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Posts posted by ptatohed

  1. California has a take home PE exam or is it a supplement exam to PE like seismic or survey?

    It's actually considered a 4th exam. It's a test you take at home and mail in with your application. It's based on the Professional Engineer's Act and the Board Rules. There are 25 questions and you must get at least 70% correct. If you don't get 70% the CA State Board will still process your application and allow you to sit for the PE Exam, but you will need to pass the take-home test before you get your PE Registration.

    Link, if interested.

    It's actually pretty time consuming and I felt a bit iffy on a good 4-5 of them. It's kind of a bummer that the state never tells you that you passed (at least I never heard anything). I have to just assume I passed or else I would have been told to re-take the take-home test. ?

  2. Let me add to my post above.

    IF you made the assumption that NCEES starts with a cut score of 56/80 (which they never said) and then adjusts their subsequent cutscores based on equating (which they do say), you could possibly derive some correlation that would tell you the cut scores for past exams.

    IF you had enough data (which I don't believe we have) and knowledge in data mining you could possibly devise a neural network or something like that to predict the cutscore for the current and future exams. I still don't believe it would be much better than guessing.

    Thats exactly what i was trying to state.

    But the flaws would be the assumption that A) they start with 56/80 B)It would not be depth specific .

    I believe you do have enough data.

    You definitely would come close to predicting the cut scores of past exams and future ones within a certain +/-.

    Any IDIOT who doesn't think that is possible, must not of faired to well in Engineering Statistics.

    BUT I WOULDN'T WAIST MY TIME DOING SUCH A THING. Because know one person has a clue as to how many questions they got correct, so such an effort would be futile to ones benefit.

    That's I have too waste no one's

  3. On the take home examination, there is a place for your name and ssn and also "ID". What information is suppose to go on this line?

    lol. I had the same question. Just leave it blank, or write "unknown". Upon filling out the application for the first time, you won't yet have a state ID number. After you apply, and receive back your postcard, your ID No. will be on there. It will be a 5-digit number (as opposed to the 10 digit NCEES number). The form should be more clear.

  4. Most people I know who passed were confident that they did. Those who didn't pass were disappointed, but not surprised, and were hoping luck would be on their side.

    I really hope this is not the case and just your observation!

    Must have been thinking about this last night becaus I dreamed that I was taking the test and only able to answer 5 of the questions!


    Not my experience. I was certainly not confident I passed, and I did.

    I think if you were certain you passed or failed you probably were correct. But most people weren't that certain about it.

    Like every other person is saying here, we'll just have to wait and see. Leaving the exam, I felt great about the morning and feel the afternoon wasn't bad at all. What hurt me is that I suffer greatly from anxieties and have trouble sleeping at times. When I took the FE, I had about 1.5 hours of sleep the night before. I tossed and turned all night, but felt I did well enough to pass. I ended up making an 81 on it, but knew I could have done way better had I been rested. I remember telling family and friends that I would be surprised if I failed the FE exam. The PE exam was not much different. I tossed and turned, looked at the clock about twenty times night before. My alarm was set for 4:30 am. The last time I remember looking at the clock, I remember it being 3:43 am. When I showed up for the exam, I was full of adrenaline. I felt I aced the morning session. After snacking during lunch, my body crashed. I wanted to yell aloud and slap my face, but nothing would work. I said a prayer hoping I would get a second wind and sure enough I got my second wind about two hours into the afternoon session. By then I was also double checking a few that I had answered during the start of the test (corrected a few). All in all, I thought the exam was straight forward and not as difficult as I imagined it to be. My greatest problem was not being rested enough to function at 100%. With that said, I feel like I made 90% in the morning and 70% in the afternoon. I also said the same about this one to family and friends...I'd be surprised if I failed. I will not know my score for another few weeks, but I do know that the afternoon session will make or brake me because I know I could have performed a lot better.

    Good luck to all.

    It sounds like you got it. Good job.

  5. I have a question I hope one of you may be able to answer, because I'm in a bit of a fix. I graduated with a BA in Political Science in 1993. After getting involved in the water and wastewater business, a degree in engineering became one of my future goals. When I found out that a program was offered online, it really peaked my interest. It was the Masters program, but I was told that I would qualify for it if I took some prerequisite coursework. I assumed (please don't say it) that the prerequisite coursework was the equivalent of the undergrade requirements for an engineering degree. I was required to take 12 credits... fundamentals, calc, diff eq and hydraulics.

    Today I checked into applying for the EIT exam in NJ, and I was told the minimum qualification is a undergrad degree and that there are no exceptions given. My first thought is what the heck do I do? I never heard of anyone taking an undergrad program AFTER they completed the masters curriculum. Any help or advice that any of you could give me would be greatly appreciated. If I knew that the undergrad degree was specifically required, I would have opted for that locally instead... but hindsight is 20/20 of course. The second question is have any of you ever heard of someone getting a masters WITHOUT a bachelors in engineering? My major concern is what the degree is now worth in the eyes of the industry. I know there are plenty of engineers out there that don't have the PE, but does my degree qualify me as an "engineer" now? I hope you understand my concern. Again, any help or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you

    Bummer. CA requires 3 years of school or 3 years of experience to qualify for the FE.

    P.S. It's piqued. ;)

  6. What's funny to me is that the only time you will ever care about how long it takes to get results is when you are waiting for the results. Once you get them, you will probably never think about it again. :P

    Good point. I can't even remember waiting for my FE results.

  7. No holiday season after the April exam, but the results for many states did come around the 4th of July.. The holidays referred to above are Christmas I'm bettin'..

    Understood. My point was that I doubt the mysterious jump from 13 weeks to 15 weeks is due to the 2010 holidays. There have always been holidays after every October exam and I don't believe two weeks has ever been tacked on before.

  8. Read NCEES's Scoring Process:

    It is posted on their website, but can be a little difficult to find. They don't refer to "omitting" any questions. What they will do is if a problem has unusual answer statistics (i.e. the wrong answer, or two answers were chosen by a high number of takers), then that question is reviewed. If the review confirms an error in the question, then credit may be given for more than one answer.

    Say they decide to give credit for two answers, then if you got it right, you'll get credit and if you got it wrong because of an error or ambiguity on the part of NCEES, you would also get credit.

    Hope this helps.

    This page too:

  9. It wont be 15 weeks, I'm pretty certain of it. The refile date is Jan 21st I think and you can't refile without getting your failure notice and paperwork in the mail from the board. I'm guessing sometime around new years.

    A colleague of mine took the test in April 2010 and they told him 13 weeks for the results... He got his results exactly 13 weeks later. My guess is the extra 2 weeks they're giving this time accounts for the holiday season when probably no work will get done. The refile deadline for repeat test takers is after the deadline for first time takers. I'm not anticipating on hearing any sooner than 15 weeks.

    Isn't there a holiday season every year?? :confused:

  10. You both bring up really good points. max, I agree with you that (right or wrong) the fG of 0.97 in the Lindeburg problem was obtained from the upgrade Exhibit 20-13 (even though the problem is requiring us to solve the pc flow rate of the opposing/downgrade direction). And yes jig, I agree with you that on page 20-14 of the HCM under 'Analysis of Downgrades", it states that fG is typically 1.0. I would suggest using 1.0 for the fG in the downhill direction.

  11. I came a cross the problem (Test Master #27 transportation): see attached file.

    Why do we have to find percentage of clear zone and why we use 14’/20’

    and 14’ (not 16’)/22’.

    Why don’t we use data from the table? What is that data any way in this case?

    Did I puzzle enough? :bananapowerslide:


    While your question was a little confusing, I think I know what you are asking. It looks like your problem #27 (attached .pdf) is referencing the 2002 AASHTO RDG and I am using the 2006, but I don't think it matters. This was a fun exercise, thanks. :)

    I know what you are thinking - why can't you simply go to Table 3.1 and get the Foreslope and Backslope Clear-zone distances directly from the table? The reason is because there is a V ditch in the clear-zone. This now directs you to Figure 3.6. Plot your Foreslope slope and your Backslope slope on the figure - if your plotted point falls outside of the shaded area (the Preferred channel cross slope), you need to solve for an adjusted clear-zone (you can't simply use Table 3.1 directly).

    Please see Example G, page 3-26 (2006 RDG). It's a perfect example, very similar to your problem #27.

    Step 1.

    14'/20' = 70% (14' = edge of traveled way to ditch FL and 20' = lower range of foreslope Clear-zone from Table 3.1)

    14'/22' = 63.6% (22' = upper range of foreslope Clear-zone from Table 3.1)

    Step 2.

    (100%-70.0%) x 14' = 4.2' (14' = lower range of backslope CZ from 3.1)

    (100%-63.6%) x 16' = 5.8' (16' = upper range of backslope CZ from 3.1)

    The adjusted blackslope CZ is 4.2' - 5.8', or 4' - 6' (Answer B ).

    I hope I helped.

  12. As far as my references, here's what I used from most to least used during the exam.

    1. CERM

    2. AASHTO Greenbook

    3. All in One PE Guide

    4. ASCE PE Review Notes

    5. Braja Das Geotech Book

    6. MUTCD

    7. AASHTO Roadside Design Guide

    8. Traffic and Highway Engineering by Harber and Goel

    9. PPI Passing Zone notes

    Surprisingly I did not use the NCEES Practice Problems as much I thought I would. I barely used the HCM too. I expected to use the All in One for most of the exam but again I relied on the CERM which I tabbed really well and found everything I needed to from this book.

    Thanks maximus but this thread is for the Construction Depth - it looks like you took the Transpo Depth.

  13. "Principles and Practices of Civil Engineering - The most effective PE exam review" by Merle C. Potter (4th edition)

    ^^^^Published Date - August 2000^^^^

    Per NCEES information, the morning section including Construction (20%), Geotechnical (20%), Structural (20%), Transportation (20%) and Water Resources and Environmental (20%).

    ^^^^Effective April 2008^^^^

    If I had to guess, I'd say your review book is just a tad behind the times.

    Any good suggestion to cover AM exam review materials?

    I must have had the invisible ink option turned on in Post #3.

  14. I used my TI30 exclusively on the 8 hour (even though I had my HP33 with me) and on the Survey Exam, I used my beloved TI-89. I spent hours (my wife did actually) programming my HP33 with all of those fancy COGO programs but not once did I turn it on during the exam. Any 2+ line calculator with easy to use D,M,S functions is all you need.

  15. Passed.

    cerm/mutcd/aashto greenbook/roadside design/school of pe notebooks

    don't want to think about this exam every again.

    NEED, If you used the MUTCD more than the 'Green Book', you might want to re-think your "Passed". ;)

    Maximus, good thread. Thanks.

    Depth = Transpo

    I either just barely passed or just barely missed passing.

    Books = CERM (10th), AASHTO 'Green Book' (2004), Surveying Principles (2nd Ed), MUTCD (2003).

    I brought the Hwy Capacity Manual (2000) but didn't use it nearly as much as I thought I would (used a lot in practicing. ?). I did not bring but wish I had brought the AASHTO Roadside Design Guide (I have since acquired the 2006). I brought a Dictionary and CE Dictionary per the advice of PPI but never used them. I used my TI calc exclusively and never turned on my HP.

    So you used the 'All in one PE guide' more than the Green Book, huh? I'll have to look into that.

  16. Go to They have what you are looking for. DM 7.1 has been replaced by UFC 3-220-10N, however they are identical.

    DM 7.1/UFC 3-220-10N is at

    DM 7.2 is at

    Thanks OADG. I apprciate it. Do you agree that these are the only references needed (along with CERM) for a non-Geo guys?

    Get the "Geotechnical Engineer's Portable Handbook", I answered all unexpected questions (about 7) from this reference, it really saved me... very easy to use the index and get quick answers...

    Nice, thanks fouggesh.

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