Albuquerque, New Mexico
June 24, 2001
June 24, 2001
June 27, 2001
6.132.1 - 6.132.6
Access to the Fundamentals of Engineering Examination by Engineering Technology BS Graduates
John A. Weese, Ph.D., P.E., Texas A&M University
Graduates of baccalaureate engineering technology (ET) programs accredited by the Technology Accreditation Commission of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (TAC/ABET) are well qualified to sit for the Fundamentals of Engineering examination (FE examination) as graduating seniors. In some states this practice is allowed. However, the path registration as a Professional Engineer (PE) usually involves somewhat different conditions from those for graduates of engineering programs accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (EAC/ABET). This paper discusses the importance of providing ET graduates access to the FE examination as graduating seniors, steps that may prove successful for negotiating access, and suggestions for maintaining access once it is obtained. Programs in the commonwealth of Virginia and the state of Texas are described, along with the experiences of ET graduates and the FE examination.
The earning of a baccalaureate degree in engineering technology is not the normal starting point for obtaining status as a registered professional engineer. However, graduation from a BS program engineering technology that is TAC/ABET accredited provides assurance of quality at a level where the graduating senior should be granted access to the FE examination because the TAC/ABET accredited programs are quite capable of standing on their own merits. The broader interpretations of engineering afforded by the Engineering Accreditation Commission’s Criteria 2000 1 may be helpful.
There are many sound reasons why seniors in TAC/ABET accredited ET programs should be allowed to sit for the FE examination. Their education suits them well for performing competitively on the examination itself. Engineering technology curricula are properly positioned to equip graduates to take the general FE examination as well as most of the discipline specific FE exams that have been offered since 1996. The background in mathematics, basic sciences, engineering sciences, engineering design and the support areas provided in TAC/ABET accredited BSET programs, while different from those in engineering curricula, none the less provide ET seniors a solid base to compete effectively on the FE examination.
The increased globalization of engineering practice is bringing together people with many different engineering backgrounds to work as teams on multi-faceted engineering systems. Some of these engineering backgrounds are more diverse than is found in the differences between engineering and ET curricula in the US. Only some of the engineering team members from other nations are likely to seek permission to take the FE examination, their presence in
Proceedings of the 2001 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright 2001, American Society for Engineering Education
Weese, J. (2001, June), Access To Fundamentals Of Engineering Examination By Engineering Technology Graduates Paper presented at 2001 Annual Conference, Albuquerque, New Mexico. https://peer.asee.org/8881
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