Approved by Committee on Licensure on February 24, 2022
Approved by the Public Policy and Practice Committee on March 4, 2022
Adopted by the Board of Direction on July 22, 2022
The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) considers civil engineering faculty members to be an integral part of the civil engineering profession and encourages all to become licensed professional engineers.
Further, EAC/ABET and ETAC/ABET accreditation criteria for civil engineering and civil engineering technology programs, respectively, should require that faculty teaching courses that are primarily design in content be qualified to teach the subject matter 1) by virtue of professional licensure, or 2) by education and design experience, or 3) by teaching the course under the direct supervision of a licensed faculty member. The EAC/ABET and ETAC/ABET accreditation criteria should require that faculty prepare graduates to understand the importance of professional licensure.
Although EAC/ABET and ETAC/ABET accreditation require design courses to be taught only by licensed professional engineers or engineers with industry experience, faculty evaluation systems at some universities do not encourage faculty licensure. Some universities only consider a faculty member’s teaching, scholarship, and service in the promotion and/or tenure review processes. Consequently, faculty have greater incentive to devote their time and attention to research and teaching rather than obtaining and maintaining licensure.
ASCE supports the licensure of all civil engineers including those in engineering education. Engineering design courses should be taught by licensed professionals in accordance with ABET criteria. Teaching under the direct supervision of a licensed professional engineer allows entry level faculty without design experience the opportunity to gain experience and enables them to teach courses that are primarily design in content. Also, for those faculty members who wish to provide direct engineering services to the public, professional engineering licensure is a requirement.
Every civil engineering educator serves as a professional role model throughout a student’s academic career. ASCE highly values the contributions civil engineering faculty make to society through the education of engineering students. By the example they set, licensed educators communicate the importance of licensure to students.
ASCE Policy Statement 559
First Approved 2019