The Principles and Practice of Engineering (PE) exam tests for a minimum level of competency in a particular engineering discipline. It is designed for engineers who have gained a minimum of four years’ post-college work experience in their chosen engineering discipline. The PE Electrical and Computer exam is an 8-hour exam with 80 questions. It is administered in pencil-and-paper format twice per year in April and October and is available in three different variants:
- Electrical and Computer: Computer Engineering
- Electrical and Computer: Electronics, Controls, and Communications (ECC)
- Electrical and Computer: Power
Every six to seven years, a Professional Activities and Knowledge Study (PAKS) is completed for each examination. The results of this study are used to update the test specifications for the exam. A PAKS study was recently completed for all three PE Electrical and Computer Exam variants. The PAKS resulted in several changes to each of the exams. The new detailed exam specifications are available for review at https://ncees.org/engineering/pe/electrical-computer/.
The ECC and Power exam specification underwent some minor modification and update. However, the Computer Engineering specification underwent significant modification to better differentiate the exam from the Software Engineering Exam. The specifications for the Software Engineering Exam are available at: https://ncees.org/engineering/pe/software/. If you are a computer/software professional, you should take the exam that best aligns with your background education and experience.
To prepare for the PE exam, NCEES recommends the following:
- Reviewing the PE exam specifications
- Reading the reference materials and examinee guide
- Understanding scoring and reporting
- Viewing the most up-to-date PE exam pass rates
Information on these topics are readily available at: www.ncees.org
NCEES offers practice exams to familiarize you with the exam format and content. These practice exams contain questions that have been used on past exams and questions written just for study materials to give you extra practice. Learn more about NCEES exam prep materials at: https://ncees.org/exams/exam-preparation-materials/