Postby Get on it » Tue Mar 27, 2018 9:06 pm

2nd try on PPD and I passed. I am officially done with the ARE. Time to take some much needed time off. I did the 3 +2 method, but it ended up being 3 + 3 in the end. All in it took me slightly less than 2 years for the exams.

I want to say to everyone stressing out, that these test are do-able. Study and diversify your studying and just take the tests. I studied for both PPD and PDD at the same time.

I decided to go in on the Amber videos. I would say that they were a great resource to make me a better architect and super informative. It really helped me to feel confident going into the test and in general I feel so much more knowlegeable. I am visual, so having these videos really worked with the way I learn best. I think studying from a number of different resources is also a must for these tests. Ballast is good, but I ended up just searching online and studying for concepts I didn't quite understand. (Google Image search is great for this)

What I studied is this:
Ballast 5.0 PPD and PDD chapters. -I read all of it. This is a decent base for knowledge, but you need to go deeper in other sources for the real info I find.
MEEB- Definitely read this. -There is a list of chapters to read/skim/study in a post here on coach and it definitely is worth following.
Watched Thadeus videos- Helpful to get your brain back into the structures mindset
Watched Grant Adams Lectures- Super helpful getting your brain back into materials. These videos are pretty interesting and really cover materials well. If you have time watch them while your at work or in your free time if you have such a thing.
Designer hacks exams- I bought both PPD and PDD and I really liked it. For $40 each it was worth it to me. You can do short exams or long ones and if you take public transit its great to take a quick 25 question exam while traveling. The exams do a great job of explaining the right answer afterwards.
Fema Chapters- Definitely helpful to skim.
Jennys notes- I didn't spend a ton of time reading these, but they were a great skim the days before the exam.
ARE Handbook. - Honestly the example problems are a great resource. Highly recommend studying up on these.
Amber videos- These were great for me. Pretty much my only studying for this retake until my final cram week. There are a lot of videos so give yourself a good month to go through them.
Free Black spectacles videos on youtube.- These were helpful just to get my mind thinking. Id watch them if you can just put them on at work in the background.

I would say in closing that these exams are tough but they are doable. If you do fail, dont get down on yourself. Use the test as a learning experience for your retake. I hope this was informative to all and best of luck on your exams. Thanks everyone for your posts to help me along the way. Keep positive everyone!
Last edited by Get on it on Fri Mar 30, 2018 2:58 pm, edited 3 times in total.
Get on it
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Postby drummer03 » Wed Mar 28, 2018 5:58 am

Congratulations! Thanks for the study/resource strategies. I hope to be done with these exams soon!
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Postby ThomKat » Wed Mar 28, 2018 9:34 am

Congratulations! Thank you for posting your insights!
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