How to apply for licensure

To get an engineering licence, you must provide proof that you have met five requirements through a combination of documents, assessments, interviews, and/or testing. You may be able to start your application process before coming to Canada. The documents you will be asked to provide can vary depending on which provincial/territorial engineering regulator you apply to for licensure.

What you need to know first

The most important first steps in applying is to determine where you would like to work and then contact the regulator there to learn more about their specific application process.

When applying, it is best to start as soon as possible, because it can take some time for a regulator to assess your qualifications after receiving all of your required documents. In some cases, a regulator may require you to take further steps, such as writing an examination or obtaining more education or experience.

The following describes the components of the application process in detail:

Academic assessment

The regulator will look at your academic documents—degrees, transcripts or certificates—to determine if you need to complete any additional courses or take any examinations. Depending on the jurisdiction, your degree and transcripts must be sent directly from your institution to either the regulator or the credential assessment agency.  If your academic documents are not in the language of practice of the province or territory in which you wish to work, some regulators may also require a certified translation. Please contact the regulator for specifics.

Learn more about academic assessment here.

Work experience assessment

As one of your requirements for licensure, you must demonstrate that you have applied your engineering education through engineering work for a specified amount of time. You can earn most of your required work experience outside of Canada, although some amount of engineering experience in a Canadian environment is required for all applicants in all jurisdictions.

The format of your experience record will differ based on the regulator you’re applying to for licensure. The record will generally include your employer’s name, the position you held, your supervisor’s name and a description of the engineering work you did and the skills and competencies you demonstrated. The record must be reviewed and approved by a licensed engineer.

There are some regulators who are using competency-based assessment. To learn more, visit our page on work experience assessment or contact the regulator in the province or territory where you wish to apply.

Language competency assessment

You will need to prove that you are competent in one of Canada’s two official languages, French and English. The language you require depends on the province where you plan to work. In Quebec, French is required, whereas in New Brunswick, either English or French is acceptable. In all other provinces, English is required. Language competency means that you are able to communicate effectively with the public, colleagues, employers, and others. Requirements and assessment methods differ by regulator.

To learn more, contact the regulator in the province or territory where you wish to apply.

Character assessment

You will need to provide evidence that indicates you have observed the values of truth, honesty and trustworthiness. This is important because you are required to uphold the reputation of the profession as you work as a licensed engineer in Canada.

To learn more, please read our page on the good character requirement or contact the regulator in the province or territory where you wish to apply.

Professional Practice Examination

You will need to complete the Professional Practice Examination (PPE). This exam tests your knowledge of ethics and Canadian law as it relates to engineering, including contract, patent, trademark and copyright laws.

To learn more please read our page on the Professional Practice Examination or contact the regulator in the province or territory where you wish to apply.

When you’ve finished

If you successfully complete all these steps and the regulator deems that you have met the standards required of licence holders, the regulator will contact you with information on how to finalize the registration process so that you can practice engineering in their jurisdiction. You will also be able to call yourself an engineer!

Related Information

Find your provincial or territorial regulator

To work as a professional engineer in one of Canada's provinces or territories, you must receive a licence from that province or territory's engineering association.