ARE 5.0 Project Management PjM Study Notes

ARE 5.0 Project Management PjM Study Notes

Below are notes that I have taken and used to study for the ARE 5.0 Project Managment test.  These notes are based on facebook group /ARE Forum conversations and the NCARB recommended study material including the Architect’s Handbook of Professional Practice,  Ballast ARE 5 Study Guide and Professional Practice: A guide for turning designs into buildings.  I also read/used BIM for Integrated Design, CSI Project Resource Manual, and Youn Architect AIA contract videos but did not directly reference them to create these notes. These notes are intended to be in my own wording and are not comprehensive of everything you will need to know for PjM but I hope that you will find them helpful.  They will be most helpful for someone who already has a lot of on the job PM experience and just needs to brush up for the exam.  Please note, at the time this was published, I have not yet taken the PjM (I’m taking it tomorrow).

What does PjM Cover?

PjM is 95 items 3hr 15min and, according to the ARE 5.0 Handbook, the Project Management (PjM) division will:

test the candidate’s ability to protect the public’s health, safety, and welfare by:
• Administering contract requirements and competent
delivery of project services
• Organizing a team to design and produce contract documents
• Coordinating project team activities and project budget
• Communicating information to all constituents throughout
the project delivery process
• Developing a project schedule that defines tasks and
meets milestones

PjM Sections:

Resource Management 7-13%

Project Work Planning 17-23%

Contracts 25-31%

Project Execution 17-23%

Project Quality Control 19-25%

Resource Management

The composition of the project team and how each resource is managed. Section breakdown per the ARE 5.0 Handbook:

Determine criteria required to assemble team (U/A)
Assess criteria required to allocate and manage project resources (A/E)

Studio Structure & Organization Types (Depts. etc) (need to know for PcM too)

Partnering – Various stakeholders participate in PM decision making process.

Project Delivery Methods (need to know for PcM too)

Project Work Planning

Develop a work plan and assemble a team to complete the project. Section breakdown per the ARE 5.0 Handbook:

Develop and maintain project work plan (U/A)
Determine criteria required to develop and maintain project schedule (A/E)
Determine appropriate communication to project team – owner, contractor, consultants and internal staff (U/A)

Total Working Fee – (Use for creating the work plan chart) Fee available to pay people to do the job after subtracting profit, consultants, and other expense.

Work Plan – detailed project schedule of component tasks with assigned staff/resources/consultants.  Includes: scope of services, phase breakdown, dependencies, milestones, and allocation of time/fees.

Fee Projection – work plan

Float – max time a noncritical task can be delayed/extended.

Activities – Tasks

Dependency – task must be completed before another starts

Dummies – CPM dependencies represented by dashed arrows

Critical Path Method (CPM) – shows all tasks needed to complete a project, sequence of those tasks, task duration, and dependencies.


Analyze the AIA Contracts. Section breakdown per the ARE 5.0 Handbook:

Evaluate and verify adherence to owner/architect agreement (A/E)
Interpret key elements of, and verify adherence to architect/consultant
agreement (U/A)
Interpret key elements of the owner/contractor agreement (U/A)
Interpret key elements of the owner/consultant agreement to integrate the consultant’s work into the project (U/A)

B101 – Standard Owner-Architect Agreement

(need to know for PcM too)

Basic Services – Pre-Design (evaluate initial information), SD, DD, CD, BID/Negotiation (Assist with Preparing Bid Docs), CA

Additional Services – Programming, BIM, LEED, Post Occupancy Evaluation

G612 – Optional form to gather initial information from Owner.

Primary Contract is only a basis of a legal claim by those parties who sign it.

Waiver of Subrogation – waiver of damages covered by property insurance.

Cost of Work – labor, materials, equipment, 3rd party CM, overhead & profit.

Compensation Methods

2017 Update: Architect’s Compensation Based On A Percentage Basis: The New AIA Documents

Bottom-Up Approach – estimate fee based on billing rate by breaking the project into tasks, assigning staff and estimate time per task.

Project Budget – Top-Down Approach:

  • SD 15%, DD 20%, CD 40%, BID 5%, CA 20%
  • 7% Gross of which (40% to consultants, 5% contingency, 5% direct expense, 50% net fee)

Retainage: 10%

Stipulated Sum

=Fixed Sum + Reimbursables

Stipulated Sum – Fixed Fee (need to know for PcM too)

Always used for competitive bid.

Reimbursable: Postage, Reproductions, Travel, Project Specific Communication Costs, Project Websites, Project-specific insurance, renderings and models.

Cost Plus Fee

=Actual Expenses + Profit

=Actual labor, materisls, and subcontracts + Fixed fee

Actual Expenses: Salaries, Benefits, Direct Expenses, Overhead

Multiple Direct Personelle Expense: Direct salary is multiplied by a factor to account for personal expenses (Tax, sick leave, health care etc) then amount increased by overhead/profit multiplier.

Multiple Direct Salary Expense: (Net Multiplier Method) Similar to direct personal method but the multiplier is higher to account for employee benefits.

Hourly Billing Rates Method: Multiplier is built into hourly rate (variation is hourly not to exceed.)

Percentage of Construction Cost: % Construction fee (not as common now)

Unit Cost: (Unit Price) fee base on a definable unit, such as square feet or per a repeated building unit

Guaranteed Maximum Price

Less = owner saves; More= GC pays

B101SP Owner-Architect (Sustainable)

Defines “Sustainable Objective” – what sustainable goal project must achieve.

Sustainable Workshop – @ end of SD or earlier during programming

  • Confirm Sustainable Objective
  • Establish goals/expectations
  • Discuss sustainable measures
  • Project feasibility and scope

Sustainability Plan – AIA D503

  • Sustainable objective/measures/strategies
  • Owner/Architect/Contractor responsibilities
  • Design review details
  • Required tests to verify sustainable achievements
  • Required documentation

A101 Owner-Contractor Agreement

Liquidated Damages – a fee, representing reasonable losses, paid by the contractor to the owner for every day project is late.  Often paired with a bonus for early completion.

Retainage – % of each payment withheld till the end

Initial Decision Maker (IDM) – Architect by default but can be appointed to a 3rd party

Claims: IDM has10 days to review the claim and take action.  Possible actions include:  request additional information, reject a claim in whole/part, approve the claim, suggest a compromise, advise owner/contractor IDM is unable to resolve.  IDM decision is binding but subject to mediation.

A201 General Conditions

Owner NOT responsible for building permit and other governmental fees/permits

Owner IS responsible for approvals and permits required to construct permanent structures or make changes in existing structures such as: zoning permits, easement assessments, environmental impact studies etc.

Owner must provide GC with one free copy of construction documents.

Contractor NOT responsible to ensure construction documents comply with local codes

Contractor warranties materials and workmanship is of good quality, free of defects and conforms to requirements of the CDs.

GC secures and pays permits, fees, and taxes necessary for the execution of their work

concealed/unknown conditions

Allowances: does not including handling and installing which should be included as part of the contract sum.

Record Documents – maintained by GC as outlined in Div 01 specs


Design Services: aka design delegation; allows the use of performance specs for products and building assemblies.


The architect should NOT issue a certificate of payment unless proof of GC insurance is on file.

Owner responsible for property insurance and loss of use insurance.

All Risk Policy: Fire, theft, vandalism, other hazards not specifically excluded.

Surety Bond (aka Contract Bond): The surety (bond company) agrees to be responsible to the obligee (owner) for the default/debts of the principal (GC).  Protects owner against defaults by the GC.

A201SP General Conditions (Sustainable)

Sustainability Measure

Certifying Authority

A503 Supplementary and Special Conditions

Some additional/supplementary conditions should be separate from main contract form such as:

  • Bid Process Instructions.
  • Electronic Construction Documents
  • Additional Service Fees
  • Provisions for the owner to directly pay for items normally covered by GC
  • Additional requirements for payments/bonds/insurance, fast-tracking

Special conditions is a separate document from the Supplemental conditions which lists special conditions specific to the project site.

C401 Architect-Consultant Agreement

C401SP Architect Consultant Agreement (Sustainable)

Consultant attends sustainability workshop

give consultant copy of sustainability plan

Project Execution

Administrative procedures related to project management/execution. Section breakdown per the ARE 5.0 Handbook:

Evaluate compliance with construction budget (A/E)
Evaluate and address changes in scope of work and scope creep (A/E)
Evaluate project documentation to ensure it supports the specified delivery method (A/E)
Identify and conform with the requirements set forth by authorities having jurisdiction in order to obtain approvals for the project (U/A)

  • Monitoring Fees & Time: work plan/review timesheets for accuracy
  • Controlling/responding to changes in scope (scope creep)
  • monitoring construction budget
  • documenting the design and construction phases
  • following code requirements
  • quality control


  • SD budget cost/square foot
  • DD & CD budget more detailed – parameter method of budgeting
  • Advantage of construction manager, Design-Build, and IPD is accurate early cost information.


  • meeting notes
  • phone and email logs
  • observation reports

CSI MasterFormat Divisions


  • Division 00 — Procurement and Contracting Requirements


General Requirements Subgroup

  • Division 01 — General Requirements

Facility Construction Subgroup

  • Division 02 — Existing Conditions
  • Division 03 — Concrete
  • Division 04 — Masonry
  • Division 05 — Metals
  • Division 06 — Wood, Plastics, and Composites
  • Division 07 — Thermal and Moisture Protection
  • Division 08 — Openings
  • Division 09 — Finishes
  • Division 10 — Specialties
  • Division 11 — Equipment
  • Division 12 — Furnishings
  • Division 13 — Special Construction
  • Division 14 — Conveying Equipment

Facility Services Subgroup:

  • Division 21 — Fire Suppression
  • Division 22 — Plumbing
  • Division 23 — Heating, Ventilating, and Air Conditioning (HVAC)
  • Division 25 — Integrated Automation
  • Division 26 — Electrical
  • Division 27 — Communications
  • Division 28 — Electronic Safety and Security

Site and Infrastructure Subgroup:

  • Division 31 — Earthwork
  • Division 32 — Exterior Improvements
  • Division 33 — Utilities
  • Division 34 — Transportation
  • Division 35 — Waterway and Marine Construction

Process Equipment Subgroup:

  • Division 40 — Process Interconnections
  • Division 41 — Material Processing and Handling Equipment
  • Division 42 — Process Heating, Cooling, and Drying Equipment
  • Division 43 — Process Gas and Liquid Handling, Purification and Storage Equipment
  • Division 44 — Pollution and Waste Control Equipment
  • Division 45 — Industry-Specific Manufacturing Equipment
  • Division 46 — Water and Wastewater Equipment
  • Division 48 — Electrical Power Generation

CSI Manual

areas to potentially read (I ran out of time to read any of this, skimmed and it seems to be mostly repeated in the Architect’s handbook):

  • Module 1
  • Module 2: 2.1, 2.2, 2.3, 2.5, 2.6, 2.9
  • Module 3: 3.2, 3.2.1, 3.3, maybe 3.4 esp cost and time sections
  • Module 4: 4.3, 4.5, 4.7, 4.8.3, 4.9.1, 4.9.4, 4.9.6, 4.9.7, 4.10.2
  • Module 5:, 5.4.4, 5.11
  • Module 6: 6.1.1, 6.2, 6.3

Project Quality Control

Procedures to assist with maintaining Standard of Care. Section breakdown per the ARE 5.0 Handbook:

Apply procedures required for adherence to laws and regulations relating to the project (U/A)
Identify steps in maintaining project quality control, and reducing risks and liabilities (A/E)
Perform quality control reviews of project documentation throughout life of project (A/E)
Evaluate management of the design process to maintain integrity of design objectives (A/E)

AKA Quality Management, Quality Planing, Quality Assurance

Standard of Care + Client Expectations (Budget, Performance)

Follow project program using checklists and checking redlines

ISO 9000 – formal QC method

AIA D200 Project Checklist

Process-based Systems: (Automation) PM software and BIM

Quality Management Meetings

Staffing – QC staff and in-house mentoring/training

Quality Circles – voluntary small groups and steering committee (large firms)

Corporate Knowledge – documentation of information gained through work that is organized in a manner that keeps it accessible to all staff for use/reference: Checklists, Standard Details, Master Specs, Post-Occupancy Evaluations

Contemporaneous Documentation – recording of information at the time the event occurred. If problem, avoid emotion and placing blame.  See this link for further reading.

CDs are main source of claims of negligence

Finish all design decisions before CD phase and allow time at end of CDs for proper review and reprographics. (Last minute overtime = PM fail)

pre-design study: list of applicable codes, requirements, regulations

SD phase: local zoning, environmental, and historical requirements

Scope changes should trigger a code check.

Meeting Minutes – notes of meeting discussions, use a template for all meetings and distribute to the whole internal/external team.

Waiver of Subrogation – Waiver of Rights

Memorize Math

1 cubic yard = 27 cubic feet

1 acre = 43560 square feet

1 hectare = 2.471 acres

1 mile = 5280 feet

1 yard = 3 feet

References & Additional Resources

Architect’s Handbook of Professional Practice

Professional Practice: a Guide for Turning Designs into Buildings

The Project Resource Manual: CSI Manual of Practice

BIM and Integrated Design: Strategies for Architectural Practice

ARE 5.0 Review Manual – PPI Ballast

AIA Documents: A101, A133, A195, A201, A295, A701, B101, B195, C401 (as of this writing, use 2017 versions where available)

Young Architect Academy

Designer Hacks

I hope you found these notes helpful in your own pursuit of licensure.  If you have additional resources to share or comments please leave them below for the benefit of others.  Happy Solstice & Wish me luck!