Architecture Rules Update


In 2021, AIA Colorado led a bill that successfully amended the practice act to remove a requirement for architects to demonstrate retention of the material presented in continuing education courses. The goal of this change was to end the need to complete DORA structured report forms for each course taken.

Although the bill was signed by Governor Polis in April 2021, new laws typically can’t go into effect immediately. Additionally, our DORA licensing board publishes a set of rules and regulations that Colorado architects are required to follow. These rules also had to be updated to come into compliance with the change in law. Now that the rule-making process is complete, here we summarize the changes and records that architects need to keep.

First and foremost, the state of Colorado expects each licensed architect to read and understand both our practice act and our rules. The current versions are always available to download (alongside the board’s policies) from the DORA AES Board website. The full continuing education text is located in the rules under the “Renewal of Licenses” heading.

There are two exciting changes for courses taken in 2022 and on. Per our original intent, structured report forms are no longer necessary for courses offered by organizations such as the AIA. These forms will still exist for use after other types of CE activities when there is no provider to vouch for the content or attendance. The second change is that “board-approved transcripts” are an acceptable means of documenting you completed a course. You can now rely on your AIA transcript to show both your attendance and course details as an acceptable record. Separate attendance certificates are no longer required for any AIA courses you take.

What hasn’t changed? Architects are still required to complete 12 hours of continuing education in health, safety, and welfare (HSW) topics every calendar year. The AIA’s HSW criteria remain consistent with the state’s. Credits cannot be carried over to past or future years, and records must be kept for six years.

Before you rip all your old structured report forms to shreds, remember that new rules don’t apply retroactively. For your state-required CE courses taken in 2021 and earlier, AIA Colorado recommends keeping certificates, course details (available from your AIA transcript if needed), and completed structured report forms until they are older than six years.

If you have any continuing education questions, reach out to Advocacy Engagement Director Nikolaus Remus.

About the Author

AIA Colorado

AIA Colorado—the Colorado Chapter of the American Institute of Architects—is the voice of the architecture profession in Colorado. 

© AIA Colorado 2022