The Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam is generally the first step in the process to becoming a professional licensed engineer (P.E.). It is designed for recent graduates and students who are close to finishing an undergraduate engineering degree from an EAC/ABET-accredited program. The FE exam is a computer-based exam administered year-round at NCEES-approved Pearson VUE test centers.
The FE exam includes 110-questions. The exam appointment time is 6 hours long and includes:
Nondisclosure agreement (2 minutes)
Tutorial (8 minutes)
Exam (5 hours and 20 minutes)
Scheduled break (25 minutes)
The FE is offered in seven disciplines. Specifications for each discipline are as follows:
FE Chemical FE Civil FE Electrical and Computer FE Environmental FE Industrial and Systems FE Mechanical FE Other Disciplines
The computer-based FE contains alternative item types (AITs). AITs are questions other than traditional multiple-choice questions.
Each of the 50 states in the United States has laws that regulate the practice of engineering; these laws are designed to ensure that registered professional engineers have demonstrated sufficient competence and experience. The same exam is administered at designated times throughout the country, but each state’s Board of Registration administers the exam and supplies information and registration forms. Additional information is available on the NCEES website.
Four steps are required to become a Professional Engineer (PE):
Education. Usually this requirement is satisfied by completing a B.S. degree in engineering from an accredited college or university.
Fundamentals of Engineering examination. One must pass an 8-hour examination.
Following successful completion of the Fundamentals of Engineering examination, two to four years of engineering experience are required.
Principles and practices of engineering examination. One must pass a second 8-hour examination, also known as the Professional Engineer (PE) examination, which requires in-depth knowledge of one particular branch of engineering.
This appendix provides a review of the background material in electrical engineering required in the Electrical Engineering part of the FE exam. This exam is prepared by the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying2 (NCEES).