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Lou

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About Lou

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    Intern

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    Working on it!
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    Electrical
  1. How I prepared for the PE Power exam...and what I would do differently I was asked to post this to EB, so I created an account to start this thread. Wasn't aware of EB before. Below is not a guide or advice, only my experience. Feel free to share yours. Passed April 2015 exam. First attempt. Preparation materials: Graffeo Guide to Passing Power PE - one of the most useful prep books because it was damn succinct. Didn't have time to get into the Graffeo sample exam so won't comment on that. ppi2pass review course package, which included items below. Everyone at work recommended taking a prep class. It was useful, but there were things I would have changed if I had to do it again (see below) because 7 hours of class per week plus homework sucks up your time like a black hole. ppi reference manual - I read most of chapters 26 to 56. This reference saved me a couple of time on some of the obscure topics during the actual test but there's a lot of extraneous material if you're using it to study. ppi exam café - this is online sample test questions. I went through maybe 10 questions and didn't find it useful. In all fairness, I didn't give this much of a chance. ppi practice problems - some useful refresher problems as long as you don't get bogged down by the long problems. There are problems that will take pages to work out; you know you will never see these on the PE because you only get an average of 6 minutes per problem. ppi sample exam - same comments as ppi practice problems above. 2014 NEC - got to know some of the tables and tab locations. I never use the NEC in real life and, based upon my exam experience, my cursory prep was not enough depth to answer the exam questions. NCEES power practice exam - really useful in helping to get a feel for the exam. Schaum's Outline of Electrical Power Systems - used as background reference. never opened it during the exam. could easily do without. 2014 NEC flashcards - bought this too late to get through all 224 flashcards. I was torn about spending the $ because you can't bring in the flashcards with you to the exam. If I were taking the exam again, I'd leverage these flashcards more because I'm weak on Code. 2012 NESC - definitely useful to have during the exam. I didn't read end to end, just got a feel for Parts 1-3. 2015 NFPA 70E (different from NEC, focuses on arc flash and shocks) - useful during the exam. Didn't read end to end. Went through and tabbed sections. References brought into the exam: All of the above, except for exam café and flashcards (not bound). The review course included lecture slides and ancillary materials from the instructor, which I bound and brought with me. I didn't refer to either of those during the exam. What I would do differently: Used Graffeo as the cornerstone and then take deeper dives into ppi Reference Manual chapters as needed. For example, look at the ppi chapter on Lighting: it's an insanely long read for the topic weighting. Should have looked at the NCEES sample exam problems earlier, weeks ahead. There are 100 participants online during the ppi lectures and they inevitably cater to the lowest denominator. If 1 guy out of 100 has a question about a slide, lectures can be a painfully slow slog and prep time is precious. If I had it to do over again, I'd put less emphasis on attending, probably double up and work problems during lecture or watch the recorded version. ppi class runs up until April 4th with the last meeting on April 8th, prior to the April 15th exam - that's too late. A lot of people were always covering material and submitting homework ahead of class and now I know why. I should have finished earlier and allowed at least 2 weeks to a month for pure review, i.e. only working practice problems.
  2. NFPA also sells flashcards for the 2014 NEC. There are 224 flashcards in the deck. I bought a set close to the exam date so didn't have a chance to get through the deck before the exam but I would say the flashcards were helpful.
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