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Motivational Factors of Professional Engineers and Non-Professional Engineers in Applying for License as Professional Engineer: A Comparative Study

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Author(s): Nor Kamaliana Khamis | Zambri Harun | Mohd Faizal Mat Tahir | Zaliha Wahid | Mohd Anas Mohd Sabri

Journal: International Education Studies
ISSN 1913-9020

Volume: 6;
Issue: 6;
Date: 2013;
Original page

ABSTRACT
All engineering faculties in Malaysia are required to have at least three academics who have engineering competency for each program. Having an engineering competency means academics has obtained the compulsory endorsements from the Boards of Engineers, Malaysia, BEM. Upon approval, academics seeking such competency could carry the suffix Ir. to their names and are called Professional Engineers (PEs). In some developed countries, it is known as Chartered Engineer. Efforts in increasing the number of PEs should be taken seriously by all parties to meet these criteria. This paper presents the perceptions of academics about being a professional engineers and prospect applicants while preparing for PE certification. Academics mostly from the Faculty of Engineering and Built Environment (FEBE), Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) participated in the study. The surveys were grouped into two, namely, 1) academics who have PE qualifications and 2) academics who do not have PE qualifications. The respondent for this study are selected randomly. The response rate for the both group is around 30%. In the first survey, results show that PEs strongly acknowledge that this title improve quality of their careers as well as boosts their confidence among the society. These results also show that by being part of the registered professional body, PEs have bigger connections in the wider society, beyond academic field, and more interestingly receive more attentions and feel more respectful. In the second survey, responses in the first category indicate that lecturers have little intention to submit an application because the lack of department supports in term of remunerations and direct fee allowances. In the second category, lecturers blame procedures, but it is the eligibility in the third category that finally makes the cut; a large percentage of lecturers do not have an industrial attachment. Technically, they are ineligible to apply for the professional examination. This issue is also related to the unavailability of mentor at their work places. It is our views that departments should respond appropriately such as to award lecturers with remunerations or sponsor some of the fees. The department should also address the eligibility issue.
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