Exam Tips for the CQE certification Exam

Diagnose problem questions to determine which approach to use

A recurring theme from people who have taken the ASQ CQE exam centers around quickly determining which methodology to use to solve a problem.  Is it a Posson, straight probability, z value, hypothesis test, reliability or ANOVA.  The decision tree below will help

Know when to look up information

A question like this:  

A process follows an exponential distribution and has a mean of 100.  What is the standard deviation?

Unless you know the relationship, you can quickly look up exponential distribution and search for a relationship between the mean the the standard deviation

Have an Exam Day Strategy

Going into the exam you should have a plan.  Your plan consists of how many questions do you want to be through at the 1/2 hour, 1 hour, 2 hour, 3 hour and 4 hour mark.  This will help you stay on pace.  Do not spend time on questions you don't know or are not familiar with, move on and come back to them.

Example Question

A sample of 50 parts is taken from a process the is producing 1% defection.  The probability of finding no defective parts in the sample is?

This is discrete data and is NOT straight probability.  Your are given an sample size (large) , a rate (small) and asked how many in the sample.  This is a Poisson application.

certified quality engineer - CQE Certification Training


How the - CQE Certification Training works

Our preparation class is structured to provide lifetime access to the live, online classes along with the class recordings.  We understand that life sometimes happens and plans sometimes need to be adjusted.  With our program you are in it until you pass the exam.  Everyone learns and progresses at different rates.  This is designed to fit  your needs.

This is a very difficult exam.  We recommend you begin your preparation about 22 weeks prior to when you would like to sit for the exam.  If you sign up for our live course (VCT) we give access to the previously recorded classes and suggest you review them prior to the start of the VCT classes.  This approach strengthens your ability to retain the information and perform well on the ASQ CQE exam.  The CQE exam is difficult due to the fact you have 5.5 hours to complete 175 questions (15 of which are not scored).  That leaves you 1.82 minutes per question, which means you are moving at a pretty good rate 

Success on the ASQ CQE exam is dependent upon your ability to quickly decide which approach to use upon reading the question and knowing how to go about the task.  If you take time to review material in your reference or are unsure which hypothesis test to use or what an ANOVA is doing or how many degrees of freedom in a DOE you will quickly run out of time.  If you know and  understand the three tools provided above, you will be in very good shape to sit and pass the CQE exam.

We recommend using the CQE primer from the Quality Council of Indiana as it is very well aligned with the ASQ CQE body of knowledge and also provides a good amount of practice questions.  If you understand the questions, meaning you know what tool to use and how to go about it you will pass the ASQ CQE and perform very well on the exam.

The Certified Quality Engineer Exam is a very challenging test of your skill and understanding of Quality Engineering principles.  Roughly 20% of the exam will require you to perform some level of calculations.  The key to performing well and passing the exam is the preparation.  It is critical you understand the Body of Knowledge the exam is based on and realize your weaknesses relative to that information.  

For each section outlined in the BOK write down bullet points that help explain the concept referenced in the Body of Knowledge.  Don't copy word for word from your reference material, you want to write it in your own words.  By the time you are done, you will find you have a pretty solid understanding of the Body of Knowledge requirements and this document will serve as an excellent reference during the exam.


The preparation course for the  ASQ CQE  exam consists of about 28 hours of class time.  We offer a wide range of class times to accommodate a variety of schedules.  We can find a Certified Quality Engineer class that meets your needs.   The classes offer a mixture of lecture, problem review and quizzes.  The training is conducted in an online classroom environment with a high level of interactivity between the student and the instructor.  You will have unlimited access to the instructor to get your questions answered outside of normal class times.  

Certified Quality Engineer - CQE Syllabus

ASQ CQE Exam preparation training outline / CQE Training:

Class 1    Basic Statistics

Class 2    Statistical Applications

Class 3    Statistical Applications

Class 4    Advanced Statistics

Class 5    Advanced Statistics

Class 6    Advanced Statistics

Class 7    Product and Process Designs

Class 8    Product and Process Control

Class 9    Control and Management Tools/Improvement Techniques

Class 10  Management and Leadership/Quality Systems

Class 11  Review

Class 12  Review

Plan on about 5-10 additional one hour classes to be added to review the strategy to attack the questions. 

Cost of the CQE Certified Quality Engineer Preparation Course

$750.00  VCT (Virtual Classroom Training)  for  live CQE Exam Preparation Training

This includes all materials, access to the live, online classes and unlimited access to the recorded classes. There is no time limit for access to the recordings of the live VCT classroom sessions.

$450.00   Self Paced Class CQE Training

This includes unlimited access to the recorded classes but does not include materials.


Certified Quality Engineer CQE Cognitive level of understanding

The cognitive level of the question dictates how much knowledge and understanding of the topic is required.  The cognitive level of the ASQ certification exam questions is based on Bloom's Taxonomy. There are six cognitive levels.  Below is an example of the six levels and the type of questions  associated with each level. The levels are in order from least complex to most complex. You will see that the more complex or in depth the cognitive level the stronger understanding of the topic needed.  The following examples deal with the Certified Quality Engineer CQE Body of Knowledge.  


This level demands the ability to recognize and recall.  If you are asked how to determine if data is normally distributed you remember what a normal probability plot is.    


This tests your ability to read and understand.  If you are asked about the components of variation in a MSA (measurement system analysis) you can explain there are two components, repeatability and reproducibility.  


Know how to use and apply the ideas.  If you are asked what the sampling plan would be for a given lot size and AQL, you could find it.  


Break down the information into the constituent parts and understand their relationship.  If you are asked to determine the impact of variation, risk or the level of shift on the sample size required, you can analyze information the results and determine the significance.  


You are able to make judgments about the value of proposed ideas or solutions.  If you asked process produces more to specification or which product has the least probability of failure you can derive the solution. 


Put parts or elements together in such a way to reveal a structure not evident before.  If you are asked about determining the probability of failure resulting from two processes in series operating with normal distributions, you can pool the standard deviations and utilize in a standard Z formula to solve.


The CQE questions that involve the remember and understand cognitive level can be fairly quickly referenced.  This is where your ability to navigate a reference book is vital.  For the other cognitive levels applied to questions, a more in depth understanding of the material is required, otherwise, you will waste valuable time looking them up.  These are the concepts that require a solid understanding and recall.

Our training is focused on understanding the various cognitive levels so you can put your effort in the critical areas and rely on reference material for the others.

Try a sample Certified Quality Engineer Quiz

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