By exam number five you’d think the pre-exam freak outs might not be quite as bad as they were before. They’re really not. That being said, while I’m nervous for Sunday, I’ve realized that this is the first exam where I’ve felt genuinely confident walking in. Nerves aside, that’s a pretty good feeling to have two days before showtime.
This morning I got the appointment reminder from NCARB which included the standard rescheduling policy as usual. You know the one…you must reschedule your exam by noon eastern (that’s 9AM to us west coasters) three business days before your appointment. Given that I always take my exams on the weekend, I usually get the reschedule reminder after the deadline has passed. Nice, huh? It kind of makes me chuckle and think welp…it’s too late to turn back now.
The past few evenings I’ve been focusing heavily on the Interior Layout, and think I’ve got that one in the bag. I’ve worked through almost all of the alternates, as well as tried the original NCARB example again. I’ve managed to get my time down to about 35 minutes, which is just about perfect. I’ll do a few more timed trials tomorrow, but otherwise think I’ll dedicate the rest of my time to perfecting my Building Layout skills. I still am not quite happy with how near my “near” rooms are, so hopefully practicing a few alternatives will help. I tend to make a lot of progress in the final push…at least I have for all the exams to date.
Instead of working on the vignettes tonight, I finally put together my study guide as a way to review the notes and strategies that I’ve compiled so far. While there are other guides that are probably more helpful graphically, I created a step by step written process for each exam. Here’s the Schematic Design Study Guide PDF for you to use too, if you’d like.
Work has been crazy busy the last few weeks, so between that and late nights studying I’m pretty wiped. I think the best thing I can do at this point is get plenty of rest tonight and tomorrow, and give myself a bit of time to work though the Building Layout. Tomorrow night the Timbers take on the LA Galaxy, and while I’d love to be there for it, think it would be wiser to stay home to wrap up studying and get a good night sleep. Things have been blowing up with the team lately, amazing wins at home and embarrassing losses on the road. This week they relieved Coach Spencer of his duties, and like many fans I’m not surprised, but I am saddened. I sincerely wish him the all the best. While most of my professional role models are designers, he’s been a shining example of how one can perform a high stress job with honesty, integrity, and a bit of humor. He really is true class and I look forward to following the rest of his career.
So on that note, here’s to the final push for SD. With a few final tweaks and a bit of luck, I should have a pretty good shot on Sunday.