ARE PPP: Exam Prep, Quiz & Resources


If you’re preparing for the Architecture Registration Exam 4.0 Programming, Planning, and Practice (ARE PPP) this is your one stop shop.  While studying for the exams, a huge hassle was finding all the right resources.  (Believe it or not, there’s a lot of crappy info out there).  This is a place you can come to find a list of resources for the exam.  If you have any additional resources, leave a comment below and I’ll add it to the list.

First?  A quiz for you to assess where you’re currently at.  The 25 question quiz below randomly selects questions from a growing library.  So every time you take the quiz, it will be different.  You can use the quiz to gauge where you’re at or use it as a study tool itself.  If you do poorly, you might want to look into the resources below. Without further adieu…  Good luck!

Find this quiz helpful? Checkout the premium PPP practice exam bundle!

PPP Practice Exam Bundle

ARE PPP Books & Literature

ARE Exam Prep PPP

General Exam Resources
Kaplan: Programming Planning & Practice Study Guide
– I like this Kaplan study guide because it comes with a lot of illustrations to help drive the points home.  Each chapter has a mini quiz review at the end which is helpful for assessing if you learned and retained the material.
Kaplan: Programming Planning & Practice Q&A – This is designed to help with the multiple choice portion of the exam.  It’s about 60 questions.  In the back of the book it explains the answers.  It’s certainly a decent way to measure how prepared you are for the exam.
Ballast: ARE Review Manual – This is a giant 800 page book with all of the sections of the exam. It’s pricey, but it takes a very indepth and comprehensive look into each of the sections.  It’s VERY thorough but is sometimes hard to get through.
Ballast: Programming Planning & Practice: ARE Sample Problems and Practice Exam – I’ve heard that this is a big help in passing the multiple choice portion of the exam.
How to Pass the ARE [$] – Ebook or Audiobook – If you’re starting to go through the ARE this is a great resource for you to get in the right mindset.  It doesn’t go over exam specifics (aka it’s not a study resource), but it will help you know what to expect and give you strategies for overcoming hurdles.

NCARB Recommended References for the ARE PPP
The Architect’s Handbook of Professional Practice – An up-to-date guide on the aspects of architectural practice.
Architectural Design Portable Handbook – It’s not going to keep you turning page after page wanting to read more, but it’s a useful reference guide to have on hand.
Architectural Graphic Standards – This book is really just amazing to have as an architect.  It has so much useful information in it and 99% of it is just architectural drawings.
Problem Seeking: An Architectural Programming Primer – For anyone “minimally competent in the practice of architecture”… according to one of the amazon reviews.
Professional Practice a Guide to Turning Design into Buildings – “A precise and vivid account of the complex process by which buildings come to be designed and realized through the progressive interaction of clients, architects, contractors, and a wide range of technical and legal specialists, this is destined to be of equal pertinence to any of the protagonists commonly involved in the act of making buildings.” (Kenneth Frampton, Ware Professor of Architecutre, Columbia University)

Video Playlist on ARE PPP

Online Resources & Downloads for the ARE Programming Planning & Practice

ARE PPP ExamNCARB: PPP Exam Guide – Directly from the source.  A brief overview of the test and what to expect from the multiple choice and vignettes.
Caroline’s Notes – Very comprehensive 100+ page of notes for the exam.
NALSA Vignette Tips – NALSA explains that even though the vignettes shown in NCARBs exam guides are passing, they are not “ideal”.  Meaning… they may still contain errors.  This site has some really great tips I didn’t realize before reading it.
SBYRKTCT’s Help – There are a bunch of resources here.  I love the vignette tips & it’s a great place to get notes.
Black Specs PPP Video Course – These videos are helpful at getting a general feel for the test but I wouldn’t solely rely on them to pass the exam. At ±$100/mo I’m not sure it’s worth the money, but it’s an option.
ARE Exam Prep: PPP – I didn’t purchase this material for the PPP exam but I did for other exams.  If you’re feeling unsure about the exam, hate reading, or just can’t devote a lot of time to reading, it’s a good resource.  I thought the audio companion was very helpful.  Although be forewarned, some of the material is just paraphrased  directly from Ballast and Kaplan.

Post your practice vignettes to AREcoachNCARB’s Google Plus page, or .

Have any additional resources for the ARE PPP?  Leave them in the comments below!

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