You must pass two NCEES-administered examinations on the path to licensure as a Professional Engineer in Florida.
FUNDAMENTALS OF ENGINEERING (FE) EXAM
The Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam, which is developed and administered by the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES), is generally taken during the final year of a four-year EAC/ABET engineering program or a four-year ETAC/ABET engineering technology program, or immediately after graduation, while the course work is still fresh in your mind.
No engineering experience is required to take the exam. The FE exam covers subjects taught in a typical EAC/ABET-accredited Bachelor of Science engineering program.
Apply directly with NCEES to take the FE exam. It is administered at NCEES-approved Pearson VUE test centers during four testing windows: January-February; April-May; July-August; and October-November.
Registration and scheduling of testing appointments are made through your MyNCEES account. During the registration process, you select your exam location. Next, you are presented with a list of available exam dates. If you are not happy with the choices, you can browse through the available dates at other NCEES-approved test centers.
The exam is discipline-specific for both morning and afternoon sessions and is divided into two sections of approximately 55 questions each. You will be given five hours and 20 minutes to answer all 110 questions. You may take a 25-minute break after the first section of questions. NCEES will provide you with an online FE Reference Handbook at the exam site. You should select the discipline (options are listed at the Exams page on the NCEES website) that best corresponds to your undergraduate degree.
Exam results are typically available within 10 business days. You will receive an email notification from NCEES with instructions to view your exam results in your MyNCEES account. Results are reported as pass or fail. If you fail the examination, you will receive a diagnostic report showing your performance for each of the major topics covered on the exam. You can take the FE exam once per testing window and no more than three times during a 12-month period.
After you have earned your bachelor’s degree and passed the FE exam, you are eligible to apply for Engineer Intern (EI) certification in Florida. Please see the Engineer Interns page for details and the application. You are also eligible to take the Principles & Practice of Engineering (PE) exam.
PRINCIPLES & PRACTICE OF ENGINEERING (PE) EXAM
The second NCEES-administered exam on your path to licensure is the Principles & Practice of Engineering (PE) exam.
Like the FE exam, the PE exam is developed and administered by NCEES. In Florida, you must have earned an ABET-accredited degree and passed the FE exam before you can take the PE exam. You apply directly with NCEES to take the PE exam.
The PE exam goes beyond testing academic knowledge and includes expertise gained in the practice of engineering. While no engineering experience is required to sit for the PE exam, NCEES statistics show that first-time examinees are more likely to pass the exam with at least four years of engineering experience.
PE exams are offered in a variety of disciplines and sub-disciplines. Because the PE exam is based on the practice of engineering, you should take the exam for the discipline that you are most knowledgeable in (which may not be what you earned your degree in).
The PE exam is offered as a pencil-and-paper test or a computer-based test (CBT), depending on the discipline. No exams are offered in both formats. Currently, nine PE exams — chemical, nuclear, petroleum, environmental, fire protect, industrial systems, and mechanical (HVAC and refrigeration; machine design and materials; and thermal and fluid systems) — have transitioned to computer-based. NCEES is transitioning all disciplines to CBT by 2024. Exam fees vary, but are listed on the NCEES website.
Pencil-and-paper exams are given twice a year, in April or October, and last eight hours. The exception is the Structural Engineering (SE) exam, which is a two-day exam, with the first day focusing on vertical forces and the second day on lateral forces. (You aren’t required to sit for both parts of the exam in a single exam administration, but you must pass both parts within a five-year period.)
After the October 2019 PE exam, results for the pencil-and-paper exams will be released by NCEES typically within 10 weeks.
CBT exams are offered either year-round or as a single-day test, and vary in lengths.
Results for the CBT exams are released by NCEES within 10 business days.
Register for the PE exam through your MyNCEES account. You can take the PE exam once per testing window and no more than three times during a 12-month period.
- NCEES Examinee Guide
The NCEES Examinee Guide is the official guide to policies and procedures for all NCEES exams. All examinees are required to read this document before starting the exam registration process. It is your responsibility to make sure that you have the current version, so we encourage you to access this link often as the content of this guide may be updated from time to time.
- NCEES Exam Preparation Material
- NCEES FE Exam Specifications
This link provides the specifications for each of the discipline-specific FE exams offered by NCEES and gives the examinee an overall look at the number of questions and topics that will be covered in each exam.
- FE Exam Reference Handbook
To download the FE Exam Reference Handbook, you must enter a valid email address to receive a password to access the handbook. Once the password is sent to you electronically, enter it on the same page where you entered your email address to access and download the reference guide.
- NCEES PE Exam Specifications
This link provides the specifications for each of the discipline-specific PE exams offered by NCEES and gives the examinee an overall look at the number of questions and topics that will be covered in each exam.
- NCEES PE Exam Schedule
- NCEES Media on YouTube
NCEES’ media channel on YouTube includes videos for examinees on the computer-based testing and exam-day process and experience, the benefits of professional licensure, NCEES’ outreach efforts to promote engineering, and working with member boards to advance the engineering profession.
- MyNCEES Portal
Online portal for examinees, licensees, and member boards to access all NCEES services: exam registration, records, credentials evaluations, and exam preparation materials, etc.