Continuing Education Requirements for AL PEs
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The Alabama Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors regulates the practice of engineering and establishes continuing education standards. Engineers in Alabama must earn 30 professional development hour credits every two years. Ethics courses are accepted but not required. Alabama does not pre-approve course providers or courses. License renewal is done on December 31st of odd numbered years.
Listed below are the Alabama professional engineer (PE) license renewal requirements.
|No of PDH hours required
|December 31st of odd numbered years
|The Board does not pre-approve course providers
|Course content approval
|Technical, managerial and ethical related to the profession of engineering. Courses must have is a clear purpose and objective which will maintain, improve or expand skills and knowledge obtained prior to initial licensure or to develop new and relevant skills and knowledge.
|Maximum PDH hours to carry over
|No limit on online courses. For meeting the continuing professional competency requirements through online courses, the course must require the participant to show evidence of completion. PDH-Pro courses meet this requirement by providing a certificate of completion after participant passes a quiz.
|State Board Website
We prepared a detailed summary and review of the Alabama continuing education requirements (read the article).
Engineering Continuing Education Requirements for Alabama
If you are a professional engineer practicing in Alabama, at some point you’ll need to renew your license. When that happens, you might be wondering: what are the continuing education requirements for Alabama engineers?
To renew your license in Alabama, you are required to earn 30 professional development hours (PDH) every 2 years. You are allowed to carry over 15 PDH to the next renewal cycle. All engineering licenses are renewed on December 31st of odd-numbered years. The State of Alabama does not require that you complete any specific courses for license renewal, but they have developed criteria for the courses and activities that they will accept for your PDH credits.
Alabama believes that for professional engineers to stay at the top of their field, continuing education is essential. Knowing exactly what is required and expected of you when it comes to license renewal prevents your license from expiring or being rejected. You can earn your continuing education requirements by taking online courses, attending seminars and/or conferences or enrolling in live webinars.
Alabama Engineering PDH Credits
Licensing in Alabama is handled by the Alabama State Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors (BELS). After you have received or renewed your Alabama professional engineering license, you then have 2 years to earn the necessary 30 PDH to renew once again. You can transfer 15 PDH into the next renewal period, and you can check the “carry forward” hours on the Board’s website.
You can only renew your license online on the Board’s website. There is no fee for renewal. The Board does not pre-approve courses, and they do not require any specific courses to renew your license. It is up to your discretion to determine if the course you take meets the criteria set forth by the Board.
You are not required to submit your certificates of completion when you renew your license. However, you must maintain this documentation for a minimum of 4 years. The Board will conduct random audits, and if you are audited, you must be able to prove to the Board that you have proof of completion for the PDH credits you have claimed for license renewal. If you fail to provide the necessary evidence, your license can be suspended and disciplinary action can be taken against you.
Alabama PE License Renewal Dates
All engineering licenses are renewed on December 31st of odd-numbered years. Reminders are sent by the Board in October. If you miss the renewal deadline, your license will expire. If that occurs, you are not allowed to work as an engineer. The process to renew an expired license is similar to renewing an active license, and it will occur online, but it’s also more expensive.
Engineering Ethics and Professional Conduct for Alabama Engineers
When it comes to the continuing education requirements for Alabama engineers, you are not required to take any professional conduct, law or ethics courses to renew your license. However, if you do and they fall into the requirements and are deemed to be useful and relevant to your growth as an engineer, they will count toward your PDH credits. There are courses available on the Board’s site that cover these particular topics that can be used for license renewal.
AL PE Record Keeping Requirements
You are expected to maintain your certificates of completion for at least 4 years. If you are unable to produce this proof when audited, the PDH credits that you have claimed won’t count. Documents that can be used for proof of fulfilling the PDH requirements include:
- Certificates of completion that display the date, course, provider name, student name and instructor’s signature
- Official letters or emails from the course that display the completion date, course, provider name, student name and the instructor’s signature
- Publishing public articles, papers, books, etc.
- Obtaining a patent
You are also required to maintain a detailed log that contains the name of the activity or course, the organization that offered it, the location, how long the course or activity was, the instruction and how many PDH credits were earned. You can find a continuing education log online at the Board’s website. If you use this log, it can simplify the transfer of your records when it’s time to renew your license.
Documents that are not accepted when it comes to continuing education requirements for Alabama engineers include:
- Sign-up sheets
- Lunch and learn receipts
- Airline tickets or hotel receipts if you traveled to a conference
Continuing Education Activities Accepted by the Alabama Board
The Board will accept a variety of different continuing education courses and activities as long as they fulfill the criteria that have been set forth.
They will accept online courses, as long as it comes with evidence that you have completed the activity. You can also attend webinars, and there are many live and pre-recorded webinars on the Board’s website.
It’s also possible to earn PDH credit outside of the State of Alabama as well. However, the Board does not accept self-study courses or activities.
Some of the other continuing education requirements for Alabama engineers accepted by the Board include:
- Attending or auditing college-sponsored courses and/or courses that award continuing education credits
- Completing short classes or tutorials
- Attending conferences, workshops or seminars
- Being part of educational outreach programs
You will not receive PDH credits if you have authored work that hasn’t been published, you don’t obtain a patent or for regular or repetitive roles that don’t have updated material.
Pre-Approval of Continuing Education Activities
The Board does not pre-approve any continuing education requirements for Alabama engineers, including courses, activities or providers. You are responsible for determining if the course meets the requirements, as well as obtaining a certificate of completion in case of an audit.
Sources of Free Continuing Education Courses
There are free webinars on the Board’s website that can be used to fulfill the continuing education requirements for Alabama engineers. The topics that are covered include standards of practice, law and ethics. There are instructions on how to get your certificate of completion as well. If you take other free continuing education courses, they can be used for PDH credit if they meet the Board’s criteria.
Alabama Engineering Licensing
Every professional engineer in Alabama is required to obtain 30 PDH every 2 years, as well as have a 4-year degree with a transcript. You are also required to pass the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) and Professional Engineer (PE) exams offered by the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES), which can be found online. Depending on your degree, you must also have 4 to 6 years of credible work experience.
When it comes to applying for your Alabama engineering license, you must first register with the NCEES. Then, you’ll take and pass the FE and PE exams and submit documents that verify your education, experience, and citizenship—all of which can be done through the NCEES. You’ll then need to complete an online application that contains 23 questions. After submitting your application, it will be reviewed by the Board, and you will get a response in 2 to 3 months.
Engineering Discipline Restrictions
When it comes to continuing education requirements for Alabama engineers, there are no restrictions on the types of courses you can take based on your engineering discipline. Every professional engineer can earn PDH credits by taking the same course or activity. However, the Board requires that these courses or activities should be well organized, have a clear purpose and objective, the presenter should be well qualified, there should be evidence of pre-planning (including time for audience input/questions) and records should be available.
Important Information About License Renewal in Alabama
It is your responsibility to stay informed and up to date on the Board’s requirements for license renewal and continuing education requirements. If you have been licensed in another state but are moving to Alabama, you are expected to compare the requirements in Alabama to your previous state to ensure that you are fully qualified to renew your license.
By adhering to the record keeping guidelines for PDH credits, you will be able to renew your license with ease and increase your expertise as a professional engineer.