The PE Agricultural and Biological Engineering exam is computer-based and administered one day per year. Like other PE exams with small examinee populations, this is a single-day testing event similar to the current pencil-and-paper exams. The next test is in October. Examinees may reserve their seat up to a year in advance at a Pearson VUE test center once they are registered with NCEES and approved by their board. Candidates are encouraged to reserve their seat for this single-day event as early as possible.

The ABE PE exam will include the following:

  • Nondisclosure agreement (2 minutes)
  • Tutorial (8 minutes)
  • Exam (8.5 hours)
  • Scheduled break (50 minutes)

The PE exam is 85 questions, which include:

  • Common Systems Applications (18-27 questions)
  • Natural Resources and Ecology (13-19 questions)
  • Process Engineering (13-19 questions)
  • Facilities (13-19 questions)
  • Machines (13-19 questions)

Learn more about the NCEES Agricultural and Biological Engineering PE exam specifications.

Note: PE exam scoring uses psychometrics to equalize "hard" and "easy" exams over multiple years, unlike university course exam scoring.

In-exam resources are limited to the ASABE Standard Reference Handbook and a subset of ASABE standards, which will be provided electronically on exam day.

Preparing for the Exam

  • Review the PE NCEES exam specifications
  • Read the reference materials and review materials, such as the webinars, on the ASABE website
  • Familiarize yourself with the Supplied Reference Handbook
  • Review the ASABE standards collection for the PE exam
  • Try completing sample exam questions
  • Understand the scoring and reporting

NCEES Ag/Bio PE Exam Resources

NCEES maintains the Supplied Reference Handbook. You can access a copy by creating a free MyNCEES account. Learn more about NCEES exam materials.

Mentoring Program for First-Time Takers of the ABE PE Exam

If you're planning to take the Agricultural and Biological Engineering PE exam and would like to be paired with a mentor who can share firsthand knowledge of what to expect, please request a mentor here. We'll be happy to match you with someone who has taken and passed the exam within the last few years. The mentoring program will be conducted electronically, and once a mentor/mentee pairing has been made, contact information (name and email address) will be shared with each party. This benefit is only available to ASABE members. To join, please click here.

ASABE PE Incentive Program

ASABE's Professional Engineers Institute (PEI), the Dale Wm. Zimmerman PE Fund, and the ASABE Board of Trustees have partnered to provide two incentives:

  • First-time ABE PE exam takers will be eligible for reimbursement of PE exam registration fees up to $300, and another $150 incentive upon completion of the exam.
  • Repeat ABE PE exam takers will be eligible for $150 reimbursement.

The offer is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Please contact Please contact us by August 1 to apply. The $150 can be used for any expense the candidate choose—study materials, hotel room night before the exam, additional exam fees, etc. Receipts and results from the exam will be required to validate eligibility.