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RE: SE Tests

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If it feels good - do it. Now THAT is liberal regulation!
ag

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Scott, William N. [mailto:William.Scott(--nospam--at)veco.com]
> Sent: Friday, November 07, 2003 9:52 AM
> To: 'seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org'
> Subject: RE: SE Tests
> 
> 
> I have a letter from the Washington State Board that states that in
> Washington, an engineer may use the title "Structural 
> Engineer" if they feel
> they are competent.
>  
> I wonder why Washington even issues an SE if it you may use the title
> without having an SE license.
>  
> Bill
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Bill Allen [mailto:T.W.Allen(--nospam--at)cox.net]
> Sent: Friday, November 07, 2003 6:34 AM
> To: seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org
> Subject: RE: SE Tests
> 
> 
> 
> Keith-
> 
>  
> 
> You've either misunderstood me or we seriously disagree.
> 
>  
> 
> Yes, I'm aware that once one passes a civil exam, s/he is 
> legally allowed to
> design anything within the realm of civil engineering.
> 
>  
> 
> I totally disagree that, just because one passes an exam, one 
> is deemed
> competent. There's evidence of that all over the place. I'm a 
> good example.
> In my civil exam, I solved the surveying question using math, 
> not surveying
> principles. I have NO CLUE of which end of a transit to look 
> into. Yet, I'm
> legally allowed to sign grading and drainage plans. So, if I take on a
> project, is it legal? Yes. Is it ethical? In my opinion, no.
> 
>  
> 
> You're wrong about someone who spends their apprenticeship in 
> hydrology
> practicing structural engineering. They CAN here in CA. 
> THAT'S the scary
> part. 
> 
>  
> 
> I have no problem with someone acquiring the necessary 
> competency to engage
> in a particular field of practice. I support that approach 
> totally. Using
> the example above, suppose I decided that (gasp) I wanted to 
> do grading and
> drainage plans or just plain old surveying. So I decide to 
> take a refresher
> course in surveying principles, agree to take on a position 
> as an apprentice
> for a surveying firm, etc. until I (as well as others( think 
> that I have the
> necessary background to do it on my own, then I think it 
> would be not only
> legal but ethical to take on such projects.
> 
>  
> 
> With regards to legislating competency, I agree that's similar to
> legislating morality. Can't be done. But that doesn't mean 
> negligence can't
> be prosecuted after the fact. Consider this example. Suppose 
> I went to a
> fine university, got good grades, then went immediately to 
> work for a large
> firm designing steel structures. I pass the P.E. exam the 
> first time, and
> the S.E. exam the first time. Suppose I'm approached by an 
> architect who
> needs some plans of a residence stamped and signed. The 
> architect says he is
> going to do the structural drafting, but he needs beam sizes, 
> foundation
> sizes, shear walls and hold downs. Timber seems simple enough 
> to me. After
> all, I've read Breyer's book. Pretty straight forward. Much 
> simpler than the
> complicated projects I do during the day. No problem. Fifteen 
> hundred bucks
> for some simple wood design? You've got to be kidding. 
> Cha-Ching! I'll do
> that on my kitchen table. Of course, I don't realize the most 
> important part
> of wood design is the connections and I fail to provide a 
> load path from
> roof to foundation (straps, etc.). If something goes wrong with this
> structure and I end up in court, you probably don't think I'm 
> negligent but
> I do!
> 
>  
> 
> So we agree or disagree, I don't really care at this point.
> 
>  
> 
> Regards,
> 
>  
> 
> T. William (Bill) Allen, S.E. (CA #2607)
> 
> V/F (949) 248-8588
> 
> San Juan Capistrano, CA
> 
> http://members.cox.net/ballense/ <http://members.cox.net/ballense/> 
> 
>  
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Keith De Lapp [mailto:keith(--nospam--at)kdlengineering.com] 
> Sent: Friday, November 07, 2003 12:58 AM
> To: seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org
> Subject: SE Tests
> 
>  
> 
> Bill, you're really scaring me here!  Engineering is a 
> marketplace.  The
> client is not a guinea pig.  Haven't you ever had a client 
> who didn't fully
> appreciate the value of the service you provide and decided 
> to hire another
> professional for less money.  Hell yes you have!  For the purposes of
> keeping your fees up, you can't limit competition by claiming 
> an ipso facto
> threshold for competence.
> 
>  
> 
> You're wrong about competence and licensing.  When you pass 
> the test and the
> state issues you a license, you are deemed competent at least 
> to the extent
> demonstrated by having successfully solved the test questions 
> you responded
> to.  This doesn't mean of course the engineer who spent their 
> apprenticeship
> in hydrology can practice in the structural discipline or 
> vice versa.  But
> it also doesn't preclude an engineer from acquiring the 
> necessary competency
> to protect life and safety when left to their own devices.
> 
>  
> 
> As for civil engineering being to broad.  I believe that civil is no
> different from mechanical, electrical, electronic, chemical, nuclear,
> petroleum, and yes structural engineering.  I'll bet you lunch at your
> favorite restaurant that there are as many subsets of expertise in
> structural as there are in civil.  When we take into 
> consideration the many
> material factors that influence even the simplest design, it can very
> quickly extend us beyond our base of practical experience and 
> competence.
> Our ability to adapt and respond to these competency 
> situations varies from
> engineer to engineer.
> 
>  
> 
> I know licensed engineers who have never done a rigid 
> diaphragm analysis, a
> grade beam on an elastic foundation analysis, a perforated 
> shear wall design
> or even know what a masonry boundary member is.  I recognize 
> the competition
> for what it is, and explain to the client that engineering is 
> a market place
> just like buying tires for your vehicle.  I ask the client 
> "when shopping
> for tires, do you buy the tires that cost the least amount of 
> money?"  And
> then C
> 
> 
> 
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