NCARB Releases ARE 5.0 Guidelines Updates and 2020 Pass Rates

ARE 5.0 Guidelines Update

On March 8, 2021, we published minor clarifying updates to the ARE 5.0 Guidelines, which is an essential resource for all candidates. Many of these updates were previously shared in ARE Update emails, and do not reflect any change in policy. Key updates include:

  • Any name discrepancies must be made within seven (7) business days before your exam (page 6). Remember, the first and last name in your NCARB Record must match your ID.
  • Clarifying language about accommodations for candidates who are pregnant or breastfeeding (page 10).
  • Candidates who don’t meet the online proctoring requirements are responsible for any fees incurred, such as a canceled appointment (page 13).
  • When testing online, microphones must be enabled at all times, and headphones or headsets are not allowed (page 14).
  • How to schedule a free, 30-minute test run with Prometric (page 13).
  • If you experience three or more tech issues during your appointment, you’ll have the option to continue testing or reschedule at no cost (page 17).
  • For both in-person and online exams, you will need to notify your proctor before taking a break (pages 18).
  • Candidates must agree to the ARE Candidate Agreement three times: when scheduling an appointment, plus when you start and end your exam (page 24).

Tech Issues

NCARB and our test delivery partners, Prometric and Zoomorphix, continue to address technical issues for both in-person and online exams. The overall proportion of candidates reporting tech issues is down to 10% (compared to 13% in January)—but we still have work to do.

We’re actively testing updates that should improve the overall performance of the ARE and will be deployed later this month. Also, the majority of exam administrations (80%) continue to be delivered at Prometric centers, while the remaining 20% are taken online.

Three gears showing the percentage of tech issues reported for all ARE administrations, plus onsite and online administrations.Editor’s note: An earlier version of the above graphic swapped the percentages for onsite and online administrations. We regret the error.

If you experience a technical issue, immediately notify your proctor and then contact NCARB within 15 days. Remember, If you’re unable to complete the exam due to a major technical issue, we will work with you to reschedule the division at no cost.

2020 ARE Pass Rates

NCARB released the 2020 pass rates for all six divisions and by architecture school. To determine annual pass rates, we compare the percentage of candidates who pass each division with the total number of candidates who tested (including retakes).

Bar chart showing the change in ARE pass rates in 2019 and 2020. Overall, pass rates increased slightly.Learn more about what score you need to pass each ARE division.