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A lot has changed in 6 years, but even then, I doubt you studied for only 20 minutes, so how about not passing on bad advice.



Now if I can get back providing the requested test advice ....


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It's called sarcasm. I studied an hour or two a night for about a month and was severely over-prepared. I think the exam is pointless as it is pure memorization you'll forget a couple of days later.




lol have you taken it Enviro? Its not difficult in the way that the EIT or the PE and CA -Seismic/survey is challenging (altho i didnt think these exams were that hard - i don't know what all these PEs are always bitching about). However, it requires a ton of memorization, all closed book! But I imagine if they let people go in there with a single sheet of notes the thing would be breeze.




Yeah I passed it back in the day. It was getting popular at the time and it was beneficial to get certified. Never really used it much, so it's basically resume candy. Helped us win a couple of jobs over the years.


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I looked into the GA and bought a study book. After looking through it though, I changed my mind (for now). I might give it a try some other time, but like some of you already said.... you just memorize stuff, pass the test, forget the material, do not use it again, etc. I wonder why they do not allow reference materials? All of us can reach over and grab reference materials in the workplace when we do not have something memorized. Another thing that was a little discouraging.... we have Administrative Assistants who went out and got certified. Nothing against them, but how much weight can it hold on an engineer's resume?



Like VTEnviro said, I think when it became a big deal, everyone went out and took it, passed and that probably watered down it's value.


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The GA holds little credit...it's like the EIT, you can't do anything with it. It is when you take the specialty exams, which require project experience and project knowledge to pass, when they begin to hold weight. As for the Admin Assistants, they will never move past a GA unless they lie about their project experience. All the GA demonstrates is a basic knowledge of sustainable building practice, nothing wrong with an Admin clerk knowing about daylighting techniques.



In the end, it is only as valuable as you make it. Are you just putting letters after your name or on a resume? Or do you actually do work on LEED projects, and can you put your 10 LEED Gold projects on your resume? Do you believe in the mission of the USGBC, or do you not give a crap and could care less about sustainable design?



3 or 4 years back, GBCI implemented the specialty credentials and continuing education. From what I last heard, a huge chunk of previosly credentialled LEED APs did not enroll in con ed, and therefore have no specialty designation, and therefore have a pretty useless credential as they will not even earn their projects an ID point. So we are probably a lot less watered down than what we were in say 2008.


Edited by John Q

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I was afraid of the whole memorizing the answers to practice exams thing...I just received some PPI study guide and practice exam in the mail, going to see how i do on that one. We'll keep working on it. thanks for the info John Q. What would you suggest for studying for the home stretch? Re-read material? Re-watch exam prep course (green exam prep) re-take practice exams?



I'm to the point where i can literally write down from memory all credit categories and credit tables along with credit description, points possible, and exemplary performance options for NC/SCH/CS. I think im going to use the brain dump strategy and re-creating this during the 10 min tutorial.


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EP is where you exceed a required standard...such as 0 net energy instead of 50% reduction. ID credits can be Pilot Credits, or just something you make up, and present with your project that isn't necessarily a credit.

ID Credit 1 addresses credits that do not have EP points listed (the GA exam will not get deep into the reference guides).

ID and RP are credit categories.

For GA - none, for BD+C, you need to know the difference between zones, and the fc that goes with it.

For the refigerants, know the difference between HCFC's and CFC's and why they are bad...know that natural stuff is good.

Don't get lulled into a false sense of security with the practice tests, especially if you are answering the same questions over and over. The GA exam is going to come 95% from the Core Concepts Book, nothing from the reference guides.

It's the LEED exam, study for 20 minutes and you're good to go. My dog could pass that exam. You're gonna do great with all the work you put in.

Good luck with that one, especially on the questions I wrote.

Is there any way to get a copy of the core concepts PDF 2nd edition without having to shell out more money to USGBC? Its this sort of thing that really disappoints me about USGBC and the overall LEED system, they claim to want to spread their concepts and thereby change the construction market but turn around and charge for entry level core concepts material. A more effective way to educate and raise awareness might be to provide material free of charge. Same thing for the mandatory fees to clarify any credit...how is putting a premium on communication bringing about a shift in the construction industry? Now once you obtain a BD+C license you need to enroll in on-going education credits? (also sold at a premium) I get that everything requires funding but how about practicing what you preach and taking other factors into account when making these policies?

I hear Cal Green is gaining momentum among owners and is soon to overtake LEED certifications in CA, any thoughts?

I'm over it. back to studying! happy new year all you east coasters!

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and LEED AP BD+C in the books! I have now added 11 letters after my name in the past 3 weeks. PE, LEED AP BD+C lol thanks for your help john Q.


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John Q, I think the Admins got it when everyone was scrambling to take the test before the Leed GA was implemented. I'm not sure though, is it true that the GA came along afterwards? Also, I think you are correct about the designation, as a lot of them just say Leed AP without any particular discipline or field.



I work in the structural engineer field, and I've gone back and forth on how useful/applicable it would be in my line of work.



Thanks for all of the info.


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I work in the structural engineer field, and I've gone back and forth on how useful/applicable it would be in my line of work.

I'm a site guy. I took it back when it was just a general exam. Won us a couple of jobs though and looks nice on a resume. About all I remember about the exam was finding a really good diner for lunch somewhere in Concord, NH. Don't recall the name of the place but the cole slaw was excellent.

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John Q, I think the Admins got it when everyone was scrambling to take the test before the Leed GA was implemented. I'm not sure though, is it true that the GA came along afterwards? Also, I think you are correct about the designation, as a lot of them just say Leed AP without any particular discipline or field.

I work in the structural engineer field, and I've gone back and forth on how useful/applicable it would be in my line of work.

Thanks for all of the info.

GA came about recently. 2010 maybe?

LEED is obviously less applicable for those of us in the civil.structural side. Look through some of the MR Credits and see what applies to your job in the structural field. For me, it is as much a personal mission as it is a professional one. Having worked in a building were I had "sick building syndrome" for the first 8 months of the job, really hit home for me. 90% of our time is spent indoors, we should be making our time there as pleasant as possible. If you've ever been inside a LEED building, you just physically feel the difference. I spent a few days at USGBC headquartes a few months back, and the time just seems to fly, and my productivity was off the charts.

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LEED worth getting? How's compared to PE Power exam? Walk in the park?


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question on the CEU.....can we use PE CEU to fulfill the LEED CEU too?


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question on the CEU.....can we use PE CEU to fulfill the LEED CEU too?

You'll need 6 hours of LEED specific study, but the remaining 24 hours just double dip with all your other CEUs (that's not to say that your LEED specific stuff wouldn't apply to your PE).

Edited by John Q

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question on the CEU.....can we use PE CEU to fulfill the LEED CEU too?

You'll need 6 hours of LEED specific study, but the remaining 24 hours just double dip with all your other CEUs (that's not to say that your LEED specific stuff wouldn't apply to your PE).

thanks...so the question is

worth getting it? How much i need to do to qualified to take the exam? is the exam is like Bisci, they are in for profit instead of certification etc?

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I'm taking the exam on September 30th of this month. Haven't started studying yet but I am taking the LEED GA and LEED AP O+M on the same day within a four hour window...am I screwed? I won't be doing a review course.


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The GA exam is pretty straight forward. Know the cores and concepts book, 95% of the questions will come straight from that. The O+M exam much harder, is this the v4 version?


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The GA exam is pretty straight forward. Know the cores and concepts book, 95% of the questions will come straight from that. The O+M exam much harder, is this the v4 version?

Yes, they are both v4. v4 started at the end of July this year. The core and concept book is not bad...only 90 something pages and flooded with pictures and large text.

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Do you have any project experience with O+M?



When we rewrote the exams, the v4 exams were written to favor those with project experience, since the experience requirements were removed.


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Do you have any project experience with O+M?

When we rewrote the exams, the v4 exams were written to favor those with project experience, since the experience requirements were removed.

Yes, I do. Mainly from doing building surveys and being somewhat involved in EBOM reports. I also have an energy audit background.

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So i m a sort confused here. to get LEED BD+C, do I need to get the LEED GA first? If so, what's a good study guide out there?


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So i m a sort confused here. to get LEED BD+C, do I need to get the LEED GA first? If so, what's a good study guide out there?

There is not much out there, LEED just went to v4 in June or July this year which is slightly different than 2009. I'm taking LEED GA and O+M on the same day this month.

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