How’s it going… Finishing The Architect Exam?!??

Finishing the Architect Exam

This month’s #ArchiTalks topic is “3 favorite words”.

For about a week, I kicked around self-righteous posts about “small projects vs big projects,” which suddenly got shelved until an undetermined time.

The more I thought about the Young Architect audience, I decided I really needed to follow up with a blogpost I wrote 6 months ago, and my 3 words truly need to be:

How’s it going??

OK wait… Before you answer, let’s recap why I chose these 3 words.


Six months ago, I wrote a blogpost called Finish the Architect Exam in 2015 – The Only Resolution You Should Have.

OMG, Holy Crap!

The response I received from that single post was huge I must’ve gotten a gazillion emails.. The traffic has been one of my largest on any single Young Architect blogpost.

In that epic blogpost, I shared my story about how 2013 was my year to beat the ARE.  I defined how and why the ARE was blocking me from moving on with my life, and how I took extreme action to put an end of that. I encouraged ARE Candidates to “get sick and tired of being sick and tired” about the ARE’s.

I also ranted about how if you’re in the middle of taking the ARE’s, then you are quickly running out of time to not get caught in the middle of the ARE 5.0 transition.

The ARE 4.0 will be retired in June 2018. That’s 3 years away. According to NCARB’s data, it is taking an average of about 2.5 years to complete the ARE process.

To play it safe, I wouldn’t assume you are in the fewer than 2.5 years group, unless you are a brilliant test taker and have a track record of regurgitating massive amounts of textbook information.

The fact that you’re probably a great designer and received lots of praise in architecture school is completely irrelevant to studying and passing the Architecture Registration Exam.

I digress.

Nevertheless, six months has since passed.


A lot has happened in six months.

There have been several new developments in the ARE world since the beginning of the year. Let’s do a recap of what has happened.

  • I decided to lock myself away all winter long and wrote what is essentially a self-help book about the ARE’s called How To Pass The Architecture Registration Exam. The book discusses mindset and study hacks and examines at length why most people do not complete the Architect licensing process. Definitely not another boring technical book filled with info to memorize.
  • Charlie Klecha, the AIAS National President, decided that he was going to study for 7 weeks and take all 7 exams in 7 consecutive days. And he video-blogged all about it! He called it the #7in7 Challenge. I am hoping to reconnect with Charlie (after he recovers) for a post-exam interview.
  • Part of Charlie Klecha’s goal for the 7in7 Challenge was to raise awareness for the Pass Scholarship, where the AIAS reimburses ARE Candidates for the cost of 1 exam—if they can pass 1 exam within 1 year of graduating architecture school.
  • I wrote reviews on the ARE study prep materials by Gang Chen and The ARE Advisor—two relatively newer guys on the ARE study prep scene.
  • NCARB created a Google + Community for the ARE and started helping candidates with their vignettes.

That’s a busy six months. I look forward to reporting the next six months; I have a feeling it will be busier now that we’re in the mad dash to wrap up ARE 4.0.

Soooo…. Hows it going?

This is the part of the blogpost where you answer…

Thanks for your input.


Please take a few minutes to check out some of the other #ArchiTalk Bloggers from our friendly little circle of blogging Architects.

Enoch Sears – Business of Architecture
3 Words To Get Started

Bob Borson – Life of An Architect
3 Words: Are. Blogs. Important.

Matthew Stanfield – FiELD9: architecture
3 Words

Marica McKeel – Studio MM
Never Give Up

Jeff Echols – Architect Of The Internet
What's Your Story – My Three (or Four) Favorite Words

Lee Calisti, AIA – Think Architect
i make art

Lora Teagarden – L² Design, LLC
#ArchiTalks: I love it!

Andrew Hawkins, AIA – Hawkins Architecture, Inc.
Three Favorite Architectural Words

Jes Stafford – Modus Operandi Design
I Am Listening

Cindy Black – Rick & Cindy Black Architects
Spirit of Optimism (my three favorite words)

Michele Grace Hottel – Michele Grace Hottel, Architect
architalk#9: my three favorite words

Meghana Joshi – IRA Consultants, LLC
My Three Favorite Words

Amy Kalar – ArchiMom
My Three Favorite Words (Architalks #9)

My Three Favorite Words

Brian Paletz – The Emerging Architect
I am in

Jonathan Brown – Proto-Architecture
The Big Idea

Eric Wittman – intern[life]
my three favorite [hardest] words

Jeremiah Russell, AIA – ROGUE Architecture
three little words: #architalks



Michael Riscica

Michael Riscica is a Licensed Architect, Founder and Head Coach of the ARE Boot Camp Coaching Program & Online Study Group.

Hi I’m Michael Riscica.

My goal is to help as many people as I can PASS their exams and succeed in their architecture careers.

This is accomplished with the following offerings:

Free FB group that is 12k+ members strong
Low-cost, high-value upcoming webinar
Affordable and Quality ARE Study materials
Professional Development and Powerful Networking
Premium 10-week ARE study program