PDD Fail Bandwagon

PDD Fail Bandwagon

Postby michaelmaciocia » Tue Apr 11, 2017 7:53 pm

Hey gang,

Jumping on the fail band wagon too, just got my PDD result back today which is also a fail on top of PPD fail from February. I'm struggling for direction here, and feeling super dejected as I studied really hard for both exams. To give a summary of all the study material I've used leading up to this;

Black spectacles lectures (37 hours worth) - watched all of the lectures, took notes while watching
Building Construction Illustrated - took a bunch of notes on selected chapters, used as a reference for more detail on BS topics
architectexamprep PDD study guide - read all the way through, no notes taken
Ballast practice exam - took at got around 75% first time
Read over all my notes twice
Brightwood flashcard app on phone - went through the Structural Systems category a few times

At this point I honestly don't know what more I can study. I'm thinking it would be beneficial to join a study group here in LA where I live, but not finding anything online to actively get involved with.

I spend around 7 weeks studying for this one, a couple of hours every night, and more at weekends. Do I need longer to prepare for each exam? I have a couple of work colleagues who swore by 5 weeks study time per ARE 4.0 exam.

What more can I do?!
michaelmaciocia
 
Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Jul 07, 2016 7:06 pm

Re: PDD Fail Bandwagon

Postby tmston2 » Wed Apr 12, 2017 6:31 am

Well most of the exam is....Which of the following is most likely to be blonde?
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
tmston2
 
Posts: 147
Joined: Mon Jan 13, 2014 5:41 pm

Re: PDD Fail Bandwagon

Postby architar » Wed Apr 12, 2017 10:59 am

I just got out of the test and feel like I may be joining this bandwagon too!
I guess I'll know tomorrow.

No matter how many times I read warnings about time management it didn't help me - I ran out of time!
What really got me was the way the program will kind of jump question order without you realizing it. I was looking at the clock and saw that I was at Q106 of 120 with about 40 minutes left. I was worried with that but thought I'd be ok. Then I clicked on exam summary and realized it had jumped ahead and there were 30+ questions left unanswered! I raced through them in panic mode!

It also skipped to case study 2 when in the middle of case study 1. I thought it seemed strangely short but didn't click over to the exam summary (I should have!) By the time I realized I hadn't answered half the case study 1 questions it had been an hour since I had looked at it.

So I guess my advice there would be to check the summary often, even with the lag time.

If I take it again I will probably take advice I have seen before and skip any questions I have to think about for more than a minute, then come back to it later..get the easy ones finished first. And make a quick note on the question # and basic subject of it to to save time when going back to it. Maybe even create a star system for how hard of easy you think it will be to calculate when you get back to try to prioritize the ones you go back to if you're running out of time. I lost time on several questions that were calculations that I was not used to doing but I knew I could figure out with some time - it would have been better to save them for the end.
I resisted doing this because of my frustration with the lag time of question-loading but now I do think it would be a good strategy

Also, practice with the ncarb software and learn to make a habit of zooming with the pulldown menu and searching terms instead of looking - the automatic 300 percent zoom is annoying and distracting. We are so used to having good graphics that we tend to just look but those testing computers will hurt your eyes and tire you out! Even the code book text is horribly pixelated and fuzzy

As far as content. I have no idea how to help anyone study for this. Some of the information is so obscure - there is no architect on earth that would know all of it. I think the best strategy is to make sure you know all the main concepts backwards and forwards inside and out so that you can get those questions 100% right giving you the freedom to miss the questions that come out of left field.

And keep up the momentum and painful repetition! Eventually enough stuff will stick for a pass!
architar
 
Posts: 5
Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2012 3:08 pm

Re: PDD Fail Bandwagon

Postby architar » Thu Apr 13, 2017 6:35 am

Well I passed and I'm done!
But I absolutely could have failed and wouldn't have been surprised at all.
I think the best approach is to read carefully and try hard to get the ones you know correct and don't fret too much over the ones you don't know.
If you make sure to really understand the big concepts there are enough questions based solely on those to get you close to passing.
Then there are lots of architectural details - I think studying details, not just in section, side by side with axonometric drawings of the parts and pieces shown in them will help with figuring out some of the questions that you may not know for sure but can figure out by deduction. There are manufacturers catalogs online that are worth looking at in addition to or side-by-side with books like BCI.
Learn how your engineers calculate the things you take for granted - to read the boring charts, graphs and tables that we tend to just trust they got right being thankful we don't have to do that part of the project.
If you aren't from California pretend you're going to have to practice there because there are plenty of seismic questions that are probably easy knowledge to anyone who has worked in CA.
The Ermann videos really helped me get the big concepts on a level that helped me process some of the details that I was just trying to memorize beforehand.
I found myself wishing I had had his class way back in grad school - it would have made me a better student and architect.
They're actually pleasant to watch but after the past couple of weeks I don't know if I'll be able to get the theme song out of my head! Its pretty catchy ;)
Good luck everyone and thanks to all of you who have participated on this forum! Its been a big help!
architar
 
Posts: 5
Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2012 3:08 pm

Re: PDD Fail Bandwagon

Postby randar82 » Thu Apr 13, 2017 6:47 pm

@ michaelmaciocia

Sorry to hear about your experience. In regards to what to study, here is what I would recommend (applies to both PPD and PDD):

- If you have 4.0 materials, specifically Kaplan and Ballast, I would start by studying both in entirety. Given how 5.0 is structured, PPD and PDD cover everything from PPP, SPD, CDS, BS, BDCS and SS. I generally found that Ballast was too general and Kaplan too detailed, so they made good companions. Read the Ballast as a precursor cliff's notes, read the Kaplan and take notes for content, refresh with the Ballast before the exam.
- Same with the sample exams in Kaplan 4.0 - do these as a gauge when you are done studying to see where you might need some additional review.
- Jenny's Notes (just google Jenny's Notes ARE) - great, comprehensive guide (again 4.0 focused but all info still applies).
- Building Construction / Building Code Illustrated - if you don't have a ton of experience, these are going to be critical on 5.0, which is more heavily code and detailed focused.

That's all that I used to study for 4.0 CDS, PPP, SPD, SD and then 4.0 PPD and PDD. I tried Black Spectacles once, but found the content to be too broad and took way too much time - I wouldn't recommend. Architect Exam Prep is garbage - the 5.0 guides, in my experience, did not remotely cover the material on the exam and were the most broad in content, despite being 300+ pages. A number of people will suggest reading all of these other supplementary books - MEEP, etc. I don't think it's necessary - you're not going to be expected to design the mechanical system. Sure, you might get an odd-ball super-detailed question that perhaps if you read MEEP cover-to-cover you would get right, but at some point, there is only so much knowledge you can absorb.

I would say that PPD was largely PPP, SPD and BS questions, PDD was BDCS, CDS and SS (if you want to break them down a little further). 5 weeks is about the right amount of time... any longer and I started to get bored with the content and forgetting things.

Best of luck!
randar82
 
Posts: 25
Joined: Tue Jun 25, 2013 8:46 am

Re: PDD Fail Bandwagon

Postby tmston2 » Fri Apr 14, 2017 11:16 am

5 weeks is about the right amount of time... any longer and I started to get bored with the content and forgetting things.

How much time if you failed it? 5 weeks again?
tmston2
 
Posts: 147
Joined: Mon Jan 13, 2014 5:41 pm

Re: PDD Fail Bandwagon

Postby randar82 » Sat Apr 15, 2017 12:57 pm

tmston2 wrote:
5 weeks is about the right amount of time... any longer and I started to get bored with the content and forgetting things.

How much time if you failed it? 5 weeks again?


I was fortunate to not have to retake any of the exams, so I guess it would depend on how close you were to passing.
randar82
 
Posts: 25
Joined: Tue Jun 25, 2013 8:46 am

Re: PDD Fail Bandwagon

Postby gbalaka » Tue May 02, 2017 4:08 pm

tmston2 wrote:Well most of the exam is....Which of the following is most likely to be blonde?


Obviously, one would like to know if the carpet matches the drapes.

Otherwise, it's eeny, meeny, miny, moe. :)

Good one.
gbalaka
 
Posts: 302
Joined: Fri Dec 19, 2014 9:27 pm


Return to PDD - Project Development & Documentation

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Knotnine, lizpetite33 and 4 guests