MRO Magazine

Registration practices of engineering regulator meet standards set by Ontario’s Fairness Commissioner

Toronto, ON -- An audit of the registration practices of Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO) has confirmed the ass...


June 19, 2009
By MRO Magazine

Toronto, ON — An audit of the registration practices of Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO) has confirmed the association’s policies and procedures to be fair, transparent, objective and impartial.


The independent audit was an initiative of the Office of the Fairness Commissioner of Ontario to assess compliance with the Fair Access to Regulated Professions Act by regulated professions in the province. The audit of PEO was conducted by Deloitte and covered the period from July 16, 2007 to July 15, 2008.



“These findings are a testament to the continuous efforts of our team to ensure a smooth application process for all our applicants,” said Kim Allen, P.Eng., CEO and registrar of the PEO.


“I credit the leadership of PEO’s deputy registrar, licensing and registration, Michael Price, P.Eng., the dedicated work of his department staff, along with the more than 200 volunteers involved in PEO’s Academic Requirements, Experience Requirements and Registration committees, for our success in allowing all applicants in Ontario a fair and equal opportunity to obtain their licence.”


PEO’s registration practices were evaluated for overall compliance with the Act against several criteria identified by the Office of the Fairness Commissioner, including:


           information to applicants

           timely decisions and responses

           internal review or appeal

           information on appeal rights

           documentation of qualifications

           assessment of qualifications

           training and

           access to records.


The report is available on PEO’s website at:


Professional Engineers Ontario administers the Professional Engineers Act by licensing Ontario’s 71,500 professional engineers, granting temporary, limited and provisional licences to practise professional engineering, and authorizing businesses to provide engineering services to the public. It sets standards for and regulates engineering in Ontario so that the public interest is served and protected. Rigorously educated, experienced, and committed to a Code of Ethics that puts the public first, licensed professional engineers can be identified by the P.Eng. after their names.


Background statistics


           In 2008, PEO received the highest number of P.Eng. applications (4449) since 1998.


           PEO licensed 2374 professional engineers in 2008, the highest number of first-time P.Eng. licences issued since 1991.


           Approximately one-third of Ontario’s 71,500 engineers were educated outside Canada, reflecting PEO’s continuous efforts to facilitate the licensing of internationally trained professionals, while maintaining high standards to protect the public.


           In May 2007, PEO introduced the Engineering Intern Training Financial Credit Program to encourage engineering graduates and newcomers to Canada to apply for licensure. The program enables eligible graduates of bachelor of engineering programs accredited by the Canadian Engineering Accreditation Board and eligible international engineering graduates with a bachelor of engineering or a bachelor of applied science degree to apply for a professional engineer licence at no cost. They may also be eligible to register in the Engineering Intern Training program for the first year at no cost.


           In 2005, for the first-time ever, PEO licensed more international engineering graduates than graduates of a Canadian accredited engineering program, although only 25 per cent of international graduates typically apply for licensure. This feat was accomplished again in 2006 and 2007.


           In its 87-year history, more than half of PEO’s elected presidents were educated and trained outside Canada. A similar percentage of professional engineers educated elsewhere volunteer on PEO committees, including those that assess the academic and experience qualifications of licence applicants.


           To help ensure that immigrants arrive in Ontario with full knowledge of our licensing requirements and a head start, PEO allows prospective immigrants to begin the Ontario P.Eng. licensing process from outside Canada, before they finalize their immigration plans, and to continue the process when they arrive in Ontario.


           In January 2005, the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities released Opening Doors – An Investment in Prosperity, which included a scorecard on Ontario regulatory bodies’ progress in enhancing accessibility to their professions for foreign-trained professionals. In that survey, PEO scored at the top of the list of Ontario regulators.


           Since 2000, applicants from over 1000 institutions world-wide have been granted licences by PEO.


           To help international engineering graduates obtain experience for licensure, PEO grants provisional licences to applicants who have met all the requirements for licensing as professional engineers except the required 12 months work experience under a Canadian professional engineer.


           A licence is not required for engineering employment in Ontario, so long as a licensed professional engineer supervises and is responsible for the work.