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Professional Credentialing Of Construction Students As Associate Constructors

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2002 Annual Conference


Montreal, Canada

Publication Date

June 16, 2002

Start Date

June 16, 2002

End Date

June 19, 2002



Conference Session

Trends in Constr. Engr. Educ. I

Page Count


Page Numbers

7.946.1 - 7.946.6



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Paper Authors

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Virendra Varma

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Main Menu Session 1421

Professional Credentialing of Construction Students: The Changing Face of Construction Engineering Education

Virendra K. Varma, Ph.D., P.E. Missouri Western State College


Engineering Students in their senior year, especially those in the field of civil engineering, sit for the EIT/FE examination. Though, it may not be their program requirement, majority of seniors do generally opt to take the examination. Construction students, however, seldom have had the same opportunity to take a national examination to qualify as a certified professional constructor. With the recent push from the American Institute of Constructors (AIC), the scenario may change in the near future. This paper addresses the issues related to professional credentialing of college seniors enrolled in construction engineering and technology programs as Associate Constructors (AC). The AIC's certification of construction professionals may become the construction industry's equivalent of engineering profession's EIT/PE. Fundamentals of AIC certification program are discussed along with some pros and cons of the student certification process in the overall context of constructor certification in the continental United States.


Since the 1980s, there has been a great push from the construction industry to recognize construction as a distinct discipline separate from civil engineering. The term 'Constructor' is now a widely-used and a well-recognized term. If design is the domain of engineers, building is that of the constructors. Though design and building (constructing) can not be separated from each other as only when the two act in concert with each other that a physical structure can be created, yet design and construction are different in their content, form, and shape.

In comparison to the term 'engineer', which has long existed in the dictionary, the word 'constructor' has only been added in the dictionary in recent times. The Associated General Contractors of America has gone a step further and done a great service to the construction profession by calling its monthly magazine by the title, 'CONSTRUCTOR.' This publication has given much exposure and credence to the profession of construction.

Construction engineering, like civil engineering, is a very broad profession and has undefined limits. Like civil engineering, it has its own code of ethics. According to the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), " a profession is the pursuit of a learned art in a spirit of public service. A profession is a calling in which special knowledge and skill are used in a distinctly intellectual plane in the service of humanity, and in which the successful expression of creative ability and application of professional knowledge are the primary rewards…….Also implied is the conscious recognition of the profession's obligation to society to advance its standards and to prescribe the conduct of its members."1

Proceedings of the 2002 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2002, American Society for Engineering Education

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Varma, V. (2002, June), Professional Credentialing Of Construction Students As Associate Constructors Paper presented at 2002 Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada. 10.18260/1-2--10582

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