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Academic assessment

The evaluation of an applicant’s education by a provincial/territorial engineering regulator.

Accredited program

A Canadian undergraduate engineering program recognized by the Canadian Engineering Accreditation Board as meeting or exceeding standards of education required for licensure.

Official recognition given to a Canadian undergraduate engineering program. When a program is accredited, it means that its graduates meet or exceed the education standards required for licensure.


A person who applies to obtain a licence from a provincial/territorial engineering regulator.

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Bridging program

A program to assist individuals who have been trained in other countries for work in Canada. Bridging programs address gaps in your knowledge and experience. These programs can also help you find work suited to your skills and education while you’re gaining Canadian work experience.

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Canadian environment

The definition of “Canadian environment” varies among different regulators, but generally refers to work supervised by an engineer licensed by a Canadian engineering regulator. In some jurisdictions, work experience acquired outside Canada is also acceptable, as long as you can demonstrate a good knowledge of local Canadian engineering laws, practices, standards, customs, codes, conditions, climate, and technology.

Citizenship and Immigration Canada

The organization responsible for evaluating immigration applications and issuing Canadian citizenship. They assess whether your degree is at the same level as a Canadian one (This assessment is different from the one that regulators use to evaluate whether the content of your degree meets the requirements to practise engineering).

Competency-based assessment

Competency-based assessment (CBA) is a method of evaluating your engineering work experience that enables you to demonstrate how you use specific examples from your work history to prove that you meet key competencies required for licensure.

Cover Letter

A one-page letter that introduces you to a potential employer. It is accompanied by a CV or résumé.

Curriculum Vitae (CV)

Generally, ‘résumé’ and ‘CV’ refer to the same thing. To some employers, a CV may mean a more detailed or descriptive résumé.


A degree or certificate earned after specific academic training is completed. Degrees, diplomas, and certificates are examples of academic credentials.

Credential assessment service

An organization that assesses your academic credentials to see how they compare to Canadian academic credentials. These organizations provide information only, and do not guarantee that your academic qualifications will be recognized for licensure purposes in Canada. For more information about this type of service, please visit the Canadian Information Centre for International Credentials.

Starting in May 2013, all people applying under the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) must get an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) of their completed foreign educational credentials. An ECA is used to verify that your foreign degree, diploma, certificate, or other proof of your credential is valid and equal to a completed credential in Canada. For more information, visit CIC.

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A degree is an academic credential, usually earned at a university. There are two main kinds of degrees in Canada:

  1. undergraduate degrees, which require a minimum four years of full-time study;
  2. graduate degrees or post-graduate degrees, which can only be earned after you have obtained an undergraduate degree. For example, a Master’s would involve one-to-two years of further study; and a Doctorate would involve two-to-five years of study.

It is important to note that, in Canada, a degree is different from a diploma, which is earned after a one- to-three-year program.


A title that appears after a person’s name and indicates his or her professional qualification.


A specific field of engineering study or practice. Some common engineering disciplines are civil, electrical, and mechanical.

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An applicant for licensure who has met his or her academic requirements and is working toward gaining the required engineering work experience. “Candidat à la profession d’ingénieur CPI”, formerly known as “Ingénieur junior”, is the term used in Quebec for an engineer-in-training. In New Brunswick, the French terms for member-in-training or engineer-in-training are "membre stagiare" and "ingénieur stagiaire".

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Good character

A person of good character values honesty and trustworthiness and follows their regulator’s Code of Ethics.

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Immigrant serving agency

An organization that provides guidance to newcomers to Canada on things like language training and finding a place to live. Also called immigrant serving organization and settlement agency.

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Language of practice

The official language you use when working in engineering in Canada’s provinces and territories. In Canada, this is usually either English and/or French.


The official document that provides proof of formal permission given by a provincial/territorial engineering regulator to practise engineering. You must have a licence to practise engineering independently in Canada.


The granting of a professional engineering licence. A provincial/territorial engineering regulator grants licensure after reviewing and accepting an applicant’s required qualifications. This process to protect the public.

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An experienced engineer who provides guidance and supervision.

Mutual recognition agreements

Mutual Recognition Agreements (MRAs) are established between two or more countries to permit the recognition of credentials (academic and/or professional) and are intended to foster mobility for engineers looking to practise in other jurisdictions. However, the adoption and recognition of these agreements by the Canadian engineering regulators varies across Canada. See International mobility of engineers for more information.

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The practice of building professional relationships with engineers and other professionals to advance one’s career.

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P. Eng.

“P.Eng.” the short form of professional engineer. It is a recognized and protected title that can only be used by licensed engineers. Ingénieur (ing.) is the French term used in Quebec and New Brunswick.

Professional engineer (P. Eng.)

A professional engineer, also referred to as a P.Eng., is the official title of someone who has earned a licence to practise engineering in Canada. This title is recognized and protected, which means that it can only be used by those who hold a licence from a Canadian engineering regulator. Ingénieur (ing.) is the French term used in Quebec and New Brunswick.

Professional Practice Exam

An exam that must be taken when you are applying for licensure. The exam tests knowledge of Canadian engineering laws, local practices and conditions, and ethics.


An official district within Canada. Provinces have their own governments and are responsible for the administration of certain public services like education and health care. Each province in Canada has a different engineering regulator. There are 10 provinces in Canada: Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland & Labrador, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Quebec and Saskatchewan. Canada also contains three territories: Yukon, Nunavut, and Northwest Territories, which are similarly covered by their own engineering regulators (regulation of Northwest Territory and Nunavut is combined).

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A person such as a former employer, client, or professor who is familiar with you and your work who can describe your personal and professional qualities, such as your professionalism and your ability to work with others. In Competency-Based Assessment, a reference is also known as a Validator.

Regulated profession

An occupation or job that is controlled by provincial or territorial law and governed by a professional organization or regulatory body. Engineers, lawyers, and architects are all members of regulated professions.


A document that outlines your education, work experience, skills, and contact information. A résumé, or CV, is usually no more than two pages long and does not include personal information such as your marital status or religion.

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  1. A summary or outline of a particular academic course, exam, or discipline
  2. The full list of courses or exams involved with learning a discipline

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An official district within Canada that is similar to a province but has fewer administrative powers. There are three territories in Canada: Northwest Territories, Nunavut, and Yukon. There are two engineering regulators that govern the practice of engineering in the territories. Engineers Yukon governs practice in Yukon and NAPEG governs practice in Nunavut and the Northwest Territories.


An official document, similar to a mark sheet, which is issued by your academic institution upon completion of your program. Your transcript contains a record of the courses and credits you took, your grades in those courses, and the degrees you earned.

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Undergraduate degree

See degree.

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See Reference.

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Work experience record

A document that some regulators use during the licensure process to evaluate your work experience. It requires you to provide details about your work experience and how it demonstrates required competencies.


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.