PPD + PDD Multiple Fails - third party resource suggestions?

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    Brian Starkey

    Don't feel bad...I failed PDD 5 times (yes 5) before i finally made it through just last week!

    Of all the times I took it, the most recent was the most relaxed, steady, and least confusing out of all of them.

    Mind you, I have 20+ years of experience, so things are a little different on my end. 

    Hyperfine is excellent. Ben does a great job explaining the basics for you. Designer Hacks has some great questions (used those for both PPD and PDD). Building codes Illustrated, Building Construction Illustrated, and look for Jenny's notes (Should still be pretty easy to find, and they are great for quick reading after you have familiarized yourself with the content. 

    Very important thing to keep in mind, which took me forever to figure out....relax and take your time. read the questions. First understand what they are asking for. Far too many times I would read the question once, glance and think I found the answer, and moved on. With this one you have to be methodical.

    Good luck!

    For all of the complaining I have done about this exam, I am finally passed it, and I don't know if it has changed or I just figured out what was being asked. 

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    Katie Merten

    Vanessa,

    I agree with Brian--don't feel bad about your fails.  It's important you learn from them.  As for which resource you might want to use next, I would strongly encourage you to use the Bootcamp.  You will receive so much support and accountability.  It's a huge network of folks and if you don't know about a subject, likely someone else knows about it, and vice versa.  We learn a lot by teaching and the Bootcamp gives you plenty of opportunity to be a teacher. 

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    David Kesting

    I think that hyperfine is your best bet. That and a copy of Ching building codes illustrated and building construction illustrated. Also I would go ahead and buy a copy of MEEB, architect studio companion and the IBC code. My guess is that you are already reading a lot of this material and since youve taken the exam that many times, I wonder if your having test anxiety over it? what are you studying right now?

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    Vanessa Woods

    All,

    Over the past three tests I have studied: Ballast 5.0, Building Codes Illustrated, Building Construction Illustrated, MEEB, and Architects Studio Companion. I've done practice tests, flash cards and practice problems, studying for each exam for about 2 months. I am definitely having some test anxiety going into it but I'm thinking that's only part of the problem. I tend to struggle with the questions themselves and their wording. It seems like they're always looking for some trick answer or something. All of this has me a bit confused on how to move forward because of course I'm going to try again.

    Since I have studied all of the recommended resources of the forum I'm at a loss and thinking I need to change up my way of studying. Which is why I'm looking into paying for one of these courses. My issue with the Boot Camp is the structured schedule, since I tend to be very busy working full time etc. I like the sound of Hyperfine paired with Amber Videos being a bit more relaxed regiment wise. But I've also read some posts stating that people have done the Hyperfine/Amber and still failed, then to only pass after taking the Boot Camp. Any recommendations on which route to take?

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    Katie Merten

    Vanessa, the Bootcamp is not a structured schedule.  You meet as a group once a week and then what you do with your week is up to you.  He only asks that you show up to that one meeting and put in the time to study.  

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    David Kesting (Edited )

    It sounds like your hitting all the right material. I have to imagine that your highlighing the right sections and reviewing your highlights. IF not then you should def do that. Ballast should be PA, PPD and PDD and SKIP ALL THIER MATH. literally just block all that crap out (other then PA net to gross calcs.)

    All calcs should come from Hyperfine for like $50 and then check out Engineer4free on youtube.

    I didnt see you list Architectural Graphic Standards, which I think is a good resource to have on you.

    Other then my recommendations would be:

    GET A SUPPORT GROUP. either friends who have taken it and passed, coworkers who are taking the exams now, employers or the like. Find some people whom you can meet with on the regular and chat with them about it. I dont know you but on this post is sounds more like anxiety is your worst enemy right now.

    THERE IS NO GOTCHA MOMENT ON THE ARE's the test is not trying to sneak one by you. They are looking for baseline understanding of the material and it sounds like your reading to much into the questions. IF it says whats the cheapest option for structural think about the span and then the cost. what works best for the bottom line.

    I run and enjoy doing it and find that it really helps with anxiety. Maybe you should look into other things before hitting the books again. There studies on the effect of Supermanning and tyring visualization techniques before exams. I would look into these before signing up with another service outside of hyperfine.

    YOU GOT THIS VANESSA. I LOOK FORWARD TO SEEING YOUR I PASSED POST.

     

     

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