To become an architect in Minnesota, you must satisfy:

  • An Education Requirement – an NAAB Accredited Professional Degree (B.ARCH. OR M.ARCH)
  • An Experience Requirement – through the Architectural Experience Program (AXP)
  • And an Examination Requirement –  the Architect Registration Examination (ARE)

The Architect Registration Examination (ARE) assesses candidates for their knowledge, skills, and ability to provide the various services required in the practice of architecture. Currently the exam is in transition from the 4.0 version of the exam to the 5.0 version of the exam, with both being offered concurrently through June 30, 2018.

ARE 5.0 / Black Spectacles Survey

AIA Minnesota and our Architect Licensing Advisory Committee are surveying our Associate members to determine how to best support those taking the new ARE 5.0. One option is to use the Black Spectacles tutorials and online practice exams. AIA members can subscribe to the Black Spectacles study program on their own, but if AIA Minnesota purchases a license, AIA member registrants will receive nearly a 45% discount.

Here’s what Black Spectacles provides:

  • comprehensive content covering all sections of the exam
  • unlimited access to the entire library of ARE 5.0 courses
  • over 70 hours of video tutorials
  • built-in exam practice questions
  • interviews with working architects in their offices and construction sites

This link will provide you with access to free sample videos.

If you will be taking the Architectural Registration Exam in the new 5.0 version and possibly interested in Black Spectacles, please respond to this survey by July 15 to inform our decision on how to best help you prepare.

ARE Resources

Click here for the Path to Licensure, a step-by-step guide to taking the ARE’s and becoming licensed in Minnesota.
Click here for the NCARB ARE Guidelines.

Click here for the NCARB AXP Guidelines.

is the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards. NCARB administers the ARE.
AELSLAGID is the Minnesota State Board of Registration for architects and other professions. 651-757-1518

How does AIA Minnesota support those taking the ARE?

ARE Reviews

The AIA Minnesota Architect Licensing Advisory Committee has been organizing review sessions for each section of the exam; however, we will be taking a break from offering these classes during this transitional phase from ARE 4.0 to 5.0. Instead, we are willing to help establish either in-person study groups or virtual study groups. We are also exploring the use of Black Spectacles

Let us know how you think we can best support you during this transition period. Contact committee co-chairs, Kyle Palzer, Assoc. AIA; DJ Heinle, AIA; or staff liaison Deanna Christiansen.

ARE Lending Library

AIA Minnesota has established a lending library of study materials from Kaplan Architecture (purchased by Brightwood Education and rebranded as such as of April 2016) and Professional Publications, Inc. for all sections of the 4.0 exam.*

Lending library materials are available to AIA Associate members only and can be checked out of the office for a period of 14 days. The lending library is free. Click here (pdf) for a complete list of books and lending library details. Contact Deanna Christiansen to confirm availability of library materials.

*AIA Minnesota is in the process of purchasing study materials for the ARE 5.0 exam as well.

ARE Scholarship

The AIA Minnesota Architect Licensing Advisory Committee coordinates awarding a scholarship to an AIA Minnesota Associate member to cover the costs of all sections of the Architect Registration Exam, within the parameters defined in the application. Test fees currently total $1,470 for all seven sections of the 4.0 exam. Due to the transition from ARE 4.0 to 5.0, the 2017 scholarship awarded will total UP TO $1,470.

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