Tuesday, September 30, 2014

How to Pass the NCIDQ, Part 4

Today I'm listing out topics you most definitely want to know and my three biggest tips for going into the multiple choice exams. You absolutely can't miss these topics. You must know them forward and backward. Yes, you'll memorize these. There's really now way around it.

    • all of them but most importantly, fire codes
    • again all of them but most importantly, those related to fire
    • the Q takes this part of design seriously, even though much of this process isn't incredibly relevant and current to the way you may handle projects in real life at your job, you need to know it the way the Q wants you to.
    • Remember the following: Go Fat Crying Nun Please
      • G: Goals
      • F: Facts
      • C: Concepts
      • N: Needs
      • P: Problems
    • there are a TON of them, while you read make a single page of all the acronyms you come across and start memorizing them. You won't honestly need to know them all but the more you know the better the exams will be. (ex: BIFMA, Business Institutional Furniture Manufacturing Association)
    • As you read there will be examples of different types of calculations you need to know. More than knowing the math to these calculations is knowing what you need to make the calculations.
    • In a later post, I'll cover each of the calculations I studied
    • In the appendix of the study book there are some pages that are super helpful. Take them to a copy machine and print them out for yourself.
    • You need to know what happens under each part of the contract process but you also need to know the contracts and the numbers that relate to specific contracts.
    • These will come in several types of questions, know the ones related to interior design,
      • hint: know number 1 through 12!
    • there are different things underneath each of these...know them
    • know everything related to occupancy. Know how to calculate it, what it entails, what it requires as far as egress, etc.
    • Standards and codes related to egress is pivotal on EVERY single portion of the NCIDQ, both multiple choice exams & the practicum. You have to know this subject and you have to know it well!
    • the practicum brings it's own rule of study topics and methods. The best tip I can give is to study each portion of the practicum separetly on it's own. Make notes for each section and have a note card or page that highlights specific things you want to know under each section.
    • In a later post, I'll cover what was on my notes for each section.

Know things the way the NCIDQ asks you to. 
Forget what you know. Forget how you do things in real life at your real job, You may even need to forget some of what you learned in school. All that matters is what the NCIDQ details in that study book and on the exam website. It is their way, there is no highway options.

Study what you think you know best. 
BOTH times I took the IDFX, my lowest scoring portion was the subject matters I thought I knew best because it was what I worked on the most at my job (see previous point). Some items, for instance construction, I really needed to work on but I where I failed was paying so much attention to construction and overlooking what I thought I knew best, ff&e. Definitely spend a good amount of time on subject matters you hardly recall but do not over look areas you think you know best!

When you find yourself questioning which of the answers is the BEST (because yes, the IDFX & IDPX are jam packed with which of these answers is BEST, they're all right but which is best?!) look for an answer that related to health, safety or welfare. Over the years, the exam has really focused on specific subject matters. In the most recent past exams, health, safety and welfare have been huge. Know these words, know what the mean in relation to design and carefully make your decisions reflecting on them.

Truth, you can't know everything but you can do your best to know the most important things really well. Read everything and understand everything, don't try and memorize everything.

God can do anything you know, far more than you can ever imagine, guess, or request in your wildest dreams... Ephesians 3:20

Got questions? Submit them here anonymously! 

How to Pass the NCIDQ previous posts:

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