NCARB is committed to promoting the highest standards of ethics and integrity within the architecture profession.
Ethical behavior is a fundamental requirement of practicing architecture and ensuring each licensed professional upholds their duty to protect the health, safety, and welfare of the public. Ensuring ethical practice of architects and licensure candidates—including avoidance of discrimination and harassment, the role and behavior of AXP supervisors, and the conduct of ARE candidates—is an essential part of NCARB’s mission. Professionalism and integrity also play a role in our duty to support our regulatory boards in facilitating licensure by maintaining an accurate database of disciplinary actions taken across the United States.
The NCARB Model Rules of Conduct
To help each of the 55 U.S. architectural licensing boards uphold ethical standards within their individual jurisdictions, NCARB has developed its Model Rules of Conduct. The document, which was first introduced in 1977, serves as a national framework that can be adapted and adopted by each jurisdiction. In addition, architects who hold the NCARB Certificate are required to certify that they are aware of the Model Rules of Conduct when they renew their Certificate each year.
As of June 2018, the Model Rules of Conduct intentionally references workplace harassment as an issue of focus for disciplinary consideration. It also features the obligation found in ethics codes of professions like medicine and law: to say something if you know something. The importance of these tenets has been affirmed by current social movements, which highlight the key role that calling out unacceptable behavior plays in creating a safe work environment.
NCARB seeks to lift the profession of architecture to the highest ethical standards as licensing boards review and update their codes of conduct, with the goal of creating an atmosphere of protection, respect, and professionalism. Learn more about the development of the Model Rules of Conduct.
As part of our service to the U.S. licensing boards, NCARB maintains a secure database of disciplinary actions taken by individual boards. This database enables boards to make important decisions regarding reciprocal licensure, helping protect consumers from fraud and malpractice.
In addition, NCARB maintains a public list of individuals who have been reprimanded directly by NCARB’s Board of Directors for exam infringements and other professional violations, per NCARB's Professional Conduct Committee's Rules of Procedure. Learn more about NCARB’s disciplinary action.