ARE 4.0 to 5.0



  • Avatar
    Scott Barber

    Hi Brian,

    I didn't look closely at the transition calculator but I'm sure whatever you saw from the NCARB website is accurate. 

    Not sure what material you have from 4.0, but the most common advice for 5.0 is to not rely on 3rd party study guides, but focus on the 'primary sources' listed in the ARE Handbook. This will vary per exam (and these are just the starting point for the most part) but off the top of my head these were some of the best books for each:

    PcM: Architect's Handbook of Professional Practice (AHPP) and Schiff Hardin Lectures
    PjM: AHPP and Schiff Hardin
    PA: Problem Seeking: An Architectural Programming Primer and Site Planning Design Handbook
    PPD: The Architect's Studio Companion (ASC), Building Construction Illustrated (BCI), Architectural Graphics Standards (AGS)
    CE: AHPP and Schiff Hardin

    You'll notice a lot of these books overlap - I'd suggest studying for them in groups and taking the exams close together. I studied for PDD and PPD together and passed them two weeks apart, took PA, then studied for the other three together and passed them within 10 days of each other. 

    Ultimately you'll need to come up with your own plan of action and identify what materials you need to focus on. I used Ballast as an intro to the content for all the exams but it would not have been enough for me to pass. I'd suggest reading through the posts on this forum before you start studying for a particular exam. I spent at least a day reading through every post on whichever exam I was taking next, and used the advice from others to direct what books I studied and what content I focused on. There's a lot of good advice on here.

    Hope that helps, good luck!

    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    David Kaplan


    I only took PA, PPD, and PPD (I also did the transition approach), and I took CDS and PPP under 4.0  For those three 5.0 tests - yeah, that list you have above I think looks pretty good.  I would offer that you need to throw building codes into all of those tests though.

    One word of caution if you are thinking that your 4.0 study resources would be sufficient for 5.0.  4.0 to me was really more a memorization type test.  I really felt like anyone could've passed the 4.0 exams if they studied long enough and committed things to memory.  5.0 though - to me this test is more about understanding how to apply what we study/learn to real world situations.  The questions feel more like question we would get in the working world.  I personally thought it was way better, and good riddance to the horrible 4.0 vignettes. 

    As a result, you have to study differently.  For 4.0 - 3rd party study guides like Kaplan, Brightwood, AEP, etc. are all just fine, nothing else needed.  For 5.0, not so.  With the exception of one old school Structural Systems 4.0 book I had, I used all resources that were recommended in the 5.0 Handbook. 

    Hope that helps.  Scott's sources above are great.  He and others (including myself) have all posted our study resource list for individual exams, feel free to look those up.

    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Brian Blodnikar (Edited )

    Thanks for the replies David and Scott.  I sometimes get over whelmed trying to find information on these boards, but I will give that a try to look over the other posts for each exam.

    That was the plan to take as many close together as I could.  I was planning on taking the PcM, PjM and PA exams close together since it seems like they are using the materials.  I scheduled the PcM for 9-1-18..... 


    Update:  I found this website which matches the conversion from 4.0 to 5.0 I posted earlier.  Thanks again for your input.

    Comment actions Permalink

Please sign in to leave a comment.

Powered by Zendesk