A Final Push to Study and the BDCS Study Guide

Ladies and gentleman, I present to you for your reading pleasure “Overkill”.

Alright, so maybe I’m being a little dramatic, but I honestly wasn’t expecting to cover this much material while preparing for this exam. But once I started reading Fundamentals of Building Construction, (and trying a few practice exams to gauge what I comfortably knew) I realized that like PPP it was probably better to study more than less. It worked for me in the past…why not do it again, right? So as promised here is my Building Design and Construction Systems Study Guide. At 105 pages, I’m thinking of upgrading it to tome status. It covers just about everything in FBC, on areforum’s FTP site, and a slew of websites I ran across in the process. While it took a ton of time, I’m glad that I went through everything as thoroughly as possible and I hope that it will be worth it come Saturday. Hopefully you might get some use out of it as well.

Now the trick is just remembering everything.

oh to sell traditional materials in the modern age

I’m going to spend the next few nights reviewing as much as I can. I’m still a little unsure about fire ratings and construction types, as well as roof construction. Materials as a whole I’m pretty good on. Going through the guide a couple times a night and working through the Kaplan Q&A book should help tremendously in the final push. I also finally have some time to work on the alternate vignettes which I heard are very useful. I was able to post my roof design vignette on arefoum before it crashed and only messed up an elevation marker. It was a dumb mistake, but I’m glad that was the only one I made. I’m feeling comfortable with the accessible ramp, but want to practice a few more configurations just so I don’t get too cozy with the NCARB example. The stair has been the most difficult for me to wrap my head around. Conceptually it makes sense, but there’s something about actually drawing it that makes me freeze. But like the new Ben Folds Five song Do It Anyway suggests: “If you’re paralyzed by a voice in your head, It’s the standing still that should be scaring you instead. Go on and do it anyway”. If only the Fraggles were here to help out.

I know I’m not out of the woods yet, but I’m feeling a little bit of relief for the first time in weeks. I’m actually looking forward to a few more nights of working hard and getting some rest before the big day. I know I’ve covered everything, now it’s just a matter of convincing myself that I’m ready.

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9 thoughts on “A Final Push to Study and the BDCS Study Guide

  1. Ian says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you, and good luck!

  2. Tom says:

    You are ready Jenny, and thank you for sharing your sudy guide. I’m sure I’ll put it to good use also. You have worked hard and are prepared to ace this test…I’d wish you good luck, but you don’t need it. You’re ready!

  3. Dale says:

    Good Luck @ thanks again for the encouraging words regarding PPP! Played that song for my wife last night and thought the same thing about the same lyric! Time to plunge in, get it over with & move on to the next one.

  4. masonellis says:

    I was hoping I would take my BDCS test after you took yours so I could use your study guide (They are so helpful for review!) but I ended up taking it last Wed. I didn’t think it was as bad as everyone on the forum was making it out to be. I probably had the fewest amount of marked questions at the end after I went through it the first time than on any of the other 3 I have taken so far.

    Practice the vignettes though! I think I may have messed up on the ramp one. On most of the practice vignettes, since you have to have a 60” landing, it’s usually easiest just to have a 60” wide ramp so everything works out the easiest. This did not work on my test vignette but I was so used to practicing it that way that I didn’t realize till I had 30 mins left that the ramp had a smaller minimum width than 60 inches and I had to redraw the whole thing at the end. I’m not sure if I fixed it in time though. The stair was a little tricky and the roof was really straightforward.

    Good Luck!

    • jennypdx says:

      Thank you so much for the exam thoughts, you definitely just helped calm my serious case of the pre-exam jitters (you’d think after multiple exams the involuntarily urge to panic/hurl would go away). I will be sure to dedicate a little extra time to the vignettes today, I worked through a few stair alternates yesterday which helped. I hope you hear back with a pass letter soon! Good luck with the rest of your exams and thanks again for your note!

  5. i2defy says:

    Jenny, you are such an awesome nerd. Please bless my kids!

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