• Tips and Guides

    A collection of “how-to” guides, by a variety of authors (including me). Click on a title to download a PDF.

    AIA Continuing Education Credit

    AIA members can receive continuing education credit for “Self-Designed Activities.” For such activities, you receive credit for the time spent in direct learning, which can include “researching new product information, preparing for lectures, presentations, study-travel, computer programs, self-study, etc. ” The activity must take a minimum of one hour, with additional credit given in quarter hour increments. HSW (Health, Safety, and Welfare) credit is not available. If you find any of the material available here to be of educational value–either by itself or in combination with other resources–please consider reporting the time you spend for AIA Continuing Education System (AIA/CES) credit.

    Becoming Influential: a Workbook for Architects and Other People

    A series of individual and group exercises that will help you build networks that nurture your expertise and make it visible in the world.

    On Bragging

    Some people are comfortable telling others their accomplishments and abilities, and others aren’t. Here are some suggestions for tooting your horn without feeling like a big wind-bag.

    Promoting the Value of Design

    The handout from a presentation I gave at the 2006 AIA Convention in Los Angeles. “Why promote the value of design? Because it’s what we profess, it’s what we love. Because of the emotions we feel when we’re in a remarkable space, and because we want others to enjoy those emotions. But also because it’s our business, it’s how we make a living. And because it’s better for everyone if we are paid to do our best. So we promote the value of design to align business with goodness.”

    Tips for Explaining Design

    For architects who may be frustrated by the general public’s lack of understanding of architecture, here are some tips for drawing others into the fold, graciously. This version was selected for the AIA’s Best Practices series.

    Confessions of a Design Reviewer: Ten Guidelines for Coming Out As an Architect

    Drawing on her experience as a member of Denver’s Lower Downtown Design and Demolition Review Board, Wendy Kohn offers sage advice on how to behave–and how not to behave–at a Design Review hearing. From arcCA 07.2, “Design Review.”

    Thank You For Submitting: Advice for the Award-Lorn

    David Meckel, FAIA, provides insightful counsel to those who are flummoxed by the process of submitting for design awards. From arcCA 07.3, “Comparing Awards.”

    Work Plans from the Client’s Perspective

    Michael Strogoff, FAIA, explains how to communicate effectively that your work plan is based on client benefit.


    If you’ve ever been asked to take over a project that had been begun by another architect, you know that this process (known as “supplanting”) can be fraught with problems. Kurt Cooknick, Assoc. AIA, Director of Regulation & Practice for the AIA California Council, offers advice.

    How To Write

    A concise guide to the process by Sasha Culvahouse, age 6.

    How To Be Safe

    For possible AIA/CES/HSW credit, by Theo Culvahouse, age 6.