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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) on HKIA/ARB Professional Assessment


To help you get quick answers to common questions on matters related to Professional Assessment (PA), a list of FAQs is prepared. Please click on the following links to find out more about PA.
 

 

ADMISSION REQUIREMENTS
 

  1. What are the entry qualifications for the PA?

Candidates must have completed a 5-year or equivalent full-time professional course in architecture accredited or recognised by the HKIA and fulfilled the minimum requirement of practical experience before they are allowed to sit for PA. For details of requirement, please refer to the PA Handbook.


 

  1. How can I check if my degree is recognised for sitting PA?

Please refer to Eligibility for the PA for the qualifications accredited or recognised by HKIA/ARB.

Graduates with less than 5 years of full-time study in architecture combined in both pre-professional and professional programmes accredited or recognised by HKIA/ARB are required to make up for the shortfall by undergoing an additional period of recognised practical experience, on top of the basic requirement of 24-month practical experience, before they are allowed to take Papers 1, 2, 6, 7 and 8. In all circumstances, the additional period of recognised practical experience required shall not exceed 3 years, i.e. the maximum total period of recognised practical experience required before taking Papers 1, 2, 6, 7 and 8 shall be 5 years. The required duration of additional experience shall be determined by the Professional Assessment Committee (PAC) and its decision shall be final. Please refer to the PA Handbook for more details.


 

  1. If my degree is not recognised by HKIA/ARB, what can I do?

Graduates holding pre-professional degrees in architecture not accredited or recognised by HKIA and obtained in a jurisdiction without provision for accreditation of pre-professional degrees may apply for Portfolio Assessment. For details of Portfolio Assessment, please refer to PA Handbook and the Portfolio Assessment Guidelines on HKIA website.

Graduates holding professional degrees in architecture from non-HKIA accredited or recognised schools, beyond the jurisdictions included in the list of HKIA accredited / recognised schools, need to take the Academic Qualifying Assessment (AQA) for assessing their academic standard. For details of AQA, please refer to PA Handbook and the AQA guidelines on HKIA website.


 

  1. What kind of working experience can be counted?

There are three categories of experience which can be counted as recognised practical experience. They are classified as Category A (post-professional-degree experience in local architectural practices), Category B (Year-out Practical Experience) and Category C (Experience in Associated Professions). No employment shorter than 5 consecutive months in one office is accepted as recognised experience. For details of Category A, Category B and Category C practical experience, please refer to PA Handbook.

 

  1. I am a non-local professional and can I be exempted from taking the written papers?

A holder of the professional registration by a national registration body of architects recognised by HKIA/ARB can be exempted from taking some or all PA written papers depending on his/her post-professional registration experience, and shall apply for admission to the HKIA/ARB via the Non-local Architectural Professionals Admission (NLAPA) if he/she either has

        (a) an overall (local + overseas) post-professional registration practical experience of not less than 15 years, or
        (b) recognised post-professional registration local practical experience of not less than 5 years.

For details, please refer to PA Handbook.


 

  1. How can I check if my professional registration is recognised by HKIA/ARB?

You may check the current list of national registration bodies on the HKIA website at here.

 

 

 

REGISTRATION DETAILS
 

  1. When is the registration period for the PA?

From PA2012 onwards, Papers 3, 4 and 5 registration period is separated from Papers 1, 2, 6, 7 and 8. Papers 3, 4 and 5 are held two to three times each year with the time schedule to be determined by the HKIA on a yearly basis while Papers 1, 2, 6, 7 and 8 are held annually. The HKIA may vary the time schedule of the PA, which will be announced well in advance of the PA.

The registration deadline for Papers 3, 4 and 5 is normally two to three months before the PA while the registration deadline for Papers 1, 2, 6, 7 and 8 is normally five months before the PA. The registration period will be posted on website around December of the preceding year. Candidates should check on the HKIA website (HKIA Website > Join HKIA > HKIA/ARB Professional Assessment (PA) > Registration for the PA) here or with HKIA/ARB Secretariat for the deadline of registration.

For sitting Papers 1,2,6,7,8, candidates are reminded to submit nomination forms of advisers and office supervisors at least one year prior to the PA, viz the last working day of October of the preceding year. Please refer to Q8 regarding the list of documents that should be submitted for application.


 

  1. What documents should I submit for PA application?

REGISTRATION FOR PAPERS 3, 4 AND 5

 

The registration for the Professional Assessment should be done online at the HKIA/ARB e-Self Service System before the registration deadline together with the following :

a) Photocopy of the candidate’s Hong Kong Identity Card or a relevant identification document
b) The current fees for the Professional Assessment
c) One passport-size photo
d) Open-Book Declaration
e) Photocopy of the candidate’s academic / professional certificates
f) Original confirmation letter(s) of academic qualification
g) Original confirmation letter(s) of professional qualification (optional)
h) Original confirmation letter(s) of practical experience

 

REGISTRATION FOR PAPERS 1, 2, 6, 7 AND 8

The registration for the Professional Assessment should be done online at the HKIA/ARB e-Self Service System before the registration deadline together with the following :
a) P
hotocopy of the candidate’s Hong Kong Identity Card or a relevant identification document
b) The current fees for the Professional Assessment
c) One passport-size photo
d) Open-Book Declaration
e) Photocopy of the candidate’s academic / professional certificates
f) Original confirmation letter(s) of academic qualification
g) Original confirmation letter(s) of professional qualification (optional)
h) Original confirmation letter(s) of practical experience
i) The Logbook (summary of practical experience and logsheets) duly completed by the candidate and counter-signed by the Office Supervisor


 

  1. I am applying for Graduate Member and shall I enjoy the discount for applying the HKIA/ARB Professional Assessment and HKIA/ARB Professional Assessment – Lecture & Seminar Series?

Only those who have been successfully elected by Council as Graduate Members will enjoy the discount for applying the PA and PA Lecture & Seminar Series. As the processing of membership application takes at least a total of 4 months or more, you are advised to apply for Graduate Membership earlier in order to enjoy discount for applying PA and PA Lecture & Seminar Series.

Candidates should check on the HKIA Website > Join HKIA > Membership > As Graduate Member for graduate membership application.


 

  1. If I find difficulty in looking for an Adviser, what can I do?

To help candidates who have genuine difficulty in looking for an Adviser, HKIA has uploaded a list of HKIA members who are willing to be Advisers of PA candidates. Please refer to the HKIA website at here for the list of HKIA PA Advisers. Please note that each Adviser is recommended not to guide more than 5 fresh candidates.

 

  1. Do I need to pay the registration fee?

All candidates need to pay the registration fee for Papers 1, 2, 6, 7 and 8 each time while candidates only need to pay a blanket registration fee once each year for attempting Papers 3, 4 and 5, irrespective of the number of attempts within the same year. Registration fee is non-refundable under any circumstances.

 

  1. What do I need to do if I have recently changed my job?

Should there be any change in Office Supervisor / Adviser due to change of job, fresh nomination should be made to HKIA immediately. This is particularly important during the period prior to your attending Professional Interview.

 

  1. When will I receive the Admission Card?

Candidates will receive the Admission Card around 1 week before the assessment.

 

  1. When can I apply for Professional Interview?

You have to pass or be exempted from all 8 written papers within 8 successive years before you are allowed to attend the Professional Interview. You will receive the application form for Professional Interview.

 


 

PREPARATION FOR PROFESSIONAL ASSESSMENT

 

  1. Where can I find the syllabus and reading list of PA?

You can find the syllabus and reading list of PA in the PA Handbook on the HKIA’s website at here.

 

  1. Does HKIA offer any courses / study materials for candidates to prepare for the PA?

HKIA offers PA Lecture & Seminar Series as a supplementary course and uploaded Examiners’ reports, (HKIA Website > Join HKIA > HKIA/ARB Professional Assessment (PA) > Examinaers' Report) past papers and sample questions (HKIA Website > Join HKIA > HKIA/ARB Professional Assessment (PA) > Sample PA Questions) on HKIA website for candidates’ reference in preparing for PA. Candidates are recommended to study the core reading materials for each paper as listed in the PA Handbook.
 

  1. What projects can I use for completing my Case Study Report?

The project for the Case Study should be of the candidate’s own choice and it should be a completed local building or the substantially completed phase of a large scale local project. Partially completed buildings are not acceptable. The project should preferably be one handled by the candidate’s office. If this is not possible, the project should be one of which the candidate is able to consult the records and accounts with the permission of the Architect of the project who possesses these records and documents. In either case, the prior written approval from the Architect of the project is a pre-requisite to the approval of the synopsis by the Subject Panel in the Architect’s Permission Form. Candidate should research a specific topic within the project for carrying out in depth study and report. Candidate is not allowed to study the same special topic as the one selected in previous years.

To assist candidates in looking for an appropriate project, HKIA has published a list of past Case Study projects on the HKIA website (HKIA Website > Join HKIA > HKIA/ARB Professional Assessment (PA) > Case Study).

 

  1. If I cannot find a local project for Case Study, what can I do?

You are recommended to seek advice from your Advisers. Since projects are the property of the architectural firms, HKIA does not have the right to offer any projects to candidates for writing the Case Study.

 

 

RULES FOR PROFESSIONAL ASSESSMENT
 

  1. Can I bring my own reference books to the PA?

Starting from PA 2016 – 1st Quarter, candidates can bring their own CLEAN copy of HKIA listed reference books to the Professional Assessment with the following provisos :

a) Hand written markings and notes on any of the reference books are NOT permitted;
b) The reference books could include new memorandum of the regulations (with authorized download version only for those not available for sale by government); and
c) Apart from item 2 above, no other materials or documents can be included in the listed reference books.

 

The list of reference books that candidates can bring to the PA is downloadable via HKIA website at here.

 

  1. What kind of calculators can I bring to the assessment centre?

Candidates are only allowed to bring calculators permitted by the Hong Kong Examination & Assessment Authority (HKEAA) to the assessment centre. For the list of the authorized calculators, please refer to the HKEAA’s website at here.

 

 

If you require more information, please contact HKIA Secretariat at 2511 6323 or by email at admin@joinhkia.net .

 

Last revision date : 16 March 2018