Which Tables in the IBC are a "MUST KNOW"?

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    David Kaplan

    Daniel,

    Gotta tell ya, I wouldn't recommend memorizing ANY of these tables by heart.  But, you should absolutely have a full, zero-doubt understanding of A) how to use them and B) where they are in the Code.  They will give you the tables you need in the test, thus, you don't need to fear not getting them.  This being said, here are the tables I would focus your efforts on:

    Chapter 5 - Building height and area tables.  You should absolutely have full understanding of knowing how to define the maximum building height and tabular area for a given Use Group and Construction Type, and this includes sprinkler and frontage modifications.

    Chapter 6 - Tables 601 and 602.  You should absolutely have full understanding of knowing how to determine the ratings of the building elements based on Construction Type and also ratings of exterior walls based on fire separation distance.

    Chapter 5 - Mixed Occupancies.  You should know how to figure out the required wall ratings between two different Use Groups when you have a separated mixed-use scenario.  

    Chapter 10 - Occupant Loads - you should know how to calculate the occupant load of a given space using this table.  

    Chapter 7 - Fire Wall ratings.  You should know how to determine the ratings of a fire wall when you have one in a project.

    Again, you do not need to go into this testing having memorized that IA Construction Type is 3 HR rated columns per Table 601.  They will give you Table 601.  The goal of the test is for NCARB to make sure that you know that, when presented with a question about the fire ratings of columns, that you know how to determine that using the Code and where in the Code that is located.  I strongly encourage you to learn the "when" and "how" to use the code and not the "what."

    Hope that helps!

     

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    Daniel Pleitez

    Thank you

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    Gang Chen (Edited )

    It is important to read the exceptions under each BC table too. I am not surprised if the exceptions are tested in the ARE exams.

    Gang Chen, Author, Architect, LEED AP BD+C (GreenExamEducation.com)

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    Mark Baker

    Everyone's advice is great here.

    You do not need to and SHOULD NOT MEMORIZE the code charts (they will change in 3 years anyway). 

    But definitely know WHERE to find the imformation you are looking for. 

    And note that the information required for the problem you are working on will be available in the code reference snips they provide.  i.e. they will not keep relevant code information from you.

    Mark, Archizam

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    Sarah Simchuk

    I have a similar question. I've taken a couple study tests where one of the multiple choice questions asks you to identify the occupancy type, without giving you the IBC reference. Does anyone know if we're expected to memorize every type of occupancy (i.e. the many types of Assembly, etc), or will we most likely only be asked to identify occupancy if we're given a reference. I know you can also hope one of the case studies will have an excerpt, so maybe this is the expected strategy if so. Thanks! 

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    Mark Baker (Edited )

    So here is the summary of occupancy types.  You do not have to memorize them, but it's not that hard to do it.  And of the 10 you basically only encounter 5 of them in your professional practice.  Typically, architects specify in one particular type like education, or factory. etc. 

    There are 10 Occupancy Classifications:

    A - Assembly - Basically any kind of place where people ASSEMBLE for entertainment or like group activities (Restaurants, Theaters, Gyms, Casinos, etc.)

    B - Business - Professional Service Facilities (Offices - architects, accountants, call centers)

    E - Education (K-12 only) - Assuming that there are people in charge of the students that will direct them in case of emergency

    F - Factory - Basically manufacturing.  There is overlap between business and factory, but if the primary use of the facility is MANUFACTURING then it is likely a F use.

    H - High Hazard - explosive, combustible, corrosive, toxic materials, stored in a facility

    I - Institutional - group housing falilities, jails, hospitals, re hab - places people sleep under the supervision of other people

    M - Mercantile - (Stores) - any building used for the display and sales of merchandise

    R - Residential - (Places people live) - There are multiple types of R classification divided basically by length of time they are staying and who owns the property)  R1 - Hotels, R-2 - apartments and dorms, R-3 - Houses

    S - Storage - pretty self explanatory

    U - Utility - Not for Human Occupancy - Buildings that house utilities like power, telephone, sevwer equipment.

    Most encountered uses are A, B, E, M, and R.

    S is typically a secondary use to one of the other uses.  F is if you are working on a factory. A Factory will have offices and storage as a part of the building, but will still be a factory. 

    Basically, determine what the PRIMARY use is and that is what the building will be classified as. 

    Mark, Archizam

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    Sarah Simchuk

    Thanks Mark! I appreciate the thorough answer. I think I've been tripping up on practice questions that reference one of the specific types of assembly, or small exceptions that change the use based on low occupant count. I guess to be safe I may want to just do my best to know these items as well. 

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