PPD - 3rd Time Unlucky!



  • Avatar
    David Kaplan


    Sorry to hear about your struggles but hang in there!  Do me a quick favor: I'm not so familiar with the Sections in the Handbook, can you let me know specifically what the Section(s) is/are that you're not passing?  As in, what material do those sections cover?  Then I'll see if I can provide any guidance.

    Happy to hear that my advice has been helpful, I can't tell you enough how people on this forum have helped ME out, so I'm happy to pay it forward.  You've only got one more test (and yes I realize it's driving you nuts), but you're almost there. 

    Let me know, I'll see if I can't provide any further input.

  • Thanks for your follow-up, David. I hope this is what you asked for:
    Section 1: Environmental Conditions 10-16%.
    1.1: Determine location of bldg and site improvements based on site analysis.
    1.2: Determine sustainable principles to apply to design.
    1.3: Determine impact of n’hood context on project design.
    I passed Section one in my first two attempts and on my third attempt, got the worst level grade. I just dont know how I managed to fall so far off a consistent pass to Level 4; other than a different combination of questions that address areas that I am unfamiliar with in this third PPD attempt. Thx!

  • Avatar
    David Kaplan


    Well, for those three areas, the two sources I used were Site Planning & Design Handbook and Architect's Studio Companion.  SPDH really covers most of 1.1 and 1.3 I'd say.  When it comes to sustainable practices, such as Daylighting and Passive Heating/Cooling, the Architect's Studio Companion has chapters that cover both of those approaches. 

    I found that really having a solid understanding of the path of the sun, and how buildings need to be designed to respect that path, was key for PA.  Knowing about how the design differs among the four climate groups was also key.  What are the ideal forms for each climate type?  Where should a building be located if you have high winds, or steep topography, or natural features on the site that need to be respected?

    Neighborhood context - I think that the sample problem that the ARE Handbook provides is a good example.  It's the one where they give you a site plan of several city blocks and tell you the number of stories for each building.  The question asks you where you would site a building of 5 stories that needs maximum views of the river and needs to be contextually appropriate.  Understanding the approach to that question is really a solid example of how you'd do it on other questions too I think. 

    Hope that helps.

  • David-I’ll go ahead and refocus on the if I in these texts, as well as the question in the handbook. I’ve seen this question before in response to bldg orientation questions. It shed no light the first time I reviewed it, but I’ll look at it again. Thx again for your help! -ZN

  • Avatar
    Scott Barber


    Sorry to hear about PPD! I'm sure it's frustrating having to re-evaluate and study differently for retakes, it must be difficult to find a good balance and figure out what to focus on. I hope any advice I shared previously didn't lead you in a wrong direction! I know I'm mainly speaking from my experience, but everyone is different in the way they like to study/learn and retain information.

    I think David gave some great tips on sources to look at, I would also recommend finding YouTube videos or looking online for information if you need extra descriptions for specific info. For example, when I was taking PDD and PPD, I wanted more info on acoustical ratings and fire ratings for wall and floor/ceiling assemblies, so I went online and found some useful docs from USG that provided more of the info I was looking for. I know a number of people like watching videos so they find playlists on YouTube and use those to study.

    I hope you can find what works and pass PPD next time! Don't give up - it's a difficult journey but we will all get there if we stick with it! Good luck

Please sign in to leave a comment.

Powered by Zendesk