When does CEP start?
The Continuing Education Program began in January 2005. This means you have to provide CEP hours with the renewal you receive in 2005 and each year thereafter. (back to top)
When do I start collecting hours?
The board decided to allow license holders to begin collecting hours as of September 1, 2003. This allows everyone to become familiar with the program and ensure that everyone collects enough hours by their first CEP renewal period. (back to top)
How many hours are required?
The CEP rule requires 15 PDH (Professional Development Hours) per year. At least one PDH must be in the area of professional ethics, roles and responsibilities of professional engineering, or review of the Texas Engineering Practice Act and Board Rules. (back to top)
How do I get the one ethics hour?
You can meet the ethics requirement through any coursework, seminars, presentations, or other activities that are in the area of professional ethics, roles and responsibilities of professional engineering, or by reviewing the Texas Engineering Practice Act and Board Rules. An interested engineer can download or view the Texas Engineering Practice Act and the Board Rules at http://engineers.texas.gov/downloads.htm. (back to top)
What is Self-Study?
The language in the rule states, "Credit determination for self-directed study is the responsibility of the license holder and subject to review as required by the board." Essentially, self-study is any study, research, reading, etc. that is relevant to the practice of a technical profession and includes technical, ethical, or managerial content. So, reading up on a new topic, researching a new design, keeping up with current engineering periodicals, or reading about the engineering Act and Board Rules can all count. It is credited on an hour for hour basis, with a maximum set by the legislature at 5 PDH total per renewal period. (back to top)
What proof / documentation do I need?
The board wants the reporting process to be as simple as possible. There are only two things that a license holder needs to do:
1) Certify on the renewal statement that you have completed the CEP requirement and return it with your renewal payment. This is the main document that the board reviews and keeps as a record of completing the CEP requirement.
2) Keep some sort of paper proof of your activity. This can include a certificate of completion or attendance in a course or seminar, a grade report, a flyer or agenda from a presentation or meeting, or any other document that shows the date, location, duration, and type of activity you wish to claim. Do not send in the supporting documentation with your renewal.
Self-study should be reported simply as the type of activity, date, and hours claimed. (Example - "Read Engineering Practice Act, 02/05/04, 1 PDH"). A worksheet can be downloaded from the website to help track self-study hours. Content providers or activity sponsors do not need to report attendance to the board. (back to top)
What courses, presentations, or activities count? Does the Board have a list?
The intent is for the continuing education program to be self-administered. TBPE does not pre-approve any courses, seminars, presentations, or other activities to meet the CEP requirement, and the Board does not require that a PE take a course approved by RCEPP (see question below). The board does not have a list of approved courses or activities. It would be very difficult to include every possible course, seminar, or activity available to a P.E. nationwide.
There are two basic criteria for an activity to count:
1) Is the specific activity on the list of activities in the rule? (see below for an excerpt from the rule)
2) Is the activity relevant to the practice of a technical profession and does it include technical, ethical, or managerial content?
If the activity is related to engineering in a technical, managerial, or ethical manner, then it will count.
PDH units may be earned as follows:
(1) Successful completion or auditing of college credit courses.
(2) Successful completion of continuing education courses, either offered by a professional or trade organization, university or college, or offered in-house by a corporation, other business entity, professional or technical societies, associations, agencies, or organizations, or other group.
(3) Successful completion of correspondence, on-line, televised, videotaped, and other short courses/tutorials.
(4) Presenting or attending qualifying seminars, in-house courses, workshops, or professional or technical presentations made at meetings, conventions, or conferences sponsored by a corporation, other business entity, professional or technical societies, associations, agencies, or organizations, or other group.
(5) Teaching or instructing as listed in paragraphs (1) through (4) above.
(6) Authoring published papers, articles, books, or accepted licensing examination items.
(7) Active participation in professional or technical societies, associations, agencies, or organizations, including:
(A) Serving as an elected or appointed official;
(B) Serving on a committee of the organization;
(C) Serving in other official positions.
(8) Patents Issued.
(9) Engaging in self-directed study. (back to top)
NCEES / RCEPP has a list of approved courses and providers. Do I have to take a class off this list?
The National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) created the Registered Continuing Education Providers Program (RCEPP) on August 1, 2006. TBPE accepts courses and providers that have been reviewed and approved by RCEPP, but it is not required that a PE take a course from a provider approved by RCEPP. (See question above.).
Also, continuing education providers do not need to be registered with RCEPP to provide courses for PE's in Texas. (back to top)
What exemptions are there from CEP requirements?
There are important things to note about the Continuing Education Program and exemptions:
1) ALL active engineers, regardless of industry exemption or age, must provide CEP hours for renewal. This means that even if you do not perform engineering for the public (exempt industry) or you are over 65 you must still provide 15 PDH per renewal period.
2) The only exemptions are listed below:
- A license holder serving on temporary active duty and deployed in the armed forces of the United States for a period of time exceeding one hundred twenty (120) consecutive days in a year shall be exempt from obtaining the professional development hours required during that year.
- License holders experiencing physical disability, illness, or other extenuating circumstances as reviewed and approved by the board may be exempt. Supporting documentation must be furnished to the board.
- License holders who are currently in "Inactive Status" and who further certify that they are no longer receiving any remuneration from providing professional engineering services shall be exempt from the professional development hours required.
- New license holders by way of examination shall be exempt for their first renewal period. (back to top)
I want to change to "Inactive Status" and not do CEP. How do I become Inactive and how do I report my status?
If you have received your renewal notice and decide that you meet the requirements for Inactive Status, you must apply for Inactive Status before your renewal is due. This means that you can submit the Inactive Status Form before your renewal is due, or you can submit the paperwork WITH the renewal form. Simply checking the "Currently Inactive" box on the renewal form will NOT automatically change you to Inactive Status.
Please note, if you send in your renewal and then decide to become Inactive, you are still required to complete the CEP requirements for that renewal. Also, there are no refunds of any fees paid prior to becoming Inactive. This means that if you paid a renewal fee with the $200 professional fee, and then decide to become Inactive, you will not get a refund for the $200 fee.
So, in short, you must send in your Inactive Status Change Form before you renew or with your renewal statement.
Please visit the Inactive Status Frequently Asked Questions page for more information. (back to top)
Where can I view the CEP rule and get more information?
You can view the rule and get up to date information at http://engineers.texas.gov/CEP_Info.htm. You can also contact the board in writing or by phone. (back to top)