I recently completed all the divisions, and I thought I should summarize what helped and what didn’t help me in this process so that others may benefit from it.
I found NCARB-recommended materials most useful for the exam and essential for my work. It does take time to read them, but I was able to manage it by finding online PDFs (mostly free), copying them onto my iPad, and reading them wherever and whenever I could. Carrying a single iPad is far easier than carrying all the books. I also purchased an app that would read me the PDF text and allow me to multi-task.
I found the third-party materials not nearly as useful and often contained errors and outdated information. I wish I knew about that before I purchased a whole series of them for a hefty price of $400. These materials are written for the exam and are very basic. They may be fine if one's goal is to memorize the material and pass the exam as quickly as possible. However, I think you will find the NCARB-recommended books quite useful throughout your practice and worth spending money on if you can't find free versions online.
I found YouTube channels to be a great resource. There are numerous exemplary videos, such as an entire series of lectures on structures by Professor Leslie Thomas or an entire series of lectures on city forms by MIT.
I found the NCARB mock exams extremely useful. It became available during my last test, which was on programming and analysis. I took that several times to gauge my timing in addition to my knowledge.
Elif’s mock exams were also quite useful. Even though I questioned the correctness of some of her answers, I still think it was a good brain workout. I only used the PA mock exams, and there were some 200 questions. The questions were very relevant to the exam, but again, I had an issue with some of her answers.
Good luck to you all.
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