Studying is one thing, but what happens after you pass the Engineer in Training exam?
With each state defining its own unique licensing process, it’s important to know now what the journey looks like post-exam to ensure no steps are missed along the way.
In this resource, we will help you build clarity around life after passing the FE Exam.
Becoming a Professional Engineer
Let’s start here.
Though there may be additional state-specific exams required, the Engineer In Training Exam (ie the FE Exam) is one of two exams that any aspiring engineer will take to become a licensed Professional Engineer.
All individuals on this path to licensure as a Professional Engineer must pass two NCEES-administered examinations, which are:
- Engineer In Training Exam (FE Exam)
- Principles and Practice of Engineering Exam (PE Exam)
The FE Exam and PE Exam are standardized tests written and scored by the NCEES and adopted by each state’s Board of Professional Engineers as a valid means of qualifying the competence of aspiring engineers.
The Engineer in Training Exam itself is 5 hours and 20 minutes long with 110 questions spanning a wide range of foundational engineering concepts.
After you pass the Engineer in Training exam, you will be deemed competent in the fundamentals of engineering and allowed to move on to the next step in the engineering licensing process.
What is the next step after passing the Engineer In Training Exam?
After you pass the Engineer in Training exam you will generally go one of two ways.
- Apply for your EIT Certification and become an Engineering Intern (or Engineer in Training)
- Gain the required engineering experience before applying to take the PE Exam
As mentioned, licensing requirements are not set uniformly across the board by the NCEES, but rather, by each state’s engineering board.
With that being said, most states have an Engineering Intern (or Engineer in Training) program.
If your state is one that does, then after you pass the Engineer in Training exam, you will move to submit an application to receive your EIT Certification.
Though having the EI or EIT designation does not give you any additional legal benefits, it does bode well for your marketability as employers are often seeking to employ individuals that show initiative in their development as professional engineers.
As an EIT, you are also able to use the initials at the end of your signature which is kind of a cool milestone for one to reach.
If you live in a state that does not have an Engineering Intern program, like Michigan, then you will move to the next step in the licensing process which is to continue gaining the progressive engineering experience as required by your state to obtain eligibility to sit for the PE Exam.
Progressive engineering experience can be defined in a number of different ways, but in a general sense, if you are working under the supervision of a registered Professional Engineer then you are acquiring the appropriate experience.
Typically, the minimum experience required to apply for the PE Exam is 4 years, but it does differ from state to state and, in many cases, is dependent on the accreditation of the undergraduate program you graduated from.
Are these the only paths?
So are these the only possible paths to take after you pass the Engineer in Training exam?
In fact, some states allow you to take the PE Exam before the FE Exam – or at the same time.
Others require additional exams.
Or longer experience.
To be certain of the process in your specific state, be sure to visit this resource which will give you the latest requirements: