Professional Diploma in Architectural Practice – DT119

Programme co-ordinator

Stephen Best – Senior Lecturer
Dublin School of Architecture
College of Engineering & Built Environment
Dublin Institute of Technology, Bolton Street, Dublin 1


Part Time - 1 Year


Deadline for applications has now closed

1. Part-time Application Form - All Modules

Application Deadline Wednesday, 31st May 2017
Application Form Closing date has now passed

2. Case Study Module

Application Deadline Wednesday, 31st May 2017
Application Form Closing date has now passed

3. CPDEB01P - CPD Lectures only

Application Deadline Wednesday, 31st May 2017 
Application Form Closing date has now passed

Programme Information

DT119 Handbook 2017
DT119 Case Study Guidance 2017
DT119 Timetable 2017

The Professional Diploma in Architectural Practice leads to the examination held at the Dublin School of Architecture, which is recognised by the Royal Institute of Architects of Ireland (RIAI) as the final qualifying examination. The programme is accredited by the RIAI for the purposes of registration. Successful candidates will be able to obtain Statutory Registered Status with the RIAI to practice as an Architect in Ireland.

Under the terms of the Building Control Act 2007 and the underlying European Legislation, EU Directive 2005/36/EC, the passing of the RIAI recognised qualification allows for the establishment as an architect (subject to statutory provisions) in a member state of the European Union.

The programme aims to equip each student with the Knowledge, Ability and Judgement needed by an architect to perform his or her professional duties and to understand how an office organisation is managed for this purpose. The examination is measured against the scope and requirements of the RIAI and current practice, its requirements as well as its anticipated future developments.

The purpose of the examination is to ensure that those who practice architecture have achieved a threshold of competence - in terms of knowledge and ability - and professionalism – in terms of awareness and understanding - that is consistent and relevant, and will safeguard clients, building users and society at large. The examination tests the students against the relevant RIAI criteria.

On successful completion of the PDAP programme the student will be able to:

  • Describe contemporary issues relevant to the practice of architecture in Ireland
  • Recognise the requirement to act ethically within the RIAI Code of Conduct
  • Evaluate personal performance against good practice
  • Explain the importance of collaborative practice in the field of architecture.
  • Demonstrate a critical awareness of the global, societal and legislative context of sustainable design.
  • Describe the general principles of management
  • Outline the specific issues arising from architectural practice
  • Describe his/her obligations and responsibilities to employers, clients, other professionals and to a society at large
  • Integrate the principles of project management
  • Examine the principles of team management
  • Debate the general legal context & explain how aspects of it impact on the management of architecture.
  • Evaluate the effects of Planning & Development & Heritage legislation on the realization of architecture.
  • Predict the effects of Safety Health & Welfare legislation on the realisation of architecture.
  • Appraise the effects of Building Control legislation on the realization of architecture.
  • Outline the legislative context of fire safety design and certification.
  • Characterise the societal and legislative context of inclusive design.
  • Conclude the duties and obligations placed upon the architect when appointed as contract administrator
  • Differentiate approaches to cost planning with and without the input of a quantity surveyor
  • Examine roles, responsibilities and relationships of sub-consultants during the Pre-Tender
  • Design Process and the Post Tender Project process.
  • Evaluate the selection process for main contractor(s) and sub-contractors.
  • Assess a resource plan and information issue programme addressing pre-tender procurement activities
  • Reflect on and critically evaluate the management of a real-life project
  • Reflect on and critically evaluate the management of real-life practice
  • Appraise the key methods by which the government controls and regulates the construction industry, including current consumer protection issues and related legislation.
  • Judge the legislative and economic controls of development including fiscal measures, planning legislation, environmental law, building regulation, health and safety regulation, and identify associated codes of practice and sources of technical information
  • Predict how the legislative and economic control of the built environment and the construction industry affects development and the procurement of projects in Ireland
  • Appraise sources of information available to architects in Ireland
  • plan and negotiate future appropriate professional experience accordingly

Programme Content

Semester 1:

Semester 1 is delivered through a series of three 5 credit modules, which are: 

ARCH 6101 - Context of Architecture, Management and Business Administration.

ARCH 6102 - Management of Architecture and Legislation.

ARCH 6103 - Management of Construction, Procurement and Contracts

Semester 2:

The second semester is to a large degree undertaken through self-directed study. There will however be three individual tutorials arranged with the Programme Chair, which will provide feedback and support. Students will be required to submit a case study, career evaluation report and sit an oral examination at the end of the semester.

Semester 2 is delivered through one 15 credit module, which is:

ARCH 6201 - Case Study and Career Evaluation


The programme is assessed through a range of techniques including: case study, reflective career evaluation, group work, assignments, summative examinations and oral presentations.


Dublin School of Architecture, College of Engineering and Built Environment, Linenhall, DIT Bolton Street, Dublin 1

Entry Requirements

The DT119 PDAP programme is open to the following categories of applicants:

  • Graduates of a recognised programme in architecture, equivalent to the DIT BArch
  • Other building professional who wish to take the programme of study as CPD.


The Dublin Institute of Technology’s special purpose award of Professional Diploma in Architectural Practice will be awarded to participants who successfully pass all of the examinations and assessments of the programme.

Career Opportunities

Successful graduates will be eligible to register as a professional who is entitled to call themselves an Architect.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the duration of the programme?

The PDAP programme runs on a part-time basis over 1 year.

On what days does the programme run?

The PDAP programme has run 15.00 – 20.00 each Monday over 12 contact weeks in first of two 15-week semesters. The single day operation of the programme is designed to facilitate students travelling from outside the Dublin area. This is currently under review. The second 15-week semester comprises of individual and group tutorials. 

What is the time commitment required for the programme?

The 1 year part time PDAP programme is structured on the basis of 30 ECTS credits or a minimum of 600 learning hours. Students should allow for a minimum of 20 learning hours per week over 2 x 15-week semesters. This comprises 5 hours in college each Monday and at least 15 hours self-directed learning over 12 weeks in each semester, and 20 hours self-directed learning per week for the remaining 3 weeks.

How often does the programme run, and when does the next programme begin?

The programme runs annually commencing in January.

How much does it cost?

For information on part time postgraduate fees for 2015/16 please click here.

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