PPD -- post test study thoughts

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    Edward Bilek

    Congratulations Kurt! I appreciate your activity on this site. I take PPD in one week and will be going over  a lot of material one more time before then.

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    Kurt Fanderclai

    Thanks, Edward -- good luck with your PPD exam.  Hard to keep track of everyone -- where are you at now in the process?

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    Edward Bilek

    I missed-typed above, I have PDD next Monday. I passed the other five, taking them about a month apart, but gave myself six weeks for this last one. I have had some distractions, so this week will be serious exam prep time!

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    Kurt Fanderclai

    That is great for you!  Good luck on Monday -- I now know the feeling -- it's pretty exciting having just one exam left.

    How long are you actually going to have studied for your upcoming PDD?  I am thinking of taking it in three weeks -- is that too short to study for it?

     

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    Randall Hunter

    Congratulations Kurt! I cannot wait to get past this one and know there's only 1 left. I'm very relieved to hear you hardly used MEEB. I've been trying to figure out how to use that thing and it is so dense. I will most likely use it as a review tool throughout my studying.

    Did you use fundamentals of building structures at all? It appears that the Arch studio companion and graphic standards with some BCI was your calling card. I suppose I"m going to have to buy those other two (already have BCI).

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    Kurt Fanderclai

    Thanks, Randall!

    Did not use Fundamentals... 

    MEEB may be great for some candidates -- I knew I was not going to plow through that monster.  It may factor more into PDD for some specific calcs -- ?  

    BCI (const.) was where I started for PPD -- read it cover to cover.  Then I moved to Arch Studio Companion to understand MEP systems a bit better.  Graphic Standards and Arch Studio are great for an overview of system pluses and minuses.

    Also -- depending on your experience or studies, you may want to review site design -- something that covers climate-related decision making.  I didn't study much for this type of info -- very light review only.

    When are you taking PPD?

     

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    Edward Bilek

    Kurt, if I had dedicated two or three hours everyday I would have been ready in three weeks. I studied regularly for the first two weeks after PPD but backed off since then. Of course, this asssessment may have to be re-evaluated after I actually take the test! I will keep you posted.

     

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    Randall Hunter

    I am in the middle of BCI right now. I just read the first half a couple of times for PA so now I'm reading the second half for PPD. I definitely will need as much help as I can get on the systems so those other two books might be necessary for me.

    I haven't scheduled yet but I'm planning on getting it in by mid December. I'm going to study for the next 10-12 days and see how I feel about the material. I may have to give myself a little extra time for this one.

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    Kurt Fanderclai (Edited )

    Edward -- great to know -- I appreciate your input.  And, yes -- let us know when you pass it!   Good luck!

    Randall -- I really feel like I straightened out some of my thinking by reading the Arch Studio Companion on MEP systems.

    And just FYI -- I and betting you won't need to wait that long to take PPD.  I think I screwed around too long studying for PPD.  In the end, I studied a lot of stuff that never made it on to the exam. 

    Really know chapters 5 and 6 in the IBC 2012.  Do a bunch of practice examples -- and there is lots of stuff online for this -- youtube, etc. 

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    Randall Hunter

    Thanks for the info. What edition of the Arch Studio Companion did you use?

    And you're probably right. The two exams I failed in the old system I believe were partly because I gave myself way too much time to study and I think it hurt my focus.

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    Kurt Fanderclai (Edited )

    No problem.  I used the 5th edition -- 2012 -- of the Arch Studio Companion -- which is not the newest version, so check online for a free PDF of the older version.   

    Again, it's not a listed major resource -- but a few candidates have mentioned using it -- I found it helpful.

     

     

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    Kristian Akin (Edited )
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    Kurt Fanderclai

    Hi Kristian -- thanks for the congrats, and I'm happy if I helped some other candidates along the way!

    As for the calcs on PPD -- I think your last sentence is how I felt on the calcs for both PPD and PDD.  Lots of "mini-calcs"  with fairly evident info provided.

    Sounds like you're on track studying the ARE5.0 Handbook recommendations -- also look through the PPD section on this forum -- some candidates did extensive write-ups on PPD.  I did not, but I did do a very long post-test write-up on PDD if helps you out when the time comes.

    Good luck!

     

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    Kristian Akin (Edited )
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    Rebecca Weeks Erdman Edmunds

    Congratulations, Kurt! Bravo! 

    Just getting ready for another stab at PPD. Ugh. It's my only one left, by also my achilles heel... 

    Thanks for all your advice across this forum.

    Cheers,

    Rebecca

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    Kurt Fanderclai

    Well thank you, Rebecca!

    When is PPD for you? 

    I didn't find either PPD or PDD particularly enjoyable -- heh!   Believe me -- and I don't think most other candidates would disagree -- if you can pass one, you can pass the other.  So in my mind you've already proven you can do it.

    Be confident.  Good Luck! 

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    Rebecca Weeks Erdman Edmunds

    12/22/17 at 9:00am... 

    My 3-ring binder of notes from all my readings and resources is 3.5" thick; I open it and alternate between falling asleep and getting agitated! 

    Cheers. 

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    Rebecca Weeks Erdman Edmunds

    Happy to report that I PASSED PPD, so am so done! Did not complete in my target 6 months, but got in just under 10. A few afterthoughts on PPD, as someone has mentioned somewhere on this site, the wild range of questions and question complexity across this exam, as I experienced, means one test version can be more complex and trying than another. I used so many materials in the end, but, for me, the ultimate trick was to have NO DISTRACTIONS in the 3 days before testing. I reviewed my notes and materials diligently. Images in MEEP and intro paragraphs in structural and HVAC sections of ASC was a nice review, but I did not read any of these in detail. 

    Best of luck to everyone!

    Cheers,

    Rebecca

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    Asra Zaidi

    hi Kurt! 

    i know it has been months since you passed this exam but I always find your comments very in-depth and helpful. I am taking the PPD exam in 3 weeks and so far I have read Ballast 5.0 section on PPD (too long too detailed), currently on ASC just got through the structures section and will finish the book before Sunday (hopefully). next week is all BCI (construction) and the week after is Site planning and design handbook, FEMA chapter 4 and BCI (codes). Then revision.

    Basically,  ASC is very helpful but all the charts that were given against each type of system were very confusing,my question to you is that  How much of that do I need to remember? do I need to memorize anything from each system? I found the charts that compared span sizes of each system and the table on pages 24-27 that that describe  which system to use when addressing specific design concerns VERY  helpful. is that all I need to understand?

    also for acoustics and lighting, do i need to learn any equations? are there any good sources for that? what concepts do they test on acoustics and lighting?

    sorry if this all sound too confusing. its just I'm freaking out and there is soo much to cover and only so much I can remember. 

     

    Thanks

    Asra

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    Kurt Fanderclai

    https://are5community.ncarb.org/hc/en-us/community/posts/360000825207-Passed-PPD-study-approach 

    https://are5community.ncarb.org/hc/en-us/community/posts/360000526448-Passed-PPD- 

    https://are5community.ncarb.org/hc/en-us/community/posts/360000072568-OMG-I-passed-Whew- 

    https://are5community.ncarb.org/hc/en-us/community/posts/115008034507-PPD-post-test-study-thoughts 

    https://are5community.ncarb.org/hc/en-us/community/posts/115008306328-Post-test-elation-Resouces-for-PPD-

    Hi Asra -- the above are some of the study write-ups that several have done on this forum.

    For the various equations you've mentioned -- PPD is definitely systems heavy, but like other candidates, I made sure I understood all equations referenced in the 5.0 handbook.  Both PPD and PDD may hit any of those, so know them and the associated concepts.  At the same time -- there is little need to go deeper than what NCARB is telling you regarding equations.  

    Good luck to you!

     

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    Asra Zaidi

    Thanks Kurt,

    it is funny how I have read through all of these threads except the last one. can you also recommend which chapters to read on Building codes illustrated for PPD. i found some threads that gave a list of chapters for PA but not PPD. 

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    Kurt Fanderclai (Edited )

    Hi Asra -- sorry for the duplication -- however, in my opinion, if you implement what is being consistently recommended in those threads, you should be well prepared.

    Building Codes Illustrated:  Bought it, never read it.  Someone else may be able to add specifically toward your question.  I reviewed the code itself for PPD/PDD, and in any case, I would recommend understanding and being able to implement IBC chapters 5 and 6 backwards and forwards.  Also be familiar with IBC chapters 3, 9 and 10 at a minimum. 

    By the way -- you're right, some of the structural comparison charts in ASC do indeed get a little confusing -- rote memorization, no -- but soldier through as much as you can in the ASC -- I also really thought the MEP info was very helpful.  Don't neglect mechanical systems.  Again, PPD is systems -- so you'll need to know when to use what system where and why.

    Where are you at in the ARE process?

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    Asra Zaidi

    Thanks again kurt!,

    my questions might seem redundant but there is just so much and so less time. I started my ARE exam study as soon as i found out I was pregnant in September. I have so far taken PjM, PcM, and PA and passed all except PA. I underestimated the material and what was frustrating with PA was that most, if not all, the material are covered in PPD. now I have until may 29 to pass at least two more. I want to give PA another try before the baby but i don't wanna rush which i did with previously. 

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    Kurt Fanderclai

    Asra -- congratulations on the upcoming "new addition"!   Also on the two passes!

    Well, as you found out, PA and PPD do tend to have some overlap -- which can now definitely work in your favor before your May 29 big day.

    If you come up with other topics/questions in the next three weeks -- start a thread -- there are always some smart folks ready to help.   

     

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