Welcome to College Confidential!

The leading college-bound community on the web

Sign Up For Free

Join for FREE, and start talking with other members, weighing in on community polls, and more.

Also, by registering and logging in you'll see fewer ads and pesky welcome messages (like this one!)

As a CC member, you can:

FE Exam

ecnerwalc3321ecnerwalc3321 Posts: 2,065Registered User Senior Member
edited May 2008 in Engineering Majors
Have anyone taken this exam? Can anyone comment on the difficulty and usefulness of it (better job prospects?, higher pay?, How does it help me?) Thanks.
Post edited by ecnerwalc3321 on
«1

Replies to: FE Exam

  • CorbettCorbett Posts: 1,599Registered User Senior Member
    The FE exam is a normal prerequisite for an engineering license (the "Professional Engineer" title issued by state governments). If your engineering career will involve site-specific permanent infrastructure (e.g. structures, utilities, roads), then you probably need a state license, and you probably should take the FE exam.

    Civil engineers routinely take the FE exam, as do some electricals (power engineers) and mechanicals (HVAC engineers). If you are planning to enter a field like this, then passing the FE exam will definitely boost your resume.

    If your engineering career will involve portable, mass-produced products (e.g. cars, appliances, electronics, software), then you are probably exempt from state licensure requirements. In this case, passing the FE exam will probably not be regarded as a significant plus by employers. Most engineering grads enter exempt fields, and never take the FE or PE exams.

    Some engineering programs require students to take the FE exam before they graduate, because they use it as an assessment exam, to track the strengths and weaknesses of their students. There are even programs that use the FE as an exit exam; you have to pass it in order to get your degree.

    The FE exam is generally regarded as rigorous but fair. Study materials and review classes are widely available. Students in ABET-accredited engineering programs have, on average, about a 70-80% chance of passing on the first try.
  • Blah2009Blah2009 Posts: 1,243Registered User Senior Member
    i just took it today. 8 hours and a grueling experience I would not wish upon anyone. In general though ,it was pretty straight forward and easy. I finished with hours to spare for both sections. Definitely take it immediately before graduating as you know more than you think and will probably never be as prepared for the test after that time frame.
  • jmilton90jmilton90 Posts: 561User Awaiting Email Confirmation Member
    I thought the test was quite straightforward too when I took it a year ago
  • ken285ken285 Posts: 3,882Registered User Senior Member
    If you're even remotely considering entering an infrastructure field, then you should take the FE exam during your senior year. Watch out for the registration deadlines because they can sneak up on you. I know a few who missed them and had to wait 6 months to take it. If you wait a year or two, you'll likely forget many of the subjects. The FE covers pretty much every technical subject you've taken during your college career, and perhaps some you haven't taken, so the longer you wait, the worse off you are.

    Passing isn't that difficult though, since you only need to answer about half the questions correctly.

    The value of the FE is heavily dependent on the industry that you enter.
  • lil_killer129lil_killer129 Posts: 4,706Registered User Senior Member
    I am planning to enter the theme park industry as a ride engineer or something like that. Do I need to take the FE exam?
  • silverbulletsilverbullet Posts: 161Registered User Junior Member
    it wouldn't hurt.
  • CorbettCorbett Posts: 1,599Registered User Senior Member
    I am planning to enter the theme park industry as a ride engineer or something like that. Do I need to take the FE exam?
    The need for licensure ultimately depends on the laws and regulations of the state you are working in. In general, however, permanent theme park rides represent highly customized, one-of-a-kind installations, with a lot of associated safety and liability concerns; they are probably subject to outside review from state inspectors and/or insurance co. representatives. Professional licensure is commonly required in this type of situation. So my guess is yes, it's probably a good idea to take the FE exam, and eventually the PE exam, if you want to enter this field.

    The Principal Mechanical Engineer for Walt Disney Imagineering is a PE.
  • tw14tw14 Posts: 99Registered User Junior Member
    The job environment that exists today may be quite different from the job environment you may encounter 25 years from now. As others have stated, the FE exam is not that difficult if you take it at the end of your senior year. My advice is to take the exam to retain all available options in the future. Your future may involve a career change or a promotion that does require licensure...by taking the exam you retain the option to obtain your P.E. license.
  • ecnerwalc3321ecnerwalc3321 Posts: 2,065Registered User Senior Member
    Is it hard to self-study for it? I'm a chemical engineer and haven't had some of the mechanical engineering courses such as statics, dynamics, etc.
  • tw14tw14 Posts: 99Registered User Junior Member
    It has been a long time since I took the exam, but from reading the website it seems to be very similar. The morning session basically covers the first two years of an engineering program. If you did well in the statics and dynamics you covered in physics, you won't have a problem with most of those questions (which are multiple choice). You can choose the chemical engineering discipline specific exam in the afternoon session. Good luck!
  • lil_killer129lil_killer129 Posts: 4,706Registered User Senior Member
    I read online that the first session is 120 questions worth 1 point each, and the second session is 60 questions worth 2 point each. How many points do you need to pass?
  • CorbettCorbett Posts: 1,599Registered User Senior Member
    I read online that the first session is 120 questions worth 1 point each, and the second session is 60 questions worth 2 point each. How many points do you need to pass?
    There is no fixed passing score. NCEES adjusts the passing score for each administration of each different exam, depending on the perceived difficulty of the questions that happen to be selected for that particular exam. So the raw passing scores might differ for the April 2007 FE/Electrical exam vs. the October 2007 FE/Electrical exam. And both might differ from the corresponding FE/Mechanical exams.

    NCEES does not even release numerical scores, just the "pass" or "fail" results, so it's hard to estimate what a typical passing score might be. As suggested above, if you can answer half the questions confidently, you'll likely pass, even if you guess randomly on the other half.
    Is it hard to self-study for it?
    Not particularly. Good study manuals are available. The FE Review Manual from ppi2pass.com, which is probably the most popular study guide, comes with a "pass or your purchase price is refunded" guarantee.
  • feenotypefeenotype Posts: 2,290Registered User Senior Member
    Your school may offer a FE review course. I'm a chemE and some of my discipline colleagues took the review course and they all passed the exam.
  • ken285ken285 Posts: 3,882Registered User Senior Member
    I second the recommendation of Lindeburg's FE review book. (ppi2pass). Coupled with your textbooks, it's a great resource. One of my friends took a review course and they based it off of this book.
  • ecnerwalc3321ecnerwalc3321 Posts: 2,065Registered User Senior Member
    what about barron's fe book? I used barron's extensively in hs, but this book seems a bit thin for all the material covered on the test.
«1
Sign In or Register to comment.