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Thread: APAICP (Almost Passed AICP)

  1. #1
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    APAICP (Almost Passed AICP)

    Hello All:

    Let me first start this message by saying, "Congratulations to all who passed the AICP exam!"

    I, unfortunately was not among the one's who passed. Does that make me or anyone else who didn't pass a poor planner? Absolutely not!

    The day I opened my mailbox to find the APA envelope marked "CONFIDENTIAL", my heart began to race. I remembered something a fellow planner had told me about the mailed results..."if it's addressed <your name here>, AICP, then you've passed." I quickly looked at the address label and realized I didn't have the identifiable letters after my name. I didn't make it through the door before tearing the envelope open to realize that I was not among the ranks of the AICP "planners". Furious, wasn't the word to describe my feelings.

    As the anger turned into humility and my humility turned into a mope, I began to realize that all the studying in the world could not have prepared me for this dreadful exam. If given a year and every APA recommended readings, CD's, and pamphlets, I'd answer every question the same way I did on May 11.

    Shortly after receiving the results, I performed a search for others planners who faced similar disappointing conclusions with the test. No message was to be found. Well, here's the first of hopefully a long line of other who find themselves part of the APAICP (Almost Passed AICP) group.

    So all my fellow APAICP Planners, hold your head high, because there are no bad planners here!

    MTroyS, APAICP
    Last edited by MTroyS; 31 Jul 2002 at 7:32 PM.

  2. #2
    I passed the AICP, but I know 2 excellent planners in the area who did not. One of them studied 10 times more than I, which leads be to believe that I just got lucky and guessed correctly on several of their terrible ambigous questions.

    Which leads me to this: I agree with MTroyS, having your AICP does not make you a better planner. The APA likes to hype it up to make it seem like you are inadequate if you don't have it, but that is simpley untrue. I know a lot of people without their AICP and every one of them is an excellent Planner.
    "I'm a white male, age 18 to 49. Everyone listens to me, no matter how dumb my suggestions are."

    - Homer Simpson

  3. #3
    Cyburbian Jeff's avatar
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    I've thought about studying for the AICP test alot (usually eevery year). But I just don't seem to see the relevance of it, at least in my situation.

    I'm going to be starting Grad school in the fall in Civil Enginnering (more relevant to me since I work for an engineering company and do the work already anyway). Right now getting a P.E. is much more practical and important to me.

    Does it make you a "bad" planner because you failed the test. Absolutely not in my eyes. I know plenty of people without it who can "plan circles" around some of the idiots I know that do have it. It does make your business cards look better though

    I'd like to see less of this national certification and more state licensing (New Jersey). Therefore, the test you study for actually has some relevance to the environment that you work in.

  4. #4

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    I worked for several years in a large planning department, and AICPs were actually frowned upon. AICP meant to some of the higher-ups in the department and administration that one was a planning "purist"; it was a professional tag that negatively singled people out in a department that needed more professionalism.

    I haven't taken the exam yet, but plan to next year. I could use the credentials, no matter how dreadful the exam is!

  5. #5
    Cyburbian smarty's avatar
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    Yep, ditto on the APAICP for three of us here. We all studied the same, all used the same (useless) LANPLAN CD and AICP study guides, drank heavily the night before, had a Grand Slam before the test, so we were pretty well ready for 150 questions.

    None of us passed. None of us are really disappointed. None of us are going to take it again. Our main question was, "what is a scaled score". Because the scores we got were 48, 49 and 51, with a passing score of 55. But we took 150 questions, so even on a straight scale, a score of 55 would be like an E-- or Super Failing.

    I can't understand this score or base it on anything to help me with future tests. Even medical school tests actually WANT you to pass. It actually shows you've LEARNED something, not what you MIGHT know.

    It really doesn't seen that this test was geared for actually learning, more a quiz to see if you're as smart as the 'other planners'.

    I think we're all just frustrated with the amount of personal time and department money that was spent, to get such a 'fahcocktah' test.........................
    I wonder if birds know it's Tuesday?

  6. #6
    Interestingly enough, my major professor in college frowned upon the AICP for the simple reason that it did not necessarily require a degree in Planning to sit for the exam. His reasoning is that if you are going to sit for the state bar you must have a law degree, if you are going to sit for a medical certification exam you must have a medical degree, etc. His view was that AICP was not a true Planning certification since you did are not actually required to have a formal education in Planning. Do I agree with him? Not sure, but I do know that i don't need four letters following my name to know and prove that I am an excellent Planner. I prefer to let my work tell that story.
    A word to the wise ain't necessary. It's the stupid ones that need the advice.
    --Bill Cosby

  7. #7
    Cyburbian Jeff's avatar
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    I don't know if I agree with your professor there. I can only think of one person I know that actually has a "planning" degree. Most have a geography or political science, etc.

    When you think about it, what do you really learn in college? Not much. Everything is learned on the job. I'm going to be sitting for the EIT exam next year and I don't have an engineering degree so I guess I may be a little biased.

  8. #8
         
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    I took the AICP exam this year, studied the green book, the Landplan cd (that thing blows), studied all the recommeded materials, took an overview course, went to grad school for planning and actually did quite well - and I didn't pass the exam. What the hell is wrong with me?

    Will I take it again next year? I guess I have to because my work requires it really - but I don't want to.

    thanks for listening.

  9. #9
    That landplan cd sucked big time. According to that CD, 50 percent of the questions on the exam should have been about groundwater and the other 50 percent about ethics.

    Its just another APA/AICP money making scam. If they really wanted people to pass, they would have included the cd with the registration packet. That CD set was not worth 200 bucks! I am glad that I borrowed one instead of buying it.

    The APA is all about making money, not serving the needs of planners. How many times a year do we get something in the mail from APA trying to sell us books, cds, etc? Just last week I got 3 different things (including 2 planners book service catalogs) from the APA. They should use OUR money more wisely.
    "I'm a white male, age 18 to 49. Everyone listens to me, no matter how dumb my suggestions are."

    - Homer Simpson

  10. #10
    Cyburbian sal95's avatar
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    Yep, that cd sucked big time. I don't remember a single groundwater or Native American land rights question on the exam- but that cd was full of them! Thank goodness that I split the cost of the exam with two other people taking the exam!

    Somehow, I passed. The test is really geared to the public sector planner with a lot of the situational questions looking half-way familiar. I was almost always able to narrow it down to the 2 "correct" answers, but it was usually a toss-up to which one was the "best" answer after that. I'm glad that I pulled it out, because I have no idea how I was going to study for it again. The only thing to do really is to become part of some of the big debates around the office on how to deal with different situations and don't waste a whole lot of time with the green book and the so-called study materials that the APA makes available (for a hefty fee).

  11. #11
    Cyburbian sal95's avatar
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    typo

    -split the cost of the cd. . . sorry.

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