Please upgrade your browser. This site requires a newer version to work correctly. Read more

Prepare for your LEED AP BD+C Exam

Published on Posted in LEED

Congratulations on taking your first step toward earning your LEED AP BD+C! The key to earning a LEED AP is a thorough understanding of green building, the LEED rating system and the ability to facilitate the certification process.

Access the candidate handbook for exam policies and procedures

The LEED v4 exam is based on the following test specifications and references. The exam questions reflect Task Domains and Knowledge domains.

Planning to take the Green Associate exam at the same time as the LEED AP exam? Check out the exam prep for the Green Associate exam.

Task Domains: Task Domains reflect the tasks necessary to perform LEED® safely and effectively. These include concepts such as LEED Project and Team Coordination, LEED Certification Process, Analyses Required for LEED Credits, and Advocacy and Education for Adoption for LEED Rating System.

  • LEED Project and Team Coordination (22%)
  • LEED Certification Process (32%)
  • Analyses Required for LEED Credits (32%)
  • Advocacy and Education for Adoption for LEED Rating System (14%)

Knowledge Domains: Knowledge Domains reflect the rating systems’ credit categories and what one needs to know. These include concepts such as LEED Process, Integrative Strategies, LEED credit categories, and Project Surroundings and Public Outreach.

  • LEED Process (8 questions)
  • Integrative Strategies (9 questions)
  • Location and Transportation (9 questions)
  • Sustainable Sites (9 questions)
  • Water Efficiency (9 questions)
  • Energy and Atmosphere (14 questions)
  • Materials and Resources (12 questions)
  • Indoor Environmental Quality (11 questions)
  • Project Surroundings and Public Outreach (4 questions)


The primary sources for the development of the LEED professional exams are the LEED rating systems. The following list of references is not meant to be comprehensive. When combined with the test specifications, the candidate has the material from which the exam is based.

This exam is designed to test the knowledge and skills necessary to participate in the design process, to support and encourage integrated design, and to streamline the application and certification process.

Please note: LEED professional exams are updated on July 1 of every year; this update incorporates LEED addenda published through January of the same year. Additionally, no exams will be offered from June 15-June 30 of each year.

Sample Questions

These sample questions were discarded in the process of creating items for the new LEED AP Building Design + Construction exam. The items are provided for your convenience to allow you to better familiarize yourself with the format and general content of items on the exam. Correct answers are marked with an asterisk*.

  1. The city is building a new botanical garden and is attempting LEED® certification. What could the educational program include to earn an Innovation in Design Credit?
    A. Present the building’s sustainable features at the grand opening
    B. Present the building’s sustainable features at a town hall meeting
    C. Provide on-going weekly tours highlighting the building’s sustainable features*
    D. Publish a press release to the local newspaper outlining the building’s sustainable features

  2. How should athletic fields be treated in the calculations for WE Credit, Outdoor Water Use Reduction?
    A. Must be calculated using 100% potable water
    B. May be included or excluded from the calculations*
    C. May be calculated using a standard 20% reduction from baseline
    D. Must be calculated using at least 20% from an alternative water source

Looking for more study materials? Access the following course:

136 commentsLeave a comment

LEED Specialist, U.S. Green Building Council
As Whitney mentioned, these courses are On Demand so you can complete them at your own pace. If you want LEED GA specific study materials I would visit this link: Course material will be slightly different as the LEED GA exam is designed to test the general knowledge of green building practices and how to support other professionals working on LEED projects.
Many thanks for the reply
., U.S. Green Building Council
All of the contents are available online. You can access the materials anywhere you have an internet connection through your account.
Thanks for the reply
Architectural Technologist, Pattison MGM Architectural Services Ltd.
Hello, I completed my LEED Green Associate last year in November. Since then I have completed 12 of my continuing education hours. I am now looking at doing the LEED AP BD&C exam in the next few months. Assuming I pass and complete that, how will my current CE hours be affected? Will they be reset to 0 and have a full 2 years to complete the required hours for BD&C? Or will they carry over?
., U.S. Green Building Council
Thank you for your interest in becoming a LEED AP BD+C! You will earn a new credential and then need to start earning hours from within your new reporting period. The hours used to maintain your LEED Green Associate will not carry over. Hope that helps, and good luck!
Architect Intern, Dewberry
Hello, is there going to be a Exam Preparation book for the LEED AP exam, similar to the Green Associate Exam Preparation book that can be purchased through USGBC? I see there is a link to the online course at the bottom of this page but I was wondering if there will also be a book.
., U.S. Green Building Council
Thank you for your interest in becoming a LEED credential holder! We recommend starting with the LEED Green Associate credential candidate handbook and study bundle. Both are listed below: 1. Review and study the list of references used to write the LEED Green Associate exam: 2. Consider reviewing some of the free practice questions in this article: 3. Consider purchasing the LEED Green Associate study bundle: 4. Visit the credit library ( and check out many examples of projects ( 5. We also have a guide that will walk you through some of the major changes, accomplishments, and language for LEED v4: 6. Finally, you may also find other exam preparation options online or through Education @USGBC here: Good luck!
Architect Intern, Dewberry
I have already taken the LEED Green Associate Exam. My question was about the LEED AP BD+C Exam, and if there will be a book released in addition to the online course listed on this page. Your response didn't mention a book at all.
., U.S. Green Building Council
We do not have a study bundle or exam guide for the LEED AP BD+C exam. The references listed in the candidate handbook are a great place to start your studying: If you choose, you can also use exam preparation course and materials.
  • of
  • 14

Leave a comment Don't have an account? Create one

You must be signed in to leave a comment.

  • Share on Twitter
  • Share on Facebook
  • Share on LinkedIn
In LEED 07.31.2015

Nixon Peabody: Raising the green bar among the D.C. bar

In LEED 07.30.2015

Green building continues to soar to new heights

In LEED 07.28.2015

LEED in Motion: Canada just released

In LEED 07.28.2015

Who in Mexico is using LEED?