80-Day PE Exam Countdown

The PE Exam Countdown doesn’t have to be a frenzied, stressful cram session where you try and stuff as much information as possible into your short-term memory. The PE Exam preparation process can actually be enjoyable and possibly career-expanding by thoughtfully planning out your time and activities.

PE Exam Countdown

Here’s a quick checklist to help you get and stay on track with the PE Exam Countdown:

  • Read PE Exam Success – The 10 Best Ways to be Prepared
  • Get registered with NCEES for your exam.
    • Note: registration typically closes at 3:00 pm EST, 8 weeks plus 1 day prior to the exam.
  • Download and read the Examinee Guide.
    • Don’t under-estimate the guidelines. People have been dismissed from the exam for as little as wearing a non-compliant digital watch. This mistake could cost you an entire year depending on which exam you are taking.
  • Start gathering your Test-Day resources:
  • Work through as many example problems, practice tests, review courses as possible between now and the exam. Working example problems helps you focus on your “weak” spots and builds your confidence for the exam. Solved problems are great to include in your test-day binders.
  • Schedule your time during the PE Exam Countdown:
    • How much time are you going to devote each day/each week to preparing?
    • Where can you find enough practice material?
    • Do you have to borrow any reference material (i.e. code books, handbooks, etc.)?
    • How are you going to organize and catalog your resources for quick reference during the exam? Remember, you only have 6 minutes per question.
    • When can you devote an entire 9-hour day to practicing with sample exams. Getting a “feel” for working through a practice exam under actual time constraints will pay huge benefits on exam day.
  • Plan your exam day:
    • Know the exact location of the exam including address, building, and room.
    • Have accurate and detailed directions.
    • Have an emergency/secondary route – just in case.
    • Know how long it will take to get to the exam.
    • Plan when you’ll have to wake, eat, get ready, and leave for the exam.
    • If necessary, make lodging arrangements.
    • Plan how to spend your lunch break.
      • Bring something to eat in your car.
      • Map out the nearest fast-food restaurants.
      • Have your running shoes and a change of clothes for a quick walk or run.
      • Bring additional resources to look through.

By thinking through the entire process:

Exam Prep – Logistics – Resources – Backup Plans

and working everything out in advance, your PE Exam experience will be much more pleasant and less stressful.

If there’s anything I can help with, please don’t hesitate to contact me at:


To Your Success …

Jeff Setzer, PE
PE Exam Countdown

PE Exam Countdown

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