Get Licensed in Minnesota

Seeking initial licensure as an architect?
Find below information on the education, examination, experience requirements, as well as application details and forms.

Already licensed in another state?
See the sidebar "Licensure by Comity (Reciprocal Licensure)."

For general application information relevant to all professions, see Get Licensed.

Initial Licensure

Education Overview

Applicants must be graduates of an architectural curriculum accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB).

Find an NAAB Accredited Degree Program

If your degree is a) not NAAB-accredited or b) from a foreign institution, you must have Education Evaluation Services for Architects (EESA), a fee-based service available from the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB), evalute your education to determine if it meets licensure requirements.

For details on all the above, see the application for the exam (below) or MN Rule 1800.1000 Subp. 5.


Experience Overview

Applicants must successfully complete the experience defined in NCARB's Architectural Experience Program (AXP) before they can be licensed. The program consists of 3,740 hours spread over six experience areas. You will need to create an NCARB Record and specify Minnesota as your jurisdiction.

About Creating an NCARB Record


Examination Overview

Applicants must pass all required divisions of the Architect Registration Examination (ARE). The exam is administered by the NCARB; but before you can register with NCARB, you must first be approved by the Board to sit for the exam.

A single application to the Board allows you to sit once for each division of the exam. If you fail one or more divisions, you will need to apply again to the Board to sit for the failed division(s).

Examination Application Form

The application packet provides a wealth of information regarding the application process, including links to Minnesota Rules and relevant associated websites (such as NCARB). We encourage you to thoroughly review the instructions and the forms.

Architect Registration Examination (ARE®) Application


Application Deadlines

NCARB offers the ARE year-round and so there is no deadline for your application to the Board. Note, however, that testing reservations through NCARB are on a first-come, first-served basis and are restricted by seat availability at each test center. You must schedule your appointment a minimum of three business days in advance of the test date.


Examination Costs

In addition to an application fee, which is listed on the application form, applicants must pay an examination fee to NCARB.

Exam Board Appli­cation Fee Exam Fee
ARE $75 Paid to/set by NCARB


Next Steps After the Exam

Need to Retake One or More Divisions of the Exam?

See the application form for how to reapply.


Passed the ARE?

The Board will officially notify you by mail once you pass all sections of the ARE and remind you to request that NCARB send your completed Record, showing you have gained the experience required for licensure, to the Board. Once this information is received, the Board will review your qualifications at its next meeting (see calendar). After that review, you will be instructed by mail how to request your license. The license fee is $120.

Note: You are not licensed and cannot practice or hold out as licensed until the Board processes your license.

Regardless of when obtained, your license expires June 30th of every even-numbered year.


Additional Resources


Professional News

NCARB Reduces Record Transmittal Fee
ARE 5.0 Exam Fees Increased in October
NCARB Publishes 2018 Annual Report

Stay Connected

Minnesota Board of Architecture, Engineering, Land Surveying, Landscape Architecture, Geoscience and Interior Design (AELSLAGID)
85 E. 7th Place Suite 160, St. Paul MN 55101 USA

 8:00 am–4:30 pm, Monday-Friday
 (651) 296-2388
 TTY (800) 627-3529
 FAX (651) 297-5310
 Staff Directory


Receive eNews from the Board

Note: Email addresses are considered private data in Minnesota. Signing up for eNews is entirely "opt in": The only way to receive it is by signing up directly yourself.

Board staff cannot subscribe or unsubscribe you, or change your email address. Subscribers manage their own accounts using the links provided in the emails, once they have confirmed their subscription by replying to an initial "Subscription Confirmation Requested" email.