I took and passed PA yesterday morning. Each person's experience of each test is different, but I think it's helpful to hear what it was like for others. So for what it's worth, here's my experience.
Just like it says in the ARE 5.0 Handbook, you'll want to read Building Codes Illustrated, Problem Seeking, and Site Planning and Design. I thought those resources were right on the money. I'm so glad that I read each of those. Also the more you read of Sun, Wind, and Light, the better off you'll be. And of course don't neglect the codes! (I wish I'd spent more time on those.)
Like everyone who reads this forum, I was nervous about timing. But it turned out okay. I was able to answer every question and even review a few flagged ones before it kicked me out. The way I managed time was this:
- I didn't hurry through each question, but I didn't linger either. Once I felt I'd made my best answer, I moved on without double-checking or second-guessing.
- For the ones I was really unsure about, I put in my best guess and flagged it for review later. Done. Next.
- I saved the case studies for last. Remember, each question is only worth one point. The case study question that takes 10 minutes of agonizing research and calculation is still only worth as much as an easy multiple choice question. So I decided that if I was going to run out of time, I'd like it to happen during the case studies.
In my experience this test put a heavy focus on personal judgement and logical thinking skills. It's very important to know the material, but I'd say it's equally important to make sure you're awake with your best thinking cap on.
Eat a good breakfast, relax, and crush it. :)
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