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Last edited 19 Jan 2021
The term ‘engineer’ is a very broad one, covering a range of disciplines that use the sciences and mathematics to develop solutions for technical applications. Typically on a construction project, a structural engineer and building services engineer will be part of the core consultant team.
In 1965, an initiative by the Chartered Engineering Institutions to increase conformity in professional engineering qualifications resulted in the creation of the Council of Engineering Institutions which held a register of Chartered Engineers, Technician Engineers and Engineering Technicians.
Following a Committee of Inquiry under Sir Monty Finniston in the 1970’s a report ‘Engineering Our Future’ was published in 1980 which considered whether engineering should be regulated. The Secretary of State for Trade, felt that self-regulation was sufficient but that statutory regulation might be appropriate in some areas, such as the nuclear industry.
The Engineering Council was created in 1981, inheriting the register from the Council of Engineering Institutions. It is now the regulatory body for the engineering profession in the UK. It defines and maintains standards of professional competence and ethics as set out in the UK Standard for Professional Engineering Competence and the Information and Communications Technology Technician Standard.
It describes its mission as ‘To maintain internationally recognised standards of competence and commitment for the engineering profession and to license competent institutions to champion the standards for the deliverance of public benefit.’
It holds the national register of more than 222,000 engineers and technicians who have been assessed and awarded the professional titles; Engineering Technicians (EngTech), Incorporated Engineers (IEng), Chartered Engineers (CEng) or Information and Communications Technology Technicians (ICTTech).
To gain these titles applicants must join a relevant professional engineering institution licensed by the Engineering Council to assess candidates. Award and retention of these titles gives confidence in their knowledge, experience and commitment.
Registration is renewable annually. Fees are collected by the registering institution, which will also monitors conduct and continuing professional development (cpd); that is activities undertaken by members of the register to ensure their skills and knowledge remain up-to-date.
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