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Architecture and Computer Science?

prim

[a bit of a back story: am in Y12, going to start applying to universities (undergraduate) in 4 or 5 months. Architecture and Computer Science (/stem subjects) are my two career choices. I've been going through a lot of talks with parents, as I was leaning more towards computer science but they were completely against it, so now I'm trying to find a way to continue studying it. Unfortunately, the more research I do, the more unanswered questions pop up in my head, here are a few..]

1. If I study architecture as a major, am I allowed to take classes, if not minor, in a science/maths subject.. maybe computer science? 

2. For that I've been researching, getting answers from websites saying if you enroll in an architecture course, you won't have time for anything else - you'll practically be living, eating and sleeping in your studio. Is that really the case?

3. Disregarding minors, the USA (UCB, Georgia Tech, Cornell) or the UK (UCL, Cambridge)?

If anyone can help, opinions and feedback are high appreciated. Thank you so much :)

 
May 27, 17 1:49 pm
archietechie

To answer your questions:
- Yes
- Yes
- UCB USA & UCL UK (computational archi - your 2 fav things combined into 1). Don't bother w/ the rest altho I know shit about Georgia Tech.

Personal experience after taking a subject or 2 of CompSci whilst majoring Archi, it's tough. Here's my take on the 2 disciplines: On one hand, studios require time dedicated to perfection of vision while the latter requires practice to get a better fluency in computer language (gets progressively tougher w/ each subject of course). Suggest you take up some summer schools before admission to get an inkling of what exactly do you want for the rest of your life (of course it's never too late to change it up as you go along) but your parents should never be the one deciding your career.

Good luck w/ whatever your decision might be tho.

May 27, 17 2:49 pm  · 
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prim

archietechie Thank you! [for the wish and for the detailed reply.] I will try go to summer schools and yep those are the top two unis im aiming for. One more thing, can I ask which university you studied at ?

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prim

RickB-Astoria That's where my worries lie as well. From what I've studied and seen, computer science and architecture design is two very different things, and I'm wondering whether I'll be able to cope with it or not.
Thank you so much for your reply!

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AdrianFGA

prim

Just a small thing. Unlike Architecture school, serious Computer Science require far more advanced math skills, on a par with what is shown in these online publications, here and here. You should study CS only if you are confident you can deal with that kind of math.

May 29, 17 12:15 am  · 
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Non Sequitur

Math Kung-Fu? Nice. I can just imagine you beating down hoards of ninjas with equations 1960's batman style.

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prim

AdrianFGA yep, pretty sure those are within my abilities if i put my mind to it.

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prim

RickB-Astoria
It might be true, and I agree that computer science is globally more financially lucrative, but in Thailand (where I'll be living and working probably for my whole life), architects are viewed much much more highly than computer 'scientists' (people don't call them scientists, but rather just 'someone who deals with computers'). I hate that it happens, but it does, and it affects the companies that branch into Thailand, the aspiring companies, the pay, the respect computer scientists and engineers get.. This was one of the reasons my parents opposed the idea of me pursuing computer science..

Oh and yep software architecture is great. I also agree with you about the change in positions as time passes, but it's kind of the same with architects as well, in a sense? right.. I'm not sure but they say the higher you go, the more supervising you do hence the less actual designing you do.

 · 
prim

Thank you both! :D

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prim

First reason's because I'm Thai, and second is parents - they always say "daughters have to take care of their parents" and said they'll allow a couple of years of working abroad then I'll have to go back to work in Thailand and stay with them

Mum once asked me would you be okay with not seeing your parents for years except some holidays, I said of course, and they got so mad that they didn't talk to me for weeks [I got so confused? I still am, because I don't think I was being unreasonable?]

I've honestly lost count of how many times I've said what you said to my parents. I can't agree more to what you said and I really (for obvious reasons) want to work abroad if not the USA

 · 
420g

computer science = fah-q pay me

architecture = please can i have a job

May 30, 17 2:18 am  · 
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prim

420g yeah.. sadly

 · 

420g might have a point... Data is from 2014 and computer science can mean a lot of things, but architect didn't even make it on this BLS list of fastest growing occupations.

Or from 2015

That being said if you are just really into computation and technology, the right architecture program, to second archietechie, could allow you to combine the two. Digital fabrication, parametricism, robotics, et al.

Jun 1, 17 1:02 am  · 
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prim

Nam Henderson
Thank you for the links! 
and yep, a course like that would really be great.

 · 
sameolddoctor
Screw architecture dude! If you love it so much, go to school for CS, get into a "real" profession and make some money, then hire an architect to build the house of your dreams. Oh and contrary to what many might say, a lot of architects exist as draftspersons, to merely draw whatever the client wishes.
Jun 1, 17 3:16 am  · 
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prim

sameolddoctor I wish I could! but the pressure that asian parents and society can put on their kid is no joke D:

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sameolddoctor
Screw architecture dude! If you love it so much, go to school for CS, get into a "real" profession and make some money, then hire an architect to build the house of your dreams. Oh and contrary to what many might say, a lot of architects exist as draftspersons, to merely draw whatever the client wishes.
Jun 1, 17 3:16 am  · 
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420g

i have an acquaintance who just got out of prison and the forklift job they found him pays him just as much as the big Toronto firm i work for with all my education.

Jun 1, 17 11:46 am  · 
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prim

oh wow that's somehow amazing wow what

 · 
420g

university graduate = poverty for millennial

high school drop-out = millennial homeowner

 · 
420g

get an apprenticeship as a plumber or electrician, full journeyman (5-6 years experience) unionized rate is $45/hr ($90k year) + very good benefits.

Jun 1, 17 12:06 pm  · 
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nabrU

Computer science is useful, at the very least to have an understanding of how computers work. Approaching architecture from a computational view may not lead to great architecture but that is not a given, take advice but you can ignore it.

Jun 1, 17 10:02 pm  · 
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AdrianFGA

@Prim:

In more traditional countries, architecture still enjoys some of the old respect and prestige. Be aware, however, that even in Thailand, this profession will inevitably change and will lose its glamour and status, while Computer Science (CS) will become more socially acceptable.

pretty sure those are within my abilities if i put my mind to it.

Did you already attend high-school informatics contests at national / regional level? Did you already write lots and lots of code? Do you have good algorithmic problem-solving skills? By Grade 12, you should have already accomplishments in these areas. These are strong predictors of any future CS abilities.

Let me remind you again, that you must have a strong command of pretty hard math like discrete mathematics, linear algebra, probability and statistics, numerical optimization and analysis, just to name a few (also calculus). Be aware that one of the most important applications of modern CS is machine learning (ML) which comes with its own universe - deep learning, deep neural networks, then some crazy ML libraries like PyTorch or TensorFlow; and that ML must be eventually studied by all CS people, one way or another.

Please research as much as you can about these issues. If you really and truly feel confident that you can tackle these things, then I definitely advise you to go for Computer Science.

Jun 2, 17 1:11 am  · 
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prim

i got no notification of this im so sorry its been 3 months and i just suddenly thought of this thread

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prim

RickB-Astoria, yep, I really like mathematics as well. It was a part of why I started computer science. AdrianFGA, I just started studying computer science this academic year, so I don't have may achievements.. but I do have a distinction on the Bebras challenge (elite class), if that counts.. Also gold certificates on the UKMT 3 years straight. But yes, I am confident in my logic, fast learning/thinking and problem solving skills.

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prim

UPDATE: THANK YOU ALL SO, SO, SO MUCH FOR YOUR REPLIES, IT REALLY HELPED IN MAKING MY VIEWS/OPINIONS CLEAR.

UPDATE//: am aiming for architecture now. Did some computer science work experience, found it somewhat linear, a bit dull (there wasn't physical work, or anything visual). I would love to learn computer science, just not work with it as a career for the rest of my life. I found that thought/mindset very bad and decided against studying computer science.

now thinking of Architecture at Bath, since it's very engineering and technology based, at least more than other architectural courses.

Sep 25, 17 7:25 am  · 
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prim

edit: I can't not have art in my life, i guess.. I thought I could but I just proved myself wrong.

Will definitely make use of all your advices, will definitely continue studying computer science in my spare time, cus computer science is amazing, just that I'll be pursuing architecture & design as a long term career

Sep 25, 17 7:41 am  · 
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randomised

Congrats OP on making up your mind and good luck with your studies.

Sep 25, 17 8:13 am  · 
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joseffischer

I went to georgia tech and have many friends who got a CS degree there.  The CS degree is top notch.  Some of my friends dropped out due to their own personal issues, but those who finished work for google (there's an atlanta office) redhat (gets to work from home) one works for a company designing web apps, and did papa john's newish phone app, and one works for Autodesk (had to move away from atlanta).  They were all paid $70-100k for their first job.  Mine from the same school as an architectural intern paid $35k.... literally half the lowest of my friends.  I am now registered, and as a techie who decided to try and be creative, I am constantly frustrated with having to put sets together on my own or with more inexperienced colleagues while managing clients, going to job sites, and otherwise actually trying to be an architect.  Easily 70% of my day really should be automated standardized construction sheets that the program just puts together.  "oh, you're using TPO roofing on this job?  You're going to need these sheets with these details based on the massing model of the roof you made."  Instead it's a bunch of busy work.  

My suggestion would be to take the CS degree because you're not going to really learn how to code by taking minor classes, at least at tech all the major CS project labs were just as stressful and intense as any studio course.  Then, if you're still interested in architecture, get your M. Arch.  that way, you'll be prepared, going into the profession, to really turn it on its head and automate all of the boring parts of our job.

In reality though, I keep looking for a CS guy interested in revamping my trade, and after they've gained all those skills, there is more interesting and way better paid things to do elsewhere than helping an architect out.

Sep 25, 17 9:19 am  · 
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bryangonzales

Wait how would you get a M. arch if You decide to go for a CS degree . I didnt understand your response I apologize. I’m studying CS at the moment and even thought I like it , I can’t stop
thinking about how architecture is like

 · 
joseffischer

Also, the real issue here seems to be convincing your parents what constitutes a respectful career.  I'm not sure what other careers they would favor, but you're going to need to shine a light on the architectural profession and prove that it's actually not that respected in most circles.  You'll get kudos at dinner parties, but anyone who actually is part of building our world typically sees the architect on a job as an employee.  It definitely doesn't hold the same weight as doctor.

Sep 25, 17 9:22 am  · 
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koalatea

haha, you have a lot of time ahead of you -- it seems you made a decision, but you can definitely pick up some CS again down the road if you're interested -- frontend web development, mobile development or computer graphics are places where you get more visual stuff. Best of luck! I majored in CS in college with a minor in visual art, now trying to save up money for an M. Arch I with software engineering money :) 

I had some older Asian relatives (not my parents) tell me computer science isn't really a 'womanly' profession too, but I love proving people wrong

Sep 26, 17 1:05 am  · 
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ritikasarwade

Can I do major in Computer Science and minor in architectural studies?

What will be my profile if I did this degree? 

Also, if I did minor in architecture, will I be able to do SketchUp and CAD in Computer Science?

May 12, 19 9:27 am  · 
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