Should I take SE Structural Engineering Exam?

After years of hard work and experience, gaining a PE licensure alone doesn’t mark the end of progress for your structural engineering career. There’s an even more grueling exam designed to test your in-depth knowledge of structural engineering – the SE Structural Engineering Exam. While most engineers may not feel like putting in the extra effort for the SE exam and are satisfied with a PE licensure, a few would prefer otherwise. The SE exam would demand a lot of your time and commitment. You’ll also need to shell out money for books, exam fee, review courses etc. If you’re still debating on whether you should or should not take the SE exam, then read on carefully and make a decision:

structural engineering

The upside:
Perhaps being aware of the host of opportunities the SE structural engineering exam can open up may put your doubts to rest. Here’s the upside of attempting the SE exam:

i)Respect and authority
Simply having an SE title commands respect from people. Your opinion and words tend to carry more weight, which in turn translates into a sense of unmatched authority.

ii)Boosts confidence
You’ve just passed a grueling 16-hour long exam and you’ve got every right to flaunt it as one of your biggest achievements. This accomplishment can help boost your confidence level.

Let’s face it – in order to pass the SE structural engineering exam, you’ll need to put in at least 200 hours of study time. The extent of knowledge you will gain in the process should make you feel good about yourself

iv)Career opportunities
For all those engineers with a legal SE credential, the array of opportunities is endless. As an SE, it is your job to stamp structural drawings and a lot of potential employers may be eyeing you as a viable candidate.

The downside:

i)No pay raise
Gaining an SE title doesn’t instantly guarantee you a pay raise as firms are gradually starting to accept SE as an industry standard. This means that the chances of your employer awarding you with a raise are very slim.

ii)Extra costs incurred
Right from the exam fees to the material costs, you must invest a lot to pass the SE Structural Engineering Exam.

iii)Time wasted
What if you do not make it? The hours you’ve wasted studying could have been spent on something else you liked.

So should you take the SE Structural Engineering Exam? Why not? Even if you fail to make it past the exam, a little extra knowledge never hurts. Keep up an optimistic attitude and take up the SE exam to reap the countless benefits that passing the SE exam will provide.


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