Our present civilization depends on technology and so will its future. Choice of projects from their macro-objectives, technical and economic analysis; their implementation through micro-planning, following least cost solution, for the benefit of the entrepreneur and the society at large, perforce are in the hands of the engineers. For efficient operation, which brings about commercial success, a plant or a system has to be in the hands of the engineers. Therefore, the tasks involving systems/ project planning, designing project implementation, and testing for quality, performance and certification, needs to be entrusted to engineers.
However, an engineering degree alone does not enable a person to undertake and discharge these responsibilities. The practical application of the knowledge is a key aspect in the development of competent professional engineers. It is essential therefore, that a young graduate is given an opportunity to develop the ability to apply his/her knowledge to provide cost-effective and sustainable solutions to better serve the society.
Engineering expertise is considered to have two stage-bases: i) Engineering knowledge the know-what, and ii) engineering process the know-how. Initially, a graduate engineer needs to go through a process to acquire know-how that is known as training. This period of development is known as Initial Professional Development (IPD) and is an essential part of the engineer’s formation process. An academic degree may give a person the initial know-what and qualify him or her to enter onto the staircase of professional excellence. At this juncture they need to acquire additional skills to climb up the stairs of professional competence to perform at various levels of responsibility.
Every employer or organization will seek to train its engineers. Training is a central as well as a line responsibility and can be both formal and informal. The latter includes self-education and a continuing education for a person to remain fit and up-dated to adapt to any change in technology and responsibility. Employer would see to it, because he needs an appropriate person to do the job. On the other hand, the person will volunteer in this respect in his or her own interest, to remain in the job in the first place, and for personal improvement and self-esteem, if not any thing else. It is both in the interest of the employer and the employee that training should be administered and continuing education should be encouraged.
Professional excellence achieved through training also increases the bargaining power of a person wherever they go to seek employment. It can not be over-emphasized that the engineers of a developing country should seek trans-boundary employment in the twenty-first century. To prepare for it, one should be trained to such standards as are internationally recognized.
It is felt from within the engineering community of Bangladesh that professional attainment through training and experience at work place should be measured to some standard before they are recognized as professional engineers. With this end in view, the Bangladesh Professional Engineers Registration Board (BPERB) has established the standards that will be required for an engineer to qualify as a “Professional Engineer” (PEng.) in order to operate within Bangladesh. BPERB has also set up an implementation procedure for the assessment of engineers wishing to be recognized as Professional Engineers, and the maintenance of a register of engineers who have been accepted as meeting the required standards for Professional Engineer.
A further factor influencing the introduction of a register of professional engineers in Bangladesh is the forthcoming introduction of World Trade Organization (WTO) sponsored General Agreement on Trade and Services (GATS) treaty. This will have the effect of removing barriers to the free movement of professional engineering services between nations, provided the professional engineers meet certain agreed international standard. It is the BPERB’s declared intention to seek international recognition for professional engineers on its register and the introduction of this registration process is the first step to achieve this.
It is gratifying to note that in the recent International Engineering Meeting 2003 held in New Zealand Bangladesh has been admitted as a Provisional Member of the Engineers Mobility Forum. This is a recognition of the assessment and registration system put in place by BPERB by an international body which maintains an International Register of Professional Engineers. It is the desired goal of BPERB to seek Full Membership of the Engineers Mobility Forum (EMF) so that our Professional Engineers can also be entered in the International Register.
Who is a Professional Engineer ?
- be technically competent (from the beginning to the close of his/her career).
- be a conceptualizer (able to see the whole as part of a system).
- be able to plan.
- be able to manage the change – when condition changes s/he must be ready to modify while maintaining the goals of the plan.
- be competent in design – able to assemble facts, arrange them, make the analysis and use judgment in drawing conclusions.
- be cost conscious and able to make meaningful cost comparisons.
- be able to communicate readily – to write, to sketch, to speak and above all to listen and respond.
- develop managerial skills. People are a part of most solutions..
- be sensitive to other people’s ideas, yet steadfast and having made decisions, be able to secure action.
- be an advisor – able to present options and evaluate the impacts and alternatives.
- be able to lead – should have leadership qualities and style. (Having reached conclusions s/he must be willing to initiate action and direct the effort of all members of the team.)
- be an advocate – in his/her service to public s/he will experience situations where s/he must champion the conclusions reached by his/her professional competence.
- be motivated to maintain his/her competence by continuous education.
- have commitment to his/her professional society – should practice actively in his/her professional society, and contribute his/her abilities and competencies to enhance the profession.
- show by example that ethics and high integrity are fundamental in professional service.
The entry requirements for applying for registration as a Professional Engineer (PEng.)
- An engineering degree recognized by the Institution of Engineers, Bangladesh.
- Corporate membership of the IEB
- A minimum of 7 years work experience of an engineering nature after graduation, 2 of which must have been in a responsible engineering capacity. This should be evident in his/her Career Report to be submitted in a given format along with his/her application.
- Satisfactory achievement of the Core Training Objectives as defined by BPERB.
- Evidence of achieving a specified amount of CPD in the last 12 months.
Continuing Professional Development
Continuing Professional Development (CPD) is the systematic maintenance, improvement and broadening of knowledge and skill, and the development of personal qualities necessary for the execution of professional and technical duties throughout your working life.
CPD may be achieved by attending or undertaking: –
- Courses, seminars, workshops and technical meetings organized by the IEB, Employers, Universities, Institute and other professional bodies or course providers approved by BPERB.
- Conferences and the IEB Convention.
- Distance learning e.g. Correspondence courses and other supervised study packages.
- Research and post qualification studies.
- Technical authorship or preparing a presentation for an organized training event. This to normally count 1 day CPD.
- Lecturing for those who are not regularly employed as lecturers.
Applicants applying for registration after 1st January 2003 must be able to demonstrate that they have completed a minimum of 4 days CPD during the previous 12 months. After 1st January 2004 this will rise to 5 days. Evidence of this CPD must be enclosed with the application for registration.
The Core Training Objectives
Core Training Objectives, which will form the general basis of all applications for registration as Professional Engineers are given below. These Core objectives have been written to permit maximum flexibility in order to accommodate the wide range of disciplines associated with engineering. It is expected that an intending applicant will have general, and in some cases specific, experience in dealing with the issue and problems listed among the Core Training Objectives.
During the period of Initial Professional Development (prior to applying for registration) the graduate engineer will be expected to develop many of the skills defined in these core training objectives and will be expected to demonstrate this through the writing of a 2000 word report/essay (to be produced after the application is accepted for consideration). The report/essay writing exercise shall be held under controlled conditions (similar to examination conditions) and shall be followed by oral presentation to the Assessors.
The Core Training Objectives are set out in four sections:
- Personal – effective communication and interpersonal skills, leadership and professional commitment;
- Engineering – identification and solution of engineering problems and the safe and economic implementation of the solutions;
- Management and Economics – efficient procurement and management of resources within economic and regulatory constraints to achieve the engineering objectives;
- Environment, Health and Safety – awareness of environment, health and safety in Engineering solutions and processes.
The Core Training Objectives are as follows:
- Demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of local, national and international current affairs and how they affect the engineering profession. The applicant should be familiar with relevant journals, newsletters, electronic sources, etc., which provide relevant information. The applicant has to demonstrate how such affairs impacted his/her work or the working environment of engineering projects with which he/she had been associated.
- Communicate with others in a work situation, at all levels orally, in writing and by presentation. The applicant during the written exercise and the subsequent oral review will also demonstrate communication skills to the assessors.
- Ability to work in and make effective contributions to team activities. The applicant needs to demonstrate that he/she has the requisite experience of executing engineering works, which involved multidisciplinary teamwork. The role played by the applicant in the team will need to be highlighted.
- Maintain personal commitment to the engineering profession and to the employer. The applicant should have been actively involved in IEB activities and such initiatives, which promote the cause of the engineering profession. Additionally, the personal initiative taken to augment the engineering works entrusted to him/her by the employer needs to be demonstrated.
- Knowledge of the Code of Professional Conduct prescribed by the Institution of Engineers, Bangladesh. Mere knowledge of the Code is not enough. The applicant should be able to cite instances where during his/her professional career personal initiatives were taken to abide by the Code in order to uphold the dignity of the profession.
- Demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of engineering procedures. This will include Planning, Programming, Progressing the implementation process, etc.
- Be able to identify engineering problems and define possible solutions. The applicant should have suitable experience of solving engineering problems during course of his/her professional career. Such problems may include investigation and analysis of design, maintenance, safety issues, etc.
- Conduct appropriate investigation and analyses to evaluate possible solutions to engineering problems. This may involve use of Information Technology in specific cases. The applicants should be familiar with the modern tools of analyses currently available to an engineer in solving practical problems. It is also to be demonstrated that he/she has gained a thorough appreciation of the fundamental principles learned during his/her academic studies.
- Take responsibility for the management of engineering works or parts of engineering works and demonstrate leadership qualities in the style of management. The applicant should have had experience in providing engineering leadership in a work situation where he/she had applied independent judgment and engineering knowledge in providing solutions.
- Management and Economics
- Manage contractual issues by having practical experience of administration of appropriate form of contract. The applicant should be aware of the implications of various clauses of different contracts and demonstrate his/her expertise of having real world experience of applying them. The applicant should know how all parties to a contract exercise their duties and responsibilities.
- Contribute to the management of projects. It is expected that the applicant will have at least two years of relevant engineering experience in a responsible position where he/she had to manage projects or parts of large projects independently.
- Set up and mange appropriate MIS system to ensure transfer of information in the work place situation.
- Demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of how work is financed and how funds are obtained and managed.
- Manage the application and know the limitations of established best practice as defined by Standards and Codes: National and International.
- Formulate and manage quality plans. A quality plan goes beyond just quality control and involves formulation of an overall implementation plan and procedure to ensure quality work to be accomplished to a specified standard, time and budget.
- Be able to identify acceptable quality and know the actions to be taken when quality of work is unacceptable. He/she should have gained some experience in the use of quality assurance tools in implementation of manufacturing, construction or maintenance processes.
- Ability to plan and manage the effective uses of resources and understand how it contributes to the financial performance of an organization. The proper use of resources means a judicious use of the “five Ms” – Men, Method, Materials, Machines and Money.
- Environment, Health and Safety
- In deriving engineering solutions, take account of regulations and best practice on environment issues. He/she should understand the relevance of an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) report as it affects the engineering work undertaken in his/her organization/project/industry.
- Be able to take responsibility for personal and collective safety in the work situation. Should be aware of his/her responsibilities to employers, employees and general public.
- Produce engineering solutions in compliance with relevant regulations and Best Practice concerning health, safety and risk not only for a work site but for public at large.
- Manage and apply safe systems
BPERB has established that the minimum requirement for registration as a professional engineer is 7 years experience in work of an engineering nature, at least 2 of which must have been in a responsible capacity. Only applicants who can demonstrate that they have achieved this will be allowed to enter the registration process. The career report, which must be submitted in a given format supplied by BPERB with the application form for registration, is the applicants’ opportunity to demonstrate they have required engineering experience. It is therefore essential that the applicant details at least the last 7 years of work experience in the career report. S/he should give dates and positions held over this period and should describe the level and limits of responsibility held in each position. For the purpose of registration, “responsible capacity” is defined as having responsibility for the financial and technical outcome of work of an engineering nature. It is acknowledged that engineering works vary greatly in size and complexity and the Board will not demand complete responsibility for excessively large or complex works. The applicant should have held responsibility for a part of a large work or all of a small works, part of a complex work or all of a straightforward works. The assessors will apply a certain amount of judgement in their decisions.
The Career Report is not intended to be an onerous task for the applicant but it does give the assessors an opportunity to eliminate those who clearly do not meet the requirements of the Board. The Career Report, to be submitted in the given format designed by the Board, should demonstrate the requirements noted above.
The 2000 word report/essay
The Professional Engineer, registered with the BPERB, will be expected to have obtained certain key knowledge, skills and understanding of the engineering work environment and should be able to demonstrate these through their performance at work. These key knowledge, skills and understanding are defined by BPERB as the core competences of a professional engineer and are divided into 4 sections and explained earlier in this booklet. The Professional Engineer is expected to have achieved these core competences and the process of registration is designed to confirm this. The assessors, on whose decision, the applicant’s admission is based, have three principal sources of information on which to judge whether the applicant demonstrates the qualities of a professional engineer. The first is the Career Report, the second the questionnaires from the three sponsors, completed in confidence by Fellows of the IEB, known to the applicant and the third is the 2000 word report/essay which the applicant is required to write at a venue to be advised by the BPERB once the application has been accepted.
The core competences are divided into the following 4 sections;
- Personal – effective communication and interpersonal skills, leadership and professional commitment;
- Engineering – identification and solution of engineering problems and the safe and economic implementation of the solutions.
- Management and Economics – efficient procurement and management of resources within economic and regulatory constraints to achieve the engineering objectives.
- Environment, Health and Safety – awareness of environment, health and safety in engineering solutions and processes.
Within these 4 sections, there are a total of 21 separate core competences each defined in detail earlier in this booklet. The BPERB recognizes that some applicants will not have the necessary opportunities to have acquired all of these competences. However, a candidate is expected to demonstrate that he or she has achieved at least 15 of the total of 21 including at least 3 from each of the 4 sections.
The 2000 word report/essay is the main opportunity for the applicant to convince the assessors that s/he possesses and has been consistently demonstrating in his/her work performance, the required competence. It should therefore not simply be a narrative of activities carried out by the applicant but must describe the “why and how” of the work activities. It should also indicate the applicant’s involvement and the role s/he played in the process. The report will be expected to demonstrate that the applicant understands the underlying engineering, economic and management principles behind the work activities. Whilst it is not essential, the BPERB recommends that the 2000 word report/essay should be written around a specific project or a series of projects that will give the applicant the opportunity to demonstrate his/her personal involvement in the process.The report/essay will be written on pre-printed paper provided by the BPERB. In the right margin, there is a column for the applicant to indicate in the appropriate place, the reference number of the core competence (see pages 7-10) that is being demonstrated. The assessors will expect to see more than one instance where the competence is demonstrated as isolated instances will not convince the assessors that the applicant can consistently meet the standards required of a Professional Engineer.
The report/essay should be written in English and be of minimum length 1500 words but should not exceed 2000 words. Once the candidate’s application has been accepted and the BPERB is satisfied that the minimum requirements of experience and responsibility have been met, the applicant will be called to attend a venue to write the 2000 word report/essay under controlled conditions. There will be a time limit of 3.5 hours set for the report and the only reference material allowed will be this booklet “Getting Registered as a Professional Engineer”. Assessment of the applicant’s suitability for registration as a Professional Engineer will normally be based on both this report and the material submitted earlier in the process and oral assessment.
The registered Professional Engineer will also be expected to possess the following qualities which the 2000 word report/essay should demonstrate;
- a sound understanding of engineering principles;
- the ability to use relevant existing technology coupled with the ability to locate and use new technologies to benefit work and engineering generally;
- the ability to identify and apply appropriate scientific methods to produce alternative solutions to complex engineering problems;
- independent judgment in the application of engineering science and knowledge, particularly in the chosen field;
- the leadership skills to plan, manage and direct the human, material and financial resources required to solve complex problems, often in multi-disciplinary teams;
- a high level of understanding and application of engineering economics;
- commitment to the public interest in all aspects of work, including health, safety, risk, financial, commercial, legal, environmental, social, economic safe and sustainable solutions;
- a base of Information Technology (IT) skills.
Any application for Registration must be supported by three Sponsors who are Fellows of the Institution of Engineers, Bangladesh with at least ten years standing. The sponsors must know the applicant personally and be convinced in every respect that s/he is a fit and proper person to be selected. The sponsors will be required to complete a separate confidential form giving their own impressions of the applicant and reasons why they consider him/her to be a fit person to be registered as Professional Engineer. This confidential document will be submitted separately direct to the Registrar of the BPERB. As more Professional Engineers are registered it is the intention of the BPERB to change from the year 2005 the requirement for sponsorship from Fellows of the IEB to sponsorship by Professional Engineers who have been registered for at least three years.
Submission for registration as a Professional Engineer
Applicants for registration as Professional Engineers must submit, in English, the following documentation with their submission;
- Complete application form complete with names of 3 sponsors.
- Career report giving details of the previous 7 years of their engineering career, detailing the dates and positions held and demonstrating that the applicant has been in responsible capacity for at least 2 years.
- Evidence of membership of IEB.
- Evidence of academic qualification.
- The Career Report should be submitted typed in the given format.
- References from 3 sponsors known to the candidate to be submitted separately in sealed envelope.
- Two copies of passport size photograph
The submission documents should be submitted to The Registrar, The Bangladesh Professional Engineer Registration Board.
- The 2000 word Report/Essay.
On receipt of application the Board will determine suitability of the applicant to appear in a designated place to produce the 2000 word report/essay under controlled condition.
- The Assessment Process
The Assessment will be a desk-based process followed by an interview and the panel will be seeking to judge from the applicant’s submission whether the applicant meets the requirements of a Registered Professional Engineer, as set out in this document. They will look for the submission to demonstrate that;
- the applicant has proven technical, communication and commercial competences; acquired a working knowledge of statutory and contract procedures and administration; exercised independent judgement requiring both responsible experience and the application of engineering principles’
- the applicant has acquired an understanding of economic, financial, safety and environmental considerations;
- the applicant has a knowledge and understanding of the progress of technology through innovation;
- the applicant has demonstrated qualities of vision and leadership; is observant, articulate and clear thinking and can inspire confidence;
- the applicant has a continuing commitment to professional development
The assessors will only call applicants who write satisfactory 2000 word Report/Essay for an interview for clarification of the issues raised in the Sponsors’ Questionnaires, Career Report and the 2000 word Report/Essay and to confirm that he/she has achieved the Core Training Objectives.
The first part of the interview will be 10-12 minute presentation by the candidate of his/her career, highlighting the relevant experience as contained in the career report. The presentation may be by the use of A4 size flip charts or by lap top computer.
The second part of the interview will comprise probing by the assessors/reviewers of the candidates’ written report/essay and oral presentation to ascertain candidates’ achievement of the core training objectives.