PE Exam

As you most likely already know, the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) is the national nonprofit organization that develops, administers, and scores the examinations used for engineering licensure in the United States. Their website is your source for all the most current and authoritative details on the examination process, rules, dates and deadlines. This page is here to help you zero in on some of the most important details you need to know.

NCEES Website:

NCEES Examinee Guide

This is your PE Exam bible, and it should be where you go to to answer all questions about how the PE exam works, registration procedures, and what is and is not allowed during the exam. Right now, both the Civil and Mechanical PE Exams are currently being offered as pencil-and-paper tests, so make sure you’re looking at the information for the pencil-and-paper tests. Pay careful attention to what you are not allowed to bring into the exam or have on your desk. This will impact your preparation and could impact your ability to even take the exam.

NCEES Exam Specifications

For each PE Exam the NCEES provides a detailed list of the topics covered and the applicable design standards in the exam specifications and design standards for the each exam. The PE Exam specifications and design standards are posted 6 months before the exam, so updates for the April exams are posted in November, and updates for the October exams are posted in May.

NCEES Civil Exam Specifications:
NCEES Mechanical Exam Specifications:

NCEES Exam Registration

Registering to take the PE Exam is a two step process in which you must:

1) meet the requirements of your state’s professional licensing board

Links to State Engineering Boards:

2) Register with NCEES to take your chosen exam during the exam registration period for each exam date. The opening and closing dates for the current registration period are posted on this page on the NCEES website when they become available.

NCEES Exam Registration:

You must create a MyNCEES account to register to take an exam or purchase practice exams.

NCEES Exam Registration:

Exam Dates

The Civil and Mechanical PE Exams are currently being offered as pencil-and-paper tests. These are offered on two dates each year in April and October. The exams are scheduled to transition to a computer-based testing format between 2020 and 2023. DTC will adapt our courses to meet the changed requirements in time for the scheduled start of computer-based testing for each exam. Once the exams have transitioned to computer-based testing, they will be offered year-round, so there will be no scheduled exam dates.

          Civil & Mechanical – Friday, October 26, 2018
          Civil & Mechanical – Friday, April 5, 2019
          Civil & Mechanical – Friday, October 25, 2019
          Mechanical – Year-Round Computer-Based Testing (scheduled to begin this year)
          Civil – Friday, April 17, 2020
          Civil – Friday, October 23, 2020
          Mechanical – Year-Round Computer-Based Testing
          Civil – Friday, April 23, 2021
          Civil – Friday, October 22, 2021
          Mechanical – Year-Round Computer-Based Testing
          Civil – Friday, April 22, 2021
          Civil – Friday, October 21, 2021
          Mechanical – Year-Round Computer-Based Testing
          Civil – Year-Round Computer-Based Testing (scheduled to begin this year)

NCEES Practice Exams

For each PE Exam the NCEES publishes a practice exam that you can purchase. These are excellent exam prep resources as they contain questions from past exams; simulate the format, style, and level of difficulty, and provide solutions. We highly recommend that anyone taking the PE Exam use the NCEES practice exam as part of their exam review.