The IEEE WCET™ examination is administered on a computer at a testing center and consists of 150 scored multiple-choice questions plus 15 unscored pretest questions randomly distributed throughout the examination. Questions on the examination are in English and are based on the most recently published test specifications as noted below. Four (4) hours are allotted to complete the examination.
IEEE WCET Examination Areas of Expertise
The IEEE WCET examination consists of questions in several different areas of expertise. A short description of these areas and the examination weightings (the percentage of questions allocated to each area of expertise) are presented below.
Area 1 (11-15%) - RF Engineering, Propagation, Antennas, and Signal Processing: Tasks and knowledge related to: antennas, RF engineering, transmission, reception, propagation, channel modeling, and signal processing.
Evaluate system performance and reliability; calculate path loss; evaluate the effects of different fading and empirical path loss models; calculate and evaluate the effects on the received signal of path-related impairments; determine parameters related to antennas or antenna arrays; generate and evaluate coverage and interference prediction maps; develop and analyze procedure to optimize the coverage of a radio; make RF system measurements.
Area 2 (19-23%) - Wireless Access Technologies: Tasks and knowledge related to wireless access networks, especially the physical, MAC, and link layers.
Analyze building blocks, multiple access, mobility management, and spectrum implications in wireless access system design; analyze design considerations to optimize capacity/coverage; design and analyze a wireless access system; analyze the required bandwidth for a wireless system and tradeoffs; analyze wireless access technology standards, their features, and evolution.
Area 3 (19-23%) - Network and Service Architecture: Tasks and knowledge related to network infrastructure, including core networks; service frameworks such as IMS; and application architectures such as voice, video streaming, and messaging. All-IP services architecture as in 3GPP Rel 6 and beyond, including Enhanced Packet Services (EPS) as in 3GPP Rel 8 LTE (Long Term Evolution) and EPC (Enhanced Packet Core).
Analyze service platforms, IP addressing schemes for various technologies; design and test quality of service (QoS); select and test a load-balancing scheme; analyze IP routing and ad hoc routing and mesh protocols; perform capacity planning, error tracking, and trace analysis; analyze the evolution of mobile networks to enable IP multimedia.
Area 4 (19-23%) - Network Management and Security: Tasks and knowledge related to fault, configuration, account, performance, maintenance, security management, management availability, and operation support systems (examples include network service assurance and provisioning).
Design a fault monitoring system and a performance monitoring system; develop/specify types and methods of alarm reporting; compute availability and reliability metrics; assess the potential impacts of known security attacks; plan corresponding solutions to known security attacks.
Area 5 (8-12%) - Facilities Infrastructure, Standards and Regulations: Tasks and knowledge related to the specification, design, implementation, and operation of facilities and sites, and externally imposed compliance requirements and conformance testing, including interoperability.
Determine power consumption; analyze electrical protection requirements and design the electrical protection layout for a wireless telecommunications facility; determine the required antennas for the facility and their positions; develop a specification for the required structure for a wireless base station facility; determine the required cable, antennas, and materials to implement an in-building wireless network; evaluate equipment compliance with industry standards, codes, and site requirements.
Assess service and equipment quality; prepare specifications for purchasing services and equipment and evaluate the responses; verify compliance with regulatory requirements; select and analyze frequency assignments; perform standardized homologation tests as required by regulatory or standardization bodies; evaluate compliance with health, safety, and environmental requirements; perform conformance/interoperability analyses of systems and components; analyze the use of licensed vs. unlicensed spectrum; obtain licenses and permits.
Area 6 (11-16%) – Emerging New Paradigms and Services: Tasks and knowledge related to ongoing developments in protocols and architectures for emerging new standards in wireless (5G, 802.11) and service requirements and application scenarios.
Analyze new network and service provisioning architectures (e.g. 5G); emerging standards in W-WAN and W-LAN (especially recent developments of IEEE 802.11); network virtualization and slicing; Internet of Things (IoT); Machine Type Communications (MTC); evolution of the Evolved Packet Core; analyze the evolution of wireless systems to support emerging applications.
Area 7 (8-12%) - Fundamental Knowledge: Basic knowledge that a wireless communications engineer would use in order to perform tasks across all domains.
Apply basic concepts related to electrical engineering, communications systems, and general engineering management.
Examinations are reviewed by a panel of IEEE WCET subject matter experts to ensure that the questions are current and reflect the published test specifications.