Frequently Asked Questions
How do I become a Registered Engineer in Trinidad and Tobago?
Following are the requirements to become a Registered Engineer in Trinidad and Tobago
- The main prerequisite is graduation from an accredited Engineering Programme The academic requirements are also satisfied by success in the UK Engineering Council exams, discontinued in 2011, and replaced by the City and Guilds Graduate Diploma (BSc equivalent) and the Postgraduate Diploma (MSc equivalent).
2 If graduated after 2009, a further requirement is evidence of further learning which should be equivalent to an appropriate Master’s Degree. Although an appropriate Master’s Degree is a sure route it is not necessarily the only route once there is equivalency in the number and level of ‘credits’ otherwise acquired.
3 The Engineer can only apply for Registration after no less than 4 years in engineering training/practice after he/she graduates.
4 Once the above criteria are met, the Engineer can submit his/her application to the Board (an application Fee required). Application Forms and instructions are available on the Board’s Website, www.boett.org
If my pathway choice to Registration is further learning, other than by way of a Master’s Degree, does the BOETT just need proof of the training via relevant training Certificates?
Proof of further learning could be demonstrated, among other things, by way of the following: – provision of Transcripts of additional Programmes pursued; Course Certification from recognized providers; Continuing Professional Development Units obtained from recognized CPD providers or more specifically an accumulation of certified training with credits equivalent to a Master’s Degree. A taught Master’s degree usually requires a minimum of 42 credits evaluated by written examinations and/or coursework (project reports, dissertation/thesis), where 1 credit is typically 13 credit hours of instruction. A taught Master’s degree of 42 credits typically consists of 36 credits of courses with 6 credits for a dissertation. This means the equivalency to a Master’s Degree would be 546 (i.e., 42 x 13) contact hours of instruction, if there is no dissertation requirement, and examinations at the appropriate level. An MPhil is acceptable but requires a few courses and a more in-depth dissertation/thesis.
Does the BOETT have a List of CPD Providers to facilitate the pursuit of further learning for Registration?
The BOETT does not have a list of CPD providers but we do have a Joint CPD Committee with the Association of Professional Engineers of Trinidad and Tobago (APETT). This Committee assigns CPD Units to Training-Courses/ Seminar/Conferences/etc. on request from such providers. The assignment of CPD Units is based on content and duration. The Committee encourages such providers to seek the concurrence of the BOETT/APPETT CPD Committee when providing courses/seminars/etc, that are relevant to the engineering profession.
For example, the Engineering Institute of the Faculty of Engineering provides outreach programmes geared towards industry and could be a source of training that constitutes further learning for the purpose of BOETT Certification of Registration. Similarly, the AIChE, ASCE, ASME, IEEE, among others, offer online accredited training programmes to further one’s professional knowledge with awards of Continuing Education Units (CEUs)
How long does it take to process and approve an application for Registration with the BOETT? My application was submitted about three months ago and to date I have not received a response on the status of my application
The Board meets on a monthly basis at which time it receives and considers recommendations from the Board’s Accreditation and Assessment Committees. The Board has to satisfy itself with regard to all matters pertaining to the qualifications, experience and competency of any and all applicants applying for Registration. As such this invariably may require several levels of scrutiny, examination and investigation of the academic qualifications and the engineering work done by individual applicants for registration as a registered engineer. At best this process would take about 8 to 10 weeks. However, in circumstances which require in-depth investigation and scrutiny of an applicant engineering credentials it can take between three to four months
I am qualified as a Chemical/Process Engineer but my experience and practice has been in Manufacturing Engineering. Can I qualify for registration as a Chemical Engineer?
Manufacturing Engineering is a relevant field of practice for a Chemical/Process Engineer, so that your experience in that field will not disqualify you from registering as a Chemical Engineer which is your fundamental accredited engineering qualification.
You can therefore apply for Registration as a Chemical Engineer since your training is in that field and your experience in a manufacturing environment can be relevant to your training as a Chemical and Process Engineer.
If, however, you wish to be Registered in a Specialist subcategory (Category # 20) as a “Manufacturing Engineer”, you can so request in your application. In this subcategory your application credentials will be rigorously assessed for competency in aspects of manufacturing systems (design, management, production, quality control etc.), including assembly processes, to produce products in a manufacturing environment.
After graduation with a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering, the only job I could find was labelled a technician. Does that qualify as engineering practice, given that the job entailed technical work at a relative high level?
All other prerequisites being satisfied; a job designation is not a determining factor in assessing your registration credentials. Depending on the level and scope of the technical work you perform you may be able to be registered as a Specialist Engineer in the field in which you have gained experience and developed core competency.
I am interested in registering as an Electrical Engineer with the BOETT. I graduated in 1996 and previously worked at a Metallurgical/Manufacturing company for most of my career and I am now leading my own company which provides professional renewable energy products, services and solutions. None of my previous managers or directors were BOETT registered. Also, my colleagues who are BOETT registered did not directly supervise my work. Can you please advise on how to proceed with my application and sponsors statements?
Given your many years of engineering practice and the level at which you have been in such practice, you are likely eminently qualified to be among the list of Certified and Registered Engineers in Trinidad and Tobago. It may therefore be acceptable to the Board if your application is endorsed by two Registered Engineers who may not themselves have supervised your work but are fully aware of the scope and level of your engineering practice and can attest thereof
If an Engineer has specialist training and expertise in a subcategory of any of the current listed Categories of Registration, but that field of expertise is not specifically listed among the Categories, how can that Engineer be categorized so as to recognize his/her particular expertise?
An Engineer who has specialized training and expertise in a field of Engineering that is a subcategory of any of the listed Categories, but which is not so listed, can apply to be Registered under Category # 20 – Specialist Engineer. The BOETT’s Stamp which that Engineer receives will read “Specialist (Name of Field). Specialist fields on the BOETT’s current Register of Engineers are “Building Services Engineer”; “Drainage Engineer”; “Geotechnical Engineer”; “Road/Asphalt Engineer” and “Transportation Engineer”. Other such specialists’ fields, from time to time, are designated at the discretion of the Board, based on a rigorous assessment of the applicant’s credentials
I graduated with a BSc degree in Mechanical Engineering and I have a Master’s degree. I practiced as a Materials Engineer, gaining knowledge and experience in the testing and use of construction materials (metals, concrete, ceramics, timber, plastics). Can I be classified as a Materials Engineer?
An Engineer who has specialized training and expertise in a field of Engineering that is a subcategory of any of the listed Categories, but which is not so listed, can apply to be Registered under Category # 20 – Specialist Engineer. The BOETT’s Stamp which that Engineer receives will read “Specialist (Materials Engineer).
Does the designated authority for geotechnical engineering come under the Registration Category # 13 – Mining?
An Engineer who applies to be Registered as a Geotechnical Engineer is assessed to be qualified for such designation, not only by way of academic training and qualification but more specifically, by way of demonstrated proficiency and competency in the practice of geotechnical engineering. The practice of geotechnical engineering relates to the behaviour of soils under the influence of loading forces and soil water interactions, such as the design of foundations, retaining wall, earth dams, clay liners and geosynthetics. An Engineer who is successfully assessed in this regard is placed under the Registration Category # 20 Specialist with a Stamp which says – Specialist Engineer – “Geotechnical”.
An applicant who has an accredited qualification in Geotechnical Engineering but has demonstrable experience, proficiency and competency in the practice of mining engineering, with limited or no experience in geotechnical engineering practice, as defined above, would be assessed and recommended for Registration under Category # 13 – Mining Engineer.
I applied to the BOETT for registration as a Civil Engineer. However, I received Certification Registration as a Project Manager. Was this an error or is there a reason for this?
The BOETT Assessment Committee assesses an application to determine the demonstrated area of competency of the applicant. Registration applicants generally apply for registration in the Category in which they have an accredited degree qualifications. However, if an applicant has been practicing substantially or exclusively in the field of project management, it may be determined that the applicant’s proven competency is in that Category and a recommended is made accordingly.
Registration in the Category of Civil Engineering requires a demonstration of knowledge and application of engineering technology, or more specifically, an acceptable level of any particular area of civil engineering design experience, capability and competency. If, an applicant who is categorized as a project manager can demonstrate competency in another category, he/she can reapply to the BOETT for reconsideration of a revised Registration Category by providing details of the additional facts or circumstances that warrant a revision of the Registration Category.
I graduated with a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Engineering and went straight into academia. Do I qualify to be registered after four years after my Master’s degree? In other words, does lecturing qualify as engineering practice? Or do I have to show that I have done research and published in journals and conference proceedings (or acquired patents) as evidence of engineering practice?
Teaching at the tertiary level qualifies as engineering practice for the purpose of registration.
Does the time spent doing a PhD, which normally takes four years or more, count as engineering practice?
The research work required for a PhD is considered engineering practice.
After graduation with a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering, the only job I could find was teaching science subjects in secondary school. How can I gain engineering experience to be registered?
While teaching at the tertiary level qualifies as engineering practice for the purpose of registration, the same does not apply to teaching at the secondary level. A possible option to gain engineering experience is to seek to find a registered engineer mentor in industry who is prepared to engage you in undertaking supervised assignments on a part time basis outside of your normal working hours. You would need to offer to do these assignments without monetary compensation or such compensation entirely at the mentor’s discretion. If requested the BOETT will be prepared to jointly engage APETT to make an appeal to the wider engineering community to find a suitable mentor for you or any other engineer who desires to achieve registration status
What Documents can a Registered Project Manager Stamp?
A Registered Project Manager can sign-off and validate Project Management Documents including the following:
- Project Charters
- Project Management Plans
- Project Schedules, including baseline and subsidiary schedules
- Method Statements and Work Plans
- Project Risk Evaluation and Assessment
- Project Communication Plans
- Change Request Management Plans
- Other Project Management Protocols
CAN A REGISTERED ENGINEER ADVERTISE HIS SERVICES?
YES, a Registered Engineer Can Advertise his Services! The Key elements of an Engineer’s advertisement of his services are the Message and the Medium
According to Article 15 of the legislated Code of Ethics: –
A Registered Engineer–
(a) shall not advertise his work or merit in a self-laudatory manner, and shall avoid all conduct or practice likely to discredit or unfavourably reflect upon the dignity or honour of the profession; and
(b) may employ circumspect advertising to announce his practice and availability. Only those media shall be used as are necessary to reach directly an interested and potential client or employer, and such media shall in themselves be dignified, reputable and characteristically free of any factor or circumstance that would bring disrepute to the profession or to the professional using them. The substance of such advertising shall be limited to fact and shall contain no statement or offer intended to discredit or displace another Registered Engineer, either specifically or by implication.
After graduating with my B.Sc. in Mechanical Engineering I got into Facility Management and spent several years in the field. First supervising, then managing the maintenance of buildings and building systems. I have not had a job with an Engineering title, nor have I had a registered engineer supervise my work, but there are many engineers in the field, some of whom were my supervisors. How do I become a registered engineer and can facility engineering/management be considered under any of the recognized Categories of Registration?
Firstly, all other prerequisites being satisfied; a job designation is not a determining factor in assessing your registration credentials. You may be able to be registered as a Specialist Engineer in the field in which you have gained experience and developed core competency. If therefore, you wish to be registered as a Facilities Engineer, you can be so classified under “Category 20 – Specialist (Name of Field)”, subject to a rigorous assessment of your facilities management credentials.
Secondly, with respect to the endorsement of your application, it may be acceptable to the Board if your application is endorsed by two Registered Engineers who may not themselves have supervised your work but are fully aware of the scope and level of your facilities engineering practice and can attest thereto.
As a Registered Sanitary Engineer, I have been mentoring/training a young engineer who expects to register as a Civil Engineer. However, his intentions later on is to become a Project Manager. My statement as a sponsor will attest to his training in drainage and water supply. Will he therefore be registered as a Sanitary Engineer?
Registration in the Category of Civil Engineering requires a demonstration of knowledge and application of engineering technology, or more specifically, an acceptable level of any particular area of civil engineering design experience, capability and competency.
However, if an Engineer who otherwise would qualify for registration as a Civil Engineer, wishes to be categorized in a specialty area of Civil Engineering in which he can demonstrate specialized training and experience, then he can apply to be registered under Category # 20 – Specialist Engineer.
The BOETT’s Stamp which that Engineer receives will read “Specialist (Name of Field). Specialist fields in engineering on the BOETT’s current Register of Engineers are “Building Services Engineer”; “Drainage Engineer”; “Geotechnical Engineer”; “Road/Asphalt Engineer” and “Transportation Engineer”. Sanitary Engineering which is also a specialist field under Civil Engineering has its own Category # 18, under which such a specialist Civil Engineer can apply for registration as well.
Most applicants generally apply for registration in the category of their basic accredited engineering qualification. However, if, an applicant who is registered in any particular category can demonstrate competency in another category or subcategory in which he/she wishes to be registered, then he/she can reapply to the BOETT for reconsideration of a revised Registration Category by providing details of the additional facts or circumstances that warrant a revision of the Registration Category.
Is there any official documentation that states the role, scope of works/ activities that each Category of Registered Engineers is supposed to perform?
There is no document which states the role or scope of work/ activities required of any category of engineering practice. Such function is implied by the designated categories and more specifically the designated sub-categories. Assessment of engineering proficiency and competency in any category is undertaken by an Assessment Committee appointed by the Board and which is comprised of a number of Sub-Committees of specialists registered engineers in various fields of engineering practice and expertise.
These sub-committees are constituted to review and examine the practical engineering credentials of applicants in the various categories of registration and make recommendations to the Board with regard to the categorization of an applicant.
Can a Non-Registered Engineer critique the work or evaluate a bid for works to be performed by a Registered Engineer?
With regard to the issue of a non-registered engineer critiquing the works performed or evaluating a bid for works to be performed by a Registered Engineer, this should be a matter for serious consideration by the project owner or the employer of the non-registered engineer.
Board Registration is the only legislative professional certification of engineers practicing in Trinidad and Tobago. Registration Certification by the Board of Engineering means the following:
- That the Credentials claimed by the Engineer are actually held
- That the Engineer has satisfied a rigorous assessment of his/her professional competency
- That the Engineer’s expertise in a specialty area is demonstrated and validated
- That the Engineer has demonstrated a level of competency and professional commitment
- That Board Certification is a benchmark through which the Public, Employers and Clients can have confidence and trust that an Engineer has met recognized professional standards in his/her profession
- That the Engineer is obliged to conform to a legislated Code of Ethics in his/her conduct with the Public, Employer and Clients and is prepared to be held accountable for any unethical practice.
- That the Engineer is obliged to protect the public health, safety and welfare and to demonstrate professional competency, objectivity and confidentiality.
A major drawback of utilizing a non-registered engineer in the circumstance as described is that there is neither a guarantee of the supposed engineering competency of the non-registered engineer nor any legal obligation on the part of the non-registered engineer to conform to any of the above professional or ethical norms nor can he be held accountable by the Board for any unethical breach.
As far as the responsibility of a registered engineer is concerned in the performance of his duties, Article 14 of the BOETT legislated Code of Ethics provides the following guideline.
Article 14. A Registered Engineer-
shall undertake only such work as he is competent to perform by virtue of his training and experience;