Archinect
anchor

You can surely pass the ARE by using the "Feynman Technique"

Richard Feynman is the greatest scientist after Einstein. I remember applying the Feynman Technique to learn Statics when I was in college and got the highest grade! To better understand it, watch this video to use it for your architecture registration exam preparation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_f-qkGJBPts

 
Jul 8, 20 4:15 am
rcz1001

Princess Diane Sanchez, have you ever passed the ARE exams? If you have not, I recommend that you do not make suggestions about how to pass the ARE exams.


Jul 8, 20 4:37 am  · 
 ·  1

The "Feynman Technique" has been applied to people like Physics and Mathematics students ranging from different fields like Quantum Gravity, Number Theory, Topology, etc. I'm 100% sure it can also be applied to passing the ARE. I'm sorry, but please do your research. You appeared to be a scientifically, "illiterate" person.

 ·  1
randomised

So, you didn't pass those ARE's did you?

2  · 
rcz1001

Princess Diane Sanchez, the Architect Registration Examination is not a "Principles of Engineering" exam or a science exam. Your suggestion may help answer some questions in the exams. Seriously, have you passed any "division" of the "Architect Registration Examination"? You over pitched the idea that you will pass the ARE by using the "Feynman Technique". If you have not passed the ARE exams, you might not have the credibility to be offering advice on how to pass the ARE. The Feynman Technique can help a person to pass the exams by improving his or her studying technique.

 · 

Have you tried the Feynman Technique? I recommend that you do not make an opinion if you haven't tried it. This technique is applicable not just on exams but on teaching as well. Do your research. 

Jul 8, 20 4:55 am  · 
 ·  1
randomised

So, you haven't passed those ARE's did you?

 · 
Non Sequitur

Regular studying also works well.

2  · 
joseffischer

Yeah, just replace "the feynman technique" with "studying" and her post becomes a way easier read, if a bit boring

 · 

As someone who passed the AREA 4.0 I recommend studying - especially the AIA contracts.

 · 
Bloopox

This is a good technique for learning complex-seeming subjects, especially for people who tend to have "equation panic."  I could see it helping for studying some topics for the ARE. 

However, I'd caution that when you encounter actual ARE test questions that appear to require any complex understanding/explaining/breaking down of the problem, those questions are usually "trick questions" in the sense that they're not really testing your ability to do complicated math or even set up the equations - they're testing your ability to immediately see why you don't need to do that.  On structural questions in particular, my advice (as somebody who has passed the ARE) is that after reading the question, immediately look at the answer choices.  If there's one that stands out as different than the others - for instance if 3 of the choices are big numbers but one is zero - ask yourself why.  That usually gives you the answer without the need to actually do any complex breaking down of problems or equations.  It's a test of general concepts.  You've got only a matter of seconds or at best a minute or two per question.  If it appears that it's going to take you 5 minutes, you're probably overlooking the obvious.

Jul 8, 20 10:03 am  · 
3  · 
code

and this is better than the Trump method where he paid someone to take his SAT test?

Jul 8, 20 12:50 pm  · 
1  · 
proto

have you met Rick yet, Princess?

Jul 8, 20 1:02 pm  · 
 · 
Threesleeve

She has. Rick's latest character appeared earlier in this thread.

1  · 
rcz1001

Who?

 · 
proto

did not know that

 · 
tduds

Not sure why the antagonism but I'm all about the Feynman Technique.

Jul 8, 20 2:30 pm  · 
 · 

there is someone on Archinect that could speak about this with an expert opinion ;)

Jul 8, 20 7:19 pm  · 
 · 
citizen

And don't call me Shirley!

Jul 8, 20 9:35 pm  · 
1  · 
shellarchitect

As bloopox was saying, the ARE is a test for breadth of knowledge and concepts.  I used to laugh at those on the areforum who would post a study list of 15 arcane textbooks that they would read over 6 months.  Those people never passed.  The key to most of the exams is to understand the general concept and theory.  Critical thinking is key

Jul 9, 20 8:25 pm  · 
3  · 
joseffischer

I freaked out about the tests, took me forever to finally study and take one. Then some projects hit and I was too busy to study properly and freaked out some more. When I finally sat down the stuff was "have you been an architect recently? Ok, good job" and I just signed up for the rest of them and stopped worrying.

Alternatively, I know some people sit down fresh out of school, hit the books, cram flash cards, ask mentors about case studies and pass.  It just seems like a way harder way to do it.


 · 
natematt

What really struck me when I started taking the exams, was how much of it you don't actually know the answer for sure on. It's in contrast to most other tests you take in life, where you've memorized something, or are calculating something, and ultimately you know an answer, or you don't know an answer and guess. These are probably 80% best guess, which is to say sometimes you're pretty sure and sometimes you're not. But any sort of studying where you put that much effort into reviewing a specific thing with such vigor would probably not be very successful. Could it be helpful for part of the exams? Of course, but as a whole, I don't think it makes much sense.

With the new version, just having worked as an architect is a huge benefit. 

2  · 
atelier nobody

Some people think my advice is weird, but I'm not kidding - if you're planning to spend any money on exam prep, your best investment is to take all the exams cold. You'll probably surprise yourself by passing at least one or two, and the ones you fail will have given you the best exam prep money can buy, the actual tests.

Jul 9, 20 10:09 pm  · 
5  · 
SpontaneousCombustion

This is a reasonable strategy IF you're ok with a total testing timeline long enough to factor in the mandatory wait time to retake any section(s) that you do fail. Personally I didn't want to potentially be stretching my testing process out over that many months (let alone over the year or two that many here seem to recommend) so I wanted to be confident I would pass them all on the first shot. I scheduled all the sections close together with no more than 7 to 14 days between each, then studied fairly intensively for all sections at once - though broadly and not involving 15 arcane textbooks. My employer at the time had an ok collection of office study materials, and what I did purchase to supplement that didn't add up to more than $200. It was worth it to me, to be able to finish them off in one go, and anyway it's easy to sell study materials on Amazon or Ebay for close to what you paid.  But I do agree with not needing 15 sources, and I also think most in-person test prep seminars are overkill. Also I didn't encounter anything on the exams that needed "the Feynman Technique".  Most of the questions don't need any deconstructing.

2  · 
thatsthat

My partner did this and passed all on the first attempt, and this is back when there were 9 exams. I'm still in awe that he was able to pull it off. 

2  · 
atelier nobody

SpontaneousCombustion - Hence my qualifier: "IF you're planning on to spend any money..."

 · 
SpontaneousCombustion

What I understand you to be saying is take the whole exam completely cold, see which sections you fail (if any), and then spend your money to target those failed sections, and then retake them. Your strategy prioritizes minimizing and targeting your studying (and minimizing your expenses on study materials, as an outcome of that). Your strategy is great as long as you are ok with the mandatory wait time associated with the possible failing and retaking part.

I'm just saying that if you're NOT ok with that wait, and you are prioritizing time instead - i.e. if your total test-taking time-frame is less than one mandatory waiting period - then you should probably spend your money upfront on at least some general overview type of materials, before taking any of the sections at all. I took and passed 9 sections in a matter of weeks.  Some of them I probably would have passed cold, but I most likely would have failed 3 of them if not for the studying, and just didn't want to wait out the waiting period, which was 6 months back then.

1  · 
atelier nobody

"What I understand you to be saying is take the whole exam completely cold, see which sections you fail (if any), and then spend your money to target those failed sections..."

Nope, that's not what I'm saying at all - I'm saying that the failed exam IS the exam prep. Total money spent = cost of taking the exam.

 · 
SpontaneousCombustion

Ok, I see, you're saying spend nothing. I still think that's valid, as long as a potential fail and wait is acceptable to you. I guess the flow chart would be: are you ok with potentially failing one or more tests, and then having to wait to take them again? If yes then consider following atelier nobody plan, and do not spend money for study materials. If no then consider following Spontaneous' plan and do spend some money judiciously on some general study materials, to better ensure passing all on first try.

 · 

Failing a test is still an expense at $235 a pop. I think he's saying that it is money well spent as test prep though. If you pass, you pass and no extra money has been lost. If you fail, you know what to expect and can better prepare for it. Most people psyche themselves out trying to prepare for the tests. They over analyze everything and try to study for every possible question that might come up. 

Also, NCARB now allows you to retake a failed division after 60 day waiting period instead of the older 6 months you might be referring to in your comments about the waiting period. You can take the same division up to 3 times per year: https://www.ncarb.org/blog/why-we-changed-are-retake-policy

1  · 
SpontaneousCombustion

Yeah, I know you only have to wait 60 days now. But there are also only 5 tests now, so if you space them a week apart you can kill them all off in a little over a month, if you pass them all. I agree that people make it all out to be harder than it really is.I see so many people on here spreading out their test taking over years, and that just shouldn't be necessary for most.

2  · 

Also you'll be getting all new questions . . .

 · 
archinine
Spontaneous, there are 6 exams in the 5.0 (unless you did a 4.0/5.0 combo), and you have 5 years to pass the remaining 5, once you’ve passed the first one. (Rolling clock starts with the first pass not first fail). A 2 month wait is a drop in the bucket of the 60 months total.

Not a bad strategy Atelier.

Unsurprising princess has failed to answer if this methodology ever worked
Jul 11, 20 5:41 pm  · 
 · 
SpontaneousCombustion

Same concept with 6 tests: if you space them a week apart you'd still be done in 5-6 weeks. I don't know why people plan to stretch these things out over 60 months, or even over 2, 3, 6, or 12 months! I do understand that various life circumstances can interfere with doing it all quickly, but planning from the start to stretch them out for years just seems like a hard slog on which it would be tough to keep up motivation and momentum. But: to each their own.

 · 

Sponty, how much do you work with, or follow, current test taking candidates and know of their plans? I don't find that most candidates plan on stretching them out over years (that seems to happen from things getting in the way rather than by intention). Most people plan for about 4 weeks between exams (some shoot for 6 weeks). That keeps the hard slog minimized, while allowing some time to review and study content without burning out, and still capitalizes on momentum. It also allows for a fail or two, and the retake to be added to the end without losing momentum waiting for the retake. Even then, maintaining that schedule can be difficult depending on cash on hand to pay for exam seats, and being able to get exams scheduled when you want them. Even before COVID-19 it was difficult for some to find an available slot with Prometric without looking 2-3 months out.

1  · 
SpontaneousCombustion

I'm only a supervisor for 2 people right now, but have been a supervisor for several over the years, and have other coworkers in our office who are currently testing. I'm mostly getting the idea from this forum that a lot of people think it takes 2+ years just for testing, after completion of AXP, because there are a lot of threads where people specifically say that - usually when they're trying to give high school or college students the timeline for architecture school, experience, and ARE.

People I've supervised have varied, anywhere from pretty much the same plan that I used (schedule all the sections at once, each section a few days to 2 weeks apart from the next) to stretching them out over many years, for lot of different reasons. I know that it can be tough to find testing spots - right now some centers in some places are booked out past the end of the year - but before Covid it has been fairly easy here for candidates to schedule them all close together, as long as they've planned it out a month or so in advance.

The thing I worry about is that I've seen a lot of the people who have stretched them out over longer periods lose momentum. They fail one and feel all defeated or develop test fear and never schedule it again, or their other life circumstances get in the way - and then some of them end up on the 2, 5, or even 15 year plan - and then the rules change on some of them, and/or the rolling clocks run out, which moves them backward from the finish line and discourages them again... I've seen a lot more successes among those who tackled it all in a short period of intensive study, and passed them all in one sweep. But I do understand everybody's got their circumstances and reasons for how they decide to do it.

 · 

I see, thanks for clarifying a bit. I think the reason you see some people suggest that it takes 2+ years for testing is because, on average, that's what it's been taking. Should people plan on it taking 2+ years? ... that's not really the point. Rather, in the context of giving people a realistic view of what it takes to get a license, it's valid. 

Per NCARB, it took candidates finishing in 2019 2.3 years to complete the ARE. It's only been less than 2 years back in 2010. Current numbers are showing 2.5 years for 2020. This is all an average though so that's covering all the people between the unanticipated gotta-pass-them-before-my-rolling-clock-runs-out / 5-year plan, as well as the pass-them-all-in-a-week plan.

1  · 
atelier nobody

Here in California, you can start taking the exams right out of school, concurrently with the AXP, so there's no incentive to finish them any sooner than the AXP (and actually a disincentive if you take 5 years or more to finish the AXP).

 · 
eeayeeayo

Having more (or all) sections passed is a selling point for employers. Even if you're not licensed yet because of experience or application snags: more tests passed makes you less of a question mark about whether you'll eventually pass, and you cost less to the employer if they're in the habit of contributing toward test costs and/or testing time. And there's the incentive of getting it done! Not having it hanging over your head is great. I found advantage in studying for all close together. I started out pretty gung-ho about overstudying to touch every base, but there was so much overlap between sections that by the time I got to the last one I didn't need to study for it at all, which is good because I had a work deadline and barely even made it to the test center on time. I spent about 5 months total and it was about as long as I could manage to stay focused on that task. As for technique: if the Feynman thing works for you, great.  Most of the test was about memorized information, not so much puzzling out things, so how to apply it to pick the right answer out of 4? I'm not sure.

1  · 
Aluminate

I watched the video and I'm unclear how the original poster is applying this method to passing the ARE.  Maybe she could provide examples of how to apply it to typical test questions (imaginary ones of course, so as not to get the NCARB police after her.)  It seems designed for problems for which there are formulae or complex processes required.  What I recall from the ARE were things along the lines of "which of the following would be an acceptable plywood grade for maple kitchen cabinets that are intended to receive a transparent finish?", "which of these metals is highest on the galvanic scale?", "which of these is the correct AIA form for owner-contractor agreement for a design-build project", "what's the lowest IBC-compliant height for this railing", "how large can the glass area be in this 2-hour rated door", "who is responsible if the architect's employee falls through the rotted floor of the contractor's job trailer", etc.  How is the Feynman approach used to answer those correctly?

Jul 14, 20 4:34 pm  · 
 · 

Block this user


Are you sure you want to block this user and hide all related comments throughout the site?

  • ×Search in: