I received my preliminary pass for PDD yesterday which completes my ARE experience. I want to post what study material I used since reviewing everyone's posts really helped me determine what to focus on.
I tried to study for PPD and PDD separately at first, took PPD and failed. Then I studied for these exams together and took them 8 days apart and passed both. It's a lot and those 8 days were stressful, but it was worth combining the study material since there is such an overlap.
- Ballast PPD book - This is a helpful study guide to get general terms and concepts.
- Ballast PDD book - I only skimmed this since there was a lot of calculations and formulas. In general I think I was good to know the concept on how to use the formulas but I would recommend not spending too much time on these.
- Amber Videos - I believe these videos were the missing element from the first time I took the exam. Great resource.
- Black Spectacles - The videos were not helpful to me but the practice exams were very helpful, they have a lot of hard questions that help prepare you for the thought process in the exam.
- Building Construction Illustrated, Fundamentals of Building Construction, and Architect's Studio Companion - I still have these books from college - although they are dated, all of the information is valid and useful to review. I skimmed them and although they have overlapping information, I would recommend reviewing them all.
- I have about a decade of working experience so I did not study construction details, however I would highly recommend using the Building Construction Illustrated or Fundamentals of Building Construction books to study construction details.
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