The RAIC offers an accessible alternative through a direct, self-paced program of academic studies, design studios, and practical experience leading to the RAIC Diploma in Architecture - accepted in Canada as equivalent to a Professional University Degree in Architecture. Graduates from the Syllabus are entitled to use the designation "Dipl. Arch." indicating that they have completed all requirements of the RAIC Syllabus Diploma.
In 1978 the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada Certification Board established the RAIC Syllabus, a national expansion of Provincial Architecture Association Minimum Syllabus programs. The Syllabus is a unique program that permits people working in the architecture profession to proceed through a course of study to reach professional registration. The Syllabus has been developed for those who find it impossible to attend a School of Architecture, although such study at the university level is recommended.
Syllabus Diploma students apply to become a Student Associate of their Provincial Architectural Association, and log practical work experience in the Canadian Experience Record Book (CERB). Original CERB reports are filed by the student with their Provincial Association, with copies to the Syllabus.
Following graduation from the RAIC Syllabus, and issuance of the RAIC Diploma in Architecture, the graduate then applies to the CACB for certification of academic qualifications. Depending on individual Provincial Association requirements, Diploma Program students write their Professional Examination while completing the Final Design Thesis, upon completion of the Final Design Thesis, or following certification by the CACB. Internship requirements following academic certification also vary from province to province.
Upon completion of all Provincial Association requirements, the RAIC Syllabus graduate becomes a Registered Architect.