Continuing Education Requirements for IL PEs
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The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) regulates the practice of engineering and establishes continuing education standards. Engineers in Illinois must earn 30 professional development hour credits every two years. Ethics courses are accepted but not required. Illinois does not pre-approve course providers or courses. License renewal for all engineers is November 30th of odd numbered years.
Listed below are the Illinois professional engineer (PE) license renewal requirements.
|No of PDH hours required||30 PDH|
|Renewal period||November 30th of odd numbered years|
|Provider approval||The Board does not pre-approve course providers|
|Course content approval||No specific guidance or restrictions on course content are provided by the Board.
For Professional Engineers, the course must “contribute to the advancement, extension or enhancement of the professional skills and/or scientific knowledge of the licensee in practice of professional engineering” and “foster the enhancement of general or specialized practice and values of professional engineering, related sciences and engineering ethics.”
For Structural Engineers, the course must “contribute to the advancement, extension or enhancement of the professional skills and scientific knowledge of the licensee in practice of structural engineering” and “foster the enhancement of general or specialized practice and values of structural engineering.”
|Maximum PDH hours to carry over||15 PDH|
|Online courses||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||https://www.idfpr.com/profs/ProfEngineer.asp|
We prepared a detailed summary and review of the Illinois continuing education requirements (read the article).
Engineering Continuing Education Requirements for Illinois
Are you a professional Illinois engineer getting ready to renew your license? If so, you are probably wondering: what are the continuing education requirements?
When it comes to the continuing education requirements for Illinois engineers, you are required to complete 30 professional development hours (PDH) every 2 years. You are not allowed to carry forward any credits into the next renewal period. Licenses for all professional engineers are renewed on November 30th of odd-numbered years.
Illinois PDH Credits
The engineering profession in the State of Illinois is regulated by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) Division of Professional Regulation.
You are given wide latitude when it comes to selecting which courses to take for your continuing education requirements. The Board recommends that the course contributes to the advancement, enhancement or extension of your professional skills and/or scientific knowledge in your field of engineering. The Board also expects that the credits will contribute to the enhancement of general or specialized engineering practices and the values of related sciences, ethics and professional engineering.
You are required to maintain your PDH completion records for at least 6 years. When it comes to online courses for continuing education requirements for Illinois engineers, there is no limit on the number you can take.
Illinois License Renewal Dates
As a professional engineer in Illinois, you have to renew your license every 2 years. Since 2005, the renewal date has occurred on November 30th of odd-numbered years. You have to complete 30 PDH credits in the preceding 24 months to qualify for license renewal.
If you don’t meet this requirement, your license renewal may be refused or disciplinary action might be taken against you—or both.
Should you be renewing your license for the first time, you may not be required to complete the continuing education requirements for Illinois engineers. If you are an Illinois-licensed professional engineer that has been practicing in another state, you are required to fulfill all the PDH requirements to renew your license.
You have the option of placing your license in inactive status. If you do, you are obligated to write to the Board and let them know. During this time, you won’t have to pay the renewal fee until you are ready to resume/reactivate your license. Keep in mind that if your license is inactive, you are not allowed to practice engineering in the State of Illinois.
Engineering Ethics and Professional Conduct for IL
The Board does not require you to complete courses in engineering ethics or professional conduct. You do, however, have the option of taking these courses, and they will be accepted as fulfilling your continuing education requirements for Illinois engineers.
As a professional engineering practicing in Illinois, there are some things that are expected of you. These include the following:
- You need to recognize that your primary duty is to protect the health, welfare, safety and property of the public
- You are only allowed to accept projects that fall within your area of education, expertise or specialization
- You are allowed to accept projects or assignments with tasks that are within and/or outside of your field of expertise, but you can only execute the tasks that fall within your area of education, expertise or specialization and have licensed professionals in other fields take on the other tasks
- You should avoid conflicts of interest between yourself and your client and/or employer
- You should only publicly express your professional opinion on technical issues if you have verified facts
When it comes to your professional conduct, you are not allowed to do the following:
- You can’t reveal confidential facts, information or data that you obtain through your engineering profession unless required by law
- You can’t partner with or use your name or brand name in conjunction with another party or company that is believed to engage in fraudulent activities
- You can’t apply your signature or seal on plans unless they were designed by you or under your supervision
Record Keeping Requirements for Illinois Engineers
When it comes to continuing education requirements for Illinois engineers, you are required to keep and maintain your records for at least 6 years, in case you are chosen for a random audit. The information you need to keep includes the name and address of the course sponsor, PDH logs and/or transcript records.
Continuing Education Activities Accepted by the Illinois Board
In Illinois, one PDH is equal to 50 minutes of activity. Unless you participate in a CEU-awarding program. Then, one CEU is equal to 10 PDH, as long as the continuing education course is approved by the Board.
You are allowed to complete online courses for your continuing education requirements, and there is no limit on how many you can take. You also have the ability to take live webinars and use them to fulfill the continuing education requirements.
It is your responsibility to determine if the course or activity you participate in meets the continuing education requirements for Illinois engineers.
Pre-Approval of Continuing Education Activities
The Board does not pre-approve any continuing education course or provider. You need to ensure that the course contributes to the extension, advancement or enhancement of your professional skills and/or scientific knowledge in your field of engineering. The courses or activities should also enhance your general or specialized practice, ethics and values.
Sources of Free Continuing Education Courses for Illinois PEs
There are a variety of different places that offer free continuing education courses. If you are a member of a professional engineering society such as NSPE, ASME or ASCE, they may offer free courses as a membership benefit.
PDH-Pro offers a free course for engineers who evaluate their content.
Illinois Engineering Licensing
When it comes to fulfilling the continuing education requirements for Illinois engineers, you have to complete 30 PDH credits over 2 years. The activities that are accepted for license renewal include:
- Successfully completing a college or university course in your related professional field; one semester hour completed equals 15 PDH and one-quarter hour equals 10 PDH
- Actively participating in professional engineering seminars, tutorials, programs, short courses, or workshops either online or in-house
- You can take a self-study course, but it will only be accepted if an exam is given and graded by the course sponsor
- Being an active participant on a committee or holding an office in a professional or technical society
Engineering Discipline Restrictions
As an engineer in the U.S. and the State of Illinois, you are required to practice within your competency. Despite this requirement, the Board does not restrict you from earning continuing education credits in another discipline. Thus, if you are a civil engineer, you have the opportunity to complete courses or activities for mechanical or electrical engineers.
This is because the Board believes that to do your job well, you need understanding and knowledge in a broad range of topics. Completing courses outside of your field of engineering field will make you a better professional engineer.