Customer Reviews: FE Review Manual: Rapid Preparation for the Fundamentals of Engineering Exam, 3rd Ed
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VINE VOICEon May 16, 2012
Update 07/18/2016: This "FE Review Manual" was for the old-style, 8-hour-long, pencil-and-paper Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam. Visit the NCEES website (search: NCEES FE) for an explanation of the new, shorter, computer-based exam. While there: (1) make a copy of the exam specification for your FE exam; (2) watch the video on how to use the NCEES Reference Manual; and (3) download a copy of the NCEES Reference Manual. Instead of using the “FE Review Manual,” you should study from a review manual that has been updated for the new, discipline-specific computer-based FE exam (FE Mechanical; FE Electrical and Computer; FE Civil; FE Chemical; FE Environmental; FE Industrial and Systems; and FE Other Disciplines). PPI and Kaplan have review manuals for the new FE exam (“FE Mechanical Review Manual”; “FE Electrical and Computer Review Manual”; “FE Civil Review Manual”; and “FE Chemical Review Manual). With these up-to-date review manuals, you don’t need the "FE Review Manual" or the old discipline-specific review manuals (which were for the afternoon section of the old exam). You could conceivably prepare for the new FE exam using a copy of the old “FE Review Manual” and the exam specification for your exam to guide your studies (you can find the exam specification on the NCEES website).

Update 03/20/14: The Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam is now administered as a computer-based exam. Check out the NCEES website and YouTube channel (NCEES Media) for details. The website also provides a practice exam. While the old 180-question exam was 8 hours in duration, the new 110-question (multiple-choice) exam has been shortened to 5 hours and 20 minutes. The total appointment time is 6 hours, which includes time for orientation and a break. A simulated TI-30XS onscreen calculator is available for examinees during the exam. The FE is offered in seven disciplines: FE Chemical; FE Civil; FE Electrical and Computer; FE Environmental; FE Industrial; FE Mechanical; and FE Other Disciplines. Most FE review materials have not caught up with the new exam. Go to the NCEES website (ncees dot org slash exams slash fe-exam) to find the "exam specifications" for your own discipline-specific exam. Create a study plan for yourself based on the topics for your discipline and number of questions in each topic. You should also take the practice exams on the NCEES website, since those should align most closely with the up-to-date exam. Also, download the digital copy of the reference manual (PDF file) from the NCEES website and get used to using it on a computer (watch the how-to video).

Original Review (applicable to the old-style FE exam):

In short, the Michael R. Lindeburg books are the very best for preparing for the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam. If you are going to take the FE exam, then buy this book (as well as the discipline-specific book) and spend at least three month studying and answering the sample problems. Study only topics that will be on your discipline-specific examination (see NCEES website). Also, take at least two practice exams (using the NCEES FE Supplied-Reference Manual and an approved calculator). I have created an Amazon Listmania titled "Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) Exam Prep."

If you aspire to become a working engineer, then you must obtain a professional engineer (PE) license for each state in which you work. PE candidates must achieve acceptable results on two exams: the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam, which is usually taken in the senior year of college, and the discipline-specific Principles and Practice of Engineering (PE) Exam, which is typically taken after at least four years of work experience.

Passing this exam is one of the most important goals of your life. Take it seriously! Don't listen to those folks who tell you to take the exam without any preparation.

You will easily pass the FE exam if you spend three months (more or less) seriously preparing for it. You might need longer if you have been out of school for a number of years. Granted, the current exam is easier than it was in the past; but you should still prepare systematically and thoroughly. If you are still in college, then I recommend taking the exam during your senior year. For this case, I would recommend studying 10 to 20 hours per week during the entire summer, then cramming for four weeks right before the exam. For obvious reasons, you should try (if you can) to take a lighter course load during the semester in which the exam is given.

The types of questions on the exam are no mystery. If you are not ready on exam day, it is YOUR fault! To be successful, you need only six things: (1) Michael R. Lindeburg's FE review manual (FE Review Manual: Rapid Preparation for the Fundamentals of Engineering Exam); (2) Lindeburg's discipline-specific review book (e.g., mechanical, electrical, civil, chemical); (3) the NCEES FE Supplied-Reference Manual (FE Supplied-Reference Handbook, 8th edition, 2nd revision); (4) a freshman calculus book (knowing freshman calculus could make the difference between passing and failing); (5) an approved calculator (some calculators are not allowed); (6) FE sample examinations (FE/EIT Sample Examinations, 2nd Edition). You should also check out the NCEES website for up-to-date information about your selected discipline-specific examination, as well as practice exam(s) that should most closely match the current style and content.

Considering how much money you (or your parents) spent on your college education, the cost of the above is trivial. The Lindeburg books are the absolute best for FE exam prep. Trust me, you need both the FE Review Manual, the discipline specific book AND the Supplied-Reference Manual. Now is not the time to be frugal. Take this exam very seriously. Unless you get a PE license, you cannot (in most states) legally call yourself "engineer." Many jobs are open only to licensed PEs. Salaries are much higher for licensed PEs. This exam affects your whole life!

The exam is deliberately designed so the examinee is under extreme time pressure. Without preparation, you might be able to figure out the answers to the questions, but if it takes you five to ten minutes per question, instead of a roughly three minutes, then you are likely to fail the exam. You need to be so well prepared (by going through the Lindeburg books and practicing with the NCEES FE-Supplied Reference Manual) that you IMMEDIATELY recognize the problem type and you IMMEDIATELY know where to find (and how to use) the equation or constant or conversion factor in the reference book.

Check the website for your state's licensing board (or give them a call) to see which calculators are approved for use during the exam. You will not be allowed to take the exam with an unapproved calculator (for example, the HP 50g cannot be used in most states). Therefore, if need be, buy an approved calculator BEFORE starting your exam preparation. Perform all example problems with this calculator, as well as (at least two) FE practice exams. This is exam is so important, you might want to take two approved calculators into the exam (just in case one fails).

You should obtain and use a real copy of the NCEES FE Supplied-Reference Manual (FE Supplied-Reference Handbook, 8th edition, 2nd revision) throughout your entire exam preparation. You cannot take your own reference manual into the exam. You should use this reference manual during all of your exam preparation to become intimately familiar with the content and location of content. By test day, you should know immediately what is in the reference manual and how to find it quickly. A searchable, electronic copy of the handbook may be displayed on the monitor during your computer-based examination. You should go to the NCEES website and download a copy of the handbook so you get used to using it. While there, you should also watch the video explaining how to search the onscreen handbook during your computer-based exam. Make sure you are studying from the latest version of the handbook (i.e., make sure your copy matches the NCEES downloaded electronic version).

Check out the NCEES website for general information on the FE exam, study materials, and online practice exam.

Good luck!
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on February 9, 2014
The FE 2014 exam is now disciple specific, that means there is no morning-after noon section at 4 hours each, its one 6 hour exam for your chosen discipline. This means you need to know the specific sections that are called out for each particular exam.

I am an EE, and this book only covers about 2/5-1/2(at best) of the material i need to study, so if you're looking to take this exam, this is only a supplemental review, you NEED another good electrical specific book. DO NOT buy the ones from PPI or Lindeburg, they are not updated for the 2014 exam, they are only questions and overall what you get for what you pay is awful.

Please be aware of the changes to the exam before buying any study material !!!

Written 2/9/2014
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on April 15, 2012
This book is very helpful. If you are taking the general ("other disciplines") exam, this is book is all you need. Read it all.

If not taking the general exam, you need to know the following to comfortably pass.

The morning session is very easy. Unfortunately this book combines the morning session style questions with the afternoon session for those that choose the general for the afternoon. Thus, you can waste time studying the harder problems if you are taking a discipline specific afternoon exam.

So, read the text of most sections (except biology and some of the more advanced topics). Work all the sample problems (first five of each section) and know them backwards. Quickly scan through the "FE style" problems (read problem then read solution) but ignore the more difficult questions. Basically spend only 35% of your study time on this book.

Get the discipline specific book from Lindeberg and spend 65% of your time on it. It is very thin. Memorize it. The exam doesn't change much over the years, and this will not only make exam day a breeze, but it will definitely help prepare you for the PE.

The exam is pass/fail based on a scaled score of 70. All that means is they will adjust up or down the raw score based on the national performance of all test takers on a number of certain test questions that they use over time to gauge the quality of the test taking group. The way you make up ground on others is by spending time on the discipline specific portion. The morning test proves you can think. As such, there are a lot of problems that you have to be able to answer quickly. The afternoon demonstrates what you know. You can take your time, but you have to know how to solve those problems before you walk in the door.
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on October 26, 2010
Why bother with a 4 year engineering degree when you have Lindeburg?

I am a law student, and I NEEDED to pass the FE to attain patent bar eligibility. I'd never studied engineering in my life, although I did major in mathematics in undergraduate, which did prove helpful. I picked up Lindeburg's 2nd edition manual, and I dedicated 5 weeks to this book. I was also a full time law student and working part time at an awful firm 20 hours a week. I spend every spare minute with it, flew to Michigan in April, and I passed the FE on my first try.

There's no way I would've passed without this book, and I recommend it to EVERYONE. I actually love it. I am now applying to engineering schools to pursue a masters in electrical engineering because I found this book so inspiring. If you want to pass the FE, buy this book.
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on January 5, 2011
Great Product. Detailed problem solutions and clearly explained concept summaries. Formulas that are included in the official NCEES Reference Manual are highlighted in green so that you know what formulas will be provided for you on test day.
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on March 14, 2014
The NCEES has changed the FE to a computer based exam with less questions. You will have the option of taking a discipline specific exam, or the non-disciple specific exam. Before you start studying, be sure to view the NCEES handbook and see which topics will be covered in your exam. This is great, because as opposed to the old version of the exam, you will only have to review a few sections of this book. For example, Environmental Engineers DON'T need to review the sections on Electricity, Computers, Dynamics, Statics, Chemistry, Biology, Etc, but instead should concentrate on Fluid Mechanics, Thermodynamics, Ethics, Engineering Econ, Materials, and Prob & Stat.

Given the new format, you will find that a lot of the information about study plans and such is outdated. It is best to make a list of the sections you need to review, and plan your own schedule. I would also suggest renting the discipline specific prep book for your exam, if available.

I find that this book tends to over complicate some of the questions, and focuses too much on things I didn't really see on the exam. For example, you could spend a week reviewing the entire math section of this book, and end up only seeing two or three easy math problems on the exam. If you focus on the right things, then this book is great, but don't get caught up in it's size.

P.S. To all the Environmental Engineers out there, review the Thermodynamics section! Do it like 3 times. You will thank me later.
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on December 16, 2011
I initially bought the FE Review Manual by Lindenburg Second Edition for my EIT review, and was looking at the third edition for any changes. I compared the NCEES supplied reference 8th edition with the up to date one, and I can't seem to find ANY changes (except the 8th Edition to 8th Edition 2nd revision change on the second page).

Why bother with the new edition? If anyone can see a clear update. Please identify it.

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on May 27, 2011
This book provides an excellent basis from which to study for the FE exam. It doesn't have explicit sections for the individual (afternoon) exams, but most of that information is covered somewhere between the front and back covers. For example, I took the Mechanical exam, and it has Thermodynamics, Dynamics, Fluids, and Material Sciences sections, all of which were covered on the exam.

I have to say that if you are a current student, this book might be more than what you need to study, especially if your university has FE review sessions. However, it would make EXCELLENT and thorough study material for someone that has been out of school for a little while.

Also, make sure that you pick up a copy of the FE provided booklet that you receive on exam day. If you are a student, your college might have some loaner copies, and you can pick them up on Amazon relatively inexpensively. It is very important to have knowledge of the (only) book that you can use during the exam.
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on July 20, 2014
Good review of the fundamentals. I took off one star since I was totally freaked out of the exam after failing test exam after test exam in this book and studying for months... Turns out the real exam was actually WAY easier than this book. I felt that the extra work was worth it though, and prepared me more to apply for engineering jobs with increased confidence when I found out I had passed the exam.
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on April 23, 2015
I studied through most of this book in preparation for the mechanical FE exam. The review coverage was completely sufficient in most of the topics. Here's a breakdown of how well the book covered the topics on the exam.
Fluid mechanics - Good coverage
Strengths - Good coverage
Control Systems - No coverage
Machine Design - No coverage
Dynamics - Good coverage
Heat Transfer - Some review, but not sufficient
Thermodynamics - Moderately sufficient
Economics - Good coverage
Math - More review than neccesary

In conclusion, this book is a really good place to start in preparation for the mechanical FE exam; however, I recommend further studying of thermodynamics, heat transfer, machine design and basic control system topics (very basic) than is offered by this book.
It's also important to become EXTREMELY familiar with the FE reference manual, especially in the thermodynamics section. Good luck!
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