All Engineering Professionals make a commitment to maintaining their competency in order to meet both current and future challenges within their industry. Engineers must undertake Continuing Professional Development (CPD) to ensure that their skills and knowledge are always up to date. CPD has become an integral part of a professional engineer’s life. With CPD courses for Civil Engineers increasing in demand, we’re delivering an article to help assist any current and future engineers.
Civil Engineers, Structural Engineers, Chartered Engineers, Engineering Technicians, ICT Technicians and Incorporated Engineers all make a commitment to maintaining their competence through CPD. Professional development courses for engineers are giving the above engineer types an opportunity to further develop their training whilst progress their careers.
The activities you undertake depend on where you are in your career and what you’re looking to achieve, which will vary in relation to your circumstances, needs and objectives. CPD examples for engineering professionals must cover a wide range of topics that will go beyond the normal knowledge of structural or civil engineering. These topics will include the need to keep up to date with changes to design codes and standards, changes to construction methods and keeping abreast of building standards legislation.
This article provides an overview of CPD for Civil Engineers, Structural Engineers, some simple CPD examples for engineering professionals as well as a brief overview of the Institution of Structural Engineer’s (IStructE) CPD requirements, ICE CPD Hours requirements and other main institutional bodies.
CPD Examples for Engineering Professionals
A common misconception when it comes to CPD is that it always means paying to attend training courses or seminars. Although paid training courses certainly count as CPD, learning goes far beyond just this avenue and very often can cost nothing other than an investment in your time and effort. CPD is any learning activity that enables an engineering professional to develop their competencies relevant to their profession. Continuing Professional Development is a holistic activity, not just relating to technical knowledge, but should contain an appropriate balance of all professional skills. Great CPD examples include – seminars, educational events, online E-Learning, private study, work experience and other types of work-based learning.
CPD must be relevant to the type of work being undertaken by the engineer and should be able to demonstrate necessary steps taken to remain competent to their chosen area of speciality. It is essentially learning that can be divided into seven broad types:
- Work-based learning & development
- CPD Seminars for Structural Engineers
- Structural engineering CPD courses, seminars and conferences
- Professional body learning events
- Further self-directed learning
- Mentoring and coaching
- Industry-related education
Not all learning takes place within a group or facilitator situation. For more information on the various types of CPD, such as structured, self-directed learning please visit CPD explained.
Who are the governing bodies for Civil and Structural Engineers?
A commitment to Continued Professional Development is a requirement to be a member of many professional engineering organisations including;
- Chartered Institute of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE)
- Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE)
- Institute of Highway Engineers (IHE)
- Institute of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE)
- Institute of Structural Engineers (IStructE)
- Institute of Engineering and Technology (IET)
The Engineering Council is Britain’s regulatory authority for registration of Chartered and Incorporated engineers and engineering technicians.
Institution of Structural Engineer’s (IStructE) CPD Requirements
The Institution of Structural Engineers is the world’s leading professional body for qualifications and standards in structural engineering with over 27,000 members operating across 105 countries. IStructE acknowledges that CPD can be undertaken in a number of different ways. 30 hours per year of Continuing Professional Development is the expectation for structural engineering professionals, however, IStructE has recognised that some members may have periods where they need not undertake their normal level of structural engineering CPD.
The expectation is 90 hours over a period of three years to take into account times of reduced CPD. If there is a valid reason why you cannot gain 30 hours of CPD in a given year – or you do not manage to gain 90 hours over three years – then this will be taken into account during assessment. If a member does not comply with IStructE CPD policy, i.e. does not submit an appropriate CPD record, they may ultimately be removed from membership.
Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) CPD Hours Requirements
The Institution of Civil Engineers is an independent professional association for civil engineers and a charitable body in the United Kingdom. As some people refer to as ICE CPD, the Institute of Structural Engineers award professional qualifications that are the industry standard, lead the debates around infrastructure and the built environment and provide an unmatched level of training, knowledge and thinking. As an ICE member, you will be required to manage your own Continuing Professional Development. This means being able to send an annual record of your past year’s ICE CPD and your plans for the year ahead. ICE CPD Hours Requirements state;