American Institute of Architects (AIA) and Black Spectacles Launch the Future of ARE® Prep

Program will make passing the ARE® easier for emerging professionals

Washington, D.C. – May 11, 2015 – In an effort to support recent architecture graduates and their ultimate goal of licensure, the American Institute of Architects (AIA) has teamed up with Black Spectacles, an online learning company for architecture and design, to offer a better way for emerging professionals to prepare for the Architect Registration Exam (ARE®) . 

The AIA chose to team with Black Spectacles because of its world-class online ARE prep curriculum and dedication to the architecture and design profession. Black Spectacles created the world's first online video curriculum designed to help architects pass the ARE.

"We believe the power of architecture and design has a profound influence on people’s lives, and we know that helping more architects obtain their licenses will contribute positively to this mission.” said Marc Teer from Black Spectacles.  “We are thrilled to work with the AIA to bring this mission to every corner of the globe. Our AIA ARE©-prep product is so easy to use that there are no more excuses for not being licensed—we’ve made it as easy as it can be."

Available as an annual or monthly subscription, AIA ARE Prep: Powered by Black Spectacles offers benefits to AIA Members including:

  • Unlimited access to 40+ hours of ARE prep online video tutorials anytime, anywhere, from any device
  • Top quality content utilizing the latest best practices in adult learning presentation style
  • Flexible subscription packages - monthly or annual
  • A 15 percent, AIA member discount

 “The cost was more affordable than the traditional study guides, the website was very user-friendly, and the content covered in the tutorials gave me the confidence to know that I was on the right track with my studying,” said Greg Hoffman, ARE Candidate from Kansas City.  “Using these online tutorials, in conjunction with the study guides provided by NCARB, I was able to pass all 7 divisions in just over 2 months.”

The ARE prep curriculum was developed by architects from some of the world’s leading design firms and prepares licensure candidates for all seven divisions of the ARE.

“In addition to being a great opportunity for emerging professionals to advance in the profession, this AIA program offers architectural firms, for the first time, the ability to support all their employees with a cost-effective subscription to the AIA ARE preparation materials,”  says Deborah DeBernard, Senior Vice President for AIA Global Innovation.  “The return on the investment – newly licensed architects – is profound.”

About Black Spectacles
Founded in 2010 by Marc Teer, Black Spectacles' mission is to advance the creative potential of the architecture and design professions.  Black Spectacles offers online courses for learning design software and to prepare emerging professionals to take the Architecture Registration Exam.  

About The American Institute of Architects
Founded in 1857, the American Institute of Architects consistently works to create more valuable, healthy, secure, and sustainable buildings, neighborhoods, and communities. Through nearly 300 state and local chapters, the AIA advocates for public policies that promote economic vitality and public wellbeing. Members adhere to a code of ethics and conduct to ensure the highest professional standards. The AIA provides members with tools and resources to assist them in their careers and business as well as engaging civic and government leaders and the public to find solutions to pressing issues facing our communities, institutions, nation and world. Visit

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