The ARE Is Evolving!

Washington, DC—The National Council of Architectural Registration Boards is pleased to announce coming improvements to the Architect Registration Examination, better known as the ARE. The first of these will be officially implemented February 2, 2004.

From consolidated content areas to revised testing times, ARE Version 3.0 incorporates a number of evolutionary improvements that were first identified in the Architectural Practice Analysis Study conducted during the year 2000. Most importantly, the Practice Analysis validated the format and content of the current exam. ARE Version 3.0 acts upon study recommendations that increase the exam’s relevancy. While ARE Version 3.0 is not a major overhauling of the exam, it is an effort to include more recent topics while adjusting the emphasis of focus in other areas.

In order to eliminate redundancy, some ARE content areas are shifting; a few others are being strengthened; and a few new content areas are being introduced. What does this mean for ARE candidates? The most obvious changes are fewer questions in each multiple-choice division and the elimination of two graphic vignettes.

Here is a breakdown of some specific changes included in ARE Version 3.0:

Multiple-Choice Divisions

• Reduction of the overall number of questions in each division

• A better organized content outline for each division, with more consistent titles

• The reintroduction of questions about site design throughout several divisions

• Questions covering new content areas, including “green architecture,” sustainability, and new material technologies

• Renaming the Materials & Methods division Building Design / Materials & Methods to better reflect its expanded scope

• Expansion of practice and project management portions of the Construction Documents & Services division

• A redesigned screen layout that anticipates new types of questions in the future


Graphic Divisions


• Elimination of the Site Section vignette from the Site Planning division

• Elimination of the Block Diagram vignette from the Building Planning division

• Standardizing the sequence of all three graphic divisions by implementing one mandatory 15-minute break between sections of each division

• Elimination of access to the Practice Program at Prometric test centers during the examination reduces the scheduled appointment time

• The Practice Program remains available for downloading from the NCARB web site

The newly revised and updated publication, ARE Guidelines, will provide additional details about changes to exam content and administration. The Guidelines will be available by mid-October; all currently eligible candidates will receive a copy by mail. Candidates will also be able to download the publication from the NCARB web site once it is available.