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FAPA Conference 2006 AICP Info Session

FAPA Conference 2006 AICP Info Session

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FAPA Conference 2006 AICP Info Session

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  1. FAPA Conference 2006AICP Info Session Presenters: Wiatt Bowers, AICP Tina Demostene, AICP Mindy Heath, AICP Alan Steinbeck, AICP AICP Exam Preparation

  2. Agenda I. Introductions II. Eligibility and Registration a. Requirements b. Deadlines c. Information Bulletin d. Testing Locations III. Study Resources a. AICP Study Guide and CPC Manual b. Private Online Courses c. Reading Lists d. AICP Online Tutorial V. Subject Matter Outline a. AICP info on test topic areas b. Plan Making – “The Big Problem area” c. Background on other topic areas V. Situational Questions VI. Code of Ethics VII. Helpful Tips VIII. Questions Session Outline

  3. FAPA Conference 2006AICP Info Session Eligibility and Registration

  4. Eligibility Requirements • Be a current member of the American Planning Association (APA). • Be engaged in professional planning, either currently or in the past, as defined by AICP. • Have completed, at the time of application submission, one of the combinations of education and corresponding years of professional planning experience listed in the chart below: • Graduate degree in Planning from a program accredited by the PAB - 2 yrs • Bachelor's degree in Planning from a program accredited by the PAB - 3 yrs • Graduate degree in Planning from a program not accredited by the PAB - 3 yrs • Any other post-graduate, graduate, or undergraduate degree - 4 yrs • No college degree - 8 yrs • The education may be obtained before, during, or after the experience.

  5. Registration • Application Submission Deadline • AICP's computer-based exam will be offered each year in two 2-week testing windows (May and November) at more than 300 testing centers in the United States and Canada. • Application Review and Notification • Once your completed application (including all education and employment verification) is received, it will be reviewed and you will be informed of your status to sit for the AICP exam in about six weeks. • Previous Applicants • Previously approved applicants may come back and use the same new application form to pay for the next exam. Once logged on, the system will recognize the applicant's approved status with prompts to complete only the contact and exam information pages of the form and pay the exam fee. NOTE: Once approved, you will have four testing periods, or two years, within which to take the exam. After two years, you will be required to complete a new application and fulfill all the submission requirements again. • Test Results • Exam takers will receive their test results before they leave the testing center.

  6. Registration • Beginning with the 2005 exam cycle, AICP is introducing a new application that combines the application and registration steps into one form and one fee. This eliminates the previous two forms and separate fee payments. The intent is to make the application process more customer-friendly and efficient. Education and employment verifications for each degree and job listed in the application will continue to be required in order for your application to be considered complete for review.

  7. FAPA Conference 2006AICP Info Session AICP Study Resources

  8. AICP Study Resources Treasure Coast Section FAPA ( • Comprehensive list of AICP Study links – prepared by our local Treasure Coast Section FAPA (Free) • Special thanks to the Treasure Coast Section of FAPA (and Henry Bittaker) for putting this website together Study Stack ( • Really Cool [and fun] flashcards, tables, charts and teaching games (Free) APA ( • Practice test by APA (Free to APA members) APA ( • Selected Readings – suggested by APA (Free to APA members)

  9. More AICP Study Resources Planetizen ( • Planetizen – Planning Website (Free, but requires membership) Cyburbia ( • Cyburbia – planning website (Free, but requires membership) Planning Prep ( • Planning Prep – AICP Exam Prep website. (Free question of the week, but costs $120.00 to join) ICPE ( • Institute of Continuing Planning Education (Cost $$ to Enroll)

  10. More AICP Study Resources APA ( • APA’s accepted Land Based Classification System. LBSC provides a consistent classification methodology for land uses. About Planning ( • About Planning- If you can't find it here, then it doesn't exist. Web links, news stories, commentary, university offerings and employment regarding urban planning, growth management, smart growth and new urbanism. Also include the single largest, comprehensive, exhaustive and current listing of urban planning websites on the Internet (~300 links).

  11. More AICP Study Resources • Michael Waiczis Study Materials(e-mail contact: • AICP Examination Preparation Guidebook. This study manual is a comprehensive guide to the exam. (App. 125 pages). • Practice and Teaching Exams. An exercise book offering 1050 practice questions that teach subject matter. (App. 120 pages). • Law, History, and Ethics Study Guide for AICP Candidates-Concise manual covering universal legal topics, key historical events, and planning ethics. (Approximately 60 pages). • Glossary of Planning Terms for AICP Candidates. A very good reference manual that defines and summarizes many topics that may appear on the exam. (Approximately 50 pages). • “Study Resources” CD – Contains three (3) documents to help you prepare for the exam: Commentary to the List of Subject Matter for the AICP Exam, 58 pages, Notes from the Practice of Local Government Planning, 66 pages, and Study Manual by Subject for AICP Candidates, 188 pages.

  12. Top Ten Planning Websites • What are the Top 10 Internet Planning Websites? • Who would know better than the planning editor who maintains over 300 planning related websites? Rich Carson has been the editor for the "Urban and Regional Planning" category of the Open Directory Project (also known as DMOZ), and is an editor with LookSmart/Zeal. These are the core directories services for the Web's largest search engines, including Netscape, AOL, Google, Lycos, HotBot, DirectHit, and hundreds of others. The Project has 3 million websites and is maintained by volunteer editors. Rich's picks: • Source:

  13. Top Ten Planning Websites • American Planning Association ( • Professional association organized to advance the art and science of planning and to foster the activity of planning -- physical, economic, and social -- at the local, regional, state, and national levels. • Congress for New Urbanism ( • Non-profit organization that works with architects, developers, and planners, teaching how to implement the principles of new urbanism.

  14. Top Ten Planning Websites • Cyburbia ( • Planning resource center contains a comprehensive directory of Internet resources relevant to the built environment. Also contains information about related mailing lists and Usenet newsgroups, and hosts several interactive message areas. • Planetizen ( • Urban Planning & Development News, Jobs, & Events. PLANetizen is a public-interest information exchange for the urban planning and development community. We provide a daily, one-stop source for urban planning news, job opportunities, commentary and events.

  15. Top Ten Planning Websites • PlannersWeb ( • This is the official web site for the “Planning Commissioner’s Journal” magazine. However, it has a lot of great planning resource information for the planning professional, including reports, planning links, and even a comic strip. • Planum ( • This European planning web site is billed as an “e-zine promoted by journals, associations of planners, academic and research institutes.” Planum has a journal and information on events, news and has essays on a variety of topics.

  16. Top Ten Planning Websites • Smart City Radio ( • This is the web site for the National Public Radio show “Smart City.” The show recently went national and Carol Coletta is the host. Carol does a weekly interview with people involved in all aspects of land use planning. You can listen to her broadcast through your computer and subscribe to her e-newsletter. • Smart Growth America ( • This is a coalition of nearly 100 advocacy organizations that have a stake in how metropolitan expansion affects our environment, quality of life and economic sustainability. The web site provides information on a variety of planning topics.

  17. Top Ten Planning Websites • Urbanicity ( • This is another new site and it is one the most international planning web sites on the Internet. Urbanicity’s stated mission is to “explore aspects of urban management.” The site is extensive and has a magazine and lots of information including feature articles, case studies, technology papers and an e-news. • Urban Land Institute ( • Non-profit education and research institute with focus on the use of land. Information on development, planning and managing growth.

  18. Top Picks from Previous Years About Planning ( • If you can't find it here, then it doesn't exist. Web links, news stories, commentary, university offerings and employment regarding urban planning, growth management, smart growth and new urbanism. Center on Urban and Metropolitan Policy ( • Brookings Institution research center focuses on cities and their metropolitan areas, and the impact upon them of government policies, private sector actions, and national trends. Includes articles and research studies. Links for Planners ( • Directory of links set up for Cornell's planning students; but is useful for anyone involved or interested in Urban Planning. New Urbanism ( • New Urbanism is the most important planning movement this century. It is the revival of our lost art of place-making, and is essentially a re-ordering of the built environment into the form of complete towns. New Urbanism promotes the creation and restoration of compact, walkable, mixed-use neighborhoods, towns, and cities. Smart Growth Network ( • The Network was formed in response to increasing community concerns about the need for new ways to grow that boost the economy, protect the environment, and enhance community vitality. The Network's partners include environmental groups, historic preservation organizations, professional organizations, developers, real estate interests; local and state government entities. Sustainable Development Center ( • U.S. Department of Energy site offers a host of useful information to help you understand the concept of sustainable development. You'll find overview articles, slide shows, links to other sources of information, recommended books and videos, and educational materials and programs that can help your community in its sustainable development efforts.

  19. APA – Planning Magazine • Planning Magazine • Review Recent Issues • Recommend review of 1-2 years of previous issues • But not current year—those are too soon to have made it into the test • Magazine mailed to APA members • Also can be found on APA website • Publications / Planning Magazine / Previous Editions •

  20. Local AICP Study Courses • Orlando Metro Section AICP Study Course • October 13- 14, 2006 • Orlando, Florida • For Information Contact: Andre Anderson • Phone: 407-207-0101 • e-mail: • Suncoast Section AICP Study Course • Spring 2007 • Tampa, Florida • For Information Contact: Alan Steinbeck • Phone: 813-273-3774 ext 336 • E-mail:

  21. FAPA Conference 2006AICP Info Session Subject Matter Outline

  22. I. History, Theory and Law 15% A. History of planning, including legal decisionsB. Theory of planning C. Patterns of human settlement II. Emerging Issues and Trends 10% A. Social, economic, demographic, and technological trends B. Current topics (e.g., smart growth, neo-traditional, sustainable development) III. Plan Making 20% A. Strategic planning/visioningB. Goal settingC. Survey research methods and data collection D. Organizing, analyzing, and reporting informationE. DemographicsF. Information systems (GIS, MIS)G. Fiscal impact analysis IV. Functional Topics 20% A. Natural resources and environmental qualityB. Land useC. Infrastructure (e.g., water, sewer, power, telecommunications)D. EnergyE. Public services (e.g., public safety, education, human services)F. TransportationG. RecreationH. Economic development and revitalization plansI. Historic preservationJ. Urban designK. HousingL. Neighborhood issuesM. Rural and small town planning V. Plan Implementation 20% A. Land use regulationsB. Application of legal principles (e.g., takings, aesthetics, etc.) C. Environmental impact analysisD. Growth management techniquesE. Budgets and public finance (including capital improvement programs)F. Plan and development project review (including maps, site plans, and design review)G. Program evaluationH. Communications skills, including public presentationsI. Intergovernmental relationsJ. Project and program management VI. Code of Ethics, Public Participation, and Social Justice 15% A. AICP Code of Ethics B. Multi-cultural and gender issuesC. Public participationD. Negotiation and coalition building Subject Matter

  23. Plan Making – “The Big Problem area” • aka Methods and Techniques • Information from AICP Study Guide • Slides from APA National Conference

  24. Background on other topic areas • Legal Update • Census/Demographics • Hot Topics – Eminent Domain, Affordable Housing • Others?

  25. FAPA Conference 2006AICP Info Session Situational/Narrative Questions

  26. Narrative Questions • Carefully read the question • Determine what is being asked • Overall topic or scope • Specific Details • Inference Question • Determine if the question has multiple parts • Decide if specific notes would be helpful Notes should be comprehensive and concise – Testing center will provide scratch paper

  27. Answering Questions • Topic or Scope Refer to the main idea in notes • Specific Details Refer to notes that will lead you correct text • Inference Refer to and apply knowledge of planning Inference questions appear frequently and you must feel comfortable applying planning knowledge – not all the relevant information is in the text

  28. Narrative Questions - Preparation Study through discussion and dialogue about planning topics, processes and trends Talk with: • Superiors, planning professors or colleagues • Study groups of others preparing for the exam The exam is geared toward public-practice planners.

  29. Narrative Questions – Subject Matter The Exam is comprised of various planning topics, trends and issues • How to prepare: • Rely on planning school texts and class notes • The Green Book – Second Edition • Study the AICP Code of Ethics ( or at fax 1-800-800-1589)

  30. FAPA Conference 2006AICP Info Session Code of Ethics

  31. Ethics • APA Code of Ethics ( • These AICP documents offer codes, rulings, and procedures to help certified planners (identified as members of the American Institute of Certified Planners) negotiate the ethical and moral dilemmas they sometimes face. • All communications regarding specific situations should occur either in letters or phone conversations with the Executive Director in his capacity as the ethics officer. Because of issues of reliability and confidentiality, e-mail communication is not to be used. • This Code is a guide to the ethical conduct required of members of the American Institute of Certified Planners. The Code also aims at informing the public of the principles to which professional planners are committed. • ***Know the NEW Code –it was revised in Spring 2005.*** • code of ethics

  32. Ethics • Everyday Ethics for Practicing Planners • Book by Carol D. Barrett, 2002. Ethical solutions to everyday problems--Barrett dissects 54 sticky, real-world situations. She shows how to recognize ethical conflicts that arise in everyday practice, reason through them, apply relevant sections of the AICP Code of Ethics and the APA/AICP Ethical Principles in planning, and decide on the best course of action. Five especially complex scenarios are structured for group discussion. Her thoughtful analyses and references to planning’s professional code of ethics will help beleaguered planners develop a workable scheme for reasoned ethical evaluations and decision-making.

  33. More AICP Resources – APA Policies APA Policy Guide ( • APA develops policies that represent the collective thinking of our members, and represents a collective view on positions of both principle and practice. Through the Policy Guide, APA articulates specific policies that establish principles for better addressing our issues and it develops more specific guidelines that recommend specific actions on the part of APA members Together, these two elements — policies and general recommendations — form APA Policy Guides.

  34. Adopted Policies Agricultural Land Preservation Billboard Controls Community Residences Endangered Species and Habitat Protection Energy Environment: Waste Management Environment: Water Resources Management Environment: Wetlands Factory Built Housing Historic and Cultural Resources Homelessness Housing Impact Fees Neighborhood Collaborative Planning Planning for Sustainability Provision of Childcare Redevelopment Security Smart Growth The Supply of Public and Subsidized Housing Surface Transportation Takings APA Policy Guide

  35. AICP Study Info at FAPA Conference • Thursday • 10:30 AM - Ethical Challenges (Salon G) • Friday • 2:00 PM - Recent Developments in Planning Law • 3:00 PM - FAPA Ethics Committee Meeting • 4:00 PM - 21st Century Ethics–The New AICP Code • Saturday • 9:00 AM - FAICP Roundtable Discussion

  36. FAPA Conference 2006AICP Info Session AICP Test Taking Tips

  37. Test Taking Tips • Attitude and preparation • Particulars of the exam • What and how to study • Test taking strategies

  38. Attitude and Preparation • Maintain a positive attitude • Stay in control • Do not be intimidated • Don’t work the day of the exam • Get a good night’s sleep • Stay in a hotel the night before if taking test in another town. • CRAM… at least 2 days in advance, then relax. =)

  39. Attitude and Preparation • Try to stay in your regular routine of sleeping and eating • Don’t drink a lot of coffee or eat a lot of sugar • Bring some water with you

  40. Attitude and Preparation • Know where the test center is in advance • Drive there so you know how long to allow for travel time • Get there early – 30 minutes in advance of the scheduled test time • Two forms of ID • Schedule your time ASAP

  41. Attitude and Preparation • Bring your testing slip and identification • Simple calculator will be provided to you • Scratch paper will be provided to you • Prepare a survival kit • Water, snack/protein bar • Tylenol/Advil/Ibuprofen • Bring a Doctor’s note for other medication, etc. • Dress comfortably • Three hour, thirty minute exam: change in temperature?

  42. Attitude and Preparation • Do not be intimidated by the questions • Broad brush exam: you will have areas to shine • Pass is a pass … by one question or ten • Maintain your organized test-taking style • Keep your rhythm and cadence; relax

  43. Attitude and Preparation • The test is designed for speed • Pace yourself • No one question if worth more than any other question. • Answer every question on the exam

  44. Attitude and Preparation • Decide quickly if you know the answer • If you do … answer it! • If you don’t … mark it and move on! • After you finish the exam – take a break before reviewing your answers. • Water, snack bar • Bathroom break

  45. Particulars of the Exam • 170 questions (only 150 count) • 20 questions are pretest questions randomly inserted into test • Over 100 of the questions are stand alone questions (a, b, c or d)

  46. Particulars of the Exam • Must get 110 to 115 questions to pass • About 1 out of 2 pass the test

  47. Particulars of the Exam • Electronic Exam • Tutorial is available on • • There will be a tutorial before the exam begins • There is a review capability

  48. Particulars of the Exam • Be familiar with APA site ( • AICP bulletin • Practice Test

  49. What and How to Study • Decide how much time you want to or are able to study • Some say 80-100 hours is needed • Skimming and taking notes can be just as effective as extensive reading • Know your study style

  50. What and How to Study • Study concepts not details • Be able to explain what, when, where, why, who and what effect in short statements • Less attention on how – no time for this