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How Much Math is On the Environmental Exam??


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#1 Soil_EngineerVA

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Posted 22 June 2010 - 01:24 PM

I was thinking about sitting for the Environmental Exam, as i have a pretty good background in Environmental topics and Chemistry. I know if you take the Enviro Exam it's more questions, but at least it's one topic all day. I was just wondering if most of the questions on the exam are qualitative or quantitative? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

#2 MNEnvEPETstee

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Posted 22 June 2010 - 04:25 PM

While I did not specifically count, I guess I would say my impression was a 50/50 split. You don't need calculus, I would worry more about unit conversion and statistics. Yeah, a lot of unit conversion.

#3 twindadtodd

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Posted 22 June 2010 - 08:21 PM

QUOTE (MNEnvEPETstee @ Jun 22 2010, 12:25 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
While I did not specifically count, I guess I would say my impression was a 50/50 split. You don't need calculus, I would worry more about unit conversion and statistics. Yeah, a lot of unit conversion.


There was a pretty good mix of qualitative/quantitative questions. The math wasn't hard. Basic algebra.

#4 twindadtodd

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Posted 22 June 2010 - 08:24 PM

QUOTE (twindadtodd @ Jun 22 2010, 04:21 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
QUOTE (MNEnvEPETstee @ Jun 22 2010, 12:25 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
While I did not specifically count, I guess I would say my impression was a 50/50 split. You don't need calculus, I would worry more about unit conversion and statistics. Yeah, a lot of unit conversion.


There was a pretty good mix of qualitative/quantitative questions. The math wasn't hard. Basic algebra.


I would add that the problem with the Environmental exam is the breadth of topics covered...water, air, radiation, safety, regulatory. It's a lot of material. I'm focused on the soil/groundwater investigation and remediation side of things and there were only a few questions specifically related to what I do on a day-to-day basis.

#5 Dleg

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Posted 22 June 2010 - 11:34 PM

Agreed with all above. The math is pretty much all just the use of the correct formula or unit conversion. The real challenge is the extreme breadth. I highly doubt there is anyone taking the exam who has personal experience in all that is covered. That's why your reference library is so important.

#6 Soil_EngineerVA

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 09:40 PM

I guess i'm just kind of scared to take the Enviro Exam. I took the FE 4 times, and passed on the fourth attempt. the three failures came from taking the Civil discipline, and then i decided to take the Environmental discipline and surprisingly passed with flying colors. I work in the Geotechical field, and just failed the PE. So, i am thinking of taking a different discipline, but i want to know if it is possible to familiarize one's self with the knowledge necessary to pass the Enviro Exam. i enjoy environmental, and my degree is Envrio. Any thoughts??

#7 twindadtodd

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 09:51 PM

QUOTE (Soil_EngineerVA @ Jun 23 2010, 05:40 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I guess i'm just kind of scared to take the Enviro Exam. I took the FE 4 times, and passed on the fourth attempt. the three failures came from taking the Civil discipline, and then i decided to take the Environmental discipline and surprisingly passed with flying colors. I work in the Geotechical field, and just failed the PE. So, i am thinking of taking a different discipline, but i want to know if it is possible to familiarize one's self with the knowledge necessary to pass the Enviro Exam. i enjoy environmental, and my degree is Envrio. Any thoughts??


It's hard to say. If your degree was in Environmental and you had coursework in water/wastewater treatment then you may fair well if you could bring yourself back up to speed. Again though, it's such a wide range of subjects you may be wasting your time learning the basics of new topics and not having enough time to focus on what you already know (or may be able to recall from school). I I remember, there were also a number of relatively straighforward and easy qualitative questions as long as you had the right references...

#8 Stokey

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Posted 05 July 2010 - 07:59 PM

QUOTE (Soil_EngineerVA @ Jun 22 2010, 09:24 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I was thinking about sitting for the Environmental Exam, as i have a pretty good background in Environmental topics and Chemistry. I know if you take the Enviro Exam it's more questions, but at least it's one topic all day. I was just wondering if most of the questions on the exam are qualitative or quantitative? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.



The math is not the challenge but rather the breadth of topics covered on the environmental exam. I took the exam twice (2008 and 2009), and except for a heavy focus on air problems the rest of the exam varied. There are a good number of qualitative questions but you need to be familiar with the subject or have a familiar reference and know right where to look. (It can be quicker to solve a quantitative problem). My advice is have a good reference book for each subject area, study each subject area and know your references. I spent a lot of time preparing for the second exam (about 4 months and 15+ hours per week). I felt pretty confident when I finished and did pass that second time.

#9 Dleg

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Posted 05 July 2010 - 10:18 PM

QUOTE (Stokey @ Jul 6 2010, 05:59 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
(It can be quicker to solve a quantitative problem).


This is so true. I was well prepared for the quantitative questions, and finished my first run-through of the exams in 3 hours (morning) and 2.5 hours (afternoon). I recall going back to work on a couple of quantitative problems and polishing them off fairly quickly, but mostly I spent the remaining time searching like mad through my references for the answers to a number of qualitative problems that I had no personal experience with.




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