ARE 5.0

New Era for the ARE

The next version of the Architect Registration Examination® (ARE®), ARE 5.0, will launch November 1, 2016, and incorporate the latest testing technology.

ARE 5.0 Division Structure

ARE 5.0 will include six standalone divisions that more closely align with current architectural practice. Each division will include at least 80 questions, one to two case studies, and new question types to replace vignettes. Learn more about ARE 5.0’s division structure.

Transition Plan

With our test development consultant, NCARB mapped ARE 4.0’s divisions to those in ARE 5.0 to ensure competency of candidates who may complete the ARE through a combination of both exams. Candidates who begin testing in ARE 4.0, but do not complete all divisions, will receive appropriate credit for divisions in ARE 5.0 when they transition to ARE 5.0.

ARE 5.0 Resources
  • Join the ARE 5.0 Community for resources, insight, and expert help.
  • Download the ARE 5.0 Guidelines for more information on exam policies and scheduling tests.
  • Download the ARE 5.0 Handbook for details on each division, learning objectives, sample questions, and more.

Need advice? Our customer service team can help! 

When Will ARE 5.0 Launch?

ARE 5.0 is launching on November 1, 2016. In the meantime, we’re exploring exciting opportunities with test prep providers and developing a NCARB Blog series on the new divisions. 

Subscribe to ARE 5.0 Updates to receive notification when new information is available.

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ARE 5.0 Transition Calculator

Our interactive calculator can help you create a personalized testing strategy by showing how 4.0 divisions will be credited in ARE 5.0. Log in to My NCARB, and we’ll automatically load the exams you've passed and their expiration dates. Use the Transition Calculator.

New Item Types and Case Studies

For ARE 5.0, we will be retiring vignettes in favor of two new question types: hot spots and drag-and-place. Plus, each division will include one to two case studies. Watch videos about ARE 5.0’s new question types

Timeline to ARE 5.0

Check out our timeline on when you can expect study materials, exam details, and other information related to ARE 5.0. Review the timeline to ARE 5.0.

Why ARE 5.0?

NCARB updates the exam every 6-10 years to ensure that it aligns with current practice. Learn about the evolution and development of ARE 5.0.

Related Publications


ARE 5.0 Guidelines
New! The ARE 5.0 Guidelines include an introduction to the exam, an overview of appointment times, plus five steps to completing the exam. ARE 5.0 will launch November 1, 2016.

Download (PDF, 756K)


ARE 5.0 Handbook
New! The ARE 5.0 Handbook includes a breakdown of each division, sample questions, suggested study resources, and more. ARE 5.0 launches November 1, 2016.

Download (PDF, 6,314K)


ARE 5.0 Credit Model
The divisions of ARE 4.0 are mapped to the divisions of ARE 5.0 to ensure competency of candidates that may complete the ARE through a combination of divisions in both versions.

Download (PDF, 71K)


Your Guide to ARE 5.0
ARE 5.0 will launch on November 1, 2016. The six-division exam will include case studies that simulate real-world practice, incorporate new testing technologies, and feature a format that more closely aligns with modern practice.

Download (PDF, 530K)

Related Content

NCARB Announces ARE 5.0 Launch Date
The highly anticipated ARE 5.0 will launch November 1, 2016.

What You Need to Know About ARE 5.0
To help you prepare for the upcoming launch of ARE 5.0, here are a few updates about exam content, scheduling policies, and test prep materials.

Related FAQs

When will ARE 5.0 study materials be available?

Study materials will be available in late summer 2016, allowing ample time for any candidate to prepare for a division of ARE 5.0. ARE 5.0’s test specification (what each division will test) has already been released and is available to download here. See more here.

What does self-transition mean?

Once ARE 5.0 launches, ARE 4.0 candidates will be able to make the individual choice as to whether to keep testing in ARE 4.0 or transition their eligibilities to ARE 5.0. The ability to self-transition will allow candidates to control how they strategically complete the ARE. Once you transition to ARE 5.0, however, you must finish the exam in ARE 5.0.

What can I do right now to prepare for ARE 5.0?

Keep testing in ARE 4.0! The average candidate finishes the ARE in two years—meaning most candidates currently testing will be done with ARE 4.0 before ARE 5.0 even launches.