Student working on architectural model

Architecture courses give you the tools to design and create beautiful and practical spaces, across all kinds of industries

  • 16 December 2021
  • 3 min read

Architecture is the design and construction of buildings.

Studying architecture means combining art, maths, and science to understand more about a building’s construction and interior. You'll design meaningful and purposeful spaces, and develop creative skills that are highly valued by employers.

By drawing accurate designs of buildings by hand or with specialist computer software, you'll influence the world around you to shape cities, communities and the way people live. You may even study modules such as sustainable architecture and building for the future.

Who studies architecture and where can it lead?

If you’re looking for a subject that combines creativity with science, engineering and design, architecture might be for you.

Students studying architecture are solution focused. They're thoughtful, creative, practical people who care about both society and the environment. They recognise how the building and spaces around us can have a big impact on our community, and want to make a positive contribution to that.

Hear more about what it’s like to study Interior Architecture from graduate Mo Mostakin
University of Portsmouth Interior Architecture and Design Graduate Mo Mostakin

Mo graduated in 2017 with an Interior Architecture and Design degree from the University of Portsmouth. He is now an Interior Designer at HBA Residential. Find out what Mo’s role entails and how he’s applying the skills he learnt during his time at Portsmouth.

Where can you work with an architecture degree?

Studying architecture will give you the skills to work in any company that creates living and working spaces for people. That could be in the artistic world of theatre, TV and film. Or for an architectural construction company or exhibition centre.

You could work as a consultant, or start your own architectural company. Whatever industry you choose, you'll take inspiration from all around you to transform your ideas into real places. 

Using architectural origami

Architects and Interior Designers enjoy origami because they can produce a huge variety of shapes and forms from only a single sheet of paper. Designers can adapt particular elements of paper-folded models to create conceptual designs for spatial and structural ideas.

Watch this short clip showing the role of Origami in helping London Architects ‘Make’, design and build prefabricated folding kiosks in Canary Wharf. From design brief to conceptual model, origami was crucial to the Architectural and Design process.

Challenge: create your own architectural model using origami

Now it’s your turn to create a series of models made from a sheet of paper, and some basic materials.

Play the video and build your models alongside some of our Architecture and Interior Design students while they complete the same task, and tell you a bit more about why they chose to study Architecture and Design. Written instructions are also available if you'd like them.

You'll need:

  • A base for your model – ideally a dark coloured piece of paper or card, but you could use a book, or just build your model off the table top or desk
  • A white sheet of paper
  • A sheet of graph paper 
  • A sheet of tracing paper
  • A coloured piece of card – any colour will do
  • Sellotape
  • A glue stick
  • A figure – maybe Lego, or made out of BluTac

If you don’t have all of these, you can use other similar materials, or even just get extra creative with a simple piece of white paper.

Architectural origami: from sheet to form challenge
Architects design buildings and play a role in shaping cities, communities and the way we live.

Explore the technical and analytical skills you need to begin a career as an architect using paper, in this architectural origami tasks with students and lecturers.

Architectural origami challenge: written instructions

Using the white sheet of paper, transform it into a 3D form through manipulation, action and folding.

Add to your model using the graph paper. What other layers, shapes or textures can you add to your model?

Using the white piece of card, keep adding to your model. What new things can you try with a more rigid material?

For the final stage, use either the tracing paper or the coloured piece of card to create features such as doors or windows, or add colour to create a striking design.

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