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Important Compliance Announcements

Guideline to Paragraph 15 of the Victorian Architects Code of Professional Conduct.

Division 3—Architectural practice

15 Notification of qualifications and contact details
(1) An architect must take all reasonable steps to ensure that the architect’s qualifications, experience, awards, honours and authorship are stated accurately in all documents.
(2) An architect must take all reasonable steps to ensure that the architect’s name and contact details are identified clearly and accurately on stationery, signboards, public notices and in publications.

GUIDELINE: The Board interprets “architect” as including architectural companies and partnerships, in which case the stationery etc. needs to identify the name of the approved company or partnership as well as the names of the architect director(s) of the company or member(s) of the partnership. Adopted by the Board on 12th July 2016.

GRADUATE ARCHITECT? – NO SUCH THING! - You mean “Architectural Graduate”

Don’t risk prosecution!

The term “graduate architect” is only ever used by or about someone who has an architectural qualification but who is not registered as an architect.

This is a breach of the Architects Act, which restricts use of the title “architect” to persons whose name appears on the Register of Architects.

The Board is concerned about the widespread use of this term by non-architects, and is aware that the term is widely used. This, however, does not make it legal.

To date the Board has been communicating with non-architects it has become aware of who are using the term, putting them on notice to comply and prosecuting them if they persist in breaching the Act. Reports of prosecutions appear on the Board’s website. (View “Prosecution Reports” here:

Since the great majority of people using this term have in fact completed an architectural qualification, they have no excuse for claiming to be ignorant that the title “architect” is protected. Likewise, architect employers have no excuse for using the term as a position description for a person who is not an architect.

Therefore, the Board considers that posting of this advice on its website constitutes a putting on notice to comply to all persons presently using this term who are not architects. The Board, at its discretion, may in future institute legal proceedings without notice against non-architects who use this term.

People also need to be aware of that the following language is specifically restricted by the Act to persons who are registered:

  • “architectural design”
  • “architectural services”


If you are not an architect you cannot use these terms either, including in descriptions of skill sets on e.g. LinkedIn.


  • A correct term to use is “architectural graduate”, which – provided the person using it actually has architectural qualifications – means exactly what it says.
  • A non-architect cannot use the term in any context – this includes the following:
    • Social media (including LinkedIn and Facebook)
    • Business cards
    • Email signatures
    • Title blocks
    • Advertising
    • Orally