How Long Does It Take To Prepare for the FE Electrical and Computer Exam?

The preparation process for the FE Electrical and Computer Exam is difficult and long. Although every student varies in how much time they spend preparing for the exam, we have compiled average lengths based on the estimates of many of our students.

The average passing student studies around 200-400 hours, which is usually distributed as around 3-4 hours per day for 3 months. In contrast, the average failing student studies around 100-300 hours, or around ~2 hours per day for 3 months.

It is important to note, however, that what matters far more than the number of hours you spend is how you spend those hours studying. Actively studying and doing practice questions will get you far more return on every hour than if you spent those hours re-reading notes or textbooks.

At StudyForFE, we advocate for active learning and have numerous resources for you to learn more actively. In addition to the study guides which have hundreds of practice problems, we also have computer-simulated practice exams which aim to be identical to what you will face on your actual test day.

Additionally, you can view many of our tips on maximizing your study efficiency. For example, it is recommended that you divide your study sessions into 30-minute blocks, where you study for 25 minutes and take a 5-minute break. This is known as the Pomodoro technique and can help you maximize your focus.

How Long to Study for the FE Exam

Clock and Books

If you’re thinking about taking the FE exam in 2022, you might be wondering how long you should study. The answer to this question depends on a few factors, including your prior educational background and your engineering experience.

Here are some of the prominent factors:

Studying Time on Average

How long to study for the FE exam varies from person to person.


The average time you should spend preparing for the FE exam is 3 to 5 hours per day for about 2 to 3 months.


The time required to prepare for each FE exam discipline varies as each has a different amount of examinees and problem difficulty level.

For instance:

Among the seven FE exam disciplines, the FE Civil exam is by far the most renowned one, and there is a high demand for engineering licenses in the civil engineering sector.

It means:

Students won’t have to spend much time studying for the FE examination on their own since several civil engineering school programs offer FE test preparation reviews to aid in FE exam preparation.

Which Kind of Test Taker Are You?

Students have varied tactics for preparing and taking examinations, just as they do for composing notes or memorizing information.

So you should be aware of your testing style as it can impact the time one should spend studying for the FE exam.

For example:

If you are the one who begins studying as soon as the exam dates are announced, you will probably end up devoting much more time than your friends or classmates.

On the other hand:

You will put in only a few hours if you are the kind of person who starts studying the night before an exam and yet magically pass it. 

So what kind of test taker are you?

This is a crucial point to consider when estimating the amount of time you will have to spend preparing for the FE Exam.

When Are You Taking the Exam?

The time you need to study for the FE exam also depends on when you are taking it.

For instance:

If you’ve graduated for two or fewer years, it is highly recommended to dedicate three-four months to study.

It is because:

The topics on the examination won’t be fresh in your mind as you haven’t studied in quite a while, so you will need to spend more time studying — possibly much more time.


If you are out of school for three or more years, then you must give at least more than four months or even six months if you have personal or professional responsibilities on your shoulders. 


If you take the FE exam during college or shortly after graduation, you won’t have to study much.

The reason for this is:

The information will be fresh in your mind, and you will have a solid grasp of the concepts. Even if you don’t remember the information much, it will still be simple to pick up any concept as you are currently in an educational state of mind. 

How Do I Prepare for the FE Exam in One or Three Months?

Clock and Books

Follow these steps if you want to prepare for the FE exam in one or three months:

  • Create a FE exam schedule before you begin studying
  • Comprehend well the subjects that will be addressed on the FE examination.
  • Purchase the NCEES® reference handbook and gain familiarity with it.
  • Take a quick FE practice test to find out your strong and weak points in the area.
  • Practice as many problems as you can.

Frequently Asked Questions:

1- How many hours a week should I study for the FE exam?

You should dedicate at least 14 to 21 hours a week to studying for the FE exam, and that is roughly two-three hours per day. Reading the reference handbook, going through an exam preparation course, and practicing multiple problems should be the focus of your study hours.

2- Can you pass the FE without studying?

Though it is rare, yes, you can pass the FE exam without studying if you apply the Pareto Principle appropriately. Pareto Principle can help you give 80% results if you only put in 20% effort. It implies that you can clear your FE exam even if you only concentrate on a limited number of topics during your preparation.

3- What is the pass rate for the FE exam?

The FE exam does not have a fixed pass rate, and you will only get your result as a pass or fail. Generally, a curving passing score of 70 percent is obtained by answering approximately 50 percent of the exam’s questions. The exact percentiles will fluctuate from year to year, though.


How long to study for the FE exam depends on each individual’s capacity to absorb information in a particular amount of time.

It also relies heavily on certain factors like the type of test-takers, when you are taking the FE exam, i.e., right after graduation or after being out of school for a few years.

However, the average study time to prepare for the FE exam is three to five hours of studying per day for about two to three months.

The FE exam is challenging, but not hard enough that you can’t ace it – you just need to devote time studying for the exam as per your capability and have a strong mindset.

We hope reading this article gave you a thorough insight into how much time you should dedicate to studying for the FE exam.

If you want to acquire more information regarding engineering topics, you can visit our blog section.

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.