PA Thursday - Any Final Tips?



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    Julie Brown

    Remember that you can rotate drag n drop objects by right-clicking on them!

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    Canuto DeLeon

    Yes! Rotate don't forget that one .... I didn't know I could do that until exam day.

    My recommendation from just taking this exam today is BE QUICK. Answer questions and move on instead of taking 5 or 7 minutes on a single question. I ran out of time and left 1 or 2 questions unanswered. I've taken PcM & PjM and had some time to spare at the end, but this test today really beat me up with the time constraint.

    Practice your "Allowable Area Increase" and know everything that needs to be calculated. Give yourself some sample problems and just work through them with the codebook by your side. Look for the other posts in the community about area increase, they go more in depth.

    Sounds like you have a good grasp of the rest of the exam content from your study literature. Know your soil characteristics and you'll be fine.

    You got this Scott, Good Luck!

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    Scott Barber

    Thanks Julie and Canuto! 

    Thankfully I came across a post that mentioned rotating objects - will keep this in mind! I've heard a lot of people say they've run short on time. I've taken PPD and PDD and had plenty of time at the end of those, so I've been mentally preparing to answer quickly.

    I think I'll be ok, I just haven't had as much time to study leading up to this exam so I'm feeling more anxious about it in that way. Trying to focus the last couple nights of studying on where I'm weakest, and will just have to do my best on Thursday. 

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    Sarah Simchuk

    Question for everyone on rotating objects. I knew I could do this before I went in to the exam, but it didn't seem as if I needed to. What's everyone's feelings on this? Do you think there are some questions that really cannot be solved without rotating one of the items? 

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    Scott Barber

    Good question, Sarah. I know if you're placing rooms in a building you need to match the rotation (I think there's one like that on the practice exam). Why they couldn't just have a building oriented project north with a north arrow, I don't seems like understanding a north arrow, as basic as it is, is more important to understand as an architect than designing interior spaces on a site plan. 

    I'm curious though, if you have a question where you're placing the building mass based on a certain climate or context, how accurate the rotation needs to be. If the correct answer is 12 degrees, what's the margin of error?

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    Susan Scarlet-Macaw


    Rotating is important because there is a solar optimum orientation angle. 

    Orientation is measured by the azimuth angle of a surface relative to true north. Successful orientation rotates the building to minimize energy loads and maximize free energy from the sun and wind.  

    in a hot humid climate the optimum orientation is 5 degrees. Hot arid/dry 25 degrees, temperate 17.5 degrees and cold 12 degrees. 

    you can also read this

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    Canuto DeLeon

    I remember reading about "Avoiding cutting/crossing multiple contours" because of the associated excavation costs. Ballast exam guide also mentioned to "Avoid the tree canopy line" to not disturb root systems much. If you can achieve both by rotating then that would save you construction cost in practice and save existing trees

    @Scott .... As for the "margin of error" comment on a 12 degree rotation, if there were to be an item with that possibility. I would refer back to Ballast ARE Exam Guide, and I think it says "5-25 degrees east of south" (or south of east I don't remember) but I think as long as you fall within that range it would be ok. Kind of like ADA handrails between 34"-38"

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    Yi Li


    i was wondering how much detail we need to know about soil? 



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