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Structural Engineer vs Architect: What are the key differences?

What are architects responsible for?

Architects created the built environment around us. They must consider both the physical structure and beauty because they are scientists and the arts. Architects create hand-drawn sketches, models, plans, and technical drawings daily. More frequently, they use CAD (computer-aided design) software. Together with other industry experts like designers and engineers, they meet with clients to discuss their needs.

Why work as a structural engineer?

Structural engineers also design buildings, but their priority is safety over beauty. To ensure that buildings are sturdy and suitable for their intended use, they make the calculations and choose the materials. They might also offer suggestions for enhancing already-built structures. In Glasgow, we provide a service.

Unlike architects, structural engineers have a broader range of projects, including bridges, dams, and even attractions at theme parks! Yet like architects, they create designs and drawings, interact with other industry experts, and as they advance in rank, they might also get involved in project management.

What are the significant differences between engineers and architects?

While there is a great deal of overlap between the two positions, the significant difference is that structural engineers are less involved in the final appearance of the building. It is an architect’s job. Yet, architects can get away with less understanding of physics and math.

Of course, they still need to be informed about these, but in the end, an engineer typically determines how to maintain a building’s stability and safety. And while structural engineers work with other forms of infrastructure as well, architects focus primarily on buildings. We provide a service in Edinburgh.


Simple explanation: You’ll probably make more money as an architect than as a structural engineer. This shows the more rigorous education needed to become a professional architect.

Training, education, and experience

Although standards differ from institution to institution and country to country, admission to university courses in both architecture and engineering is hard. Becoming an architect in most countries, including the US and the UK, takes at least seven years. Structural engineers provide a structural report.

Licenses and certificates

Professional architects in the UK are required to have passed the RIBA Part III test and a license. It is illegal for anyone who has earned a degree in architecture without completing this test to declare themselves an architect; they must instead identify as architectural designers.

In the US, architects must pass the ARE (Architect Registration Exam) to practice professionally.

The Institute of Structural Engineers accreditation is something structural engineers in the UK should pursue. You can apply for Chartered Engineer status if you have a BEng; if you have a BEng plus a Master’s or an MEng, you can apply for Incorporated Engineer status (IEng) (CEng).

Notwithstanding the value of both designations, businesses frequently favor applicants who charter. States in the US have different licensure requirements for structural engineers. Structural engineers provide a Structural Survey.

Typical office setting

Architects work primarily in offices, with some site visits and meetings. The hours can be pretty long even though they have a nine-to-five job with unusual overtime. The usual workplace for structural engineers varies depending on the company it employs them. While those employed by consultancies are office-based and focus on design, those by contractors typically work on-site and manage construction.

According to consultancies, hours with contractors are typically longer and more irregular.

salaries for structural engineering and architecture

As already noted, structural engineers typically make less money than architects. American structural engineers, for instance, don’t make as much money as their architect friends. Com estimates that the former will earn an average of $88,476 yearly compared to the latter’s $108,572. In the US, the situation is very similar as of April 2021.

With salaries of £42,357 and £38,761 for structural engineers and £61,435 and £40,598 for overall positions, respectively. Of course, various criteria, including education, experience, and geography, affect compensation.

architectural engineer vs. the architect

Both individuals work with structures. However, an architect considers a building’s structure and its exterior design, while an architectural engineer is primarily concerned with the structure. Often strong in math and science, architectural engineers can offer guidance on noise reduction, weatherproofing, and conformity to local building requirements.

They are creative and work closely with customers and architects to bring projects to life. In contrast to becoming an architect, which requires at least seven years of education, one can become an architectural engineer after completing a three- or four-year bachelor’s degree.

Civil engineering vs. structural engineering

Because I believe students will specialize at the postgraduate level, bachelor’s degrees in civil engineering are frequently found, but not master’s degrees in the field, which includes structural engineering. Building and infrastructure design and construction are collectively called civil engineering (minus the aesthetic elements).

Making calculations and models for load-bearing buildings like skyscrapers, bridges, tunnels, and dams is the only focus of structural engineering.

Civil engineer vs. the architect

Buildings and infrastructure are both included in the vast topic of civil engineering. Civil engineering graduates can specialize in various fields, including structural, transportation, environmental, and more. Civil engineers are more concerned with how things will function than how they appear. Although architects perfect the visual aspect of structures, engineers are frequently creative individuals (and, occasionally, infrastructure).

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