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Friday, 15 May 2015

Getting titles right in the engineering field in Malaysia

RECENTLY, the Institution of Engineers Malaysia (IEM) received an enquiry on the usage of the title “Engr.” for members of the institution.

The title “Ir” was first introduced by IEM in the early 1970s for both the graduate and corporate members of the Institution. The amendment to the Registration of Engineers Act in 1987 provided for the use of the title “Ir” to registered professional engineers only.

With this development, IEM had to amend its constitution to disallow the use of the said title. Hence, the title “Ir” which once signified the membership of the Institution was taken away.

Since then, IEM has strongly felt that there was a need to provide an identity for the members of the Institution. Many suggestions and calls were made for the institution to look into the issue of a suitable title for its graduate and corporate members who are qualified engineers with accredited and recognised engineering degrees.

Therefore in 2006, the use of the pre-nominal “Engr” for the graduate and corporate members was introduced with the aim of not only giving due recognition and honour to the engineers, but also encouraging the younger generation to take up engineering.

However, in 2009, IEM further amended the constitution to allow only graduate members and corporate members, who are not professional engineers, to use the title “Engr” before their names. This will clearly distinguish between the title “Ir” for professional engineers and “Engr” for IEM members who are not professional engineers.

Moreover, the usage of the title “Engr” shall be used in conjunction with the post-nominal of “FIEM”, “MIEM” or “Grad IEM”, whichever is appropriate. As such, the use of pre-nominal “Engr” shall not be construed to imply that the person is a professional engineer.

With the progress of society and the Government’s aspiration for Malaysia to achieve the status of a developed nation by 2020, IEM shall always support the Government’s vision to produce more qualified engineers who will play a very important role in nation-building.

IEM graduate members can use the title “Engr” with pride and confidence as their degrees have been vetted and recognised by the Institution.

The admission as graduate members of IEM is only accorded to the holders of engineering degrees accredited under the Washington Accord. In so far as the approving authorities are concerned, the title “Engr” does not pose any confusion because all submission of plans need to have the stamp of a professional engineer (P.Eng.) with the title “Ir” as required by the Board of Engineers Malaysia (BEM).

“Engr” is now a title where members of the institution who are not professional engineers can be addressed.

This will give high recognition and honour to the engineers and promote the growth of the engineering profession for the progress of the nation.

Currently, there are more than 10,500 members of IEM who are entitled to use the title “Engr”

By IR YAM TEONG SIAN Secretary Institution of Engineers, Malaysia


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