- Engineering in Canada
- Before You Come to Canada
- Becoming a Professional Engineer in Canada
- Finding a Job in Canada
- Provincial Regulators
- Additional Resources
In Canada, engineering is a regulated profession. You must have a licence to work as a professional engineer. No one can call him or herself a professional engineer, use the P.Eng./ing. designation or carry out engineering work in Canada without a licence.
Engineering regulatory bodies have been established in each province and territory of Canada to license engineers who meet the profession’s high standards, and to govern the profession of engineering. Engineers have a duty and an ethical responsibility to protect public safety. The licensing of engineers through the regulatory bodies ensures this. You must confirm the requirements with the provincial or territorial association.
While you are waiting to go to Canada, there are many important things you can do to improve your chance for success.
The FCRO provides you with helpful resources such as the Planning to Work in Canada? workbook and the Working in Canada Tool. Use these resources to find and collect important information and to develop your job search plan.
You will need to prove your language skills in English or French (depending on the province where you wish to settle) or be tested. You can find information at www.language.ca. If you need to improve your language skills, start before you come to Canada.
Your official education, work and identity documents are important. It is much easier for you to gather and organize your documents while still in your home country.
Verify the translation requirements. In some cases, you will have to use a professional translation service in Canada.
Each provincial and territorial association has its own provisions for the steps in the licensing process that you can take prior to immigrating to Canada. For more information on these steps, you can contact the provincial or territorial association directly.
After being granted a permanent resident visa from the Government of Canada, you should contact the association in the province or territory where you plan to settle.
You will be asked to submit at least the following documents.
- The original diplomas, degrees or full transcripts recording your course and marks, and the official program syllabuses or course descriptions.
- The full address of the educational and professional institutions where you obtained your engineering qualifications.
- Employment and character references.
All documents must have certified English translations (French in Quebec; a choice of English or French in New Brunswick).
The association reviews your university background and may assign an examination program to ensure that academic requirements are met. The association assesses your academic qualifications, primarily the bachelor level or first degree. Qualifications other than the bachelor level may or may not be taken into account.
Usually, associations will assign an examination program if you do not have a bachelor’s degree in engineering from a recognized Canadian university. The examinations assigned are based on your claimed discipline or specialty of intended work. You may also be required to take an examination on non-technical subjects (engineering economics or management).
Examination sittings are held once or twice a year, depending on the jurisdiction. For more information, you can contact the provincial or territorial association directly.
The association evaluates your previous engineering experience. The evaluation is based on the application of engineering theory, exposure to project management and communication skills.
Three or four years of acceptable engineering experience is required, depending on the province or territory in which you are applying for licensure. Experience obtained outside Canada may be acceptable if sufficient documentation is provided. A minimum of 12 months of acceptable experience must have been acquired in Canada to ensure that you are familiar with Canadian codes and standards.
If you are assigned an examination program, you are normally required to complete all the examinations before the association will begin crediting your engineering experience.
You must write and pass the examination on professional practice, ethics, engineering law and liability. Normally, you would write it any time after you have completed the assigned examination program.
Once all the requirements for licensure are met, the association will issue you a licence to practise engineering in that jurisdiction. Please be advised that it may take several years to obtain licensure in a Canadian province or territory.
It may take a long time to find full-time work as an engineer in Canada. You may have to search for a year or more.
You cannot work as an engineer if you are not licensed. However, during the licensing process, you can work if a licensed professional engineer takes responsibility for your work.
While a licence application is in progress, you may wish to register as an engineer-in-training to receive advice and guidance from the provincial or territorial association.
You may be eligible for a bridging program. Bridging programs ease the transition from your international training and experience to the Canadian workplace. Do some research to see which engineering firms, companies or immigrant-serving organizations have bridging programs.
The Engineering Institute of Canada offers a job board. Some provincial or territorial associations offer job boards as well. For more information, you can contact the provincial or territorial association directly.
- Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of British Columbia
- Association of Professional Engineers, Geologists and Geophysicists of Alberta
- Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Saskatchewan
- Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of the Province of Manitoba
- Professional Engineers Ontario
- Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec
- Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of New Brunswick
- Engineers Nova Scotia
- Engineers PEI
- Professional Engineers and Geoscientists Newfoundland and Labrador
- Association of Professional Engineers of Yukon
- Northwest Territories and Nunavut Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists