Summary of ARE 5.0 Programming and Analyses Exam Experience:
The ARE 5.0 Programming and Analyses exam can be considered easy and appropriately timed for those who are well-prepared. It is essential to practice questions on a computer to familiarize yourself with on-screen problem-solving and navigation. Visualization helps in answering around 80% of the questions, and it is crucial to pay attention to the clues and constraints present within the questions.
A thorough understanding of the International Building Code (IBC) tables, occupancy, allowable height, stories, and areas is necessary, along with their relationships. The American Disabilities Act (ADA) and historic preservation flashcards are beneficial, requiring only the memorization of general concepts. Familiarity with US climate regions, solar and wind analyses, Trombe walls, contour lines, and site plans is also important.
Zoning concepts like Floor Area Ratio (FAR), gross areas, and setbacks are vital. Pacing yourself and taking deep breaths at the beginning and end of each question can help maintain focus. Learning to skip questions and mentally adapting to different scenarios is essential for success.
Knowledge of soils boring, classification, soil types, and their relationships with foundations is necessary, along with general sustainability recommendations. Utilizing the NCARB guidebook is a must, as 70% of the questions directly relate to the topics covered. Understanding the topics, applying them in various situations, and practicing numerous questions is key.
In order to prepare, resources such as the NCARB Handbook, ArchiCorner videos, Marina Curac's YouTube videos, NCARB Community Posts, and playlists by Ariana Parrish and RMSM Studio should be utilized. BlackSpectacles free resources and Quizlet flashcards on ADA and soils are also helpful. You don't need the YoungArchitect programs, except maybe for their Facebook page, which offers valuable resources and insights from fellow test-takers, and sometimes economical study material.
Personally, I used mostly online and free resources. I didn't use Amber Book, and flipped through Ballast, Problem Seeking, and BCI.
It probably helps that I have a few years of experience working, and with a mix of projects.
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