Is AA degree still Worth it


Hi all,

I'm an international student and completed my RIBA part1 in the UK. I'm going to start my MArch [part2] this September. I got Part 2 offers from the AA diploma programme, UofE (ESALA), MSA, UAL, Uol (Liverpool), GSA. And I've been rejected by Cambridge and Bartlett part2.

I need to sign the admission form from AA to secure the offer place in a few weeks. But I am hesitant to make decisions between AA, ESALA, MSA. I know AAschool is prestigious, but I heard some news (I don't know it's a rumour or not) that AA school is not the one it used to be. And currently, there is no leadership in AA school cuz the director was fired last year. 

AA is a private school, so it seems like it's challenging to get a scholarship, and the living expenses in London is higher than in the other cities. 

But the most important thing I care about is the graduate perspective of these Unis/Schools. I know job-seeking relies on my portfolio standard, but from an overall perspective, I am not sure is it easy for AA part2 graduates to get a job in London? And is an AA degree still worth it?

I appreciate any help you can provide.

May 8, 21 5:21 pm

My uneducated guess is that the AA is still worth it as it’s the only school I know from all abbreviations and acronyms you just posted...

May 8, 21 6:24 pm  · 
8  · 

Thank you!

May 9, 21 11:26 pm  · 

AA for certain.  As an International Student, the AA degree will give you more milage and the network of international grads is noteworthy.  Still the AA has such a great teaching faculty and guest lectures at least 2x a day.  Your down the road from the Bartlett and can take up their lecture also.  Remember your part II is mostly about making connections.

If you're planning to work post part II in the UK, London will give you much more for the pickings. 

2nd choice is UofE.  Great city and the Scottish landscape is stunning.  If you are keen to explore nature during your studies, head north.

The other Unis should not be in consideration. MSA is a factory of students and take in anyone.  I do love Manchester through. 

Congrats and good luck with your studies! Glad UK is opening up and face to face teaching should be well underway come September.

May 9, 21 2:59 am  · 
2  · 

thank you TED!

May 9, 21 11:26 pm  · 
1  · 

thank you

May 9, 21 11:27 pm  · 
1  · 

The AA is what you make of it. Sure, people knowing the name is good in the hiring process, but the question is a) what you want to learn, and b) what you want to do after you graduate and how that connects to a). The AA often expects you to be able to set your own agenda. It's experimental sometimes to the degree of silliness. And even though you don't get a scholarship when you start, I believe you can apply for bursaries to cover the expenses once enrolled. If you want to learn about designing buildings I think a more "traditional" polytechnic might be better.

I dunno if it's changed a lot. I graduated during the latter part of Brett's tenure and haven't been in London since. Back then it was a lot of fun. If you end up going there remember to choose your unit wisely -- that usually matters more than any promise of prestige.

May 11, 21 10:52 pm  · 
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thank you for ur answer!

May 15, 21 9:35 pm  · 

The AA is still the best school for architecture, the level of Tutors and the guests that visit for crits is like none other.

It is an extremely competitive and you can be sure that this is where the cream of the crop are.  Job wise you are more likely to get a job after having studied at the AA than any other uni.

May 16, 21 9:08 am  · 
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