FE Electrical & PE Power | The importance of confidence

What is Confidence?

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If you’re studying for the FE Electrical or PE Power Exam, you’re facing a number of obstacles. These include obstacles like time management, retention, and. An overlooked obstacle, however, is your confidence in your ability to ace the exam. Confidence is how much faith you have in your ability as well as your chances to do well on the exam. It is extremely important and can be developed with focused effort and practice.

Why is it important?

You might have heard of a concept known as ‘Self-fulfilling prophecy’, which means that your results match your belief. If you think you have no chance of passing the exam, you’re probably right. Likewise, if you think that your effort and dedication will be rewarded when you pass the exam with flying colours, you’re also probably right. Some psychologists believe that 85 percent of our success is determined by the right attitude.

Why you might lack confidence?

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There are many reasons why people may initially lack confidence, all of which can be improved. If you have previously underperformed in academics, you may also not have a lot of confidence in your abilities. Similarly, if you have failed previously, you might have less confidence. It is very important to remember that failure has nothing to do with who you are, and everything to do with how you prepared. If you have the proper preparation for the Fe exam and prep for PE exam and strategy, you can ace the exam without a doubt. Likewise, if you would like to grow your confidence, you should try to adopt a growth mindset instead of a fixed mindset.

A fixed mindset is what we is often instilled by uninformed friends and family members, this is the belief that our abilities are fixed and cannot be improved significantly. It is the belief that talent and genetics predetermine your potential. This belief, however, is not only extremely incorrect but also dangerous. Truly successful people in every discipline all have one thing in common: they have adopted a growth mindset. They see failure as a stepping stone and an opportunity to grow. They seek challenges instead of being discouraged by them. If you can adopt a growth mindset, you will eventually begin to see success in all areas of your life, and not only in the FE Electrical and PE Power Exam.

How to improve confidence

One way to systematically improve your confidence is using the COPE Model. Which stands for Cumulative, Observation, Positive Attitude, and Encouragement.

Cumulative: True confidence comes from the gradual accumulation of results you’re proud of. If you can consistently get questions correct on the study guide, mini-exams, and practice exams, you will undoubtedly feel more confident in your abilities. The key here, obviously, is to do lots of practice problems and improve on your weaknesses, so that you continuously make fewer mistakes.

Observation: When we see similar students succeed, we realise that it may be quite possible for us to succeed as well. You can find dozens of student interviews on our YouTube Channel where students of all work and age backgrounds discuss the exam preparation journey. I’m sure you will find their advice helpful, relate to their struggles deeply, and gain confidence by hearing their success stories.

Positive Attitude: A simple yet powerful way to gain confidence is to watch what you say to yourself when you face obstacles. If you get a question wrong and your immediate thought is “I can’t do this exam”, or “This is unfair”, you are needlessly making the process more difficult for yourself. Instead, you should ask yourself “Where did I go wrong”, and “Which parts do I need to improve so that I don’t make this mistake again”. That way, your constructive self-feedback will actually help you improve.

Encouragement: The encouragement of family, friends and colleagues is no minor factor in your confidence. Tell people that you believe you can do well on the exam, and this will help them believe you too. If you are taking this exam at the same time as a colleague of yours, you both would benefit and feel greatly motivated by telling each other that you can get through the exam.

Locus of Control

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The last thing I’d like to discuss in this topic is the idea of a locus of control. A locus of control is what you attribute your success or failures to. If you believe that your results are someone else’s fault, or caused by anything other than you, you have an external locus of control. The problem with this is that it’s hard to improve when you shift the blame externally. Instead, if you believe that your results are entirely caused by the things you do on a daily basis, whether its your time management, which tasks you do, how you get feedback and improve on weaknesses, then you have an internal locus of control. It is vital that you cultivate an internal locus of control because that way, you always know how to improve.

Helpful references for FE Electrical and Computer Exam Preparation

FE exam Overview

FE Electrical and Computer Exam Specification

NCEES FE Reference Handbook

List of Approved Calculators

Helpful references for PE Power Exam Preparation

PE Power Exam Overview

PE Power Exam Specification

Pass Rates

National Society of Professional Engineers

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Wasim Asghar – P.E, P.ENG, M.ENG

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.

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