Becoming a Chartered engineer in Australia is a great way to unlock your engineering career and gain a competitive edge by positioning yourself as a competent, experienced and tested engineer in your field of practice.
Since Australian Chartered engineers are recognised globally, your chartered credential is a ticket to global opportunities as a recognised engineering consultant, manager and leader. It is worth noting that the chartered credential can be attained under the following three occupational categories
Chartered professional engineer
Chartered engineering technologist
Chartered engineering associate
The application process is similar for all the above occupational categories; however, the competency elements may differ.
Key Benefits of becoming a Chartered Engineer with Engineers Australia
Chartered engineers enjoy the following benefits:
Global recognition: Professional engineers who have attained the chartered status with EA are recognised worldwide on the basis of professionalism, experience, skills and educational qualification. Therefore, chartered engineers can work with organisations from all over the world provided they have the necessary work permits.
Leadership and career development: By being assessed through the industry review process, chartered engineers can grow their competencies based on a set of industry standards. To attain the chartered status, engineers must satisfactorily demonstrate that they meet all the 16 standard competency elements.
Professional recognition: Chartered Engineers are recognised by professional bodies, governmental and non-governmental institutions, and companies across the globe. As a chartered engineer in Australia, you can take a senior engineering position or consulting role in any country.
Who is Eligible to become a Chartered Engineer in Australia?
For you to qualify for Chartered, you need to meet the minimum requirements set by EA. To begin with, you must be a prequalified professional engineer from Australia or abroad with at least 5 years of work experience.
For international applicants from countries that are not signatories of the Dublin Accord, Washington Accord or Sydney Accord, you need to go through the Stage 1 Assessment: Competency Demonstration Report (CDR) pathway before proceeding to your chartered engineer application.
The Pathways to becoming a Chartered Engineer
There are four main pathways to secure your chartered engineer status in Australia. The requirements differ significantly across the chartered pathways.
Chartered through industry review: This is applicable to engineers with 5-14 years of experience.
Chartered through the interview: Applies to engineers with 15 years of engineering experience and above.
Chartered for academics: This chartered pathway is for engineering professionals with substantive experience in the teaching of accredited engineering programs in tertiary institutions recognised by EA.
Chartered for defence: For experienced engineers working with the Australian Defence Force, with a Navy Charge Qualification (NCQ) attained in the last 15 years
Chartered through Industry Review – Standard Pathway to Chartered
The standard pathway is a comprehensive process comprising of six main steps:
Enrolment for chartered
Preparation and submission of chartered evidence
Step 1: Self-Assessment
During self-assessment you are required to evaluate your competency level for each element and rate yourself using the following scale:
Developing – This means you are still learning the competency element. It also implies that you may need supervision to practice the element.
Functional – This implies you have mastered the element and therefore can act independently without supervision or assistance.
Proficient – Means you can act independently and have the recognition to supervise and train others.
Advanced – Can act independently and decisively, lead and train others, and demonstrate a high level of knowledge.
Competency areas to be Assessed
The self-assessment process consists of the following competency areas that must be addressed satisfactorily. Each competency area has a set of competency elements.
Occupational Category: This is guided by your educational qualification or specialisation. You will be required to select one of the available categories, including professional engineer, engineering technologist or engineering associate.
Area of Practice: This is determined based on factors such as educational background, key skills and work experience. Note that it is possible to select more than one area of practice during self-assessment. However, in this case, you will be required to assess yourself for each of the selected areas.
Personal Commitment: This involves evaluation and rating of your level of competence in handling ethical issues, as well as demonstrating a high level of accountability, commitment and personal sense of responsibility for engineering activities.
Obligation to Community: This allows you to assess your competency based on how you delivered safe and sustainable solutions, took care of the community while discharging your duties, managed risks and adhered to relevant legal and regulatory requirements.
Value in Workplace: This gives you an opportunity to demonstrate your competency based on how you collaborate and work with other professionals, provide value to stakeholders, manage resources, costs and finances and provide engineering support to teams.
Technical Proficiency: Under this competency, you are required to demonstrate how you apply advanced engineering science and engineering knowledge, analyse and solve problems and evaluate outcomes of engineering activities.
Step 2: Industry Review
The Industry Review process is designed to provide you with feedback from engineering professionals and approved organisations. To undertake the industry review, you need to create an account on EA’s portal as prompted after completing the self-assessment.
Next, you need to select your employer or your preferred supporting organisation. Note that this can be changed later if need be. Qualified organisations are those that have an agreement with EA to support your chartered application. Remember that your competency ratings from industry reviewers will be shared with the selected supporting organisations.
After creating your industry review account, you will be able to assign industry reviewers online. Next, prepare your Evidence Statements for all the 16 competency elements while taking into account the following factors:
Reliability of the provided information
Validity and verifiability
Currency and sufficiency
Each evidence statement can have a maximum of 1500 characters, which is approximately 200 words. The next step is to submit your Chartered Evidence Statements to your industry reviewers to start the reviewing process.
Step 3: Enrolment for Chartered
The industry review results will determine your eligibility to enrol for chartered. If your ratings meet the minimum threshold, you will be allowed to enrol for chartered.
Who is eligible to be my Industry reviewer?
The selected industry reviewers should be engineers who know you and your engineering work. They should also be willing to provide their reviews on your work.
The ideal candidate is a chartered engineer in your field of practice and a member of Engineers Australia.
An engineering team member with more than 7 years of experience in your field of practice.
Start by checking through the chartered evidence matrix to have an in-depth understanding of the requirements. Create and compile a portfolio of chartered evidence for submission to EA. The chartered evidence includes the following:
CPD log: It includes training programs that you have completed.
Detailed CV: Provide employment details including comprehensive lists of responsibilities, selected projects and key achievements.
Industry Review Evidence Statements: This is a compilation of the revised evidence statements sent to your industry reviewers.
Chartered Evidence Narratives: These are 500-word reports that provide evidence of accomplished tasks or projects. Use Chartered Evidence Narratives to support competency elements that are not sufficiently supported with documentary evidence. This is a great way to improve your chances of a positive EA outcome.
Other forms of evidence: e.g. drawings, project reports, calculation sheets, photos etc.
Step 5: Professional Interview
Professional interview is the last step of your chartered process. It allows you to authenticate the chartered evidence you submitted during enrolment for chartered. The interview also provides the assessor with an opportunity to explore your competency further based on the provided chartered evidence.
Based on information from previous chartered applications, the EA assessor will seek to verify the provided chartered evidence by asking questions related to key areas already covered in the evidence. Also, the interviewer may identify and ask questions about the competency elements that are not satisfactorily addressed supported by the provided evidence.
The professional interview step may be challenging; however, you can make it very easy by following the 5 tips below:
Study EA guidelines first to broaden your understanding.
Ensure that each of your chartered evidence statements fully addresses the competency element it was prepared for.
Review the provided chartered evidence including CV, CPD, narratives, drawings, reports, and other materials to ensure that they are authentic, reliable, verifiable and accurate.
Take time to review and dig deeper into the content of all the documents submitted as chartered evidence. This will refresh you and allow you to answer all the interview questions smoothly.
If possible, engage a consultant to assist you with information and preparation/compilation of requisite documents.
Step 6: Chartered
After passing the professional interview, you will receive a positive outcome and approval to practice as a chartered engineer. Enjoy global recognition and a myriad of opportunities as a chartered engineer, engineering associate or engineering technologist.
How to Maximise your chances of Attaining the Chartered Engineering Credential
Although you can take your time to research, prepare all the documents and complete your chartered application , it is a good idea to work with an experienced consultant to maximise your chances. A consultant will help you to prepare a strong application that will pass EA assessment without the usual difficulties.
Engineers Base Consultants (EBC) has many years of experience in the preparation of chartered applications under all chartered pathways.
Our experts will guide you throughout the process. We will also help you to prepare high-quality chartered evidence documents including:
Industry Review Evidence Statements and
Chartered Evidence Narratives (where needed)