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  1. Hi all, So I'm sadly reporting that I did not pass the civil PE structural depth exam this time. It was my second time taking it, first being in April of this year. I'm at a bit of a loss as to what to do for my third time around (I refuse to give up!). Here is my background for my first exam, followed by its diagnostic: I self-studied using the CERM, the CERM's accompanying practice problems, and NCEES practice exams. I probably spent somewhere around 150 or 200 hours studying, starting at the end of January and going through the first week of April. To start, I studied mostly on weekends for 6-8 hours Saturday and Sunday. Once I was one month out, I started studying 2-3 hours after work three or four work nights as well, usually taking Friday night off before hitting it again with the weekend schedule. I also had to peel off a few days on weekends to study for the CA state specific seismic and surveying exams. This was definitely detrimental to my time devoted to studying my depth. That can clearly be seen in the diagnostic, I think. April 2016 diagnostic: A little more background: walking out of the exam in the spring, I thought I had passed. When I got my results, I was pretty much at a loss as to how I had bombed the Design and Details of Structures: Component design and detailing section so atrociously. Though obviously, I was subpar in actually all of the afternoon (and many of the morning) sections. That particular section definitely stuck out to me the most. For October 2016, I decided I probably hadn't studied enough on my own, and definitely didn't focus enough on my depth topics. I decided to take the live online PPI Civil PE review course for a few different reasons. Firstly, I thought it might do me better to have more structure to my studying. Secondly, my coworker recommended it as he had taken this course (same instructor) and passed on his first try. Thirdly, I really liked the guarantee. As the course came to a close, I thought it had been good for the morning section, but rather lacking for the depth. I should have known that to begin with, as it is not advertised as being for the specific depths and instead devotes one or maybe two classes at most to each depth topic. Anyway, I completed all the homework and the PPI practice exam (and so fulfilled the requirements for the guarantee), did not divvy any time off of the state exams (I had passed seismic and decided to save studying for surveying until the week after the PE exam). I also worked additional PPI practice problems (120 solved problems, primarily in the structural depth) and NCEES practice exams again. I completed the NCEES practice exams in 4-hour chunks for morning and depth, to simulate the test itself. I thought I was pretty much as well-prepared for the PE exam as I could have reasonably been. This is my diagnostics report this time: \ As can be seen, overall, I did significantly worse (in terms of absolute scores) in the morning and 33% better in the afternoon. I much improved my score in the depth topic I bombed in April (though I still came up short), but this time suffered a rather crushing defeat in Analysis of Structures: Loads and load effects (which I had previously done much better in). I am noticeably supbar in the morning sections also, which is a little perplexing to me because I felt I studied them about as much as I did the first time around. Though, I do remember thinking the Hydraulics & Hydrology and Geometrics questions being more complicated compared to what they were in April. I ended up with a score of 45 this time, compared to 46 in April. I guess I'm just at a bit of a loss as to how to attack this exam for April 2017. I think I would like to do a review course again, but perhaps on demand this time. I am not tied to PPI because of the guarantee, as I don't know that it would prepare me significantly better by doing it again. I've read great things here about EET, but I don't know if I would then sign up for the breadth and depth both, just the breadth, or just the depth (though I think just the depth would be the least likely option). For materials, I feel I was pretty well covered... Having studied with the CERM, PPI practice problems, the PPI practice exam, PPI's Civil Engineering Solved Problems, and various other practice problems as well as the NCEES practice exams. To both exams, I brought with me the CERM, my study course notes, the PPI Structural Depth for the PE Exam Reference Manual, as well as various codes (basically all recommended codes besides OSHA, PCI, and AASHTO). Does anyone have any advice? When I compare my diagnostics, I basically just kind of see two different people taking the exam, and don't really know how to proceed. Thanks so much for any help you can provide! I really, really appreciate it. I am determined to pass in April 2017!
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