Testing Centers with/without Lag Time for Loading Questions



  • Official comment
    Ryan NCARB

    Josh, your understanding is incorrect. ARE 5.0 is delivered over the internet, so each time you advance to a new question it is being loaded.  NCARB completed extensive testing of this prior to launch, including at multiple test center locations across the country, and also experienced small amounts of latency between questions.  This is the same delay you may experience when taking the ARE 5.0 Demonstration Exam.  Those delays between questions have been accounted for in the overall testing time window for each division.

    This matter is something both NCARB and Prometric are actively monitoring.  Timing, both per item and for exams overall, is tracked on ALL administrations.  Should any anomalies occur in the future it will be addressed with candidates, but at this time everything is function as expected.

  • Avatar
    Joshua Kunkel

    It is my understanding that Prometric remotely logs in to NCARB's server(where the exam lives) and this is what causes the delay.  I had the same issue when I beta tested.  Very frustrating.

  • Avatar
    Erik Lindberg

    Ditto to Joshua.

    I experienced significant lag in Orange County, CA. Don't think that helps you east-coasters though.

    I recall someone on these boards saying they didn't have any; maybe we should figure out where they were and all fly there to test. =P

  • Avatar
    Daniel Spilman

    To respond to Ryan's official post, 

    Please refer to my post here, where I explained my exam experience :


    I experienced significant latency issues during this exam, as explained in detail in the above post and I had the same issues when I took Project Management. I was a huge fan of the exam overall, however I think its absurd to say that the exam is functioning as expected with these latency issues. Whether or not time is added to the exam to compensate for the latency (which I have a hard time believing, because this could be a varying factor), when someone is taking an exam, it is VERY STRESSFUL to sit there and wait while looking at "Loading" when opening the Reference Material on a case study. Even if time is allotted for this, this would create anxiety in any exam-taker as it makes you feel as though you are losing time and must rush.

    Furthermore, everyone takes exams differently. Some may read through the Reference material before beginning questions, others may read the questions and jump back and forth between reference materials. Again, these differences make it impossible to "account for" the loading time which could add up to a very significant amount of testing time.

    Again, I want to stress that overall I am a huge advocate of the 5.0 exam format. I think its great. But this is an absurd issue that should be corrected. I firmly believe NCARB should change there stance on this issue specifically. That is the purpose of these forums, to hear the voice of the early exam-takers.

    Also lets not forget about that damn calculator (excuse the strong language). But again, its absurd. Just let Prometric give us one of the basic function calculators that they have there for CPA exams and such. There is no good reason to force people to use the on screen calculator when there are perfectly good and safe calculators that the testing center can provide. 

    Other's please continue to provide your feedback as you test. NCARB needs to hear if these issues are affecting your exam. Thank you to the other early exam takers!

  • Avatar
    Joseph Wassell


    I took PPD and PDD at the same test center in the NYC area, and the loading times were different each time.  The real kicker was that the exam with more image based content loaded faster.  So.... best of luck?  Fortunately or unfortunately, location and latency are unrelated.


  • Avatar
    Franklin Garcia

    @NCARB The case studies do load very slow, at least 9 times I had a blank white screen for at least 8-10 seconds which freaked me out because of the time management strategies that I had prior coming into the exam. The same can be said for some questions that had some graphics involved which had lag of about 6 seconds. I am very disappointed since this exam is about time management and I was short of 9-12 questions in last case studies. In my opinion the exam needed at least 20 more minutes to finish however you still will not have time to go back a review the questions that you had marked (I did not take a break, just went all the way through).

      In the order hand this exam TEST THE KNOWLEDGE OF ACTUAL PRACTICE!!!! Woow 10+ for NCARB, the questions were relatively easy, still you want to spend a little over minute or less reading/answering the questions to make sure you get the correct answer. The case studies and drag and drop scenarios did represent actual practice, but like I mentioned above the exam needed at least 20 more minutes to solve the case studies and go over the reference material which it is VERY SLOW!!! give me a paper code book and I can go twice faster than the screen reload (I do this for a living and I did feel comfortable looking at the reference material, however the lag ohhhh the lag!!!! Please fix that).

      I am hoping that even though I did not have time to resolve for the last case studies I did well with the rest of the material.

    Best regards.

  • Avatar
    Matthew Pegolo (Edited )

    I took PPD yesterday in Glastonbury CT.  Each question loaded with about a 5 second delay.  5 seconds of staring at a white blank screen while the clock in the corner kept ticking.  Thats a grand total of 10 MINUTES over the course of the test staring at nothing and not being able to answer anything.  On top of that, the reference documents in the case study took similar times to load each document PAGE inside the tab.  

    This is pretty nerve-racking during the exam, as you aren't sure if you will have enough time to finish before time is up! 

    This seriously needs to be fixed.  


    Also, there were a few spelling errors in the test itself.  One question, which I believed to be the right answer, was spelt wrong (which actually meant another word).  It seemed to be the best answer, but it was obvious that there was a mistake with the question.  


    Overall, the LAG nearly gave me a heart attack during the exam.   Questions were very conceptually in depth, and required a lot of reading into the scene.  


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