One of the requirements for your application in your professional recognition to APEGA is the Work Experience Record (WER). The WER is part of the membership application that is necessary to detail your engineering work experience. It is the record to describe your practical experience in your career and emphasize how the technical theories were applied in this work experience.
Work experience gained before graduating from the Bachelor’s degree like on the job training, internship or co-op can be credited as the discretion of the Board of Examiner (BOE). Post-graduate degrees, that is Master of Science and Doctoral Degrees can also gain credit depends on the guidelines set by the BOE. In total, the work experience must be equivalent to at least 48 months of Engineering Work Experience.
The Board of Examiner of APEGA look not only on the time spent on your experiences but on the quality of the experience you gained. The emphasis on their evaluation of your professional experience are outlines as follows:
1. Application of Theory
The Engineer must show that at least 2 years of the minimum 4 years of experience the application of theory in their respective discipline. These includes solving problems and providing solutions, preparing and checking the designs, evidence of sound technical judgement and practices and demonstrated familiarity with the use and application of pertinent technologies, procedures, systems, and programs. The application of theory learned from the classroom must be visible base from the outcome of the study. The evidences that can show on how the theory were applied are the design products, documents, drawings and other tangible output can be interpreted as the outcome of the application of these theories.
The management skills must include: managing project resources, planning, scheduling, budgeting, and cost control, developing team skills and understanding professional and business ethics and keeping appropriate records. In different discipline, there are many ways on how the management aspect of engineering can be evaluated. These can be in the form of managing people, resources, equipment or even sensitive documents and files. The experience gained by the Engineer must show that he/she is aware of the significance of managing the resources as he/she is directly involved in implementing or designing the system.
3. Practical Experience
The practical experience must include but not limited to being exposed to work-site operations, recognizing limitations in designs, interpretations or recommendations, and understanding the application of pertinent codes and regulations. Understanding the interdependence of disciplines, systems and activities, and developing working relationships among peers and subordinates. The practical experience must not focus on the routine work of the Engineer in the workplace. He must understand and has the opportunity to lead, direct or decide base on his engineering judgement.
4. Societal Implications
Your experience must show evidence that you are familiar with safety as applied in the workplace, how engineering or geoscience benefits the public, the roles and responsibilities of regulatory agencies in your specific field of professional practice. In any discipline of engineering, safety is always at the forefront of practicing the profession. This must be clear and evaluated in all manners of a professional. In making decisions, designs and giving directions to subordinates – the Engineer must show a wide understanding of the outcome of his actions.
Your communication skills must include writing technical reports and making presentations to management, peers, or the public. It must be clear in writing your WER that you are able to understand and convey your ideas to the general public not only to peers. You must have the knowledge to communicate languages that are understandable to everybody. This can be evaluated by being directly involve in writing technical communications among peers, giving clear instructions and followed by subordinates and easily understood by all.
The 5 guidelines discussed above must be present in writing your Work Experience Record (WER). These will be the basis of the technical evaluation by the BOE whether you have enough experiences to be called as Professional Engineer. An electronic form to write and input your work experience is available at the APEGA website (www.apega.ca).
APEGA will soon introduce competency-based assessments (CBA) for engineering applicants wishing to become Professional Engineers or Licensees. Until CBA is in place, all applicants will continue using the Work Experience Record (WER).
To help with this change, engineering applicants applying for a P.Eng. or Licensee licence can use a competency self-assessment worksheet (CSAW) to compare their competencies with APEGA’s minimum requirements. This will help them determine whether they should continue their application or wait until CBA is implemented. For more information on completing the CSAW, visit the APEGA website instructions.
Most of the information above was lifted from the APEGA website and through this article, the reader can have an insight of the existing procedure and information on how to gain their Professional License as Engineer in Canada.