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LEED AP Practice Exam

7/1/09 Update: The LEED AP exam has significantly changed, and the following sample exam has not been updated to reflect this. Please use the information if it's helpful--but no guarantees of anything. And by the way, if you are looking to learn about the LEED 2009 rating systems, there's no better tool out there than our own LEEDuser.com. 4/4/09 Update: For all those who have asked questions about specific questions on this sample exam, I have posted a comment below with comprehensive answers. The exam has also been updated as of today for minor corrections. 11/21/08 Update: I've posted a report from Greenbuild on what GBCI has planned for overhauling the LEED AP credit. Get ready to be a "Legacy LEED AP"... Dear LEED-AP Exam Taker, The attached document (see the end of the post) is a sample LEED-AP exam, available to members of BuildingGreen.com. You can join for as little as $12.95 for one week, which is all you need to downoad the exam. I designed it to help me assess my command of the LEED-NC material in preparation for the LEED-AP exam. I wrote many of the questions based on fairly specific tenets of the LEED Reference Guide and associated materials. You'll have to not only understand the general intent and requirements of credits, but you may also have to go back to the material and and dig in deeper to understand the answers. The questions are challenging, so unless you really know the material, you will have to go back to the LEED Reference Guide and other sources to understand the answers. This approach helped me study and pass the exam, and I think it will help you. I want to pause here and emphasize that passing the LEED-AP exam, and more importantly, working in green building in general, is about more than memorization. I spent a year and a half immersed in green building – on staff at Environmental Building News and taking sustainable design classes through the Boston Architectural College's online certificate program – before I decided to study intensively and take the exam. Without the broader understanding of green building that I gained in that way, I would have had a much harder time passing the exam. Even if I had passed it, I wouldn't have known what to do with it. Therefore I'd like to recommend the following resources to you:
  • Environmental Building News. Since 1992, EBN is the authoritative source on green building news and information, including keeping you up to date on LEED. Subscriptions are well worth the modest price tag.
  • GreenSpec Directory. Our editors screen out the greenwash, and organize over 2,000 green products by CSI section, and cross-reference them by green attributes (such as recycled content) and by LEED credits. Available in print and online.
  • BuildingGreen Suite. Our online resources are rolled into a product we call BuildingGreen Suite, which lives on our website, BuildingGreen.com. There are numerous membership options.
Before you download the exam, I leave you with these last notes:
  • This exam is not designed to simulate the actual LEED-AP exam. I wrote it myself with no firsthand knowledge of the exam. Now having passed the test, I think it's great training material.
  • I have taken several of the sample exams out there, and I most highly recommend the USGBC Colorado Chapter practice exam. The Colorado exam is particularly helpful because it comes with an entire study guide, and the answers are explained, which is not the case here, although you can refer to many of the comments below for explanations.
  • I recommend taking at least two sample tests – one fairly early in your process, and one fairly late. The first one helps you orient to the demands of the exam, assess where you're at, and focus on where you need to work. The second one helps give you confidence before the exam, and refine your approach. So while I recommend the Colorado exam, this exam can be a second option.
  • There is an answer key but not explanations of answers. All questions are drawn from available materials such as the Reference Guide and the USGBC and GBCI websites, so answers can be explained through reference to those materials. If you want to discuss any specific questions or aspects of the exam, however, please do so in the comments section below.
  • Use of this sample exam, like all material on BuildingGreen.com, is subject to this disclaimer.
  • You may only obtain this exam from this website: do not share it with others, or accept it from others. Please share the link to this page instead. If there are any revisions or updates, you will be getting the most recent version. When this test becomes outdated at the end of June 2009, we may withdraw it from use pending writing a new exam.
Finally, good luck! Tristan Roberts, LEED AP
Editor, Online Commercial Products

BuildingGreen, LLC

Posted by Tristan Roberts on March 13, 2008


You have a typo on question 5

You have a typo on question 52. answer D "requesting an audit of up the denied credits". What do you mean to say here?sbs

In question #69, how does ans

In question #69, how does answer E, daylighting and views, help reduce cooling loads?

Thanks very much Tristan, I w

Thanks very much Tristan, I was getting a little concerned when I kept reading the number of inaccuracies of the test.

Just a general question for those that have taken the LEED AP Exam, how well prepared am I if I have done well on the BuildingGreen practice exam?

Thank you Tristen for this up

Thank you Tristen for this update on the quiz - much appreciated!

Jeff, in LEED, a "prerequisit

Jeff, in LEED, a "prerequisite" is a type of "credit." I hope this answers your question.

Several questions on this pra

Several questions on this practice exam asked about a "credit", yet the answer was a "prerequisite." I kept thinking this was a trick question and should disregard all the answers that said prereq, even if they made sense. Does anyone know if this is a "trick" on the real exam, or if when they ask "credit", they also mean "prerequisite"?

Hi Tristan - Rebecca found so

Hi Tristan - Rebecca found some of the questions I thought were wrong, but also: Question 20 requires you to choose 4 but the answer key only has 3 answers listed. Question 22 - 17.5% is the threshold needed to achieve the ID point for renewable energy, so although it's likely that adding the photovoltaics would improve the building's energy performance, #A seems like the more correct answer. Question 49 - The "Guidelines for CIR Customers" on the USGBC web site states under #d "if the answer isn't found consider contacting LEED customer service to confirm that it warrents a new CIR" - which seems an awful lot like letter C of your question. Question 66 - 25% recycled content for steel is the default where "no recycled content information is available" - maybe it would be good to clearify in the question that the supplier has no way of documenting that her steel is 80% recycled. Sorry to be so nit-picky. I really liked a lot of your questions.

I took three sample tests in

I took three sample tests in the final stages of preparing for the LEED AP test. I took this sample test four days before I was sceduled to take the actual test. I got 35% correct. It really concerned me so I studied the wrong answers and kept going. I was still studying the morning of the actual test. I passed the test. I think the difficult questions on the BuildingGreen.com test helped me see some details that I would have overlooked otherwise.

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