Navigating the architecture licensure process can be complex. You should begin by reviewing the website of the American Institute of Architects (AIA). While the National Council of Architecture Registration Boards (NCARB) establishes national licensure and registration requirements, and their web resources, especially the Architectural Experience Program (AXP), are extremely useful, it is important to keep in mind that individual states may have more specialized guidelines that supersede NCARB's guidelines. The New York State Education Department, Office of the Professions, Architecture, has established guidelines for the Architect Registration Examination (ARE). AIA requirements are also brought to bear on state licensure processes and requirements. It is recommended that you become familiar with the resources of local chapters of the AIA, such as the AIA New York Chapter. You should also contact the Architect Licensing Advisor at your school to seek clarification about the licensure process. Finally, support for AXP and licensure should be a consideration when making a decision about pursuing professional work experience.
The Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam is a measure of minimum competency to enter the engineering profession. Passing the exam demonstrates initiative and drive to pursue an engineering career. Employers hiring recent engineering graduates may look to see if the applicant has successfully passed the FE exam. Passing the exam classifies one as an intern, also known as Engineering Intern (EI) or Engineer-in-Training (EIT).
Students and applicants who are within twenty (20) credits of graduation (generally your final semester) or have graduated from an EAC/ABET accredited baccalaureate program in engineering are automatically eligible to sit for an NCEES exam.
The FE exam is a six-hour long computer based exam consisting of 110 multiple-choice questions and it is delivered year round. The FE exam is offered in seven disciplines: chemical, civil, electrical and computer, environmental, industrial and systems, mechanical, and other disciplines. See exam specifications for more details including the topics covered on the exam for each discipline.
Examinees must earn a scaled score of 70 or higher to pass the FE exam and results are usually available within 10 days of taking the exam.
Step-by-Step Process for EIT Certification
1. Register with the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) to take the exam.
2. Once you pass the FE exam and graduate from an ABET accredited bachelor of engineering program you may apply for your Intern Engineer Certificate (EIT).
3. Submit the application (form 1IE) for Intern Engineer Certificate with a $70 fee to the NYS Office of the Professions.
4. Submit the form (form 2) for Certification of Professional Education: complete section 1, making sure to sign and date it, then send or bring the form to the registrar at Cooper Union (30 Cooper, 3rd floor) to complete section 2. The registrar must return it directly to the Office of the Professions (address and instructions are on the form).
Students do not qualify for the Intern Engineer Certificate until they graduate.
Students can indicate that they passed the FE on their resume, portfolio or professional website, but should not indicate "EIT" until they have graduated.