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Paul & Others, I hope this answers some of your questions.
Here are links to a couple of documents on the AWS website, on the CWEng program. (look at page 8 of this pdf to see what the references are.   The Codes, basic engineering and welding/metallurgy).
And some information from NSPE ( NSPE was opposed to AWS's plan)
All CWEng that I know are also Professional Engineers (most took the NCEES Welding Professional Engineering exam, the Metallurgy exam or the Mechanical Exam). In my case, I took the PPE exam in 1988 in Mechanical Engineering and have been involved in the design, construction, repair and alterations of welded structures since 1978, a lot of ASME Boiler & Pressure Vessel work, Code piping, some powerplant and recently structural work, bridges. I currently, work for a bridge design & fabrication company.( I came back to industry after being an Assistant Professor for 5 years). 
The examination is 4 parts.  Parts 1 & 2  are approximately equivalent to the FE examine. Parts 3 & 4 are more detailed, id est PPE exam style. (AWS along with NCEES used the first round tests of parts 3 & 4 to valid the NCEES Welding - PE Exam (I have been told that only 3 out of the 15 that took the test passed).  The CWEng and NCEES exams were developed by Ohio State University's, Welding Engineering program (Only ABET accredited Welding Engineering program) .
Email me if you have any more questions - Rich

Richard M. Beldyk, PE, NSPE, CWEng, CPE
Professional Engineer - Delaware 6788, Maine 9987, Maryland 26594, Michigan 6201048734, Ohio E-66691, Oklahoma 20523, Pennsylvania PE061240, Virginia 37138
Registered Member - International Registry of Professional Engineers - Certificate IR101
AWS Certified Welding Engineer - Certificate  0009Eng
AFE Certified Plant Engineer - Certificate 4582