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    Alberta, Canada

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  1. Has anyone on the board sought out the IntPE/APEC Engineer designations for international work? If so, can you comment on the usefulness of these designations in streamlining the licensing process in other jurisdictions? I find it somewhat ironic that NCEES maintains the registry in the US, but does not recognize the agreements themselves. Thoughts?
  2. I tend to agree with the opinions already stated here that the current format that tests solely on one sub-discipline of expertise (MDM, TF, HVAC) is more appropriate than the breath and depth format of years past for the following reasons: 1. The purpose of the exams is to determine minimal competency to practice engineering in a particular (sub) discipline; most mechanical engineers specialize in their practice so limiting the breadth of the exam while increasing the depth is appropriate, 2. Demonstration of the ability to learn minimal competence in the other sub-disciplines has already been established to some extent in the FE exam. More pragmatically, by passing the PE exam in the current format a person has demonstrated the ability to absorb knowledge at a sufficient level, that in the opinion of NCEES, they have demonstrated minimal competency to practice engineering. If a person can demonstrate that ability in a sub-discipline than it is probable that they can develop that same level of competency in the other sub-disciplines given enough effort. How much material should a practising engineer be responsible to recall in an examination setting?
  3. First off, the requirements and difficulty of a Ph.D. qualifying exam varies greatly between universities, within departments in a given university, and even by examining committee within a department! I consider myself having gotten off easily, as my candidacy examination consisted of writing a research report of about 60 pages in length on my research topic and an oral exam of about 90 minutes by my examining committee (my two co-advisors, the examiner internal to the department, and the examiner outside the department). The contents of the report was a literature survey, methodology, some numerical/experimental results, and a discussion on the originality of the research/proposed future work. This report was approximately the first three chapters of my Ph.D. thesis. In this case there was no examination of material outside of my research project, as the intent of the candidacy examination in my case was to determine the likelihood of succeeding in the research component of a Ph.D. program. I had a relatively friendly examining committee. Notwithstanding the relatively light requirements of my Ph.D. candidacy examination, the writing of the report alone (i.e., not including the research) took me more time than the preparation time for my PE and FE exams combined. I think (that at least in my case) preparing for the PE exam required less effort and was less uncertain than preparing for my Ph.D. candidacy examination because the topics on the PE exam were well defined and required no original research. By way of comparison, the PE exam was straightforward relative to the Ph.D. candidacy examination. As has been stated above, the intents of the two examinations are very different. I've found that in the market I'm practising in, holding a Ph.D. in Engineering while working in a consulting environment adds weight and credibility to the opinions that I express. I've also found that it has added an estimated 40% premium on the renunciation received compared to holding a M.Sc./M.Eng. and even more compared to a B.Sc. A word of caution is that consulting is different from a research environment in that you need to deliver something usable to the client in a cost-effective and reasonable time frame, i.e., you can't turn jobs into "research projects." Be aware also that the reasons for pursuing a PE license are different for the reasons for pursuing a Ph.D. The former is a legislative requirement to practice engineering, while the latter is an advancement of a body of knowledge. Hope that helps.
  4. Essentially yes. For example in Alberta (From Part 1 of the ENGINEERING AND GEOSCIENCE PROFESSIONS ACT): 2(1) Except as otherwise provided in this Act, no individual, corporation, partnership or other entity, except a professional engineer, a licensee so authorized in the licensee’s licence, a permit holder so authorized in its permit or a certificate holder so authorized in the certificate holder’s certificate, shall engage in the practice of engineering, where: (q) “practice of engineering” means (i) reporting on, advising on, evaluating, designing, preparing plans and specifications for or directing the construction, technical inspection, maintenance or operation of any structure, work or process (A) that is aimed at the discovery, development or utilization of matter, materials or energy or in any other way designed for the use and convenience of humans, and (B) that requires in that reporting, advising, evaluating, designing, preparation or direction the professional application of the principles of mathematics, chemistry, physics or any related applied subject, or (ii) teaching engineering at a university; The exceptions are: (4) Subsection (1) does not apply to the following: (a) a person engaged in the execution or supervision of the construction, maintenance, operation or inspection of any process, system, work, structure or building in the capacity of contractor, superintendent, foreman or inspector or in any similar capacity, when the process, system, work, structure or building has been designed by and the execution or supervision is being carried out under the supervision and control of a professional engineer or licensee; (b) a person engaged in the practice of engineering as an engineer-in-training or engineering technologist in the course of being employed or engaged and supervised and controlled by a professional engineer, licensee, permit holder or certificate holder; (c) repealed 2007 c13 s4; (d) a person who in accordance with an Act or regulation in respect of mines, minerals, pipelines, boilers and pressure vessels, building codes or safety codes for buildings is engaged in any undertaking or activity required under or pursuant to that Act or the regulations under that Act; (e) a person who, on the person’s own property and for the person’s sole use or the use of the person’s domestic establishment, carries out any work that does not involve the safety of the public; (f) a member of the Canadian Forces while actually employed on duty with the Forces; (g) a person engaged or employed by a university whose practice of the profession consists exclusively of teaching engineering at the university. Yes. From, To know whether a document needs to be authenticated, can you answer yes to both of these questions? 1. Does the document contain technical information as defined in the Engineering and Geoscience Professions Act? 2. Is the document complete for its intended purpose? The Professional member who seals the document "is assuming full professional responsibility of that engineering or geoscience work." (
  5. Note that the membership dues in Alberta are not unusual for Canada. See figure below (costs are in Canadian dollars and do not include taxes) for November 2017 (taken from The fees go directly to the regulators, with no other association fees included. (Note that the provincial/territorial member associations are members of Engineers Canada, which is similar in some senses to NSPE but only the regulators are members of Engineers Canada, not individuals.) We do get some member benefits (, but I don't think these explain the cost, given how APEGA describes their mandate. To wit, [t]he Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta (APEGA) regulates the practices of engineering and geoscience in Alberta on behalf of the Government of Alberta through the Engineering and Geoscience Professions Act. Our main regulatory function is licensing individuals and companies that want to practise engineering and geoscience in Alberta. I am speculating that part of the reason that member dues are so high in Canada is because the professional associations can charge these prices. In Canada there is no industrial exemption (with the exception of Ontario), so anyone practicing engineering is required to become licensed. Hope that was informative.
  6. It is certainly unimpressive compared to what APEGA (Alberta) hands out, but it was somehow more satisfying for me to receive in the mail than my APEGA license...
  7. Just for fun, I added Alberta Canada to the list for anyone interested in what happens up North...
  8. I wrote my FE exam (CBT) after my PE exam (MDM) and found that the PE exam was a more comfortable experience than the FE exam from a human factors perspective. I found the paper and pencil experience less stressful than the computer based test. My boss had similar feedback with the paper and pencil format versus the computer bases testing experience. To @Mech_april2019 did you write a CBT FE exam? How did the experience compare versus the P&P format of the PE exam? Have you reviewed your diagnostic report? I found that the best source for identifying what kinds of questions I would see on the MDM exam was the NCEES practice exam. This gave me a feel for how NCEES would format/phrase questions, which I found wasn't always obvious. As for encouragement, I think all on this board are pulling for you. I would suggest that you pick which exam format you feel most comfortable with and prepare to write the next available offering in that format. Note that if you do choose to go the CBT route: 1) the mechanical reference manual that will be made available to you can be downloaded from your NCESS dashboard 2) the exam will be offered year round (which might be good or bad depending on if you need a hard deadline to motivate yourself to prepare)
  9. Hmmm, I may have messed up with the odd years thing, but believe that I am correct with the license expiring on October 31 on a biannual basis What makes sense to me is if the first license Michigan issues expires the October 31 immediately following first issue and expiring every two years thereafter. This would be consistent with what appears to be your coworkers initial license issue date (12/14/2017 - possibly expired 10/31 2018?) with subsequent expiration on 10/31/2020 and with my own Michigan license issue and expiration dates: issued 03/22/2019, expires 10/31/2019 and then subsequent expirations 10/31/2021, 10/31/2023 ... I'm speculating that this is to simplify administration of their professional development requirements (, where you appear to be exempt from professional development requirements if you hold a license for less than 12 months.
  10. Michigan licenses are for a period of two years and expire October 31 in odd number years. See,4601,7-154-89334_72600_72602_72731_72865_91777-447980--,00.html
  11. Something to keep in mind when making your decision to write at the next sitting or waiting a year to write again is if you feel more comfortable with pencil and paper (P&P) or computer based testing (CBT). All three mechanical tests are scheduled to transition to CBT in 2020 so that October 2019 is the last chance to write P&P, if that's your preference.
  12. I as well am a RPN (HP) user... HP 48G/HP 48GX HP 50g HP 35s HP 45 Used a HP 48G/HP48GX all through school. My parents gifted me a HP 50g for Christmas one year after I misplaced my daily use HP 48G for an extended period. Purchased the HP 35s just to write the NCEES exams. Picked up the HP 45 so that I would have a calculator that would meet the requirements of "non programmable." I really have a hard time using any calculator that isn't RPN...
  13. I'm guessing that registration for all that do not yet have a "Exam of this type has already been passed" status based on past PE exam sittings are unable to register for any of the paper and pencil exam and are able to register for any of the computer based exams... what would convince me that this loophole is plausible is for someone to post a legitimate screen shot showing one of the computer based exams showing something besides "Available" or "Exam of this type has already been passed"
  14. Someone who wrote the April 2019 exams will need to confirm or disprove this alleged loophole... I am unable to register for any of the computer based PE exams based on passing in October 2018...
  15. Good luck to all tomorrow!
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