context
Demonstrate an understanding of the most common procurement methods 
Demonstrate an understanding of quality control and contract administration 
Professional obligation in order to meet ethical and legal business requirements 
Understanding community values and obligations around equity, diversity, and inclusion, and the First Nation’s ongoing connection and custodianship of Country

Format Of The Portfolio

Applicants must submit their Portfolio in a PDF format with a maximum file size of 60 MB must adhere to the Portfolio Format Guide:

  • Write in an A3 landscape format 
  • Provide a maximum of 6 pages per project
  • Include project names on every page 
  • Include page numbers
  • Drawings in sequential order by project number 
  • Consistency layout on every page 
  • Add a short description of each project

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