PPD Structural Content

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    Michael Ermann

    Alyssa, memorizing structures formulas is not a good use of your study time for these exams. They are available in the references tab during the exam, plus, last week at the NCARB licensing summit, NCARB explained that EVEN THOSE reference formulas are generally no longer necessary bc test items now include formulae inside the question….plus 5.0 has surprisingly little rigorous structures content (NCARB basically swapped out structures for accounting in the transition from 4.0)….not saying you won’t see ANY quantitative statics on the exam….but you may see only two questions out of 500 over all six divisions so studying ALL that material will not return a high yield. -Michael Ermann, Amber Book creator

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    David Kaplan

    Alyssa,

    I took this exam and everything that Michael says above is true.

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    Alyssa Wozniak

    Thank you both for the input, good to know! I had a conversation with my supervisor and asked him what he remembers when he took his exams (although this was years ago!) and he said as long as I know basic concepts regarding structures that should be sufficient, but based on this it appears even that is not as critical as originally thought.

    Thanks!

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    Rebekka O'Melia

    PPD is preliminary design, PDD has the heavy structural topics.  You don't need to memorize formulas, but you will need to understand forces and be able to solve basic loading/reaction results.  You should know the loading diagrams.  And you should know that m = force x area.  

    You won't get many structural calculations.  And if it seems like an oddball question, definitely don't waste time on it.  Hope this helps!

    Rebekka O'Melia, Registered Architect, NCARB, B. Arch, M. Ed, Step UP, Step UP ARE 5.0 Courses

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    Stephen Mullins (Edited )

    I just passed PPD today and can confirm that I had no structural questions involving calcs. Most of the calcs were about life cycle costs & construction budgets. In that case, Michael's comments above check out. I'm on to PDD next and I'm hearing from the boards there are not many structural calcs there either.

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    David Kaplan

    Stephen - yes, correct.  There may be a couple of structural calcs on PDD but they're basic and honestly, if you get them wrong, move on and focus on the rest of the test.  That's my advice.  

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