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Sharing Computer Based Exam (CBT) experience - PE Mechanical Engineering


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Regarding any CBT PE exam, When you are asked about a Code problem? Are they going to give you the access of the whole code book in PDF? or are they just going to give the limited pages of the code book specifically to solve that code problem?

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Hello folks, I took the MD&M CBT Exam last week. Here is my experience about the exam and its preparation. I gave my FE Mechanical Exam on December 2019. I received the results as “Passe

As the Computer Based Testing (CBT) is implemented for all Engineering PE exams starting from April 2020, I would like to initiate a thread to share the experience on Mechanical engineering HVAC &

Guest Darkthrone1986


I took my thermal fluid exam last week and i just got the result and i passed. 
couple of things: 
1. there were around 12 questions regarding psychrometric and HVAC topics. I did not expect that many questions in this field since NCEES practice exam book has less questions in this filed. 
2. expect to see questions which are not covered in Lindeburg's book. for example, there were three questions about control valves which need your engineering judgment in order to solve them. Also don't forget to read the last chapter of manual for temperature control devices. 
3. Heat transfer question format was new mostly (much harder than what i've seen in NCEES practice exam book) and i did not see this format anywhere else (not even in textbook). 

1. Overall difficulty level?
easy-medium

2. Question outside the NCEES reference manual? If yes difficulty level.
this question is very general. I would say no but everybody knows that there are some questions about codes and standards which needs you engineering judgement.

3. Best practice problem book to be used for CBT based on the difficulty level? For eg. PPI Mechanical engineering practice problem, 14th edition, NCEES practice exam etc.
Lindeburg's manual, NCEES practice exam, Mechanical Pro exam 

4. When did you get the test results?
1 week after i took the exam (5 business day)

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  • 2 weeks later...
Guest FA_Mechanical engineer

Does anyone know if the test taker can take more than 4 hrs for the morning session?

Also for the afternoon session, does the computer terminate the test and submit it automatically once the test time is complete?

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  • 2 weeks later...

I took and passed the MDM exam at the first attempt. 

1. Overall difficulty level? Medium 

2. Question outside the NCEES reference manual? If yes difficulty level. Yes, qualitative question either you know or don't know.

3. Best practice problem book to be used for CBT based on the difficulty level? For eg. PPI Mechanical engineering practice problem, 14th edition, NCEES practice exam etc.

  • NCEES practice exam (The most important reference, I did the entire book 4 times)
  • I used Dr. Tom's Classroom for my review, the 20 weeks class is well structured. Some quiz and challenge problems are good.
  • Klein and Hart's Practice Exam
  • Engineering Pro Guide's Exam

4. When did you get the test results? 3 business days

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hello All,

I took the MDM CBT format last week and got the result today as passed. I would like to thank all the members here. This was my second attempt first being the October 2019. I initially planned to give exam in April but due to industry downturn and all the uncertainties surrounding Job decided to give whenever market improves. I started studying in august for my exam in late September. I had good hold on mechanical concepts so decided tp practice them a lot and focus on weak topics like supportive knowledge and basic engineering practices. It took me one month to review and brush up concepts and one month for practice any question I could find in various materials. I found two questions in the exam with some data mix-match or missing and reported it to NCEES. The table of content did not work for me as it when I was practicing through pdf. The search bar worked perfectly though. The main difference I found between paper and CBT is that there are many questions where you will find need to cross reference just to be sure and you know where that section is located but you wont have MERM or any other reference guide forcing you to have thorough understanding of the concept. My Pearson center required everyone to have mask throughout the exam. 

1. Overall difficulty level? Medium, It took me whole four hours to finish the morning section (38 questions)afternoon was core mechanical and it was breeze with and two hours to finish and I used rest of the time to recheck results and unit conversation.

2. Question outside the NCEES reference manual? If yes difficulty level. There were many questions but if you have deep understanding you would get them and then there are question you either know or you do not.

3. Best practice problem book to be used for CBT based on the difficulty level? For eg. PPI Mechanical engineering practice problem, 14th edition, NCEES practice exam etc. I used Merm and PPI learning hub. I also went through Engineering pro guides and found it to be very useful and exam oriented. EPG had numerous concepts which I think I would have missed if I only went through Merm.

4. When did you get the test results? 6 business days.

Please, continue to share the overall experience as you take the exam that would be greatly appreciated.

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Hi All,

Does anybody know if there is a a full "Page Down" and "Page Up" function on the exam version of CBT PE handbook (versus scrolling down and up through portion of pages)?

Thank you in advance for yourfeedback

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On 10/9/2020 at 12:39 PM, Mahil said:

Hi All,

Does anybody know if there is a a full "Page Down" and "Page Up" function on the exam version of CBT PE handbook (versus scrolling down and up through portion of pages)?

Thank you in advance for yourfeedback

As far I can recall it does work but I only used search feature as it is user friendly and highlights( keywords) all at one place. I would suggest going through the NCEES tutorial to get comfortable before starting the exam.

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks for all the intel! This thread has been so helpful to read through as I gear up for my own CBT exam!

I have a couple other questions that I'm hoping someone could answer:
- Is there a clock provided on the computer or somewhere in the room? I see that PearsonVue doesn't allow watches so I wanted to double-check.
- Are you allowed to bring in water/snacks? 

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I took and passed my MDM CBT exam on 07/02, difficulty level is medium for me (graduated 15 years ago, took 2 months to prepare the exam). I rent a PPI reference manual 13th edition from Amazon (27 dollars for 3 months) and bought a NCEES practice exam, those are the only 2 review material I had. Once you understand all questions and examples (not too many actually) in these 2 books I am sure you can pass the exam. Good luck guys!

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