RIBA Explained

RIBA stands for the Royal Institute of British Architects. It is a professional membership body driving excellence in architecture. They seek to serve their members and society in order to deliver better buildings and places, stronger communities and a sustainable environment. They take great pride in being inclusive, ethical, environmentally aware and collaborative in everything that that they do.

RIBA was founded in 1834 in London under the name “Institute of British Architects” and their central headquarters is still located there. RIBA is extremely prestigious and throughout history its members have played a leading role in the education of architectural matters in the United Kingdom and now also have a presence over the four global regions: The Americas, the Middle-East and Africa, Asia and Australasia and the rest of Europe, providing support for members and engaging and collaborating with other international institutes of Architects. RIBA have 2 regional offices to help provide support overseas, located in the Gulf and China.

As well as providing support and education for architects across the globe, RIBA administers some of the oldest and most well respected architectural awards, including: the Royal Gold Medal, the Stirling Prize and RIBA President’s Medals, which are presented and awarded annually to architecture students or recent graduates.

As well as supporting the architects of tomorrow by presenting awards, RIBA provides accreditation to architecture schools across the UK through its course validation procedure, which people embark on with the goal of becoming a chartered architect. Generally speaking, RIBA has 3 parts to how it tackles its educational process.

· Part 1: is typically a 3 year degree and one year work experience in an architectural practice.

· Part 2: is usually a 2 year post graduate diploma or masters and a further years’ work experience

· Part 3: is where the professional RIBA exams can be taken in pursuit of RIBA Chartership status.

Overall it takes a minimum of 7 years to fully qualify.

In 1834, at the same time as the inception of the Institute, The British Architectural Library, often referred to nowadays as the RIBA Library was established with money donated from its members. It is the largest architectural library in Europe and within the top 3 largest architectural libraries in the world. It contains more than a staggering 4million items and pieces. The collection includes:

· Books

· Biographical Files

· Notebooks and Diaries from famous architects

· Over 1million drawings

· Models

· Periodicals

· And photographs

However, despite this astonishing collection. RIBA is arguably best known for the “RIBA Plan of Work” which was first developed in 1963. The RIBA plan of work is a stage-by stage model depicting and organising the process of briefing, designing, constructing and operating building projects. It consists of 8 stages and is widely regarded within the construction industry as the most definitive and comprehensive design and process management tool for the UK Construction Industry.

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