ARE Exam Security and Misconduct: What Every Candidate Needs to Avoid

December 12, 2023

It’s time to talk about the elephant in the room of architecture exams – the Architect Registration Examination (ARE). A significant step towards becoming a licensed architect, the ARE often brings a mix of anticipation and anxiety to its candidates. One aspect, often overlooked yet crucial, is understanding the ARE’s strict protocols around exam security and candidate misconduct. Ignorance of the rules is no defense, and any breach can result in severe consequences, hindering your path to licensure.

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The Importance of ARE Exam Security

To ensure the integrity and fairness of the ARE, NCARB enforces robust security measures. This includes constant observation of candidates during the examination. Whether you are at a test center or taking the exam online, you will be under the direct supervision of proctors, and audio and video recording mechanisms. Here’s what you need to know:

On-site Testing

Test center waiting areas are exclusive to candidates. Individuals accompanying you will not be allowed to wait in the center or contact you during the examination.

Online-Proctored Testing

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Ignoring these security guidelines can result in a breach of exam protocols, leading to potential disqualification. But the rules don’t end here. There’s also the ARE Candidate Agreement you need to understand and accept.

Understanding the ARE Candidate Agreement

The ARE Candidate Agreement is more than a formal document—it’s a binding commitment to maintain the confidentiality and integrity of the ARE. Candidates need to read, understand, and accept this Agreement before scheduling their exam. Key points of this agreement include:

  1. Candidates are responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of all exam-related information.
  2. All exam content is confidential and must not be disclosed by any means or for any reason.
  3. Disclosing exam content, even in discussions with family, friends, or study groups, is strictly prohibited.
  4. Violation of the Agreement may result in disciplinary action, civil liability, and further action by the responsible registration board.
  5. At the start of the exam, candidates are required to reaffirm their understanding and acceptance of the Agreement. A reminder is also provided at the end of the examination, stressing the importance of upholding the Agreement post-exam.

Now that we’ve discussed the essential rules around ARE exam security and the candidate agreement let’s delve deeper into an even more serious matter: Candidate Misconduct.

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Navigating Through the Landscape of ARE Candidate Misconduct

NCARB has zero tolerance for misconduct, as it jeopardizes the fairness and integrity of the examination. ARE candidate misconduct includes any breach of the ARE Candidate Agreement, test center regulations, online proctoring regulations, and any inappropriate behavior or exam security breach. A comprehensive understanding of this is crucial to avoid severe consequences.

Violations and Sanctions

Any misconduct during the preparation, taking, or after the ARE can lead to severe sanctions, which may include a suspension of testing privileges, cancellation of scores, and even legal actions seeking monetary damages. The NCARB Board of Directors reserves the right to impose any sanction it deems appropriate.

Disciplinary Process

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Impact on NCARB Certification

Misconduct can also have long-term impacts on your architectural career. If a candidate seeks NCARB certification in the future, any previous misconduct will be taken into consideration when deciding whether to grant certification.

To avoid falling into the trap of misconduct, it’s essential to understand the rules and maintain the utmost professionalism throughout your examination journey.

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Leveraging PrepArchitect to Succeed

Navigating the intricacies of ARE exam security and candidate misconduct can seem daunting, but with careful preparation and understanding, you can pave a smooth path towards your licensure. At PrepArchitect, we believe in equipping you with not just the knowledge to pass your exam, but also the wisdom to navigate the professional ethics and conduct expected from an architect.

The ARE isn’t just an evaluation of your architectural know-how—it’s a measure of your integrity and commitment to upholding the professional standards of the architectural world. To ensure that you are well-versed with the examination procedures and expectations, we highly recommend familiarizing yourself with the ARE 5.0 Guidelines. And with PrepArchitect by your side, you can build the confidence, integrity, and understanding needed to ace the ARE examination.

Remember, an architect’s greatest design isn’t just the structures they create—it’s the professional conduct they exemplify. With this comprehensive knowledge, you’re one step closer to achieving your licensure goals.

The information provided in this article is sourced from the ARE 5.0 Guidelines, September 2022. © 2022 National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB).

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