Does the FE Exam Expire?

The FE examination is one of the most renowned exams for engineers in the United States. It is one of the basic tests that allow you to obtain a professional engineering license and open up more prospects for your career.

The Engineer in Training (EIT) or Engineer Intern (EI) certification is an optional credential that you can acquire after clearing your FE examination.

The engineering intern certification offers no special legal rights. Instead, it lets potential recruiters and your colleagues know that you passed the FE exam and are on the right track to earning an engineering license (PE).

But a question arises here:

Does the FE exam expire?

To get to that answer, keep reading as we will discuss it in this article.

So without any further ado, let’s get started. 

Does the Fundamental of Engineering Exam Expire?

So, does the FE exam expire ever, and does it impact the validity of the EIT certification?

The FE exam never expires because the FE exam results never expire, and clearing the exam effectively appoints the candidate as an Engineer in Training. Nevertheless, certain states may implement their expiration date regulations provided that one must sign up with and file for the certification with the particular state’s board of engineering before utilizing the EIT credentials.

For example:

The EIT certificate must be renewed every eight years as required by the Texas Board of Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors. It’s also essential to confirm with your state the criteria for eligibility before applying with the NCEES® and scheduling the FE exam because it can differ for each state.

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How Many Times Can You Fail the FE Exam?

Although the FE exam dates are flexible enough that you can take the exam whenever you like throughout the year at any approved assessment center near you, you will only have a limited number of chances to retake the examination if you fail.

The FE examination may only be taken once during each of the following two-month periods by each test taker:

  • January – March
  • April – June
  • July – September
  • October – December

It implies that if you attempt the test in April and don’t pass, your next opportunity to take the exam will be at the earliest in July. And if you flunk once more in July, you’ll have to retake the exam in October.

Moreover:

You are permitted to attempt the FE exam only three times in a 12-month period.

It denotes that if you fail the FE examination three times in a 12-month duration, you must wait until the following year’s FE test dates to retake the exam.

For instance:

If you don’t pass the FE exam in January, April, or July, you’ll get another opportunity in January of the subsequent year to retake the FE exam.

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Does Passing the FE Make You an EIT?

Yes, once you clear the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) examination, the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES®) will grant you the Engineer in Training (EIT) certificate. It is the most well-known NCEES® certification in the USA.

Students who complete an educational program can obtain it before appearing for the Professional Engineer (PE) exam to attain the PE license. By earning the EIT certification, you can show the potential hiring managers that you are proficient in engineering basics and progressing toward professional licensing.

When to Schedule the FE Exam

Here are five key benefits of keeping your EIT certification active:

The FE exam is a crucial hurdle for aspiring engineers, but timing your attempt strategically can make a big difference. Here are key factors to consider when choosing your test date:

  • Academic Calendar: Ideally, take the FE exam close to when you’ve completed most of your engineering coursework. The information will remain fresh, and you’ll likely have a strong foundation in the core engineering concepts tested on the exam.
  • Consider Your Course Load: Avoid scheduling the FE exam during a semester with a heavy course load or demanding projects. You’ll need dedicated study time to ensure you’re adequately prepared.
  • Balance with Work and Commitments: If you’re already working in the engineering field, consider your work schedule and personal commitments when choosing a test date. Aim for a period with less pressure and more time to dedicate to focused studying.
  • Exam Availability: FE exams are offered year-round at various computer testing centers. Check the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) website for available testing dates in your area to ensure you can secure a spot at your preferred location.

Additional Tips

  • Practice Exam Performance: If you take a practice exam beforehand, consider your score and the areas needing improvement. Schedule the FE exam when you feel confident in understanding the tested concepts.
  • Registration Deadlines: Don’t miss out! Registration for the FE exam has deadlines, so factor those in when choosing your test date.

By carefully considering these factors, you can identify the timeframe that best suits your academic background, current commitments, and personal study pace. Scheduling the FE exam during your prime time will maximize your chances of success.

If you’re seeking a comprehensive resource for your FE Electrical exam preparation, check out our FE Electrical Exam Prep course.

Our proven, on-demand content and live training have successfully helped thousands of students pass their FE exam.

Benefits of Maintaining EIT Certification 

Here are five key benefits of keeping your EIT certification active:

  1. Enhanced Job Applications: Including your valid EIT certification on your resume demonstrates your commitment to the engineering profession and your dedication to continuous learning. It can serve as a valuable differentiator, especially for entry-level engineering positions, where employers might evaluate candidates with limited work experience. A current EIT certification signifies your foundational knowledge and sets you apart from those who haven’t yet taken this crucial step.
  2. Eligibility for Specific Roles: Some engineering employers, particularly government agencies or certain private companies, might require applicants to hold a valid EIT certification for specific roles. Maintaining your EIT credential ensures you remain eligible for a broader range of engineering opportunities and don’t miss out on potential career paths due to an inactive certification.
  3. Networking and Professional Development: Many engineering societies and organizations offer membership or participation opportunities for EITs. A valid EIT certification allows you to connect with other aspiring engineers, participate in professional development events, and gain valuable insights from experienced professionals. This networking and knowledge sharing can accelerate your professional growth in engineering.
  4. Pathway to PE Licensure: The EIT certification is a stepping stone towards becoming a licensed Professional Engineer (PE). While the FE exam is the initial qualifying assessment, maintaining your EIT credential demonstrates your ongoing commitment to the profession as you gain the necessary experience to pursue PE licensure. A valid EIT certification simplifies the transition toward becoming a PE, allowing you to navigate the path to this advanced engineering credential seamlessly.
  5. Maintaining Professional Credibility: Holding a valid EIT certification showcases your continued adherence to the ethical and professional standards expected of engineers. This can be particularly important for EITs engaged in freelance work or independent consulting projects. A current EIT credential signifies your professionalism and builds trust with clients and colleagues within the engineering community.

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Conclusion

Does the FE exam expire?

No, it doesn’t!

Having EIT or EI certification indicates that a candidate has passed the FE exam, however, becoming a licensed professional engineer still requires substantial practical experience.

You can become an EI-certified professional by obtaining a degree from an institution with ABET accreditation, acing the FE examination, and filing an application to your state board. We hope this article helped you provide sufficient information on the FE exam expiry date. For more such articles, we recommend you go through our blog section.

wasim-smal

Licensed Professional Engineer in Texas (PE), Florida (PE) and Ontario (P. Eng) with consulting experience in design, commissioning and plant engineering for clients in Energy, Mining and Infrastructure.