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Re: Architectural Engineering Degree

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Does it mean that when designing a building, all you need is an Architectural
Engineer? No more need for a CE or SE, ME, EE, Sanitary, and other engineering
professions? Can the Architectural Engineer sign and seal the plans and design
calculations? If not, what is the role of the Architectural Engineer in the
design team?

Roy Sharif M. Sison, RCE

William Keil wrote:

> <  Is Architect the same as Architectural Engineering?  >
> No, an Architectural Engineer is NOT a "scientific architect!"  :o)
> An Architectural Engineer is a graduate of an ABET accredited Architectural
> Engineering program such as the ones at UT-Austin, Kansas, Kansas State, and
> others especially PENN STATE (Go LIONS!).  These graduates are exposed to
> multiple engineering specialty classes as they relate to the design of
> buildings.  All classes are not watered down summary versions but are
> instructed by their respective department, i.e. Architecture classes are
> from the Architectural department, Civil Engineering classes are from the
> Civil Engineering department, etc.  Most programs offer the chance to
> specialize in Structures, Mechanical (HVAC, Plumbing, Electrical, Lighting,
> Acoustics), or Construction Management.  The following description is from
> my experience in the Penn State AE program:
> The first two years are filled with core engineering classes including
> Mathematics, Physics, Engineering Mechanics, and Architectural Studio
> classes.
> The third year students take all of the introduction classes to the various
> disciplines, structural, mechanical, and construction management, plus even
> more mathematics, engineering mechanics and architectural classes.
> The fourth year students select a specialty and take advanced classes, i.e.
> structures students will take advanced structural analysis including the
> study of classical methods, advanced steel and concrete, soils, and
> surveying.  These classes are also combined with various classes in computer
> programming and advanced architectural studio classes.
> The fifth year in structures includes the study of foundations and modern
> structural analysis.  The fifth year at Penn State involves a senior thesis
> which is a year-long study of a recently constructed building.  The student
> must present all of the existing systems, analyze them, and then redesign
> them.  All students select their own building, unlike the Cornell program
> that has 40+ students studying individual elements of one structure.  The
> end result of the Penn State AE program is a formal presentation of all
> findings to a board of professors and professional engineers that donate
> their time (so they can find the best candidate for their staff opening :o).
> Overall, focus is always on meeting deadlines whether they are established
> by professors in the classroom or the student for the senior thesis project.
> In addition, AE students acquire a respect for the other disciplines that
> are putting systems into a building.  For example, the structural engineer
> must always yield to the mechanical engineer around the mechanical rooms so
> the ductwork can leave the AHUs.  Only broad guidelines are drawn for the
> thesis assignment and the student must establish their course of study
> including how and which topics will be analyzed/redesigned.
> The degree earned is a B.A.E, a Bachelor's of Architectural Engineering.  It
> is NOT similar to a Bachelor of Science degree.  A B.S. degree only requires
> about 120 credit hours.  A Penn State B.A.E. requires about 160 credit hours
> and (in my opinion) is equivalent to any B.S. plus M.S./M.E. degree
> combination.  That is likely the intention of the accrediting board because
> the B.A.E is a unique degree.  Employers that are familiar with the Penn
> State program agree because several employers "only hire M.S. degree
> holders" and Penn State B.A.E. graduates are considered equivalent.
> I hope this clarifies what an Architectural Engineer is and if anybody works
> exclusively on building projects and has the opportunity, hire one ...
> because with a small amount of training, you will have a quality design
> engineer.
> William J. Keil, P.E.