How to Pass a Civil Engineering FE Exam Easily in 2022?

Before getting into how to pass a civil engineering FE exam, let us dig a little deeper into what civil engineering actually is?

What is Civil Engineering?

When we think of a civil engineer, what we imagine is a person who builds or a better word would be ‘engineers’ how the world and the infrastructure around it look like. Well, a civil engineer doesn’t only care about the looks and aesthetics, but he solves a problem creatively, a civil engineers plans, builds, manages, and maintains our society’s infrastructure. They have to take into account every minor detail and things affecting their solutions. 

A civil engineer designs many different things including roads, tunnels, buildings, bridges, mines, airports, seaports, dams, sewerage systems, and flood mitigation projects while taking into account factors like population, man-made disasters, natural disasters, geology, etc.

While the picture of civil engineers is seen along with megastructures, they must also adapt to other complex challenges such as dealing with the likes of climate change and natural catastrophes.

To understand civil engineering, we must understand the five primary areas it is divided into, each of which is further divided into a range of career options for graduates. The five primary areas are as follows:

  1. Structural engineering 
  2. Engineering construction and management programs
  3. Geotechnical engineering
  4. Water engineering
  5. Transport engineering

While exploring civil engineering’s prospects, many things may interest you, the field is full of innovative solutions and opportunities to seize, people might say it isn’t a creative field but with the right specs, it can be viewed as art. In civil engineering you can see what you build, whether it’s a high-rise, subway, train track, bridge, or a bridge connecting two towns, all of it is visually in our grasp.

But wait! Before you get all excited and pick civil engineering as your career, you need to know what is on the FE civil practice exam and which educational fields are linked with it. 

Civil engineering is mainly based on math, physics, and mechanics, these are the core academic subjects of the field. To get into the field, you would need to pass a civil engineering FE exam which is the threshold for studying civil engineering anywhere around the world.

What is on the FE Civil Exam? 

It is a six-hour-long computer-based exam. During the exam, you are expected to answer multiple-choice questions, specifically 110 multiple-choice questions. There is a post-test tutorial and a 10-minute nondisclosure agreement waiting for you before you start your exam.

Although the subjects are tentative, they cover the following pattern in FE civil practice issue:

  1. Mathematics
  2. Computational tools
  3. Probability and statics 
  4. Ethics and professional practice
  5. Economics of Engineering
  6. Statics
  7. Dynamics
  8. Material mechanics and mechanical reasoning
  9. Structural review
  10. Materials
  11. Structural Design
  12. Surveying and spatial ability
  13. Hydraulics
  14. Fluid Mechanics
  15. Geotechnical engineering
  16. Construction
  17. Engineering for transport
  18. FE environmental practice exam

Some of which are core and discussed in the above section, although, the prerequisites seem tough, we have a guide to make it easier for you to pass your FE civil exam.

How to Pass a Civil Engineering FE Exam?

Saying it’s not impossible doesn’t necessarily mean that the test is easy or anyone could pass it, or else you wouldn’t be reading this article. It does take a lot of effort to pass the FE exam. Even takes years of hard luck for some students.

This article will break down how to pass a FE test and get into your favorite engineering institute.

The NCEES FE Exam Reference Handbook

First and foremost, we have the NCEES booklet, this booklet explains everything that will be on the exam. A copy of the reference handbook can be found on the official website, what we want to know is the topics it has for us, it includes about 18 different topic areas from which questions are expected to be made, you can practice or skill-test yourself using this handbook. Instead of memorizing it, think of it as a general guidebook.

The NCEES FE Exam Formula Book

All the subjects mentioned above have gazillions of formulae to look at, a newbie might get lost in the way of figuring out which ones to remember and which ones to not. A better way to go about this would be by getting a copy of the NCEES formula book which is available on the website. The manual contains a bunch of math problems and nearly all formulas that are useful in a civil engineering FE exam. 

This would save you a lot of time while preparing and while taking the exam as you’d know which formula’s to use and when to use them. A lot of teachers actually use this book to design tests and quizzes so it’s always a plus point getting the formula book.

Practice your Math skills

However confident you might think you are, a little practice is what separates you from the rest, many of the FE civil practice exam questions are complicated math problems, such as; calculus, analytic geometry, differential equations, and regression. 

Even though you are allowed a calculator, not all models are authorized, Casio FX-115 devices, HP 33 and 35 models, TI-30x, and 36x models are the only calculators allowed. So you have to have a good grip on these calculators and learn how to use them.

Take some practice tests

There are many ways to improve your test-taking ability, practice exams are one of them, they are an essential tool to help you identify your weaknesses and strengths, you can then work on them to get better in no time. The NCEES official website makes it simple to buy these practice examinations. Each of these practice tests costs $29.95 and includes 100 questions as well as a solution set. 

Use all the sources available

Make use of all the sources available to you and take help from people that are in the field, this would increase the chances of your success.

Find yourself a studying partner

To stay focused, you can find yourself a studying partner, you can share material, knowledge, and tricks with them and help them whilst focusing on the exam yourself, when you’re in a group or with a friend, it is less likely that you lose focus, you tend to stay motivated for long periods, and your partner can always assist you if you’re ever stuck or stressed over something. All these methods are carefully designed to increase your chances of passing the FE exam, so go on, take that exam and nail it.

Christopher Stern

Christopher Stern is a Washington-based reporter. Chris spent many years covering tech policy as a business reporter for renowned publications. He has extensive experience covering Congress, the Federal Communications Commission, and the Federal Trade Commissions. He is a graduate of Middlebury College. Email:[email protected]

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