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Engineering licenses are not for everyone

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A license to practice engineering is a privilege granted by a state to call oneself an “engineer” and to practice “engineering” before the public. In most states, these are protected terms having very specific meaning to the public. To become licensed as an “engineer”, an individual has to be willing to meet a minimum standard of education, experience, and examination to demonstrate their technical competence and their concern for the welfare of the public. The educational requirement is provided by an institution offering an engineering program that has been reviewed and accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET). The degree awarded by such an institution allows one to claim that one is a graduate of an accredited engineering program but not that one is an engineer. The experience requirement is satisfied by engaging in the “practice of engineering” as defined in the empowering statutes of each state engineering licensing board. The examination requirement is met by passing two eight-hour national examinations prepared by the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES), which are offered twice each year. The philosophy and content of the national examinations is the subject of this article

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Industry Applications Magazine, IEEE  (Volume:3 ,  Issue: 3 )