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Architectural Technology & Building Sciences

The Degree

Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S)

The Outlook

According to the Occupational Outlook Handbook, employment of architectural drafters is expected to grow 1 percent from 2012 to 2022. Those who have completed at least two years of post-secondary training and have developed strong technical skills and experience using CAD systems will be well qualified for this field. The Architectural Technology and Building Sciences program at FLCC prepares you for a career path in an architectural firm and it provides you the education you'll need for continuing your studies in a five-year professional program.

The Program

The Architectural Technology and Building Sciences program provides you the knowledge and technical experience that will allow you to advance beyond entry-level drafting to more complex designs. Instruction emphasizes technical competence and utilizes computer-aided drafting (CAD). The faculty work closely with architectural firms in the area to assure the program meets the needs of the architectural community. The majority of the required core courses for this degree are offered at FLCC's Victor Campus Center.

Technology: The CAD lab offers 24 networked PCs with current versions of AutoCAD, AutoCAD Architecture, Microsoft Office, Google SketchUp, Revit and SOLIDWORKS.

Networked output devices include a 3D printer, color laser printer, and large format color plotter.

Program Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of this degree program, students will be able to:

  • Apply knowledge and practice skills related to architectural technology, allowing the successful graduate to fill an entry level position as an architectural technician or architectural designer, often working under the supervision of a registered architect or professional engineer; graduates may also fill similar positions in related or supporting fields such as structural design/drafting, HVAC design/drafting, or building product supply.
  • Demonstrate the fundamentals of hand drafting including elements such as drawing layout, orthographic projection, use of line weights, paraline drawings, dimensioning, and architectural plans, elevations, and sections.
  • Demonstrate and apply knowledge of the range of building materials and techniques commonly used in building construction.
  • Identify and apply energy efficient, environmentally conscious, and sustainable design strategies.
  • Use 2D and 3D CAD software as a design, drafting, and presentation tool.
  • Create and present a conceptual design for a small residence and develop the concept into construction drawings and framing models.
  • Be cooperative and productive members of a collaborative design team (2 to 3 members).
  • Read and interpret rough sketches and, based on the sketches, develop construction drawings for a small commercial building.
  • Complete basic structural calculations related to the design of wood and steel beams, columns, and bolted connections.
  • Practice methods for estimating building material quantities and costs.
  • Apply terminology, materials, and problem solving approaches related to mechanical systems in buildings.
  • Demonstrate fundamental knowledge of construction management including the responsibilities of various participants (owner, architect, contractor, etc.), different contract types, and the roles of OSHA and Wick's Law.

The Scholarships

As an Architectural Technology and Building Sciences major, if you meet specific award criteria, you will be eligible for the following scholarships:

  • Bill Parham Memorial
  • FLCC Science and Technology Faculty
  • Murray F. Gardner Memorial
  • G.W. Lisk Co., Inc. Excellence

For more information on these scholarships, contact the FLCC Foundation.

The Experience

Classroom assignments and projects have been developed to simulate tasks that would likely be encountered in an office setting and the design studio of a five-year professional program. As a second-year architectural technology student, you will study and analyze historic buildings and design a residential project during the fall semester. You will begin the project by designing a schematic concept for a hypothetical residence and then develop that design. At the end of the semester, you will present your design to classmates, FLCC faculty and visiting critics. Throughout the semester, you will work with, develop and study construction documents, the phases of architectural design, and better understand the dynamics of a career in the architectural field.

Additionally, as a second-year architectural technology student, you will be assigned to work on a larger, more complex commercial project during the spring semester. Starting with an original schematic design, you will develop the various systems and solve technical problems to transform the schematic design into construction drawings.

Local Resources: Your program experience will be enriched while at FLCC by:

  • Taking visits to local architectural and engineering design firms
  • Building department and job sites
  • Touring local Frank Lloyd Wright residence and Luis Kahn Unitarian Temple

Manufacturer's representatives also visit classrooms to share the most recent technical information on selected products.

Upon the conclusion of your program experience, you will have a greater understanding of the issues, objectives, and constraints related to residential and commercial design. You will also possess a fundamental set of skills and strategies for addressing these design issues. The program will train you to:

  • Understand how to read and assemble a set of construction drawings.
  • Be ready to make a valuable contribution to the architecture and construction related fields.

Internships/Cooperative Education: As an architectural technology and building sciences major, you will have the opportunity to participate in the internship/co-op program. If you choose to pursue this opportunity, you will work in an Architectural/Engineering environment as a drafter or designer.

You will perform a variety of work assignments under the supervision of design professionals and are required to submit periodic written reports. An on-site mentor and FLCC faculty will review the work performed.

As a co-op student, you will be paid by the firm and will receive class credit. Each assignment is individually planned and work commitments vary. While participating in the internship/co-op program, a recommendation from the FLCC faculty advisor will be required prior to you being accepted into the program. You should contact your advisor for additional details.

The Graduates

Graduates of this program have found employment with:

  • Architectural or Engineering Design Firms
  • Manufacturers and Retailers of Building-Related Products
  • Construction Management Companies

Upon graduation, you may continue for two additional years for degrees in construction management or architectural engineering technology. Graduates of this degree program have gone on to transfer to four-year and five-year professional programs at institutions such as:

  • Alfred State College
  • Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
  • Syracuse University
  • Rochester Institute of Technology (Civil Technology)
  • SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry at Syracuse

The Faculty

Matthew Rischpater is the lead instructor and advisor for the Architectural Technology and Building Sciences program. Rischpater studied at Syracuse University's School of Architecture and has practiced architecture for 20 years focusing on residential and commercial design. He is passionate about design and architecture history, with a focus on international style, regionalism and sustainability.