Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) CIVIL CBT Exam Specifications

Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) CIVIL CBT Exam Specifications - National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying - professional licensure

The National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying  (NCEES) is an American non-profit organization dedicated to advancing professional licensure for engineers and surveyors

Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) CIVIL CBT Exam Specifications

  • The FE exam is a computer-based test (CBT). It is closed book with an electronic reference.
  • Examinees have 6 hours to complete the exam, which contains 110 multiple-choice questions. The 6-hour time also includes a tutorial, a break, and a brief survey at the conclusion.
  • The FE exam uses both the International System of Units (SI) and the US Customary System (USCS).


Mathematics Number of Questions 7 to 11

  1. Analytic geometry
  2. Calculus
  3. Roots of equations
  4. Vector analysis

Probability and Statistics

Probability and Statistics Number of Questions 4 to 6

  1. Measures of central tendencies and dispersions (e.g., mean, mode, standard deviation)
  2. Estimation for a single mean (e.g., point, confidence intervals)
  3. Regression and curve fitting
  4. Expected value (weighted average) in decision making

Computational Tools

Computational Tools Number of Questions 4 to 6

  1. Spreadsheet computations
  2. Structured programming (e.g., if-then, loops, macros)

Ethics and Professional Practice

Ethics and Professional Practice Number of Questions 4 to 6

  1. Codes of ethics (professional and technical societies)
  2. Professional liability
  3. Licensure
  4. Sustainability and sustainable design
  5. Professional skills (e.g., public policy, management, and business)
  6. Contracts and contract law

Engineering Economics

Engineering Economics Number of Questions 4 to 6

  1. Discounted cash flow (e.g., equivalence, PW, equivalent annual worth, FW, rate of return)
  2. Cost (e.g., incremental, average, sunk, estimating)
  3. Analyses (e.g., breakeven, benefit-cost, life cycle)
  4. Uncertainty (e.g., expected value and risk)


Statics Number of Questions 7 to 11

  1. Resultants of force systems
  2. Equivalent force systems
  3. Equilibrium of rigid bodies
  4. Frames and trusses
  5. Centroid of area
  6. Area moments of inertia
  7. Static friction


Dynamics Number of Questions 4 to 6

  1. Kinematics (e.g., particles and rigid bodies)
  2. Mass moments of inertia
  3. Force acceleration (e.g., particles and rigid bodies)
  4. Impulse momentum (e.g., particles and rigid bodies)
  5. Work, energy, and power (e.g., particles and rigid bodies)

Mechanics of Materials

Mechanics of Materials Number of Questions 7 to 11

  1. Shear and moment diagrams
  2. Stresses and strains (e.g., axial, torsion, bending, shear, thermal)
  3. Deformations (e.g., axial, torsion, bending, thermal)
  4. Combined stresses
  5. Principal stresses
  6. Mohr's circle
  7. Column analysis (e.g., buckling, boundary conditions)
  8. Composite sections
  9. Elastic and plastic deformations
  10. Stress-strain diagrams


Materials Number of Questions 4 to 6

  1. Mix design (e.g., concrete and asphalt)
  2. Test methods and specifications (e.g., steel, concrete, aggregates, asphalt, wood)
  3. Physical and mechanical properties of concrete, ferrous and nonferrous metals, masonry, wood, engineered materials (e.g., FRP, laminated lumber, wood/plastic composites), and asphalt

Fluid Mechanics

Fluid Mechanics Number of Questions 4 to 6

  1. Flow measurement
  2. Fluid properties
  3. Fluid statics
  4. Energy, impulse, and momentum equations

Hydraulics and Hydrologic Systems

Hydraulics and Hydrologic Systems Number of Questions 8 to 12

  1. Basic hydrology (e.g., infiltration, rainfall, runoff, detention, flood flows, watersheds)
  2. Basic hydraulics (e.g., Manning equation, Bernoulli theorem, open-channel flow, pipe flow)
  3. Pumping systems (water and wastewater)
  4. Water distribution systems
  5. Reservoirs (e.g., dams, routing, spillways)
  6. Groundwater (e.g., flow, wells, drawdown)
  7. Storm sewer collection systems

Structural Analysis

Structural Analysis Number of Questions 6 to 9

  1. Analysis of forces in statically determinant beams, trusses, and frames
  2. Deflection of statically determinant beams, trusses, and frames
  3. Structural determinacy and stability analysis of beams, trusses, and frames
  4. Loads and load paths (e.g., dead, live, lateral, influence lines and moving loads, tributary areas)
  5. Elementary statically indeterminate structures

Structural Design

Structural Design Number of Questions 6 to 9

  1. Design of steel components
    • e.g., codes and design philosophies,
    • Beams,
    • Columns,
    • Beam-columns,
    • Tension members,
    • Connections
  2. Design of reinforced concrete components (e.g., codes and design philosophies, beams, slabs, columns, walls, footings design)

Geotechnical Engineering

Geotechnical Engineering Number of Questions 9 to 14

  1. Geology
  2. Index properties and soil classifications
  3. Phase relations (air-water-solid)
  4. Laboratory and field tests
  5. Effective stress (buoyancy)
  6. Stability of retaining walls (e.g., active pressure/passive pressure)
  7. Shear strength
  8. Bearing capacity (cohesive and noncohesive)
  9. Foundation types (e.g., spread footings, deep foundations, wall footings, mats)
  10. Consolidation and differential settlement
  11. Seepage/flow nets
  12. Slope stability (e.g., fills, embankments, cuts, dams)
  13. Soil stabilization (e.g., chemical additives, geosynthetics)
  14. Drainage systems
  15. Erosion control

Transportation Engineering

Transportation Engineering Number of Questions 8 to 12

  1. Geometric design of streets and highways
  2. Geometric design of intersections
  3. Pavement system design (e.g., thickness, subgrade, drainage, rehabilitation)
  4. Traffic safety
  5. Traffic capacity
  6. Traffic flow theory
  7. Traffic control devices
  8. Transportation planning (e.g., travel forecast modeling)

Environmental Engineering

Environmental Engineering Number of Questions 6 to 9

  1. Water quality (ground and surface)
  2. Basic tests (e.g., water, wastewater, air)
  3. Environmental regulations
  4. Water supply and treatment
  5. Wastewater collection and treatment


Construction Number of Questions 4 to 6

  1. Construction documents
  2. Procurement methods (e.g., competitive bid, qualifications-based)
  3. Project delivery methods (e.g., design-bid-build, design build, construction management, multiple prime)
  4. Construction operations and methods (e.g., lifting, rigging, dewatering and pumping, construction equipment production, productivity analysis and improvement, temporary erosion control)
  5. Project scheduling (e.g., CPM, allocation of resources)
  6. Project management (e.g., owner/contractor/client relations)
  7. Construction safety
  8. Construction estimating


Surveying Number of Questions 4 to 6

  1. Angles, distances, and trigonometry
  2. Area computations
  3. Earthwork and volume computations
  4. Closure
  5. Coordinate systems (e.g., state plane, latitude/longitude)
  6. Leveling (e.g., differential, elevations, percent grades)
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