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How can I choose continuous training courses in engineering?

I would like to pursue some engineering continuing education course despite the fact that I have been working for two years in this industry. Most of this time, I have been employed in a small company. I am not sure how continuing education works though I know it is beneficial in professional careers.

Nonetheless, I am an electrical engineer; I would still like to know if electrical continuing education will bring visible changes in my career. If I will be forced to do it sooner or later, how can I choose a continuous training course wisely?

James Washington

in Higher Education

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Justin Parker on June 26, 2018

Continuing education in electrical engineering will not only make you more marketable to potential employers, but it can also help you negotiate a better pay from your current boss. With the current state of the economy, more and more engineers are enrolling for CE.

However, CE is not new to professionals with licenses to practice in their field. The reason is that most states require professional engineers within the borders to pursue professional development units. Actual enrolment only gains these units into technical courses.

However, Professional Engineers aren’t the only individuals trying to keep current in their field. Universities and colleges have reported a high number of people pursuing professional development courses.

Choosing your continuing training course can be quite tricky. Different colleges provide courses in various niche areas, with the quality standards varying from one provider to another.  Therefore, you cannot say without a doubt that a particular university’s courses are the best based on the institutions.

What to look out for before selecting a CE course:

The course instructor- most engineering faculties in reputable colleges and universities, recruit experts in the industry who have experience or knowledge on how to teach. However, it is good to be sure. You should request to know the qualifications of your course tutor.

Course content- the specific program director, is responsible for the content taught in the course. Such material is mostly based on the engineering learning needs. Knowing these needs, constant market research and staying current to understand the trends are ideal. Check if the content offered is relevant to the current industry trend. Don’t do redundant courses.

You career goals- even if a course is great, if it doesn’t fit in your career goals and plans, it doesn’t matter. As a professional electrical engineer, you must have clear goals and plan for personal development. Therefore, you need to select engineering continuing ED course that helps you move closer to these. Large organizations demand that you have such a plan. However, in smaller companies, it becomes your responsibility.

International recognition- is the CEUs you are about to pursue internationally recognized. This question should be the first thing you ask yourself once you start vetting courses and providers. Any online provider can give CEs, but internationally recognized CEUSs are only offered by providers in association with IACET (International Association for Continuing Education and training).

Soul-search yourself and make a wise decision. 

Brian Warner2 years ago

I agree. Due diligence is required in selecting a continuous training course. Don’t just look at a class at face value. Many course providers sell only the shell of the course. With well-presented topic lists, outlines, and course description, you may think you are buying unmatched value.

You should look at the objectives and goals of the course. Only a well-versed provider can come up with practical and innovative goals for their courses. Therefore, try to read the mind of the vendor. If they lack essential information; such as what you’ll learn, and learning methods, know that such a person will only waste your time and money.

I also want to add that IACET-recognition should be a non-negotiable condition for any CE course you agree to take. IACET standards are the highest standard of continuing education for engineers. It is a wonderful benefit for professional engineers seeking a practice license. 


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