PE Licensing Blog

February 10, 2014 - 11:21
The Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) Examination and the Principles and Practice of Engineering (PE) Examinations have historically been used as a means to confirm an applicant’s engineering capability at the level of minimum competence required to protect the public health, safety, and welfare. Coupled with the education and experience requirements, these examinations play a significant role in the licensure process in the US, as many applicants are not able to pass one or the other. The current exams contain almost exclusively technical content, and do not address the full breadth of the...
February 3, 2014 - 09:57
For the past five years, the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) has been considering how to structure an alternate pathway to licensure after 2020, based on input received largely from mechanical and chemical engineers who contend that post-graduate advanced learning in their areas of practice is predominantly industry- and practice-based, and not academic in nature. This article presents an idea that might help all parties move forward. Background In 2006, NCEES adopted modifications to its Model Law encouraging jurisdictions to consider revisions after...
November 19, 2013 - 09:16
The National Society of Professional Engineers has released the first edition of “The Engineering Body of Knowledge” (EBOK), a first effort on behalf of the profession in defining the knowledge, skills, and attitudes required for the practice of engineering as a professional engineer in responsible charge of engineering activities that may impact public health, safety, and welfare. The EBOK is intended to apply to all disciplines of engineering. The 60-page document is intended for a broad audience—engineer interns and practicing engineering supervisors and mentors, employers,...
October 3, 2013 - 09:43
Unlicensed Practice of Engineering A few years ago, an NCEES survey of state professional engineering licensing boards requested information from each board on the categories of violations indicated for cases opened during a two-year period. Responses were received regarding data on several thousand disciplinary cases. The frequency of categories of violations reported in that survey was as follows, beginning with the most frequent: incompetence/negligence; unlicensed practice/offer; ethics/professional conduct/misconduct; fraud, deceit, misrepresentation; and...
September 20, 2013 - 15:09
The table below provides the best and most detailed information developed to date on the status of exemptions from engineering licensure laws and regulations in each licensure jurisdiction in the U.S. This table was developed in 2013 by the Industrial Exemption Task Force of the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying, and included in the background information provided for the August, 2013 NCEES Annual Meeting. It was based on a detailed review of the statute and rules in each state, with input from individual state licensing boards. The NSPE policy regarding industrial...
September 16, 2013 - 09:29
At its annual meeting in August 2013, the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) voted by a substantial margin to modify the Model Law for engineering licensure to allow for the early taking of the PE exam. Currently, the Model Law, and most states, require that applicants for a PE license complete the required number of years of progressive engineering experience prior to attempting the Principles and Practices of Engineering Examination (the PE exam). With this coming change, the Model Law will stipulate that engineers may, at their option, attempt the PE exam...
August 15, 2013 - 09:31
This is the second in a series of articles about the licensure of engineering technologists in the U.S. Thefirst articledescribed the current status of licensure of technologists as professional engineers and indicated that some 17 jurisdictions do not provide a pathway for technologists to become licensed, while the balance of the jurisdictions do, generally requiring additional years of engineering experience, averaging about six years. Licensure as a professional engineer requires a technologist to pass both the FE and PE examinations, which address a technical engineering body of...
June 3, 2013 - 14:05
Several years ago, I was at an ABET symposium on engineering education. A professor from an engineering program rose to say, “I would like to comment on a topic we don’t often discuss in the engineering profession. I have been a professor for over 30 years now, and I can tell you that more of my former female engineering students are NOT working in engineering than are, at this point in time. I wonder if the engineering profession is not user-friendly to women.” That comment has stayed with me since. I have intended to write something about the topic, although a number of people have advised...
May 22, 2013 - 09:03
Almost everyone would agree that we owe our veterans returning from overseas tours a debt of gratitude for their service, and that it is important to facilitate their transition back into the civilian workforce. There have been a number of bills filed in state legislatures in recent years setting forth provisions to provide flexibility for returning veterans in obtaining certifications and licenses in a broad range of professions—a laudable goal. Some of these bills, however, have gone a bit far. For instance, one bill in Hawaii would have precluded returning veterans from having to take...
February 21, 2013 - 15:37
The following is personal opinion. It is neither NSPE policy nor does it reflect an NSPE position. Engineers are at odds in a number of states over a proposition advocated by structural engineering organizations to change licensure laws in states that have historically licensed engineers only as professional engineers. Structural engineers have been advocating the establishment of a separate license for structural engineers, and the limitation of the use of the title “structural engineer” to those having such a separate license. The separate license would require passing of the NCEES 16-...

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