RIBA Professional Education and Development Record (PEDR)

What does a PSA do?

Each school of architecture or course provider appoints one or more Professional Studies Advisors, with responsibility for professional studies and the monitoring of students undertaking professional experience. The Professional Studies Advisor or PSA works with employers and students in a joint effort to ensure the best possible professional development and experience for students. Professional Studies Advisors are expected to advise employers and students on all aspects of professional experience, including commenting on matters such as salary levels and student capabilities.

PSAs work closely with the RIBA and the ARB, advising on matters relating to both the delivery and assessment of practical experience and professional education through sitting on committees and working groups and so are involved in reviewing, revising and developing policy.

The Professional Studies Advisor is also responsible for reviewing the PEDR sheets every quarter and commenting on the breadth, scope and adequacy of the professional experience gained by the student. In exceptional cases will it be necessary for the PSA to advise that the student's current experience is likely to prove inadequate for the RIBA Examination in Professional Practice.

The Professional Studies Advisor should be the first point of contact if any difficulties or concerns arise. Alternatively, you can contact the RIBA Education Department who are ready to advise on any problem regarding professional training.

For more information about Professional Studies Advisors visit the Association of Professional Studies Advisors in Architecture (APSAA) website.

The table below gives an indication of the scope of responsibilities the PSA has for guiding the student through their periods in practice and ensuring they have the required level of experience necessary to pass the Part 3 examination and undertake the duties of a chartered architect.

You are responsible for: In addition, you must:
a establishing an organisational framework which will facilitate the provision of high-quality professional experience and development and professional practice education for the student employee
b advising the student of the educational objectives of professional experience and the general aims and requirements of the RIBA Practical Experience Eligibility Criteria sign, date and return the student's record sheet for each period of professional experience, within a reasonable time frame.
c providing appropriate advice and guidance on the RIBA Practical Experience Eligibility Criteria and Regulations, including advising students who wish to work overseas, complete their professional experience part time or offer a non-conventional pattern of experience comment on the student's achievements during each period of professional experience
d maintaining effective communication with Employment Mentors in practice, the university, the RIBA, and other consultants and principals involved in the supervision of students in placement
e providing the student with details of recall days or Part 3 course programmes, including times and dates for attendance at courses, educational support and access to learning resources. ensure that a mechanism is established for dealing with the unsatisfactory performance of students in placement, including counselling students who have failed to complete their professional experience in accordance with RIBA/ARB requirements.