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Architectural Drafter  What They Do

Just the Facts


Prepares detailed drawings of architectural designs and plans for buildings and structures according to specifications provided by architect.

This career is part of the Architecture and Construction cluster Design/Pre-Construction pathway.


A person in this career:

  • Operates computer-aided drafting (CAD) equipment or conventional drafting station to produce designs, working drawings, charts, forms, and records.
  • Coordinates structural, electrical, and mechanical designs and determines a method of presentation to graphically represent building plans.
  • Analyzes building codes, by-laws, space and site requirements, and other technical documents and reports to determine their effect on architectural designs.
  • Draws rough and detailed scale plans for foundations, buildings, and structures, based on preliminary concepts, sketches, engineering calculations, specification sheets, and other data.
  • Lays out and plans interior room arrangements for commercial buildings, using computer-assisted drafting (CAD) equipment and software.
  • Obtains and assembles data to complete architectural designs, visiting job sites to compile measurements as necessary.
  • Supervises, coordinates, and inspects the work of draftspersons, technicians, and technologists on construction projects.
  • Determines procedures and instructions to be followed, according to design specifications and quantity of required materials.
  • Represents architect on construction site, ensuring builder compliance with design specifications and advising on design corrections, under architect's supervision.
  • Checks dimensions of materials to be used and assign numbers to lists of materials.

Insider Info

Dig into the details and check out what people in this job have to say about their work.



Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would sit most of the time. There's some walking and standing. You may have to lift and carry things like books, papers or tools weighing 10 lbs. or less.
  • Work in this occupation involves using your hands to hold, control, and feel objects more than one-third of the time
  • Exposed to hazardous situations involving possible injury such as cuts, bites, stings, and minor burns more than once a month
  • Work in this occupation requires being inside most of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves making repetitive motions more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves sitting more than one-third of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Seeing clearly at a distance
  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Speaking clearly enough to be able to be understood by others
  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person

Work Hours and Travel

  • Regular working hours and limited travel

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Architect -- Plans and designs structures, such as private residences, office buildings, theaters, factories, and other structural property.
  • CADD Drafter (Computer-Aided Design and Drafting Drafter) -- Uses computer software to create architectural drawings, blueprints and plans.
  • Plumbing Drafter -- Specializes in drawing of plans for installation of plumbing equipment.
  • Truss Designer -- Designs and, in some cases, engineers the support systems for a building or structure.