Civil PE exams are notoriously tough. They’re eight hours long and can put a strain on anyone taking them. That’s why it’s so important to be prepared for them ahead of time— and the best way to do that is to sign up for a PE review course.
But which one is the best choice? Here’s what you need to know:
Take a look at two popular PE review courses to see one is right for you. Both the Engineering Education and Training (EET) and School of PE review courses have a lot to offer students like you, but which one is the best fit?
Check out our detailed side-by-side comparison below to see how they stack up against each other:
First and foremost are the prices for the two services. For many people, this is the most important aspect of their study materials— but these two PE courses approach this very differently.
EET splits up their content in a way that enables you to buy what you need without adding on any superfluous features. Each exam is split into on-demand and webinar courses, which cost $550 and $600 respectively. With that being said, there’s no discount for signing up for both of them at the same time— which is somewhat disappointing.
By contrast, School of PE courses are much more expensive. Their on-demand courses range from $1390 to $1790 and their live online courses cost $1690.
Between the two options, EET is obviously far more affordable than School of PE. But is this difference in cost justified when it comes to their features?
Keep reading to find out more:
EET offers a fairly straightforward pass guarantee: if you can’t pass the exam on your first attempt, you’re allowed to repeat the course for free. However, bear in mind that there are a few conditions to this:
- First, you must provide proof of your score.
- Second, your repeat course must be taken in the following season; it can’t be delayed.
- Finally, the repeat course has to be the same one you took.
It’s still ultimately a simple guarantee, but it’s also effective at preventing abuse.
In comparison, School of PE’s policy is quite similar to EET’s.
If you fail the PE civil exam within one year of completing your exam review course, you’ll be allowed to repeat the prep course at no extra cost. Additionally, you’ll need to use your free repeat within 18 months of your first attempt. Plus, you’ll need to prove that you didn’t pass the exam.
Though the two guarantees are practically identical, School of PE offers a bit more time between classes and is more lenient overall.
But what about the actual content of these prep courses? Here’s what you need to know:
EET uses its live webinars to simulate the experience of a traditional classroom environment. Each webinar is scheduled ahead of time by EET instructors. Additionally, they offer a “dry run” session before the classes actually start to make sure every student understands how they work and have all the necessary software to attend. Each classroom session is also recorded and made available to you afterwards. As a result of this level of care, EET classes are very easy to follow and understand.
School of PE’s live content is similar but with a few key differences:
Much like EET, School of PE also structures its live classes to resemble the classroom experience. However, it also includes several features that EET lacks. In addition to their courses, each class comes with a live discussion board to stay connected with fellow students. This allows you to easily ask questions and touch base with your peers. Plus, questions can be directly messaged to your instructor at any time via the student learning center.
School of PE easily comes out as the winner here. EET’s courses are great, but they lack the additions that School of PE has made to the live learning experience.
But how do these two courses compare when it comes to on-demand study materials?
EET and School of PE both offer on demand content in addition to their live courses. These approach the PE exam in a self-study format rather than a classroom one. On top of that, each of them has a distinct approach to doing so.
EET’s on demand course consists largely of recorded lectures and handouts. Over 100 hours of content are on offer and can be accessed at any time. Plus each recorded session comes with updated handouts specifically for them. If you are confused at any time, you can ask an instructor to walk you through your various resources once you’ve started your course. Best of all is that this feature is free of charge!
School of PE also offers recorded lectures. However, the on-demand option still grants you access to their discussion board. This is arguably more useful since it gives you more chances to ask questions that live students are able to ask during their lectures. Furthermore, each handout has been hand prepared by course instructors specifically for each session— so it’s an awesome refresher.
Between the two courses, School of PE is the winner here. They go the extra mile with their discussion board to keep you engaged even outside of live classes.
EET uses practice exams as capstones for their course concepts. They do so by issuing timed exams at the end of each depth class. These simulate the real thing as closely as possible— they consist of 40 questions each and are timed for 4 hours. Because of that, students will be intimately familiar with the testing process by the time they’ve finished their coursework. They’ll be experts at both the contents of the exam and its structure.
By contrast, School of PE is a bit less structured in its testing.
Instead of full blown practice tests, School of PE offers a test bank of practice problems. Review sessions pull form this bank, but not in the same way that EET does. These sessions end up functionally very similar to PE exams, but they lack the commitment to fully emulating the test taking experience. Consequently, they aren’t the most effective way to teach the exam structure— but the content itself is still great.
Ultimately, EET’s practice tests tend to be more effective than School of PE’s. They teach you more than just memorization; they also help you understand and get used to the testing environment.
Recommending just one of these NCEES-approved courses is difficult here. If you can afford School of PE, then it’s basically the better choice. They have great extra content and interaction that their competitors just don’t— but they can be pretty expensive in comparison.
If you’re comfortable spending that much money, then choose School of PE. But if you need a more affordable option, EET is an excellent choice. Just make sure to choose what you’re comfortable paying for!