Failed SS 3x & BDCS 1x - Transition Now or Take BS?

Failed SS 3x & BDCS 1x - Transition Now or Take BS?

Postby Melon Panda » Mon Oct 16, 2017 11:57 am

Hi Coach and All,

I passed CDS-PPP-SPD and then took SS (three times) and BDCS (one time) recently and failed. I don't think I can pass the remaining exams (BS, BDCS, SS, and SD) by June, 2018. Only the exams which I haven't studied yet are BS and SD.

I have two options that I'm thinking about:

Option-1: Transition NOW and take PPD & PDD.
Option-2: Study & take BS and transition to 5.0 after BS either pass or fail.


I think I need to study BS anyway to take PPD & PDD. Why not study and take BS before transition?

Your comments & advice are appreciated! Please help!!!!
Melon Panda
 
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Re: Failed SS 3x & BDCS 1x - Transition Now or Take BS?

Postby vrcat25 » Mon Oct 16, 2017 1:37 pm

when are you eligible to retake SS? I would normally say to stick with 4.0, but if you have to wait 4 or more months, it may be more practical to just go ahead and transition. If you transition, you should have a good enough base for SS, since there's much less structures in 5.0.

Just curious, what was your big problem with SS? I've heard that the thaddeus seminars help. did you take those?
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Re: Failed SS 3x & BDCS 1x - Transition Now or Take BS?

Postby Melon Panda » Mon Oct 16, 2017 1:59 pm

vrcat25 wrote:when are you eligible to retake SS? I would normally say to stick with 4.0, but if you have to wait 4 or more months, it may be more practical to just go ahead and transition. If you transition, you should have a good enough base for SS, since there's much less structures in 5.0.

Just curious, what was your big problem with SS? I've heard that the thaddeus seminars help. did you take those?


I took both Mitaruski Prepare lnc SS course (30h), Thaddeus Online course, Used Kaplan, Ballast book & questions, etc. I will be eligible to take SS again in early December. SS is my weak subject. Level 3 on general struct & seismic and Level 2 on wind forces. I guess Thaddeus didn't help...
Melon Panda
 
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Re: Failed SS 3x & BDCS 1x - Transition Now or Take BS?

Postby vrcat25 » Mon Oct 16, 2017 6:53 pm

Melon Panda wrote: I will be eligible to take SS again in early December. SS is my weak subject.

Option-1: Transition NOW and take PPD & PDD.
Option-2: Study & take BS and transition to 5.0 after BS either pass or fail.
Option-3: Take BS and retake SS in December. If i pass SS, stick with 5.0.



In that case, i'd go with "option 3"....I thought you said you failed it 3 times? Did you take it the first time in December and would that be the end of your rolling clock? If so, i'd take it 3 more times before 4.0 is retired...Just take SS and BS another 3 times, until you pass...sounds like you have studied the right material and are pretty close. i can tell you one thing....PPD and PDD are no cake walk and you may find them to be MORE DIFFICULT since they have so many trick questions. At least SS has more specific answers....Did you know that the pass rates are much lower for 5.0?
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Re: Failed SS 3x & BDCS 1x - Transition Now or Take BS?

Postby Melon Panda » Tue Oct 17, 2017 10:55 am

vrcat25 wrote:
Melon Panda wrote: I will be eligible to take SS again in early December. SS is my weak subject.

Option-1: Transition NOW and take PPD & PDD.
Option-2: Study & take BS and transition to 5.0 after BS either pass or fail.
Option-3: Take BS and retake SS in December. If i pass SS, stick with 5.0.



In that case, i'd go with "option 3"....I thought you said you failed it 3 times? Did you take it the first time in December and would that be the end of your rolling clock? If so, i'd take it 3 more times before 4.0 is retired...Just take SS and BS another 3 times, until you pass...sounds like you have studied the right material and are pretty close. i can tell you one thing....PPD and PDD are no cake walk and you may find them to be MORE DIFFICULT since they have so many trick questions. At least SS has more specific answers....Did you know that the pass rates are much lower for 5.0?


I'm totally lost... Very disappointed...

-Melon
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Re: Failed SS 3x & BDCS 1x - Transition Now or Take BS?

Postby vrcat25 » Tue Oct 17, 2017 5:27 pm

Melon Panda wrote:
I'm totally lost... Very disappointed...

-Melon


You're not the only one....Many people give up or blame everybody else, besides the people who make these tests. They definitely are not fair. I guess that's what somebody means when they say "Life isn't fair". Well, these tests have a high degree of luck and the pass rates for PPD and PDD are much less than 50% for first time test takers. I realized after i transitioned that 5.0 is much more difficult. At least for you, you haven't transitioned and the tests in 4.0 are passable.

You never answered my question from earlier though....Are you eligible to retake SS in a month and half??
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Re: Failed SS 3x & BDCS 1x - Transition Now or Take BS?

Postby nickedemus » Wed Oct 18, 2017 4:49 am

Pass rates for the 4.0 were low in the first year, too. Some exams were as low as 20-30% if I remember correctly. NCARB no longer has data that goes back that far, but I did the research when I started testing. They also used to have data for 3.0 and 3.1, and there was a similar pattern. After a year or two, pass rates climbed and held at around 55-65 percent, with structures and SD peaking higher in some years.

There seems to be a learning curve involved with each new version of the exam. That's why I stuck with 4.0. But in your situation, with 4 more exams to complete and narrowing window of time in which to take them, it's probably best for you to transition. Plus, you don't really get any bang for your buck with those last four 4.0 exams, which translate into only two 5.0 exams. I'd transition at this point. IDon't let your nerves get to you.
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Re: Failed SS 3x & BDCS 1x - Transition Now or Take BS?

Postby vrcat25 » Wed Oct 18, 2017 5:00 am

nickedemus wrote:Pass rates for the 4.0 were low in the first year, too. Some exams were as low as 20-30% if I remember correctly. NCARB no longer has data that goes back that far, but I did the research when I started testing. They also used to have data for 3.0 and 3.1, and there was a similar pattern. After a year or two, pass rates climbed and held at around 55-65 percent, with structures and SD peaking higher in some years.

There seems to be a learning curve involved with each new version of the exam. That's why I stuck with 4.0. But in your situation, with 4 more exams to complete and narrowing window of time in which to take them, it's probably best for you to transition. Plus, you don't really get any bang for your buck with those last four 4.0 exams, which translate into only two 5.0 exams. I'd transition at this point. IDon't let your nerves get to you.


To he honest, I think the pass rates are incorrect. Any way to challenge them. As for recommending somebody to transition or to stick 4.0, I think you should listen to somebody who has actually taken 4.0...I had 4 test to go as well, but I now wish I wouldn't have transitioned. The content may be the same,but the experience and perpetuation that go into studying for the case studies and new format of thr questions are two entirely 2 different things. What could it hurt to retake SS in December??
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Re: Failed SS 3x & BDCS 1x - Transition Now or Take BS?

Postby nickedemus » Thu Oct 19, 2017 3:18 am

vrcat25 wrote:
nickedemus wrote:There seems to be a learning curve involved with each new version of the exam. That's why I stuck with 4.0. But in your situation, with 4 more exams to complete and narrowing window of time in which to take them, it's probably best for you to transition. Plus, you don't really get any bang for your buck with those last four 4.0 exams, which translate into only two 5.0 exams. I'd transition at this point.


As for recommending somebody to transition or to stick 4.0, I think you should listen to somebody who has actually taken 4.0...


I didn't recommend that, actually. You should go back and read more carefully.

And I did take 4.0. I've passed all of the tests. Somehow, I managed to do that without taking any of your advice.
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Re: Failed SS 3x & BDCS 1x - Transition Now or Take BS?

Postby vrcat25 » Thu Oct 19, 2017 8:24 am

nickedemus wrote:
I didn't recommend that, actually. You should go back and read more carefully.

And I did take 4.0. I've passed all of the tests. Somehow, I managed to do that without taking any of your advice.


I meant to say "i think you should listen to somebody who has taken 5.0"...not 4.0...You are a thorough reader nickdemus, but apparently you lack in the common sense department if you couldn't understand my meaning or maybe you're one of those professional fault finders who look for typos....I'll try to be more careful next time, thanks...;0

As for your other comment, at least you don't lack in sarcasm...So you are recommending that he switches to 5.0 when you didn't?? interesting...
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Re: Failed SS 3x & BDCS 1x - Transition Now or Take BS?

Postby nickedemus » Thu Oct 19, 2017 3:49 pm

vrcat25 wrote:So you are recommending that he switches to 5.0 when you didn't?? interesting...


What do you think it means?
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Re: Failed SS 3x & BDCS 1x - Transition Now or Take BS?

Postby mariop294 » Tue Oct 24, 2017 10:35 am

read my post - I went through the same scenario! the transition was scary but PPI was a good reference. I failed PDD and PPD each the first time and than with PPI exam prep I felt better prepared and passed on the next try. if you've studied a lot than you know the material it is just a matter of doing the practice tests and make sure you do understand the concepts.
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