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A Message from NCARB to all ARE candidates

“Helping” means:

  • Sharing what study guides you used;
  • Discussing concepts highlighted in study material;
  • Reviewing graphic solutions to the NCARB Practice Program and noting obvious errors;
  • Supporting each other and celebrating each others’ success.

“Cheating” means, quite simply, discussing with other anything that you saw on your exam.

This means:

  • Identifying terms or concepts contained in exact exam questions;
  • Sharing answers to questions you had on your exam;
  • Referring others to “check out” information you saw on your exam;
  • Identifying program elements including building names, building heights, steps  from the exact graphic vignette you had on your exam.
  • Asking others to repost content that has been removed from the ARE Forum.


NCARB Disclaimer:

This is an independent website that is not affiliated with NCARB and is not endorsed or sanctioned by NCARB. NCARB, however, has asked that the following reminder be given to those using websites to prepare for the ARE.

Each time a candidate takes each division of the ARE, he or she agrees to the following Confidentiality Agreement:

“I understand that the content of this examination is confidential. I agree that I will not divulge any questions on this examination to any individual or entity. I understand that the unauthorized possession, reproduction, or disclosure of any examination materials, including the nature or content of examination questions, before during or after the examination is in violation of law. A violation of this type can result in a civil liability and/or disciplinary action by my Board of Architecture.”

If an examinee cannot abide by this agreement, they should not take the exam. A violation of this Confidentiality Agreement, as it expressly states, can lead to civil liability and disciplinary action, as well as the temporary or permanent suspension of test taking privileges. Furthermore, disclosure of the content of examination questions at any time is unethical, unprofessional and a violation of the professional standards that NCARB, its member boards, certificate holders and your fellow candidates seek to foster and protect. In addition, disclosing the content of examination questions or using such information gives some candidates an unfair advantage and is extremely unfair to fellow candidates who rightfully choose not use such improper help.

NCARB believes candidates are and should be free to share their general experiences with the ARE, and to help fellow candidates with their test taking skills and the examination process. Such communications are part of the normal examination process. Disclosing the content of examination questions, however, either by direct quotation or paraphrasing, crosses the line separating general help from improper conduct. Simply put, it is cheating.

The integrity of examination process, which is part of the larger certification process, is integral both to NCARB’s mission and the profession’s obligation to protect the public’s health, safety and welfare. If certain examinee’s receive improper help, this threatens to diminish the ability of NCARB and state boards to protect the public’s health and safety. Accordingly, NCARB will take all steps open to it, including civil and disciplinary action, to protect the examination process and to discipline those individuals who violate the Confidentiality Agreement, those who seek to share, use or disseminate exam questions, and all those who seek to give or obtain an unfair advantage over fellow candidates.