The Architectural & Engineering Technology (AET) program provides entry-level skills, continuing education, and advanced technical skills in several specialized fields, including computer-aided design and drafting (CADD), 3-D modeling, and rendering. The AET program offers an occupational endorsement certificate in CAD for building construction, four undergraduate certificates in the specialized areas of architectural drafting, civil drafting, mechanical and electrical drafting, and structural drafting, and an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree in architectural and engineering technology which encompasses all of these fields.

Program Overview

Students in the Architectural & Engineering Technology (AET) Program are trained to become skilled workers on architectural and engineering design teams. AET certificate and degree graduates are employed as drafters or technicians and work in private industry as well as municipal, state, or federal agencies.

Drafters and technicians work in support of professional architects and engineers to produce the technical drawings used by construction workers to build everything from roads and bridges, to homes and office buildings, to oil and gas pipelines. Their drawings provide the visual guidelines that show the technical details of the products and structures to be constructed. These drawings specify size, materials to be used, and procedures to be followed.

Drafters and technicians fill in technical details using drawings, rough sketches, specifications, codes, and calculations previously made by engineers, surveyors, or architects. Drafters and technicians use technical handbooks, tables, calculators, and computers to do this. Because many drafters and technicians may assist in design work, creativity is desirable. Good communication skills and the ability to work well with others are also important since they are part of a team of architects, engineers, and other technicians.

Certificates & Degrees

The AET occupational endorsement certificate requires one to two semesters to complete. AET undergraduate certificates require two to three semesters to complete. The AET Associate of Applied Science degree requires four to five semesters to complete.

Although courses taken may apply to the first two years of a four-year degree program (i.e., BS in Technology), the AET AAS degree should not be considered preparatory or a substitute for professional degree programs in architecture or engineering. Students pursuing a four-year degree in engineering should contact the School of Engineering at UAA. Those students who anticipate pursuing a degree in architecture should contact the AET program for academic counseling prior to registration.

In addition to tuition and fees, student should expect to purchase books and equipment required for each course.

Qualifying Exams

The AET faculty can assist students with curriculum planning to prepare for the Associate Technician Qualifying Examination offered by the National Institute for the Certification of Engineering Technicians (NICET), and for Construction Specification Institute (CSI) certification examinations. Courses are also available through the Construction, Design & Safety Division to help intern architects prepare for the Architects Registration Examination.


What Our Students Are Saying ...

“I like communication. I like psychology – people and spaces. I like math, and that’s all the structural sort of stuff. Science – you’re dealing with the earth and materials, and I like all those things. So, I’ve never been able to choose a degree. So, I finally feel like I found something that incorporates a little bit of everything. I enjoy all aspects of designing a project and now believe this is the right field for me.”

-Megan Endreson
Architectural & Engineering Technology '15

Learn more about Megan's experience.