ARE Live: Project Management

Join Black Spectacles and architect Mike Newman for our Project Management mock exam. With these practice questions, we will explore issues related to resource management, project work planning, project execution, and project quality control.


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Question 1

During an architectural project for a new Library, you have been tasked to track the hours spent and the billable hours available to finish. The Total Fee is $200,000. The project is a classic Design-Bid-Build project delivery, and the contract specifies that Schematic Design is 15% of the contract, Design Development is 20%, Contract Documents 45%, Bidding 5%, and Construction Administration 15%. The timecards for the employees working on the Library have been automatically summarized into the above chart. Now that the Design Development drawing set has been signed off by the Owner, what do you find on reviewing the chart?

a. The Architecture Firm is ahead $8,000
b. The Architecture Firm is ahead 60 hours
c. The Architecture Firm is behind $6100
d. The Architecture Firm is behind 60 hours

Question 2

How much does Louise make per hour, approximately?

$ _____
Any answer in the range between $33 to $48_/ hour (approx. 1/4 to 1/3 of billable rate)

Question 3

At the end of Schematic Design, the architects working on the project should do what prior to presenting the work to the Client? (choose 3)

a. Finalize the Program
b. Review the work against the Code Analysis and the Program
c. Make a construction cost analysis
d. Review the Shop Drawings
e. Order the Environmental Phase 1 analysis
f. Review the progress with the Consultants

Question 4

The Architect claims that the project is at “Substantial Completion”. Which of the following are implicated: (choose 3)

a. Warranties start
b. All RFI’s must have been completed
c. Occupancy must meet code
d. The Punchlist must be finished
e. Must have completed the Final Change Order
f. The Client is allowed to move in

Question 5

A Contractor has a question, and she calls you on the phone. What should you do?

a. One of your roles as the Architect is to help the Contractor understand the Design Intent so they can fulfill their work correctly, so you answer their question.
b. You never answer a direct question from the Contractor as you do not have a contract with the Contractor. They need to formally ask the Owner (who they do have a contract with), and then the Owner formally asks you the question.
c. It depends where in the project schedule it is
d. Who answers their phone anymore? (… this is a joke, and is not the answer)

Question 5 in the mock exam: “A contractor has a question, and she calls you on the phone. What should you do?”

Assuming that there is no context, I would answer one way (option omitted to ensure other candidates can make independent choices). If I were to assume that this question is referring to the previous Library project, I would answer differently.

Could you offer some words on how to approach such contextless questions that succeed questions with a lot of context?

Thank you for organising the webinar.
Hans-Christian

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I’ve never worked at a firm that didn’t pay interns. Is this common?

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I’ve never worked at a firm that didn’t pay interns. Is this common?

Good question, neither did I. There are some firms who don’t pay interns, but I think it’s fair to say that it’s frowned on for obvious reasons. There has been some controversy about this over the past few years…

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The wording “behind” and “ahead” is a little deceiving. I was thinking that the word ahead on the question was cost or more was charged then was expected, ie: Ahead of budget. Is this going to be similar language in the exam? Is there a way to understand or decipher what the wording actually is?

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The wording “behind” and “ahead” is a little deceiving. I was thinking that the word ahead on the question was cost or more was charged then was expected, ie: Ahead of budget. Is this going to be similar language in the exam? Is there a way to understand or decipher what the wording actually is?

That’s a great comment. I know that NCARB specifically tries to avoid deceiving wording because they are trying to figure out whether you really know the material, but not trick you by using misleading wording…

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Regarding the Library Hours Analysis chart, would other expenses (e.g. print jobs, outsourcing rendering or model making, etc) usually factor into a chart like this or into the overall fee/budget?

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I agree the wording was confusing at first. But I found the key thing to remember is the budget is a continued working document. Once I took that into consideration I realized I needed the most current estimate which included SD and DD.

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The multiplier in the architects professional practice handbook for architects is 2.5-3.02. This seems like what we should be looking at because NCARB has specifically noted this in their
study guide.

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I assume it’s accounted for in the 3-4 multiplier range of the hourly rate.
I also used thybertson’s multiplier in my answer.

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Could the client contract the Architect to help with programming as an additional service?

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Yes, I think that’s typically an additional service that happens before DD begins.

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Agreed!

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Is it an additional service or a supplemental service since its programming?

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From what the B101 states this is possible as long as it is discussed with the client and they understand that the Programming Phase will be included as an additional service. Programming is not a Basic Service.

Additional Services are: Programming, Geotechnical, FFE etc

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It could have been listed in the RFP as well

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This is a great point! @jeffs.smith

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What is the difference between additional service and supplemental service?

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What if it appears through the RFP that there is an established program and schematic design starts and it is discovered that there is programming efforts still needed?

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