How do we evaluate programs to be sure we are in the right place? Is there a list of acceptable accredited programs we should work from? Any guidance you can provide will be very valuable as we try to find the most effective program somewhere in the mid-Atlantic, New England, or East Coast area for her to be in for the next 5 or 6 years. Thank you.
First, I will suggest you obtain the book, Becoming an Architect, 2nd Edition as it outlines the entire process from high school to licensure. With that said, I will provide answers to your questions. We may also wish to touch base via the phone.
To become an architect in most states, an individual must have the following: 1) accredited professional degree by NAAB, 2) completion of IDP - Intern Development Program, and 3) pass the ARE - Architect Registration Exam.
As for degrees, NAAB accredits the following: 1) BArch - five year program, 2) MArch - typically 2-3 years following a BSAS pre-professional degree, 2b) MArch - typically 3-4 years following a BA/BS in a field other than architecture, and 4) DArch - only available from Hawaii.
What you have visited may be pre-professional degrees that require further education with the MArch.
To see the list of accredited programs, visit the NAAB website - http://www.naab.org. Another sources isARCHSchools.org - it requires a login, but is free.
To evaluate programs, I strongly encourage her to visit the programs and have a list of needs.
Also, I would strongly encourage her to attend a summer program to experience it firsthand prior to college. Attached is the preliminary list for Summer 2014. The final list is available in late January.
Do let me know if you have any additional questions. Best.