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Frequently Asked Questions

Q: I hold a Masters degree from Italy and I am registered in Italy; can I apply to join the Register?
A: Yes, as long as the qualification you hold is listed in the Directive and you are an EU national, it is open to you to apply for registration.

Q: I am an EU national and I hold a listed qualification from the Netherlands, but I have not completed the practical training requirement and assessment in order to join the Register in the Netherlands, can I join the UK Register?
A: No. Before being eligible to join the Register you will have to complete the access requirement in the Netherlands; or alternatively you can complete a UK Part 3 qualification and then apply to join the Register.

Q: I hold a listed qualification from Spain and have access to the profession in Spain. However, I am not an EU national. Do I qualify for automatic recognition in the UK?
A: The Directive provides automatic recognition for those who are EU nationals or have directive rights, for example you could be married to an EU national. However we are able to recognise your qualification as Part 1 and Part 2 equivalent subject to evidence. You will then need to complete a UK Part 3 qualification before joining the Register.

Q: I hold a listed qualification from Romania but the Romanian competent authority has confirmed that I have restricted access, that is without right of signature to the profession in Romania. Can I join the Register?
A: ARB legislation does not provide for partial access. Those applying to join the Register under the provisions of the Directive must have secured full access to the profession in their home state. You will therefore need to secure full right of signature in Romania; or alternatively obtain a UK Part 3 qualification before being eligible to join the Register in the UK.

Q: I have a listed qualification from Italy and have joined the Chamber of Architects in Greece, can I register?
A: Although you have listed qualifications, you have not gained access in your home state as you have not obtained the State Exam in Italy which would provide for automatic recognition under the Directive. However if the Ministry of Education in Italy certifies that your qualifications meets the minimum standards, and as you have access in another member state your application will fall to be considered in line with our national requirements. You will be asked to demonstrate that you meet our national requirements which involves undertaking a mapping exercise demonstrating how you meet the Part 3 criteria. You can draw on your experience in Greece and any other relevant experience for this purpose. Once you have demonstrated compliance with the Part 3 Criteria, you can then join the Register. Alternatively if you can obtain the State Examination in Italy and will then be eligible to join the Register.

Q: I do not have a copy of my Esame di Stato certificate but it is certified on my competent authority certificate, will this be OK?
A: No. You must provide evidence of all the qualifications that are required for you to access the profession in your home state so this includes any access qualification, in Italy this is your Esame di Stato.

An example of another access certificate is the Habilitation de l’architecte diplômé d’Etat à l’exercice de la maîtrise d’oeuvre en son nom propre (HMONP), this certificate is required to accompany some qualifications listed by France.

Q: When I join the Register will I be Part 2 or Part 3 equivalent?
A: The Directive provides for recognition up to Part 2 only and this meets the minimum requirements of the Directive. There is no harmonisation of qualifications over and above these minimum standards. Each member state has different professional legislation. Therefore a Greek Chamber certificate cannot be deemed equivalent to a UK Part 3 qualification. If you want to refer to yourself as being Part 3 qualified you will need to undertake a recognised Part 3 qualification at a UK school of architecture.

Q: I have obtained my first degree Poland and then obtained my second degree in Italy. Will I be eligible to join the Register?
A: As both qualifications have been obtained in the EU, we will accept your qualifications as meeting the minimum requirements as long as you are able to obtain a competent authority statement from the Italian Ministry confirming this. You will then need to either satisfy the access requirement in Italy or obtain a UK Part 3 qualification before being eligible to join the Register.

Q: I am an EU national and I have obtained my qualifications in Brazil which have been recognised in Spain. Will my qualification be recognised in the UK?
A: As you hold third country qualifications which have been recognised for the first time by another European state, you will be entitled to rely on that recognition only where certain conditions have been met to address the requirements of the General System for the recognition of qualifications Broadly these conditions are that you have secured access to the profession in a member state; and that you have completed three years of certified professional ( that is post licencing) experience in the state that recognised your qualification.

ARB will consider your qualifications to determine firstly whether they have the same effect as UK Part 1 and 2 qualifications. For that purpose, we would normally rely on a statement made by the authorities that recognised your qualification in Spain. It would therefore be helpful to receive any information from the competent authority confirming whether you have been evaluated against the minimum standards set out for architects’ qualifications in Article 46 of the Directive, and how you might compare to these.

Working on the basis that you are able to secure the above certification for both requirements, in order to begin this process, you would then need to undertake a mapping exercise against the UK Part 3 criteria. If you believe you satisfy these requirements, then please call the ARB registration team for further information on this route.

Please note if you are not an EU national or you have not completed three years practical experience since establishing in Spain, you will be required to sit the ARB Prescribed Examination and then will need to complete a Part 3 qualification at a UK school of architecture before being eligible to join the Register.


If these FAQs do not answer your particular circumstance, or if you have any further queries, please call to speak with a member of the Registration Team on +44 (0)20 7580 5861

Glossary of Terms used

Competent Authority – Each member state puts forward a body to carry out certain functions under the Directive. A full list of these authorities can be found here.
The Directive – The Professional Qualifications Directive 2005/36/EC
Listed qualifications – Qualifications that are recognised under the Directive are listed in Annex V or Annex VI of the Directive
Third Country – Countries other than the EU/EEA or Switzerland
The General System – These arrangements are for EU nationals who are architects established in other European states but are not entitled to automatic recognition as they do not hold listed qualifications. For example those whose qualifications are from a third country, which have been recognised by another European state, provided that the migrant has completed three years’ professional experience (i.e. post-registration) in the state which recognised the qualifications. This can also apply to those holding non listed EU qualifications.

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