This registration pathway is for architectural graduates who have both a recognised architectural degree AND the required work experience.

If you don't meet both these prerequisites, have a look at Pathway 2.

The Pathway 1 assessment process involves what the NZRAB calls a Professional Conversation. This entails you meeting with an Assessment Panel and talking about the architectural work you have done and how you view the architectural process.

Before applying for registration you will need to:

  • Prepare Project Record Forms describing what you've been working on in recent years. We recommend you record the projects that you are working on as they happen, which is far easier than later on trying to recall what you did a year or two ago.
  • Prepare a Case Study, using the mandatory Case Study Template to describe in detail some of the architectural projects you have worked on, one of which at least must be a complex architectural project (see definition below), and how you contributed. The Case Study Template includes instructions on what's required.

To help prepare the content of your Case Study, look at the Guide to the Minimum Standards for Registration. You must obtain permission from the relevant clients to use their projects in your Case Study.  Confirmation of obtaining your clients approval is required in the declaration made in your application form.

Complex Architectural Project Definition: A project that requires skill and knowledge to deliver the resolution and integration of complicated aspects including but not limited to siting, planning, structure, services, materials, composition and configuration. A complex project is demanding in its ordering and organisation of multiple occupancy and/or special purpose user requirements and requires the integration of cultural, social, environmental and technical issues.

When your Case Study and Project Record Forms are ready, then to apply you must:

  • fill out the application form
  • pay the required fee - $1200.60 (GST included) for a first attempt and $600.30 (GST included) for subsequent attempts.

The application form describes:

  • the information and documentation you need to provide
  • the application fee you need to pay and how to pay it
  • how to format and send your application and your case study documents to NZRAB.

Please follow the Application Form's instructions carefully.

A registered architect who, for the purpose of obtaining registration, provides orally or in writing makes any declaration or representation knowing it to be false or misleading, or provides any document knowing that it was not genuine, is subject to disciplinary penalties by the NZRAB under section 25 of the Registered Architects Act 2005.

Application close-off dates in 2024 are:

  • Round 1: 21 March 2024, with professional conversations during April / May 2024.
  • Round 2: 22 August 2024, with professional conversations during September / October 2024.

Applications sent in early are appreciated so that we can carry out our preliminary checking processes before close-off date.

Professional Conversation
All applicants for registration will be able to indicate a preference for their professional conversation to be via Zoom or face to face. If face to face these will be held in Auckland, Wellington or Christchurch. NZRAB cannot guarantee all applicants will offered their first preference.

The Professional Conversation is a meeting between you and an Assessment Panel made up of two Registration Assessors, who will be experienced architects.

During the Professional Conversation, you will lead the Assessment Panel through your case study, explaining the project(s), your role(s) within them, and how this indicates that you have the required experience, skills, knowledge and attitude. The Professional Conversation takes up to three hours. You should take no more than two hours to explain your Case Study to allow time for discussion. The Assessment Panel may also ask theoretical or hypothetical questions and require you to sketch some typical construction details.

Recordings of professional conversations are not permitted however, NZRAB may use the facility in terms of quality assurance and only for review by the Board or Convenors. If the assessment is to be recorded, all parties will be advised in advance.

Some broader Guidance on the Experience Required for Registration is also available.

Other points to note:

  • If you wish, you may have a support person with you, although he or she may not speak during the Professional Conversation. Please advise us of this when submitting your application.
  • Karakia or prayer are acceptable, though, again, please advise us of this when submitting your application.
  • If you have a relevant disability, please detail this on the application form and provide evidence. Extra time may be granted, if appropriate.
  • Recording devices are not permitted.
  • An observer or trainee assessor may be present, but they will not be part of the assessment process.

Registration Decision
After your professional conversation, the Assessment Panel will make a recommendation to the NZRAB Board, based on which the Board will make a decision as to whether you again meet the applicable minimum standard for registration. You will be advised in writing of the Board’s decision.