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New Zealand Diploma in Architectural Technology

architectural architecture DAT

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#1 Reuben

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Posted 10 February 2018 - 11:47 PM

Hey there,

 

Why I'm posting this is I want to offer advice and assistance to anyone who is thinking about, or is already doing, this course.

 

A bit about me:

 

My name is Reuben, I'm 32 and a student with Open Polytechnic, on the last few papers of this diploma.

I've also been working full time as an Architectural Designer/Draftsman for one and a half years, in a small office of five. Before this, I worked in Kitchen Design and studied a Degree in Visual Art and Design. I should also mentioned that I'm married and we have a six month old girl.

 

I use ArchiCAD (Computer Aided Design programme) at work, and it is widely used in New Zealand by various firms. So I would recommend signing up for the student version (at the ArchiCAD website) while you study, and becoming familiar with its applications. I have also used Vectorworks in my previous study.

 

Tips and advice:

 

I would advise doing the 'CON10x' papers first, as they are more prescriptive, provide an overview of the construction industry have some valuable information that is used in the 'DAT10x' papers. The 'DAT10x' papers are what you will use a lot of in the industry, and as such require a lot more research and understanding of the New Zealand Building Code (NZBC), NZS 3604:2011 and a Computer Aided Design (CAD) programme.

 

Start becoming familiar with the CAD programme early on in your study (youtube videos/tutorials etc.), rather than waiting for the papers that require you to use it. This will mean you can focus on the course/assignment material, rather than having to learn how to use the programme as well. This is once you are on the 'DAT10x' papers.

 

Don't take on too many papers over a trimester, especially when it comes to the 'DAT10x' ones. Having three assignments falling on the same day is not very fun. If this happens, it can be good to apply for an extension (one or two weeks) so they are staggered.

 

DAT104 is 30 credits and over two trimesters. It is a lot of time consuming work and requires a lot drawing. So don't treat it like a one trimester (15 credit) paper and leave it too late.

 

I set up a word document (title, headings, sub headings, contents page, reference page, headers/footers) early on, and used it throughout the entire course. Each assignment I would delete the content and rewrite it to the suit the new assignment. I would include the assignment questions, and marking requirements (and weighting per question) in red and delete it before I handed it in. This meant I didn't have to switch between windows to see assignment questions and marking requirements, as it was all on my word document.

 

When using the CAD programme, during the 'DAT10x' papers, I would 'snip' (or screenshot) relevant information or details that I was referencing or using and import them into my drawing sheets. This again saved me switching back and forward between windows.

 

I read through the assignment questions before the modules, and then try and use the module information required for that assignment (rather than all the modules of the paper). As I found that using all the information from the paper sometimes meant I included irrelevant information in assignments that was not asked for, and getting carried away (which did not improve marks, just my work load).

 

 

Reply to this post, or email me if you have any questions, and I am happy to help and get back to you.
 

Reuben Munro

reubenmunro@hotmail.com


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#2 shawnofw

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Posted 12 February 2018 - 07:31 AM

Hi Reuben -

 

Thanks for all the information! I'm about to start Trimester 1 (CON101 / 102) and this is all very helpful. Much appreciated.

 

Will definitely take all your advice on board. Cheers.

 

-Shawn


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#3 AndrewJT

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Posted 21 February 2018 - 07:06 AM

Hi Shawn and Reuben, I also ended up doing almost as Reuben suggests, starting with the CON10X papers and moving onto DAT10X papers. After taking 2.5 years to get just under half way, this year I've cut down my hours at work and am planning on doing 3 papers each semester for the next 3 semesters to finish the course, this semester working on CON108, DAT101 and DAT106.

 

It took me a little while to get onto learning a CAD programme, it was the thing that dropped off between work, study, family etc, but have started working with ArchiCAD. The online material from Graphisoft started off a bit too intensely for me, but on Youtube there are a range of videos to choose from - I found Kevin Visser's channel the best to start off with, it got me learning some of the real basics and using a range of tools quickly, so was a real confidence boost after struggling through some of the Graphisoft material, and other Youtube channels (Eric Bobrow's for example).

 

For assignments one of the first things I do is look at what they require, and what modules they relate to. For a few papers you have to select a site then use it for all three assignments, so I think it can help if you consider all 3 assignments when picking a site, as it can make some elements harder later on if you don't anticipate what you'll be using it for - in this case I start thinking about in the first couple of weeks in the course, so that when I'm ready to start on the assignment I already have the challenge of picking a subject site out of the way.

 

Good luck with the first few papers Shawn, for me the papers get way more interesting the further I've progressed, so stick at it!

 

 

Andrew



#4 Reuben

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Posted 21 February 2018 - 08:46 AM

Hey Andrew, 

 

Very true about looking at all 3 assessments first, especially when it comes to the 'DATx' ones.

 

I have just completed DAT102 and the more effort you put into assessment 1, the less stress the other two are. Especially when it comes to assessment 3.
If you put a lot of effort into designing the house/layout in assessment one, a few tweaks (after input from the tutor) will mean you are able to focus on the required outcomes of the next assessments, especially assessment 3, as this requires renders and a presentation.

In ArchiCAD:

- I would suggest using the 'Cadimage' tools such as the roof and wall covering, as this makes the renders (and textures) more 'realistic', and helps with adding cladding to the exterior envelope.

- I would also add 'element details' to the toolbox (the bar at the side that includes such things as wall/roof/slab/text etc...) as this helps when drawing assembly details. To do this go to 'options' > 'work environment' > 'toolbox' and select 'detail elements' and add it to the 'design' toolbox (top right). Then you will be able to select this option from the toolbox when drawing details and sections.

 

I am more than happy to help with anything ArchiCAD related, as I use it everyday and am quite familiar with its functions.

 

Cheers,

Reuben


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#5 danielreid

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Posted 24 February 2018 - 07:55 AM

Hi Reuben -

 

Thanks for all the information! I'm about to start Trimester 1 (CON101 / 102) and this is all very helpful. Much appreciated.

 

Will definitely take all your advice on board. Cheers.

 

-Shawn

 

Hi Shawn,

 

I will be starting Con101 and 102 this semester so would be good to get in contact 

 

Thanks

Dan


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#6 Stephanie

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 11:49 PM

Hi,

 

I have just started CON101 and already finding it incredibly daunting! 

Will definitely be taking on any advice I can get!

Is anyone here from Dunedin?

 

Thanks

Stephanie



#7 Reuben

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Posted 27 February 2018 - 07:13 AM

Hi,

 

I have just started CON101 and already finding it incredibly daunting! 

Will definitely be taking on any advice I can get!

Is anyone here from Dunedin?

 

Thanks

Stephanie

 

 

Hey Stephanie,

 

Is there anything in particular that you are finding daunting about CON101?

 

Reuben



#8 Stephanie

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Posted 28 February 2018 - 03:27 AM

Hey Stephanie,

 

Is there anything in particular that you are finding daunting about CON101?

 

Reuben

 

Hi Reuben,

 

Everything lol, been a fair few years since I've studied..... just the whole getting my brain to actually take in what I'm reading would be nice haha

 

Stephanie



#9 Reuben

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Posted 28 February 2018 - 08:22 AM

Hi Reuben,

 

Everything lol, been a fair few years since I've studied..... just the whole getting my brain to actually take in what I'm reading would be nice haha

 

Stephanie

Hey Stephanie,

 

For the first couple of papers, when there was a lot of new information and I was trying to get it to sink in, I ended up typing up all the modules in a word doc. Was pretty time consuming, but definitely helped me remember a lot more of it.

 

Also, when it comes to working in the industry... it's not necessarily important to remember everything, rather to know where to find the relevant information. 

 

Good luck with getting back into the study!

 

Reuben


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#10 Jackie Lunam

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Posted 01 March 2018 - 07:50 PM

Hi everyone,

 

I am new to distance learning and must say all the information given up front is a little overwhelming, I am just starting out on the diploma and currently working through CON101.  I have decided only work on one subject at a time as to not confuse or overwhelm myself.  Hopefully this is a smart choice.  I am at the editing and drafting stage of my first assignment and really notice the lack of a grading rubric as all my previous study had these for every assignment.  Is anyone else feeling this?

 

My previous studies include diploma in art and design and a bachelor in creative technology



#11 Reuben

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 05:40 AM

Hey Jackie,

 

For the first CONx papers the amount of marks allocated (out of the total), and the required word count, to each part of the assignment were the best indication of how much was expected.

 

The tutor was usually wanting me to show that I understood the content of the relevant modules, as well as present it in a way that was appropriate for the target audience (ie. not too technical for people who aren't in the industry) and in the required format (ie. report, agenda etc...).

 

I found that doing the 'job sheets' at the end of the modules were a big help, and sometimes directly related to what was expected in the assignments.

 

Hopefully this helps.

 

Reuben


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#12 sobo

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Posted 28 July 2018 - 07:22 AM

Hi Ruben, just a question, after this Diploma, what's next step in term of study? 

Is there any other diploma online like this somewhere or I have to attend daily in some other Uni?

Hard situation for who need to work full-time like me lol.

My question is, I'm from Italy and is not clear to me what I really can do with this diploma.

Sorry for bother you, but I think you have more experience than me.

Thanks in advance Alessandro 



#13 Reuben

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Posted 28 July 2018 - 08:08 AM

Hi Ruben, just a question, after this Diploma, what's next step in term of study? 

Is there any other diploma online like this somewhere or I have to attend daily in some other Uni?

Hard situation for who need to work full-time like me lol.

My question is, I'm from Italy and is not clear to me what I really can do with this diploma.

Sorry for bother you, but I think you have more experience than me.

Thanks in advance Alessandro 

Hey Alessandro,

 

Once you have successfully completed this Diploma (in Architectural Technology) you have more of a chance to be employed by an Architect or Architectural firm, as an entry level Architectural Draughtsman/Technician/Designer. Some firms will even employ students who are still studying (like I was).
This Diploma helps develop a portfolio that you can then show a potential employer, which showcases your work, it also helps build you confidence and understanding.

See this link here for more information on Architectural Technician in New Zealand.

Once you have worked in the industry for some time (potentially 3-5 years depending on the experience of work you are involved in) and you are competent, you are able to apply to become a Licensed Building Practitioner (LBP) in Design (Level 1, 2 or 3) see link here. Which allows you to undertake or oversee Restricted Building Work and submit to Council for Building Consents.

 

Registered Architects in New Zealand are automatically Level 3 LBP's.

It is possible for a LBP Architectural Draughtsman/Technician/Designer to become a Registered Architect after many years of experience. I'm not too familiar with the details, however my boss/employer is in the process of doing just this (as he is currently a Level 2 LBP in Design, not an Architect).

 

Hopefully this didn't confuse you too much, if it did just let me know and I'm happy to explain further.

 

Reuben



#14 sobo

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Posted 28 July 2018 - 08:34 AM

Thanks for your prompt reply, so my understand is that you can become 'architect' after 3-5 years of practice as drafter, after that you can apply for LPB and after 3 years again that you reach level 3 you automatically become 'licensed architect'?

I was asking, because in Italy when you choose architect uni, you do the first 3 years of study that is the same of this architectural technician, and you can do 2 years more to specialize in some architectural, after that you are an architect.

To become licensed architect you must pass a nationwide exams that allow to put your signature on your projects.

That is why I was wondering if it was something similar here.



#15 Reuben

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Posted 28 July 2018 - 08:43 AM

In New Zealand 'Architects' and 'Architectural Technicians' are two different things. After 3-5 years of work you could apply to become a Licenced Building Practitioner, which is still not an Architect.

Architects in New Zealand must study Architecture (not Architectural Technology) then work in the industry for 3-5 years and then do post graduate study to become a Registered Architect.

Reuben

#16 sobo

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Posted 28 July 2018 - 08:50 AM

Wow, thanks again for your reply, so if I want to become Architect, I need to start from the scratch Architecture, because even if I will finish this course there will not value for Architect study, am I right, or I can still use what I've done so far to integrate eventually study in Architect?

Last question is Architectural Technician Nz Diploma good for work in Australia?



#17 Reuben

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 07:56 AM

Wow, thanks again for your reply, so if I want to become Architect, I need to start from the scratch Architecture, because even if I will finish this course there will not value for Architect study, am I right, or I can still use what I've done so far to integrate eventually study in Architect?

Last question is Architectural Technician Nz Diploma good for work in Australia?

 

Sorry for the late reply.

 

This Diploma is aimed at getting work in New Zealand, not Australia, as you study such things as the 'New Zealand Building Code' (NZBC), and New Zealand Standard in Timber Framed Buildings (NZS3604) as well as various other New Zealand Acts, Codes and Standards. There are some Standards that apply to both New Zealand and Australia (eg AS/NZS). See link here.

 

Hope this helps,

Reuben







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