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CEng Registration?
Hi All,
I think I am eligible for CEng and currently in the process of my application, but the Assigned PRA insists to first go for IEng, as I am of the other view as I am well aware of my experience.(Total of 17 years experience, Post Degree experience is 10 years, Post diploma experience is 7 years).
I am of the view to submit my application for CEng at least, and if there is any discrepancy, shall be highlighted so then I can best prepare for 2nd or 3rd attempt, but since IEng is not priority to me, therefore, I prefer to go directly for CEng.
Please advise best case scenario and worst case scenario in case I opt for registration of CEng.

Muhammad Ali
5 Replies
Simon Barker
843 Posts
It's your decision what you apply for.  The PRA is only an advisor.

The difference between IEng and CEng isn't the number of years experience - it's about what you have done.  Do you think you meet all the UKSPEC requirements for CEng?
As Simon says, it is your decision as the PRA is only an advisor. However to first answer your question, the worst case scenario if you opt for CEng is that you are not there yet and are rejected where you would have achieved IEng, or alternatively you opt for IEng but you are actually ready for CEng and you therefore have to go through the process twice (you have to pay to application fees but more significantly have to do double the amount of work). Best case scenario is you are ready for CEng, apply and get registered.

As you can see from this, the most important thing to do is get a proper assessment of where you are so you know what you should be applying for. You need to have an honest discussion with your PRA to determine why he/she thinks IEng is appropriate and what the gaps with CEng are, following which you can make a plan on how to fill those gaps and you can decide when you will be ready to apply for CEng and whether to apply for IEng in the meantime.

It may be that you are ready for CEng already but the PRA has not seen all the evidence. If so, this should come out in your discussions. Remember that a PRA is only aware of what you tell him/her and provides advice based on that. However, the same is true of the decision made by the CEng interviewers so if you can't persuade your PRA, will you be able to make a case at interview?

Best wishes with whatever the outcome.

I would suggest  that the secret lies in the matrix at the back of the UK Spec gaps in CEng do not make an IEng - they are different. A PRA should be able to advise what's needed, how to present it and advise whether the candidate is working at CEng or IEng.

Regards Jim W
Roy Bowdler
820 Posts
The situation that you describe has vexed everyone involved in registration at the IET for many years.

Historically, UK professional institutions registered either Chartered Engineers or Incorporated Engineers. Most people chose on the basis of their academic qualifications, which institution to approach. It was possible though not common, to achieve CEng by long experience (aged over 35) and being invited to produce a special dissertation (The Technical Report Route). But usually if you lacked a CEng accredited degree, you would be classified an “Associate Member” or advised to approach an IEng institution.  

Using UK-SPEC it is not possible to reliably and accurately divide experienced engineers into IEng and CEng, because across the very wide range of activities that engineers carry out, there is considerable overlap. However, the IET applies a very thorough process in line with Engineering Council regulations to come to a professional opinion. Engineering Council rules require someone to apply for only one category, not “either/or”.

A Professional Registration Advisor will do their best, with the benefit of knowing about previous cases and latest trends in interpretation by IET assessors, to guide you.  

Since you do not seem to attach much value to IEng, there seems little point in applying for it.  If you want CEng then that is what you should apply for, if you can gain credible endorsement from others who are in a good position to judge your work.  If a PRA thinks that you are IEng then you should understand that some IET assessors, may also share that view.  Therefore, your CEng application should be very well developed to reduce the risk.

If you are unsuccessful, you will be advised about what to do before applying again.

Many thanks for saying in full what I was trying to say in a brief time before attending a conference.

James, I was basing my response on the inference of "candidate thinks he is CEng, PRA thinks he is IEng so I will assume that one or the other is right". I wasn't intending to make a judgement on which is correct as the PRA has the experience in these judgments but can only base that judgement on what he/she has been told. I do agree that there are differences between CEng and IEng, but as Roy says there is often considerable overlap. I have seen many CEng who spend a lot of their time doing IEng work, while I have seen a number of other CEng who I wouldn't trust to do an IEng task. I have also seen a few IEng doing CEng work but generally that situation changes as the individuals apply for CEng as soon as they are able, due to the perceived higher status of CEng.


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