Notice of Change/Withdrawal

Board of Professional Engineers
61G15-20.006: Educational Requirements
Notice is hereby given that the following changes have been made to the proposed rule in accordance with subparagraph 120.54(3)(d)1., F.S., published in Vol. 32 No. 30, July 28, 2006 issue of the Florida Administrative Weekly.

This change was made to address a concern expressed by the Joint Administrative Procedure Committee.

When changed, subsection (2) shall read as follows:

(2) A non-EAC/ABET accredited engineering degree program (hereinafter “engineering program”) which seeks approval certification pursuant to Section 471.013(1)(a), Florida Statutes, shall submit the following to the Board:

(a) A completed application form and self-study report (which may be obtained from the Board by writing to: Executive Director, Florida Board of Professional Engineers, 2507 Callaway Road, Suite 200, Tallahassee, Florida 32304);

(b) A registration fee as prescribed by the Board;

(c) A survey fee as prescribed by the Board;

(b)(d) A current catalog and student and faculty handbook.

When changed, subsection (3) shall read as follows:

(3) The Board's survey and evaluation of an engineering program shall consist of two elements:

(a) No change.

(b) A visit to the engineering school, including visits to facilities at locations other than the main campus, at the expense of the applying engineering program. This site visit will encompass all elements of the standards for approval certification set forth in this rule. A site visit is an essential requirement in the review of an engineering program seeking certification, without which no approval certification may be granted by the Board.

When changed, subsection (4) shall read as follows:

(4) The Meaning of Approval Certification.

(a) Purpose.

1. Approval Certification of an engineering program is the responsibility of the Board and is based on standards established by the Board. The same standards as are applied in the accreditation of engineering programs by EAC/ABET will be applied for approval certification of an engineering program.

2. No change.

3. Application for approval Certification is entirely voluntary on the part of the school.

(b) Standards.

1. To be approved certified, engineering programs must meet the standards set forth by the Board in this rule as judged by the Board. These standards are sometimes stated in a fashion that is not susceptible to quantification or to precise definition because the nature of the evaluation is qualitative in character and can be accomplished only by the exercise of professional judgment by qualified persons.

2. In these standards, the words "must" and "should" have been chosen with care. Use of the word "must" indicates that Florida considers meeting the standard to be absolutely necessary if the program is to be certified. Use of the word “should” indicates that Florida considers an attribute to be highly desirable and makes a judgment as to whether or not its absence may compromise substantial compliance with all of the requirements for approval certification.

When changed, subsection (5) shall read as follows:

(5) Objectives.

(a) An essential objective of a program in engineering education leading to a BSE degree must be to meet the standards herein described for approval certification that its graduates will be prepared to qualify for licensure, to provide competent engineering services and to have the educational background necessary for lifelong learning. An engineering program may establish additional objectives consistent with its available resources. Objectives must be defined in writing and made known to faculty and students. While recognizing the existence and appropriateness of diverse institutional missions and educational objectives, the Board subscribes to the proposition that local circumstances do not justify approval certification of a program that fails to meet the standards as set forth in this rule.

(b) Approval is granted Certification is awarded on the basis of evidence of an appropriate balance between the size of the enrollment in each class and the total resources of the program, including the faculty, physical facilities, curricular time and methods of instruction, and the budget. If there is to be substantial change in any of the above functions, the Board must be notified in writing so that reevaluation may be instituted.

(6) through (8) No change.

When changed, subsection (9) shall read as follows:

(9) Site Visit.

(a) The site visit team shall consist of the Educational Advisory Committee and individual(s) designated by the Board who are or have been engineering educators and practitioners experienced in engineering program evaluation. The applicant must assist the Board in making all necessary arrangements for the site visit, including the opportunity to meet trustees, owners or their representatives, administrators, faculty, students, and any others connected with the program.

(b) All costs incurred in making site visits to applicant facilities shall be paid by the applicant.

(b)(c) Following the site visit, the Educational Advisory Committee will report its findings to the Board.

When changed, subsection (10) shall read as follows:

(10) Board Approval.

(a) Upon receipt of a report from the Educational Advisory Committee, the Board will notify the applicant of its intent to grant or deny approval certification. Approval Certification must be denied if deficiencies found are of such magnitude as to prevent the students in the school from receiving an educational base suitable for the practice of engineering.

(b) If the Board gives notice of its intent to deny the application for approval certification, the notice shall include a specific list of deficiencies and what the Board will require for compliance. The Board shall permit the applicant, on request, to demonstrate by satisfactory evidence, within 90 days, that it has remedied the deficiencies specified by the Board. The Board shall deny certification if the applicant has not paid all fees and costs required of the Board in connection with the application.

(c) If the Board gives notice of its intent to approve the application grant certification, it shall specify which type it intends to grant: provisional or full approval certification.

(d) Provisional approval certification may be granted where deficiencies exist but are not of such magnitude to warrant denial of certification entirely. The Board shall determine the period of provisional approval certification, not to exceed three years, based on the nature of the deficiencies found, and an estimate of the reasonable period of time which may be necessary to remedy the deficiencies. Failure to remedy the deficiencies within the time specified by the Board may be grounds for denial of approval certification. The Board may, however, extend the period within which deficiencies may be remedied, if there is good cause to do so. A site visit may be required by the Board if it deems it necessary to determine whether the deficiencies have been adequately remedied and whether any other conditions may have changed during the period of provisional approval certification.

(e) Full approval certification will be granted to an engineering school which is in substantial compliance with all of the standards for certification set forth in this rule. The school shall submit to the Board evidence of continued compliance annually.

(f) Periodic surveys and evaluations of all approved certified schools shall be made at least every four years.

(g) No change.

THE PERSON TO BE CONTACTED REGARDING THE PROPOSED RULE IS: Paul Martin, Executive Director, Board of Professional Engineers, 2507 Callaway Road, Suite 200, Tallahassee, Florida 32301