Gang Chen 5.0 Mock Exam

Gang Chen 5.0 Mock Exam

Postby 198kevin » Fri Jun 09, 2017 4:42 pm

Hi,
I've been studying for about 4 weeks, test in 1.5 weeks and set aside today to take the Gang Chen mock exam figuring to shore up my notes with areas I'm fuzzy in. Apparently, I'm either totally screwed or this mock exam is completely off for this exam. I got to question 56 our of 100 something before I threw the book down in frustration. Everything requires random code knowledge or complex structural calcs/lighting calcs/heating calcs. Has anyone used this yet? If this thing is close to what the exam is I need to put it off for another month. So far I've passed SPD, CDS and PPP and am using relevant notes from those tests along with notes from 5.0 Ballast. Was feeling really confident today about where I sat for this exam and now I feel like I know nothing. Thoughts on the relevance of this mock exam?
Last edited by 198kevin on Mon Jun 19, 2017 2:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Gang Chen 5.0 Mock Exam....Relevant...at all?

Postby architect23 » Fri Jun 09, 2017 5:05 pm

I've had a bad experience with gang Chen for both the leed exam as well as CDS- I recall it being overly specific. I say ditch it- after doing some research on this guy, he's just trying to make money.
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Re: Gang Chen 5.0 Mock Exam....Relevant...at all?

Postby vrcat25 » Sat Jun 10, 2017 7:19 am

198kevin wrote:Hi,
Everything requires random code knowledge or complex structural calcs/lighting calcs/heating calcs.


that sounds exactly like 5.0 and the case studies. I really don't think it would hurt to try to learn those calculations. Sure, there's a chance that some of them won't be on the test, but at least you will be ready if they appear. PPD and PDD are nothing like SPD, CDS and PPP and practicing test questions, as random as they are, can only help. Even though you're given 4 hours and 15 minutes, it sure will go fast and you had better practice and be ready for one or more of those calculations if they appear. Basically, you have to know pretty much EVERYTHING for PPD and even that's not enough. Hopefully, you are better with the "best guess" and "pick 3-4" questions than i was. Not sure there's a way to prepare for those, but you may as well capitalize on the code and calc type questions so i would definitely complete the other 50 questions. You can never take enough mock exams as random as the questions may appear, i doubt there nowhere near as random as what you're going to run into when you test.

I would try "ballast ARE sample problems" building systems, structural systems, ppp and bdcs" They are $50 a pop so i just scanned mine and resold on eby. They are the closest you are going to get to the actual test. Actually, they are far better. NCARB does a lousy job at making questions, but ballast is an actual publisher with editors. I've heard of many 3rd party publishers like amber and the whole enchilada, black spectacles, gang chen, etc. but i'd just stick with ballast. Unfortunately, half of the actual test questions are ALL OVER THE PLACE. Sometimes i wonder if the guy must have been smokin' on the crack rock when he wrote the question...I've had some very interesting and funny scribbling's on my test, personally. Anybody else have questions that looked like a first grade child drew it?? :)
Last edited by vrcat25 on Sat Jun 10, 2017 7:28 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Gang Chen 5.0 Mock Exam....Relevant...at all?

Postby 198kevin » Sat Jun 10, 2017 9:50 am

vrcat25 wrote:
198kevin wrote:Hi,
Everything requires random code knowledge or complex structural calcs/lighting calcs/heating calcs.


that sounds exactly like 5.0 and the case studies. I really don't think it would hurt to try to learn those calculations. Sure, there's a chance that some of them won't be on the test, but at least you will be ready if they appear. PPD and PDD are nothing like SPD, CDS and PPP and practicing test questions, as random as they are, can only help. Even though you're given 4 hours and 15 minutes, it sure will go fast and you had better practice and be ready for one or more of those calculations if they appear. Basically, you have to know pretty much EVERYTHING for PPD and even that's not enough. Hopefully, you are better with the "best guess" and "pick 3-4" questions than i was. Not sure there's a way to prepare for those, but you may as well capitalize on the code and calc type questions so i would definitely complete the other 50 questions. You can never take enough mock exams as random as the questions may appear, i doubt there nowhere near as random as what you're going to run into when you test.

I would try "ballast ARE sample problems" building systems, structural systems, ppp and bdcs" They are $50 a pop so i just scanned mine and resold on eby. They are the closest you are going to get to the actual test. Actually, they are far better. NCARB does a lousy job at making questions, but ballast is an actual publisher with editors. I've heard of many 3rd party publishers like amber and the whole enchilada, black spectacles, gang chen, etc. but i'd just stick with ballast. Unfortunately, half of the actual test questions are ALL OVER THE PLACE. Sometimes i wonder if the guy must have been smokin' on the crack rock when he wrote the question...I've had some very interesting and funny scribbling's on my test, personally. Anybody else have questions that looked like a first grade child drew it?? :)

Yeah I just read my post again and was like "yup sounds like the accurate description of the ARE's." Also I'm pretty sure it's not a guy smokin a crack pot, what they do is rip up an encyclopedia britanica and then release a rabid monkey in golf shoes and what ever facts stick to the monkey's feet become a question. But anyway I guess my question was in relation to how PPD is more DD and PDD is more CD's so it seems Gang Cheng is asking a lot of very CD type questions outside of what Ballast covered for PPD. Was goving over suggested BS and BDCS notes by Jenny and run into the same problem, whats considered conceptual and whats CD. (understanding structural systems, skipping connection types?) There's just too much to cram at this point and I'm realizing until there is more known content out there I think the plan of attack should be just studying for both at the same time and just being prepared for it all and hopefully passing at the same time. Anyway, back at it.
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Re: Gang Chen 5.0 Mock Exam....Relevant...at all?

Postby vrcat25 » Sat Jun 10, 2017 10:08 am

198kevin wrote: But anyway I guess my question was in relation to how PPD is more DD and PDD is more CD's so it seems Gang Cheng is asking a lot of very CD type questions outside of what Ballast covered for PPD. Was goving over suggested BS and BDCS notes by Jenny and run into the same problem, whats considered conceptual and whats CD. (understanding structural systems, skipping connection types?)


It sounds like you are on the right track now. PDD is more CD's, but i wouldn't put it all in that category. There were plenty of conceptual "best guess" type questions. In fact, it was all over the place, but mostly construction details, systems, code. I found it to be much more difficult than PPD in the sense that there's more calculations. After recently taking both PPD and PDD i'm definitely not sold on the "take them both at the same time" philosophy. I would say take and pass PPD first before even considering taking PDD. For me, they were too entirely two different types of test and the questions for PDD required much more time to calculate, especially if you weren't very familiar with that area and had to scramble back and forth from the reference tabs. The only way they were alike is that both had way too many WTF throw away questions that are almost impossible to answer or study for. All you can do is move on to the next question and hope that was a "trial question". There were way too many of those type of convoluted questions though for both tests. hope that helps some. Just took PDD this past week and PPD the week before last.
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Re: Gang Chen 5.0 Mock Exam....Relevant...at all?

Postby 198kevin » Mon Jun 19, 2017 2:17 pm

I wanted to come back to this after reviewing post test dumps, doing the NCARB demo exam, practice case study and reviewing material available during the test in the 5.0 handbook. A lot of the questions I'm assuming still go way further into structural calcs than I think you need to know, (I still haven't taken the test yet tho) but it seems the random code questions would come with a code excerpt and the more in depth calculations come with formulas so taking this mock exam with the same reference materials available on the NCARB demo exam leads to a much higher result and makes me say it's actually an alright source. The mock case study also included, doesn't ask any code related questions but it does do a good job of getting you to look for tricky program questions.
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