The design of buildings and spaces -- public and private -- where people live, work, eat, play, worship, govern, and meet plays an integral role in the development of a society's culture and an individual's sense of place. The designer who chooses architecture as a career marries art and science to create aesthetically pleasing places that are also useful. This reflects the role of design as a whole.
Architects guide clients through the entire design and construction process; they must consider materials, technology, cost, structural stability, as well as aesthetic, artistic, and practical qualities; they provide an environment of space, light and climate, changing its context by its location and form and conveying artistic meaning.
All states in the U.S. require architects to be licensed (registered) by the state in which they practice, and education typically requires five or more years of professional studies followed by several years of internships and passage of the Architect Registration Examination (ARE).