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Guest leqk

Should you take the exam again after you fail

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Guest leqk

I failed the April exam. I don't know if I should take it again in October. Please advise. Thanks.

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Guest ctiedt

I would, unless you have something really big going on between now and October. I failed last October and started studying when I got that notice to take it again in April. I passed in April. I found myself having to re-learn or learn things for the October test, but when I studied for the April test I found myself reviewing and furthering what I had previsouly re-learned. I found myself also looking for the "catch" on the questions the second time around and asking myself if the I considered all of the details they had given me in the problem, only because I had a better understanding of everything. Finding the formulas is the easy part it is making sure you use the right information that is the tricky part.

Based on the % you got back, you can also figure out where your week spots are and work to improve in those areas a little more and review in the areas you already did pretty good on. Pretty soon, if it hasn't started already, they will begin posting % and you can figure out where you placed...... Go for it! Don't give up that easy...... Seriously!!! Press on!!! :p10940623:

PS- If you get stuck with anything post it here and we will help you out!!!

Edited by ctiedt

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I failed the April exam. I don't know if I should take it again in October. Please advise. Thanks.

Blast the sucker in October. Go for it!!!!!!!!!!!

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Guest ctiedt
April is the easier test but NCEES wont admit it....

Boy oh boy are you trying to break 'em down or build 'em up..... I'm with Luis.....Go for it!!!! You have nothing to lose-(exam exam fees and some time) and everything to gain!!! It is worth it in the end! :bio:

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Guest EdinNO
April is the easier test but NCEES wont admit it....

So where in the hell does this come from? I know, I probably shouldn't even justify this with a respone.

Was it because a co-worker passed in April and you failed in October? Just curious about the logic here.

Ed

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I failed the April exam. I don't know if I should take it again in October. Please advise. Thanks.

No. And I like my burger with extra pickles by the way...

Of course you should take it. Figure out where you could study more effectively, and check out the diagnostic to know the areas where you were weak, and kick that test's ass.

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Heck yes! I'm an Electrical PE, and I took the Civil PE exam for shits and giggles this past April. Didn't pass, but I'm already gearing up for the October test.

And I'm so old (52), I can use a slide rule...got four of them, in fact! I'd love to whip one out during the exam and watch the proctors have a collective shit fit!!!

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April is the easier test but NCEES wont admit it....

I wouldn't use that line of reasoning for deciding whether to retake the exam in October. I failed the exam three times before passing the fourth time in OCTOBER 2006. My success was not predicated on when I took the exam but on the effort I placed in in the preparations. :true: I have taken exams in October and April and I can say with certainty that the perceived difference in the difficulty factor is just that ... perceived.

IMHO, you are better to go right back and take the exam as soon as possible. If you wait, you will never know what obstacles may come up to prevent you from re-taking. I had to wait almost 1.5 years to re-take the exam once because of personal health issues and then family health issues. I have had projects at work ratcheted-up to the point to where it wasn't feasible to study the way that I needed and I have had to postpone a re-take.

The only reason you would not want to re-take in October is if:

1. You KNOW there will be something out there preventing you from giving 100%; and

2. You feel that you need more coursework/study-time to understand some of the principles necessary to pass the exam.

Best of luck !!

JR

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jregieng

I have now failed the PE exam twice. I have taken water resources both times. Do you recommend trying another discipline in the afternoon? At my current job, I do a lot of hydrology modeling and hydraulics calculations. I just got killed on the environmental and geotechnical problems. I am thinking about re-learning Transportation and taking it this October (for the THIRD time, AHHHHH!). I did peak at the afternoon Water Resource problems in the Transportation afternoon questions on the last exam and they looked very easy!

Do you agree with this course of action?

owillis

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jregieng

I have now failed the PE exam twice. I have taken water resources both times. Do you recommend trying another discipline in the afternoon? At my current job, I do a lot of hydrology modeling and hydraulics calculations. I just got killed on the environmental and geotechnical problems. I am thinking about re-learning Transportation and taking it this October (for the THIRD time, AHHHHH!). I did peak at the afternoon Water Resource problems in the Transportation afternoon questions on the last exam and they looked very easy!

Do you agree with this course of action?

owillis

Keep at the areas you have previously taken. That studying will eventually add up to a pass once every thing clicks. If you have to go learn something else, then you might be starting all over unless you are already really good in the new area.

Be sure to concentrate on your stregths during the test, and make sure not to make stupid mistakes on these problems and the easy problems. There are probably enough of those to get you a PASS.

I had to take the Agricultural Engineering exam more than once. It covered subjects that are taught at one school and not others. I learned that I just needed to concentrate on my specialties and give it a good try on the other areas without wasting precious study time.

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I wouldn't use that line of reasoning for deciding whether to retake the exam in October. I failed the exam three times before passing the fourth time in OCTOBER 2006. My success was not predicated on when I took the exam but on the effort I placed in in the preparations. :true: I have taken exams in October and April and I can say with certainty that the perceived difference in the difficulty factor is just that ... perceived.

IMHO, you are better to go right back and take the exam as soon as possible. If you wait, you will never know what obstacles may come up to prevent you from re-taking. I had to wait almost 1.5 years to re-take the exam once because of personal health issues and then family health issues. I have had projects at work ratcheted-up to the point to where it wasn't feasible to study the way that I needed and I have had to postpone a re-take.

The only reason you would not want to re-take in October is if:

1. You KNOW there will be something out there preventing you from giving 100%; and

2. You feel that you need more coursework/study-time to understand some of the principles necessary to pass the exam.

Best of luck !!

JR

Guys, I do not agree with going back to the test room IMMEDIATELY. If you failed, it means you NEED TO STUDY MORE. It means that you may even skip October and go back in April, 2008.

Here is my true story. I was preparing for FE about two years ago, and I allocated quite some time for studying - like everybody. And I was going to take the exam in October of that year. Then, all of a sudden, I was INJURED AT WORK in early September and got chained to the bed for a week with awful pains. Then I could barely sit and walk for a few months, not to say to get to the exam room and sit there for many straight hours. Honestly, I was happy when I could make it to the restroom on my own.

Anyways, all I could do at that time was to study. I grabbed all my books and references and continued studying right in the bed for the FE exam. I read and re-read everything, I tried (and solved!) every problem I could find. I was controlling my timing with a stop watch to make sure I do the problems quickly enough.

Then, when I could normally sit, I registered for the April test and passed EASILY. It was a lough, I could have spent 50% less time than they offer.

I went for Principles and Practices in April this year - and passed. I am now a PE. However, for the second exam I spent less time preparing then back at the times when I was taking FE, after my long spell in the bed - and I quite felt it. I was overwhelmed with the depth section. Well, I passed anyway - THANKS HAVEN.

So, my message is - stop worring and start studying. Imagine that you have to take over a castle, and your army has to be trained to the level of professionalism when you feel nothing in the world can stop your soldiers! Read everything you can, and solve all the problems you can find - and make sure you time yourself, you solve the problems quickly and painlessly.

And only then register for the test. Do not rush. Save yourself another hard failure.

Good luck! :)

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jregieng

Do you agree with this course of action?

I can completely empathize with your frustration by working a Depth Section that you feel is within your area of practice - I did the same with the Env. In coming to terms with my performance and selecting WR Depth - I had to make an honest evaluation of my performance and look at what I was doing right and what I was doing wrong. Consistently I did well in WR - >70% on each exam. Env PM I was hung up on Wastewater treatment which provide 9/40 problems (nearly 25%) of the entire Env PM exam.

In terms of your decision to change depths - you need to ask yourself a few questions.

1. Do you really understand the new depth well?

2. Do you have the materials/references to be adequately prepared to do well?

3. Would you be better off to invest your time and $$ into doing your Depth Discipline of choice well??

For me, the things that picked up my performance:

1. Solid preparation for AM subjects. I think you MUST do well in AM if you have any hope to pass.

2. Chelapati Workbooks - I borrowed the books for WR, Geo, Trans, and Env. The focused approach REALLY helped me get to those problems and concepts that were necessary to pass.

3. Prepared my own reference manuals - I had to create my own system of organization to do better. On each of the previous exams I was literally drowning in reference materials and unable to stay focused. The last exam I made my own reference material notebooks by subject and I had a scheme devised to triage each problem and how I would METHODICALLY approach the problem solving. This kept me on task and prevented me from wandering off - time is of the essence and you can't go too far off track.

I think if you give yourself an honest assessment of your performance to date - let that decide whether you will switch or not. We can discuss further if you want to PM me.

Guys, I do not agree with going back to the test room IMMEDIATELY. If you failed, it means you NEED TO STUDY MORE. It means that you may even skip October and go back in April, 2008.

mech engineer --

I am glad you were able to overcome your adversity to pass both FE and PE exams. :)

I will add that I stand by my statements based on my post. You can't decide when to take the exam - spring or fall - based on the perception that one is consistently easier than the other. I also stand by my statement that you SHOULD go forward to retake the exam unless you are not going to give 100% or that you feel you have serious deficiencies.

Many of us do no pass this exam for any number of reasons, but I argue that few do not pass because of inability. Often times the issues regard time management, organization, lack of familiarity with a broad range of problems - these are things that can be easily remedied by cognizance of the issues - not by delaying when you can take the exam. I am only pointing that out and asking that the person take an honest assessment of themselves - nothing more, nothing less.

I wish you continued sucess.

Regards,

JR

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I've got a different perspective. I chose WR for my depth because it seems the most "learnable" without having direct experience. There's almost nothing in WR that is beyond a second-year Engineering undergraduate. I didn't study much (about twenty hours). I took the Testmasters Review class which helped me choose what to study. So counting the class and 20 hours on my own, I had less than 100 hours invested. The *only* two references I used were the Testmasters Prep Course Manual and the CERM. I didn't tab either. I simply worked problems

So considering my data point, you don't need hundreds of hours to pass the exam. Don't get me wrong... it certainly helps to study as much as you can afford. Work as many problems as you can afford. But I didn't even think about the April PE until Christmas and didn't start to study until March.

Bottom line: You don't need more than three months. Apply for the October exam. If it doesn't work out, do it again in April. Repeat as many times as your State Board will let you. If you're going to spend more than 20 hours studying, the cost of the exam is little compared to the value of your time preparing.

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Guest tm_PE
Blast the sucker in October. Go for it!!!!!!!!!!!

Agreed, I failed the April exam last year and blasted the October exam to bits. I had taken too many references in the April exam and didn't know where all the information was. For October, I took only the Six min sols books and the CERM along with some of my notes, tables and charts. Also, lessons learned from taking the exam can be VERY useful towards passing the next one.

April is the easier test but NCEES wont admit it....

I failed the April exam last year, but blasted the October exam. Seemed a lot easier, but might have been that I was better prepared.

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I can't remember where I heard this but it's profound:

You haven't failed until you stop trying.

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Guest civilsid
...I didn't study much (about twenty hours). I took the Testmasters Review class which helped me choose what to study. So counting the class and 20 hours on my own, I had less than 100 hours invested. The *only* two references I used were the Testmasters Prep Course Manual and the CERM. I didn't tab either. I simply worked problems...

You will not hear many quotes like the one above and a lot of what you read is people changing their lifestyle to really do a lot of studying. In general I would agree with Sraymond and I think I spent a lot of time studying that I did not need but I know a lot of people may have other challenges which might be partly aptiotude or general test taking abilities or family crisis or a number of other things that can cause a roadblock.

I guess it is like everything else in life, you need to do what is best for you. Only you know how poorly you did. If you feel totally lost in the exam then that is a problem. If you feel like you know what you are doing but something else is affecting you like not being able to sleep the previous night (or all weekl!) or something else that is throwing a monkey wrench into your life, then try to get that outside influence remedied. Or maybe it is simply more book work and more sample problems. Do you blow off problems you don't understand or do you agonize over the why and the how? I would sometimes spend hours on one problem just reading background information or figuring out how it relates to the real world. With my level of study, I thought it was much easier than the EIT exam. If you passed the EIT and you work in the engineering field, I think you can definitely pass the PE if you prepare yourself.

The part that bothers me the most about the original post is that you work with WR as part of your career. You should have at least a moderately good grasp on all that stuff- Bernoulli, continuity, hydrographs and runoff, pumps, etc. The PM WR part of the exam should not be overwhelming for somebody that works in that field. Lots of folks here (me included) would be more than happy to talk about stuff to help you figure out where you are and what is the best plan of attack.

P.S. I work in subdivisdion development, commercial site improvements, and all the associated work that goes with that (like water supply, grading, drainage, detention, sewer sizing, platting, streets, etc.) and I also took WR in April but my name is not on the scroll list yet because California won't adopt the scores until the end of July.

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Guest mr. smee

In order to pass the last PE go-round last October (2006), I had to do several things differently.

Because I wanted to take the environmental afternoon portion, I focused my studies mainly on environmental, water, and geotechnical in April 2006. Big mistake. Doing this left me vulnerable in the morning to missing easy conceptual questions in traffic and structural.

So for the October 2006 test, I spent my time bolstering my knowledge of rudimentary concepts in my weak areas (traffic and structural) and amassing more knowledge in my areas of expertise. My failing diagnostics were helpful b/c I knew what I needed to study. And it paid off --I was flying through the afternoon section in October 2006 with plenty of time left.

My most-used study references included the 6 min solutions (water and env), the CERM, the CERM practice problem book, and some of the practice problems from the SMARTPROS people. During the test, I mainly used the CERM, the NCEES manual they give out during the EIT, Metcalf and Eddy (Tchobanoglous), a general chemistry book, and a water chemistry book.*

Other tips I can give are very general. Go for easy definition and theory questions first and go for quantitative questions later. Plus, if you find yourself getting very involved (taking longer than 6 minutes) with calculations during the morning section (and even for most of the afternoon section!) stop. The answer is usually easy to get by knowing simple concepts (remember zero-force members?).

I walked out of that test feeling confident that I answered roughly 60 questions correct out of 80. But don’t get hung up on passing percentages! Just answer as many questions correctly (and confidently) as you can. If you walk out of the test hoping that you answered just enough to squeak by, then chances are good that you failed like I did in April 2006. If you walk out feeling like you kicked ass, then it’s likely that you did. And that’s what I did differently.

*Everyone’s reference pile will differ, of course.

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^^^ I second that approach. I found the same set of principles applied to me as well - especially going back over my weaker areas (structural and transpo). I think the added time on those subjects plus organizational skills pulled me over the top.

Congrats mr. smee !! WTG !! :multiplespotting::multiplespotting:

JR

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Guest mr. smee

Thank you JR! I just wish that the process for getting a PE in CA wasn't so long. If it wasn't for that state specific exam in surveying, I'd be a pe by now...=(

Edited by mr. smee

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