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Thread: November AICP exam

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    November AICP exam

    I just took the test today - and I passed

    I thought overall the test was fair. There were 5 or so questions that I felt were worded rather poorly and I had a hard time chosing the correct answer for. Overall I thought the test was fair.

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    November'05 AICP exam feedback

    has anyone taken the AICP exam and care to share their experience. I am taking mine on the 15th

  3. #3
    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by sam
    has anyone taken the AICP exam and care to share their experience. I am taking mine on the 15th
    I had a prof take it 11/9/05. He passed.
    If you're not growing, you're dying. - Lou Holtz

  4. #4
    Cyburbian Richmond Jake's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by unmutual
    I just took the test today - and I passed

    I thought overall the test was fair. There were 5 or so questions that I felt were worded rather poorly and I had a hard time chosing the correct answer for. Overall I thought the test was fair.
    Congrats. Now you have the privilege of paying the additional membership fee.
    Annoyingly insensitive

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    Quote Originally posted by RichmondJake
    Congrats. Now you have the privilege of paying the additional membership fee.
    Right! Hopefully my employeer is going to reimburse me (I switched jobs in between the application and testing).

    Quote Originally posted by sam
    has anyone taken the AICP exam and care to share their experience. I am taking mine on the 15th
    My advice would be to do a comprehensive review. Try not to study the day before or the day of - have your mind clear. Also, review the 2000 census summary, terminology, general population trends, etc. Review the ethics - most as self-explanatory, but know where APA stands...most of all take your time and relax - 3.5 hours was plenty for me.
    Last edited by NHPlanner; 14 Nov 2005 at 9:37 AM.

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    Nov' AICP exam

    Quote Originally posted by unmutual
    My advice would be to do a comprehensive review. Try not to study the day before or the day of - have your mind clear. Also, review the 2000 census summary, terminology, general population trends, etc. Review the ethics - most as self-explanatory, but know where APA stands...most of all take your time and relax - 3.5 hours was plenty for me.
    Thanks so much UnMutual. Please tell me this..Here is what I have read pretty well.
    1. practice tests (many many times) and all reading materials from Planetizen...
    2. AICP Codes
    3. Code of Ethics book
    4. APA Policy guides
    5. Summaries or excerts of the Green Book
    Is there anything else I need to do? I rescheduled my exam to the 17th. Please advise...Appreciate all the tips you have so far given.

    Thanks
    Sam

  7. #7
    Cyburbian
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    Quote Originally posted by sam
    Here is what I have read pretty well.
    1. practice tests (many many times) and all reading materials from Planetizen...
    2. AICP Codes
    3. Code of Ethics book
    4. APA Policy guides
    5. Summaries or excerts of the Green Book
    Is there anything else I need to do? I rescheduled my exam to the 17th. Please advise...Appreciate all the tips you have so far given.
    I took (and passed) the exam on the 10th. You're on the right track with the readings, but make sure that you know about negotiation and compromise techniques and don't gloss over the simple stuff (GIS terms, Census trends, planning law etc) - it's amazing what you can forget when you're nervous. Also make sure that you know the Code of Ethics cold. Most of the times the questions aren't straightforward, so you have to apply what you learned / crammed to the situation. It took me the full 3.5 hours to get through the test. This includes going back and double-checking a lot of my answers.

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    AICP November exam

    Quote Originally posted by jenniplans
    I took (and passed) the exam on the 10th. You're on the right track with the readings, but make sure that you know about negotiation and compromise techniques and don't gloss over the simple stuff (GIS terms, Census trends, planning law etc) - it's amazing what you can forget when you're nervous. Also make sure that you know the Code of Ethics cold. Most of the times the questions aren't straightforward, so you have to apply what you learned / crammed to the situation. It took me the full 3.5 hours to get through the test. This includes going back and double-checking a lot of my answers.
    Thanks for the tips. What about the negotiation and compromise techniques/ What do you suggest I should read? Also , I am not putting much emphasis on the Green Book. Can yu give me some percentage idea on the exam questions based on my above study breakdown? Any tips would help. Did the practice exams or reading materials from Planetizen or other prep courses help anybody?

    Thanks again for some excellent tips..

  9. #9
    Cyburbian
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    I am taking the test on the 17th as well. I think I am about studied out. So far, I have used the green book, the Ohio State prep course, and the info on the apa web site (ethics, history) and some summaries from my chapter AICP guy.

    My employer will reimburse me if I pass and they pay my membership dues. Overall, I am a little nervous. I have scored between 70 and 80 on all of the practice test I have taken, with my scores improving a point or two per time. Anyone have similar experiences with the OSU practice tests and how they translated to the actual exam?

  10. #10

    Failed!

    Quote Originally posted by sam
    Thanks for the tips. What about the negotiation and compromise techniques/ What do you suggest I should read? Also , I am not putting much emphasis on the Green Book. Can yu give me some percentage idea on the exam questions based on my above study breakdown? Any tips would help. Did the practice exams or reading materials from Planetizen or other prep courses help anybody?

    Thanks again for some excellent tips..
    I scored a 50 on my exam yesterday, and as you know, one needs a 55 to pass. I relied too much on the APA's Exam Prep 1.0 Study Notes. There wasn't nearly as much factual information that I thought there would be. However, I also used the Green Book (Very good resource to simply review - even if you aren't taking the test), Rural by Design (Not so helpful for the test I took), and Everyday Ethics for Practicing Planners (Good, but it's more important to simply keep the Code of Ethics in mind - know them). There were more methods and techniques questions on the exam than what I had anticipated, and I didn't study for this - my own fault. This was difficult, as there were a couple answers that could fit to a given question, but you have to know what AICP is looking for. I also didn't do so well in the emerging issues and trends category. For that, I recommending knowing some general ideas about the 2000 Census. For example, in 2000, which 2 States had a minority white population, excluding hispanics and latinos? That was the gist of one of my test questions - as well as Library planning(???). It took me about 3 hours to answer 170 questions, and I used the remaining half hour to review some answers.

    By the way, the three series of 50 study questions that came with the APA's study notes and CD didn't help as much as I would have liked. I took one set before I started studying and scored a 66%. Took the second set mid-way through studying and scored a 76%, and took the last set of 50 questions the day before the exam and got an 80%. Made me confident going in, but those study questions weren't at all like the questions on the real test.

    Good luck - I'm pissed and was even a little depressed about not passing, but then again how much more fulfilled will my life be with passing the AICP exam? I intend to take the exam again, especially since my employer is paying for it.

  11. #11
    Cyburbian GISgal's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by cololi
    I am taking the test on the 17th as well. I think I am about studied out. So far, I have used the green book, the Ohio State prep course, and the info on the apa web site (ethics, history) and some summaries from my chapter AICP guy.

    My employer will reimburse me if I pass and they pay my membership dues. Overall, I am a little nervous. I have scored between 70 and 80 on all of the practice test I have taken, with my scores improving a point or two per time. Anyone have similar experiences with the OSU practice tests and how they translated to the actual exam?
    Used the OSU online class last year. Got between 75 and 80 on the practice tests and scored just above passing on the AICP.

  12. #12
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    I referred to a couple of different sources: my notes from grad school, old CPC study guides (the 2005 version sucks), the 2nd edition Green Bible (I hate the 3rd edition), the study guides and practice tests from Mike Waicizs, the APA Policy Guides, and information from the Pennsylvania, Florida, Colorado, and Nevada Chapter websites. Even with all this information, I cut it close by getting a 55. My employer won't reimburse me for the test, so it was important for me to pass the first time. As a bonus, I can take the test off my taxes next year.

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    Nov'05 AICP Exam

    Quote Originally posted by jenniplans
    I referred to a couple of different sources: my notes from grad school, old CPC study guides (the 2005 version sucks), the 2nd edition Green Bible (I hate the 3rd edition), the study guides and practice tests from Mike Waicizs, the APA Policy Guides, and information from the Pennsylvania, Florida, Colorado, and Nevada Chapter websites. Even with all this information, I cut it close by getting a 55. My employer won't reimburse me for the test, so it was important for me to pass the first time. As a bonus, I can take the test off my taxes next year.
    I am not concentrating on the green book. Instead I have been going thru the Pennsylvania notes which are summaries of the green book. Approximately how many questions (or percentage of questions) came from the green book.

  14. #14
    Cyburbian
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    Quote Originally posted by sam
    I am not concentrating on the green book. Instead I have been going thru the Pennsylvania notes which are summaries of the green book. Approximately how many questions (or percentage of questions) came from the green book.
    Considering that I started studying for the exam 6 months in advance, it's hard to say how much came from where. In general, the Green Bible is a good reference. I discovered that regardless of how much you study, there will always be questions that you wonder "where the hell did that come from and how is it relevant to planning????" If anything, I would brush up on conflict negotiation and mediation skills (delphi method, critical path method, goals achievement matrix, ppbs, pert, etc). Go to google and you'll find a ton of information. Don't forget that the test is actually 170 questions, 20 of them being test questions under consideration for future tests and that they count as part of your 3.5 hour time allotment.

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    Nov'05 aicp

    Quote Originally posted by jenniplans
    Considering that I started studying for the exam 6 months in advance, it's hard to say how much came from where. In general, the Green Bible is a good reference. I discovered that regardless of how much you study, there will always be questions that you wonder "where the hell did that come from and how is it relevant to planning????" If anything, I would brush up on conflict negotiation and mediation skills (delphi method, critical path method, goals achievement matrix, ppbs, pert, etc). Go to google and you'll find a ton of information. Don't forget that the test is actually 170 questions, 20 of them being test questions under consideration for future tests and that they count as part of your 3.5 hour time allotment.
    Thanks JenniPlan...You ahve really opened my eyes...I am concentrating on those subject matters. There is just too much to cram in the final days..Were there lots of questions on history>? What about Pert and these other budgetary issues? were there definitions or problem scenarios..Any feedback from you is a lot of help not just to me but to hopefully many many others..Thanks again

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    I passed! The test had very little on history or case law, but was very heavy on consensus building, ethics, programming, and budget systems.

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    I have taken the test twice now and scored right at 53 each time. The first test was a lot easier I think looking back at it than the second. I have studied the Green Book, Ohio Online Course, and read, read and read. The test that I took in Nov. was alot different than the one I took in May. Not sure really what to study now. Lots of emerging trend questions and conflict resolution questions. Did fine on the ehtics and history (there were three or four history questions) but census stuff got me a little. I guess I will try again in May 06

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    Quote Originally posted by chubs
    I have taken the test twice now and scored right at 53 each time. The first test was a lot easier I think looking back at it than the second. I have studied the Green Book, Ohio Online Course, and read, read and read. The test that I took in Nov. was alot different than the one I took in May. Not sure really what to study now. Lots of emerging trend questions and conflict resolution questions. Did fine on the ehtics and history (there were three or four history questions) but census stuff got me a little. I guess I will try again in May 06
    I took this exam twice before and had the same score as you i.e I narrowly missed the passing score. Third time is a charm! For the previous tests I read a lot as well. After the second test I realized that more than knowledge, good test taking strategy is required in order to pass this stupid test. I took it again for the third time this November and passed! My advice, based on my experience is that you should forget what happened in the past and start afresh! I studied from the CPC manual, Green book, read Contemporary urban Planning by Levy, took practice tests from OSU online and planningprep. My recommendation would be to first read all the material, make flash cards of facts that you can't remember and then in the last month just keep taking the practice exams and going over stuff you cannot remember. Planningprep is great for the information but their exams suck! Almost all the questions in this stupid test are cryptic! My exam had a lot of emerging tend, conflict resolution, ethics, statistics and census questions. Hope this helps and all the best!
    Last edited by Planderella; 18 Nov 2005 at 10:00 AM.

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    Cyburbian Dashboard's avatar
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    I am taking the exam this coming May...for those of you that just took the test, which online prep course would you recommend - Ohio State or Planetizen? Does anyone know which one will help the most? Can you take practice exams as many times as you like? Any info will be appreciated. Thanks.

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    Quote Originally posted by Dashboard
    I am taking the exam this coming May...for those of you that just took the test, which online prep course would you recommend - Ohio State or Planetizen? Does anyone know which one will help the most? Can you take practice exams as many times as you like? Any info will be appreciated. Thanks.
    I didn't use he Planetizen course, only the OSU one. You can retake the OSU practice tests and exams all you want. I think I took each one 3 times. It really helped me memorize the facts and characterisitcs of the different planning theories, programming & budgeting techniques, etc. The questions are easier to understand than the questions on the actual AICP exam. As far as taking the exam, my biggets piece of advice is to read the questions slowly and look for the key words in the question. There were a lot of questions where figuring out the the context of the wording led to the answer.

  21. #21
    Cyburbian Breed's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Dashboard
    I am taking the exam this coming May...for those of you that just took the test, which online prep course would you recommend - Ohio State or Planetizen? Does anyone know which one will help the most? Can you take practice exams as many times as you like? Any info will be appreciated. Thanks.
    I took it and passed with a 65 last week. My confidence going into the test was pretty low, as I bombed all the Mike Wacizis tests... my best average on those ranged from the 50-60%. A passing test score requires about 75-80% correct.

    In terms of what I used to study...we have a AICP prep course provided by our state APA chapter. We got a bunch of materials from the class. And I studied the list of topics covered on previous exams listed in the AICP preparation manual via the internet (Wikipedia was great for making different historical planners and architects memorable). I made flashcards of just about every fact from those sources. In addition, I skimmed through Planning magazine from 2000 to early 2004. Participating on this board helped keep in touch with current planning trends as well. Overall, I'd say I studied a total of about 50-60 hours... with more studying as I got closer to the exam.

    One thing that stood out one some of the questions that I'm pretty sure I missed, it's not enough to simply know simple facts, you need to know the hows, whys, and whats of things. On historical cases, you will need to have more than just cursory knowledge. In terms of law cases, rather than concentrating on knowing just a little about every case like I did, I'd concentrate more on learning alot about the major cases.

    In addition, alot of the questions are situational... what would you do in this situation... what is your next step... who would you bring in next...etc. These kinds of questions are difficult because unless you have real world experience working with all these participation techniques and budgeting systems, you are pretty much going on what you've been studying. This is where knowing the hows and whys of why different things are being used is helpful.

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    AICP Exam: Emerging Trends & Issues

    I just took the AICP exam and did not pass..Missed it by a couple of points. Missed 10 questions on emerging trends and issues. For all those AICP passers please advise on what I need to read about improving my knowledge on emerging trends.
    I will prepare again for May'05. Please advise on:

    1. what prep material you would recommend
    2. Which prep course is the best in your opinion
    3. What section of APA website you recommend for emerging trends

    Thanks everybody and congratulations to those that passed the AICP exam.

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    Also missed out on the November exam, so any input from those that passed would be wonderful. By the way, I did not find the questions on the OSU website to be AICP caliber at all. I may switch to Planetizen, PlanningPrep or ICPE.

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