Learn project management as a UK architect

Training, Courses, and Other Ways to Learn Project Management for UK Architects

We’ve written on the importance of project management for architects previously.

The way you organise your work, documents and deliverables, and the way you communicate with clients and project stakeholders is absolutely essential to the future of your business.

That’s why we’ve developed PlanMan, the professional project management software for architects. Our tool takes care of all your project management needs.

But where can you, as an architect, learn project management techniques, strategies, and principles?

There are several major options. Let’s start with formal education.

Project Management Courses for Architects in the UK

There are many project management courses available in the UK, depending on your level of experience, interest, and goals. 

Some of the most popular and recognised ones are:

APM Qualifications

These are offered by the Association for Project Management (APM), the chartered body for the project profession in the UK. 

They provide a progressive structure for your career development, from the Project Fundamentals Qualification (PFQ) to the Project Professional Qualification (PPQ)

They also offer specialist certificates in areas such as risk management, major project leadership, and earned value management.

The duration of these qualifications depends on the mode of study, but typically they take between a few days to a few months to complete. 

For example, the PFQ online exam can be taken at any time and place that suits you, and it lasts for 60 minutes. 

The PMQ online exam is a 3-hour paper with an additional 15 minutes of reading time at the start 

The PPQ consists of three written papers and a professional review interview, and it can take up to 18 months to complete.

The fees for these qualifications depend on the mode of study, but typically they range from £168 to £568.80 (including VAT) for members and from £240 to £851.15 (including VAT) for non-members.

PRINCE Qualifications for Architects

These are based on the PRINCE2 (Projects in Controlled Environments) method, which is a widely used project management framework in the UK and internationally. 

They include the PRINCE2 Foundation and PRINCE2 Practitioner levels, as well as PRINCE2 Agile for agile project management.

PRINCE2 Agile is a framework that combines the flexibility and responsiveness of agile with the clearly defined structure of PRINCE2. 

It has two levels of certification: PRINCE2 Agile Foundation and PRINCE2 Agile Practitioner

The Foundation level covers the basic concepts and principles of agile and PRINCE2, and it requires passing a 60-minute multiple-choice exam. 

The Practitioner level focuses on how to apply and tailor PRINCE2 Agile in different scenarios, and it requires passing a 2.5-hour open book exam with 50 questions. 

The duration of these certifications depends on the mode of study, but typically they take between a few days to a few weeks to complete. 

For example, the online self-study course for the Practitioner level takes approximately 20 hours to complete, and you have access to the resources for 12 months.

The fees for these certifications depend on the mode of study, but typically they range from £349 to £1,299 (including VAT) for online or classroom courses.

MSc Project Management

This is an online degree programme offered by the University of London, in collaboration with Royal Holloway, University of London. 

It covers the core and specific competencies required for project management and allows you to choose from two specialisms: software development or sustainability. Considering the trend for sustainable architecture and building design, the latter may make sense for an architect. Check our posts on LEED and BREEAM accreditations to pursue those too!

This is a postgraduate degree that provides you with advanced knowledge and skills in project management, covering topics such as project planning and control, risk management, sustainability, operations, and quality management. 

The duration of this degree depends on the university and the mode of study, but typically it takes between one to two years to complete.

The fees for this degree depend on the university and the mode of study, but typically they range from £8,010 to £16,500 for UK students and from £16,500 to £33,500 for international students.

Learning Project Management on Your Own

What if you’d like to get a quicker idea of top project management strategies without going for a whole program?

There are definitely quick and easy ways to learn project management for architects besides formal education and certification.

Here are a couple of ideas:

Construction Project Management

This is a free online course offered by Coursera and Columbia University. It introduces learners to the fundamentals of construction management, such as project initiation and planning, lean project delivery, sustainability, and technology trends. 

It also covers the work breakdown structure and project scheduling. The course is part of a specialization in construction management that includes four other courses and a capstone project.

Project Management Training for Architects

This is a series of online courses offered by Lorman Education Services. It covers topics such as construction project management in the cloud, CPM in construction management, financial management and analysis of your project, and more. The courses are designed by working professionals with extensive experience in the field. They also offer continuing education credits for architects.

Architect’s Guide to Project Management

This is a blog series by Monograph, a software platform for architects. It provides practical tips and insights on how to manage projects effectively, such as how to use pre-design, how to create a project plan, how to communicate with clients and contractors, how to track progress and budget, and more. The blog also features interviews with successful architects who share their best practices and lessons learned. 

You could also use the following YouTube channels to learn project management basics:

Business of Architecture

This channel features interviews with architects, designers, consultants, and coaches who share their strategies and tips on how to run a profitable and fulfilling architecture practice. 

Some of the topics include marketing, sales, leadership, project management, productivity, and more.

Project Manager

This channel provides videos on project management concepts and skills for any industry or profession. 

Some of the topics include project initiation, planning, execution, monitoring and control, closing, stakeholder management, communication management, time management, cost management, and more. 

The channel is hosted by Jennifer Bridges, a certified project manager and trainer.

As an architect, you should always keep growing and learning new things. 

Updating your knowledge and skills will help you offer more services and earn more.