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Topic Title: Is the IENG qualification an associate professional award?
Topic Summary: Is the IENG qualification an associate professional award?
Created On: 30 July 2012 07:47 AM
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 29 August 2012 02:01 PM
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MAWilson

Posts: 48
Joined: 22 February 2006

I think the arguments for EngTech, IEng and CEng needs to be moved from who meets what competency more towards who's doing what the actually loved doing. The institutions and hopefully the IET can take the lead needs to get the discussion passed these petty bickering to an honest discussion among all professionals at all levels. I say this because whether you're an Engineer or a Technician, there should be a distinction feeling that you are indeed a working professional.

In all honesty, there are large amount of Technicians who are fully capable taking up engineering positions but don't because they prefer fault finding, plant work and live commissioning to the mountains or paperwork at my desk for review although there is some financial reward for the move. There are engineers that like design work to the plant side of things where I reside with judgements and sign-offs or procedures sometimes on a daily basis which mean you have to have a reservoir of information constantly in your head at all times.

One size does not fit all and in reality, an industry needs all these types of people to function properly. I started at Technician level and probably close to CEng level in a 2-3 years but I still miss the good old days as a Technician and sometimes wonder why I bothered moving. I'm happy where I am now but loved the technical side of things more.

The Engineering Council in my opinion has removed that value of persons doing what they actually love doing which is why I think there is this failure to register more engineers with the abstract definitions of what levels of engineering are. And to be honest, I'm not sure the leaders of such organisations currently are doing anything to put that right.

Edited: 30 August 2012 at 12:24 PM by MAWilson
 31 December 2012 03:17 AM
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rcapol

Posts: 17
Joined: 23 December 2002

ALL registrations (IEng, CEng whatever) shoule be very much valued at the level at which they have been attained. Engineers should be encouraged to work towards these where possible. It is the route to achieving registration that provides the most professional development.
It is all academic unless we use these titles actively in our professional lives. We should be focused more on driving professionalism in to engineering in a structured way. One way this can be achieved is by requiring practising engineers to be professionally registered at a suitable level of competence for what their work entails. The professional registrations are showing a minimum standard at each level, and do not reflect the competence of all holders of that registration. Some engineers are just better than others at any level, just like any other profession. But standards have to be set somewhere, and at some level. Lets not devalue them, lets push to integrate relevant professional registration requirements in to job titles, procedures, legislative sign off etc etc. We will find engineering professionals start to achieve the recognition they deserve.
I am constantly amazed at how many engineers say they should be at a higher level of registration because of comparison against a few other individuals in a specific skill area. An IEng may very well meet the requirements for CEng, I know many that do, and many unregistered engineers for that matter. Rather than complain, why not just follow the process and obtain CEng. And yes IEng should be recognised to the level it has achieved and described as such, it's far more than technician level, but just not quite the requirement for CEng. Which is why its there.
 18 January 2013 03:57 PM
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roybowdler

Posts: 276
Joined: 25 July 2008

Numbers of IEng registered members of IChemE = 58 = 0.5% of the number of IChemE CEng members. Number of new IEng registrants this century11. Number of IChemE Eng Tech Members = 6 = a trace %.

Possible hypothesis - we don't want IEng so we'll put up a belittling and patronising description to discourage them - such a successful strategy that they didn't register a single IEng in 2011.

Number of IET IEng members circa 14000 many more than the IChemE registrant total. IET Technician Members circa 4000 (more than the numbers registered by most institutions). Only two bodies register more engineers in total than the IET number of IEng i.e. The Civil & Mechanical Engineers.

I agree that some of the smaller professional institutions who have 0.5% understanding of IEng have been allowed an undeserved influence, as the only thing they are ever going to contribute is to "talk down" IEng. In a democracy there should be a place for both the inclusive and the exclusive. However IEng members of the IET who are the fourth largest group of Engineering Council registrants deserve an appropriate level of influence. I think Engineering Council recognises this, but in the end the overwhelming majority of registrants are CEng, so this will be the primary point of reference and influence.

Engineering UK and the Royal Academy could do more for IEng, but it is more important to promote the profession as a whole. In the right context I don't object to CEng being used in a shorthand way to represent IEng. Some IEng will be "working towards" CEng and all registrants are recognised within the same "chartered" framework for professional engineers. The public as a whole isn't interested in divisions between different types of engineers, which may confuse the overall message.

Unfortunately in primarily promoting CEng to the public, we seem to have confused many associated with our own profession. If you actually read the UK-SPEC standard, or compare engineers with IEng & CEng designations, trying to create some imaginary yawning chasm between IEng & CEng is ridiculous. At either end of the spectrum some IEng are very practical (more useful in many situations) and at the other some CEng very theoretical (an advantage in some other situations) but somewhere in the middle?

Most of us have no idea about the different types of medical doctors until we are ill, but I hope my GP isn't doing major surgery on the side and many surgeons wouldn't be well suited to GP work. Draw your own conclusion which one is nearer to IEng or CEng?

-------------------------
Roy Bowdler IEng FIET FCIPD
IET Registration & Standards

Edited: 18 January 2013 at 05:25 PM by roybowdler
 23 January 2013 08:59 AM
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roybowdler

Posts: 276
Joined: 25 July 2008

Self-interest is perfectly reasonable, but "selfish interest" (i.e. at the expense of others) isn't.

In any trade or profession there is a natural drive to limit access and restrict practice, which via the supply and demand may increase potential returns for those involved. Consumers (in our case business and the wider community) value some regulation, but don't want a restricted supply.

A second drive is for "status" a relative concept which requires some "exclusivity" in order to exist - suggestions for an equation welcome! As voluntary institution members and professional registrants, part of our choice may have been made in order to distinguish ourselves from others. Measuring academic attainment works (with some limitations) as a primary factor, because we have a well-established infrastructure to do it and "learnedness" makes a contribution to status. At one time having a university education also offered exclusivity.

However to have wider credibility the body charged with regulating the profession (CEI/Engineering Council) had to recognise the "learnedness" of more vocationally trained professionals via apprenticeships and colleges/polytechnics. By the time the title IEng was adopted there was 1 new IEng for every 2 new CEng. but as the education, training and regulatory landscape changed IEng lost its appeal and also some of its voice.

The profession now is bounded by the regulator (Engineering Council) as those within the footprint of UK-SPEC. However many of the autonomous "second tier regulatory bodies" (Professional Institutions) prefer to define themselves more narrowly. Where this drives excellence or "learnedness" I would see this as a good thing. Unfortunately however in the search for "status", it is easy to "talk down" other professionals, probably not intentionally harmfully, but as an inevitable by-product of the search for status.

As the IET has developed and begun to articulate more clearly its inclusive proposition for Engineers and Technicians, I see no evidence of its capability as a "knowledge leader" being diminished. Some lament a narrower remit but the IET still leads where the IEE always did and some.

As I have said in these forums before, we need to redefine our idea of "status". The Engineering profession, as exemplified by those who commit to registration, but not only registrants, delivers enormous value to society and we need to unite in promoting this. We only show weakness and insecurity by our tendency to belittle appliance repairers, or to express disgust at being thought a "mere IEng when everyone knows CEng is more prestigious".

As a professional community we need to look forwards and outwards. There are over 1000 recently registered IEng members of the IET, although they are mainly very busy mid-career professionals I would encourage them to actively engage. There are some long established IEng members who are highly respected and very active in the IET, many CEng members also transferred from IEng at some stage of their career.

-------------------------
Roy Bowdler IEng FIET FCIPD
IET Registration & Standards

Edited: 23 January 2013 at 09:24 AM by roybowdler
 23 January 2013 01:11 PM
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rcapol

Posts: 17
Joined: 23 December 2002

From memory I understand (simply) the IEng was put in place to recognise a higher level of attainment between technician level and CEng, as people were complaining that there was no intermediate recognition between technician and CEng accreditation. Now people are complaining that it's there.
In my view it is certainly not derogatory title and almost all engineers I know of recongise it's value. I fully support it. If there is an issue with the specific wording on supporting documentation, why not make your suggestions known to the EC and the IET. I am sure they will welcome it.
At the end of the day if we don't drive a requirement in to our industry for some base levels of competency (I.e professional registration), then industry will never fully embrace the value the IEng (or any other level) can bring to the profession.
 07 February 2013 10:29 AM
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Simon750

Posts: 111
Joined: 25 April 2007

I did ask the question some time back "Am I wasting my time?" as I was contemplating undertaking the application for it without the exemplifying qualifications.

Even with the answers given to me on that discussion topic I was still unsure.

When you read the opinion on the "status" of IEng from other professionals, there does not really seem to be much, if any value, of devoting time and energy on something that even members of the same institutes do not seem give much credence to it.

-------------------------
Simon Long CMgr FCMI FInstLM
 07 February 2013 04:31 PM
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roybowdler

Posts: 276
Joined: 25 July 2008

"Status" is a matter of opinion and is always relative. There are people out there who "talk down" IEng. Probably the same people who think that they are better than me because I drive a Volvo and they have a BMW (my last car was a "Beemer"). At least I can look down on the Ford brigade (my car before that was a Ford). Sad people obsessed with one-upmanship!

Some of the best engineers that I have met have been IEng and their "status" is sky high in my estimation.

I have also had the pleasure of meeting some superb Technicians. To quote a recent example a "toolmaker" who said to me "I'm proud to be a craftsman" - top "status" that one!

For the record I also deal every day with some "distinguished" CEng members and fellows of the IET, who fully respect each of the different type of registrant. There are also many IEng Fellows of the IET.

-------------------------
Roy Bowdler IEng FIET FCIPD
IET Registration & Standards

Edited: 07 February 2013 at 05:48 PM by roybowdler
 08 February 2013 05:55 PM
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mbirdi

Posts: 1907
Joined: 13 June 2005

Originally posted by: pmiller2006
The trouble is that IEng doesn't have any 'status' outside of the IET.

Then why do you continue to remain in registration, and pay hard earned money to the IET and EC?
Surely - and that's not a name - you should be decisive and resign. Are you an engineer or a mouse?
 08 February 2013 05:58 PM
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roybowdler

Posts: 276
Joined: 25 July 2008

pmiller

You have clearly followed the actions of Engineering Council in some depth. I can't verify the accuracy of your statements but taking them at face value, it is difficult to disagree with your comment - "but only to the extent that it supports and underpins the value of Chartered Engineer".Time to change then!

I am also unaware of how this is to be applied to FE which to some extent has suffered alongside IEng (Chicken and Egg?) from policies over the last 20 years, with the agenda dominated by Schools and Universities leaving FE to pick up the perceived "failures" of both. As you can gather I am fed up with the "S word", but I worked in close partnership (and made substantial investment) with an FE College for over a decade. The standard of Engineers produced (for most of the time with HNC/D but latterly FDSc/BSc) would "wipe the floor" with most BEng/MEng graduates of similar age in most mainstream engineering jobs. To be fair once we got a University (ex Poly) involved it got even better, so the argument is about pattern (i.e. part-time) rather than type of institution. Although many universities don't actually teach, which some people may not realise!

Returning to the last point where I disagree, IEng is a chartered standard, there are numerous bodies who award "Chartered recognition" for no more, as illustrated by the many IEng who also hold a chartered designation. I understand that those who hold the title "Chartered Engineer" would want to resist another engineering title with "chartered" in it. However Engineering Council using The UK Standard for Professional Engineering Competence registers three types of engineers by virtue of its authority a "chartered" body. It is therefore in my opinion reasonable to state, that a registrant has achieved "chartership" as an Incorporated Engineer.

I don't see any benefit in re-running the endless arguments about titles and the obsession with status has achieved absolutely zilch in my lifetime, it's a sociological argument and most engineers don't do "ologies".

There is no credible evidence that I know of which has illustrated anything negative about practising Incorporated Engineers. Most of the negativity has been generated as a by-product of the vain search for "status", assumed to derive from academic roots, by general elitism, or in some cases by petty one-upmanship by those who have so little to offer that they need to diminish others.

I noted in another thread that someone felt disadvantaged in their employers eyes by being judged IEng. I am saddened by this, in the same way as I am when I see anyone disadvantaged by other prejudices. If this employer recognises themselves, I would be delighted to discuss the rationale for this policy. There are perfectly good arguments which I would strongly support for designating some posts CEng, but in many cases it hasn't been thought through or even involved engineers. There are many top employers that understand and value each type of registrant, but they can't change the "CEng centric background music" which sometimes discourages individuals from seeking IEng.

I would argue that it is essential for any engineer meeting the IEng standard to register via the IET, take pride in what they have, actively engage and resist every attempt to diminish them. By doing so they will provide a service to their profession.

-------------------------
Roy Bowdler IEng FIET FCIPD
IET Registration & Standards

Edited: 12 February 2013 at 09:40 AM by roybowdler
 08 February 2013 06:41 PM
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mikestamp

Posts: 12
Joined: 20 July 2011

As a newly awarded IEng it is disappointing to see that people regard it as pointless. I am very pleased to use the IEng letters and feel no less of an Engineer than someone with CEng. As a young Engineer (26), i will progress to CEng in the near future, but seeing people who are CEng discredit IEng makes me want to not change over.

I have taken the Apprenticeship, ONC, HNC route with experience to get to IEng and not the stay in full time education route to BSc, with no experience route
 09 February 2013 09:21 AM
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DavidParr

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Mike, I speak as a PRA who has met and advised a large number of truly excellent engineers who have followed a similar career route to yourself. It is an excellent career path and produces some of the most talented and well rounded engineers.

In the real world (as oposed to the internet!) I have never come across a CEng who has belittled IEng as a chartered registration standard. IEng marks the standard for engineers who keep the wheels of industry turning.

-------------------------
David Parr BSc.CEng MIET
PRA
 11 February 2013 09:08 PM
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westonpa

Posts: 1771
Joined: 10 October 2007

How many IEng seek to upgrade to CEng?
How many CEng seek to upgrade to IEng?
There are many engineers in industry who keep the wheels turning and less than 1% of them are IEng or CEng.

I would like to see CEng and ICEng, i.e., chartered engineer and incorporated chartered engineer.

Regards.
 17 February 2013 06:18 PM
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jcm256

Posts: 1892
Joined: 01 April 2006

I would like to see CEng and ICEng, i.e., chartered engineer and incorporated chartered engineer.
..................................................................................................................................

A simple idea that would attract younger Engineer graduates. Who may fall short of experience and Masters Level for CEng, and pacify those who in meantime do not make it. Would be especially attractive to overseas candidates, which with each publication of new registered engineers, 99% of the CEng/s registered with one professional body is from overseas but not many incorporated engineers.


Don't forget the pins and ties should be worn more to promote I Eng.
ICEng pin would look just fine.

http://www.sappershop.com/index.php?cPath=126


Nice pin below:
http://www.engineersireland.ie...-Titles/Chartered.aspx
 21 February 2013 07:59 PM
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rcapol

Posts: 17
Joined: 23 December 2002

It's all rather academic unless we actually need the professional registration for our profession.
Currently I understand an individual could theoretically design a significant safety critical control system without any national (UK) regulatory or legal requirements, for any specific professional registration. But to fit a fuseboard at home, ahh, then you need to be a registered competent person for part P, (but not to design the protection devices!).
If we want recognition (ignoring obvious safety concerns) for any level of professional registration, we have to drive in some base requirements for competency in engineering. Competency assesed/confirmed by professional registration.
I would love to see industry embed registration in to positions in engineering. But if one of the largest engineering institutions and the RAE continuously make excuses for not doing anything, what chance do we individuals have.
 23 February 2013 11:06 AM
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westonpa

Posts: 1771
Joined: 10 October 2007

Originally posted by: rcapol
If we want recognition (ignoring obvious safety concerns) for any level of professional registration, we have to drive in some base requirements for competency in engineering. Competency assesed/confirmed by professional registration.

Please explain the systems for assessing and confirming competency, used in professional registration, and how robust they are.
I would love to see industry embed registration in to positions in engineering. But if one of the largest engineering institutions and the RAE continuously make excuses for not doing anything, what chance do we individuals have.

MLK and Gandhi did ok as individuals.

Regards.
 10 March 2013 09:55 PM
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rcapol

Posts: 17
Joined: 23 December 2002

Just taking my personal experience with the CEng process a few years back,
the application process, reviewed and initialled by previous mentors /managers /supervisors.
my CPD folder viewed
my interview
interviewing my work colleagues, supervisors
2 years structured training assesment
structured accredited degree,
2 years responsible experience assesment
Professional references
all seemed a pretty was a good and reasonable approach to me.
Seriously speaking though, it would be interesting you have had a different experience as it may indicate a lack of consistency in the process that may need addressing?

Some further membership requirements information here at this link.
http://www.theiet.org/membersh...equirements/index.cfm

I'm no Ghandhi, so I can't change things by myself I'm afraid, but the profession could be improved by requiring, as a minimum, professional registration for KEY activities.

Edited: 10 March 2013 at 10:06 PM by rcapol
 10 March 2013 10:39 PM
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westonpa

Posts: 1771
Joined: 10 October 2007

I am happy with that approach as you have an accredited degree + appropriate experience but professional status can be gained without an accredited degree and that is the inconsistency I am not in favour of.

I think the profession could be improved by more investment in manufacturing and young engineers and by taking the engineering message into schools to encourage youngsters to take it up. Apart from that I think there are enough laws and standards which offer good protection, so far as is reasonably practicable, without requiring compulsory professional registration unless a risk assessment or safety case shows otherwise.

The current set-up of voluntary PR seems to work well enough.

Regards.
 10 March 2013 10:42 PM
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westonpa

Posts: 1771
Joined: 10 October 2007

Originally posted by: rcapol
I'm no Ghandhi, so I can't change things by myself I'm afraid,

Neither am I.

Regards.
 11 March 2013 03:10 PM
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amillar

Posts: 1918
Joined: 28 May 2002

Originally posted by: westonpa
I am happy with that approach as you have an accredited degree + appropriate experience but professional status can be gained without an accredited degree and that is the inconsistency I am not in favour of.


I strongly disagree with this. Yes, applicants applying without a degree must expect to give a more robust account of their academic expertise than those with one, but it's still possible to find fully competent engineers whose academic qualifications do not meet the standard CEng requirements. Still, we're going over old ground again: http://www.theiet.org/forums/f...tid=243&threadid=42761 my view is covered in my first posting of 09/09/11.

-------------------------
Andy Millar CEng MIET CMgr MCMI

http://www.linkedin.com/in/millarandy

"The aim of argument, or of discussion, should not be victory, but progress." Joseph Joubert
 12 March 2013 09:27 PM
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westonpa

Posts: 1771
Joined: 10 October 2007

Originally posted by: amillar
I strongly disagree with this. Yes, applicants applying without a degree must expect to give a more robust account of their academic expertise than those with one, but it's still possible to find fully competent engineers whose academic qualifications do not meet the standard CEng requirements.

Whilst prof reg remains voluntary I am happy to go along with your approach and thinking. As things stand I think the current systems work quite well but if people want to start changing them then others may start asking for their own changes, after all if we are changing something then let's all put our requests in. It is unlikely that prof reg will become compulsory in the near future and I am ok with that.

Regards.
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