ICE Professional Review application tips

Our post today is written by Peter Hallsworth, CEng FICE. Contributor for The Structural Exam.

Peter Hallsworth picture
Eur Ing Peter Hallsworth BEng DipTE CEng FICE FCInstCES MIHT MAManE

Peter is a Member of the Institution Council and serves on several panels including the Professional Reviews Panel and the Fellowship Panel.

Peter became a Chartered Engineer in 1975 and undertook his first Professional Review in 1982. Since then he has undertaken just shy of 500 reviews of all kinds from Technician through to Fellow. He has been also running a Written Exercise Group based in Manchester and online for ten years, with several participants winning prizes every year.

What to include on your ICE Professional Review Application Form

The deadline for submissions for the Spring Reviews is Monday 9th January 2017. There is a tiny little bit of leeway but only to close of play on Monday!

You will need the application form, the receipt of fee payment and need to look carefully at the checklist at the bottom of the form. You have to prove you have completed your training either with a Completion Form or a Career Appraisal and also submit a one page precis of your report.

The precis is used to match your reviewers and the reviewers will use it to identify any conflicts of interest. This may be that the two of you have worked on the same job perhaps as a client and consultant which is not immediately apparent.

You also need to choose your role in the industry (consultant, contractor client) and your area of work and this is used for the database search to match in the first instance. So you need to think who you would like to talk to on the other side of the table and avoid questions on things you are not really familiar with! If you say you are a structural engineer you will get asked about loads on a portal frame and if you say you area geotechnical engineer you will get asked about loads on a retaining wall and perhaps how soil nails work. 

The last check is to confirm that your sponsors have done their bit and emailed it off to the Professional Reviews at ICE Headquarters in London.

Drafting and submitting your report

The next part of the process is to think about the final polish to the reports and using hyperlinks in your pdf file. That will be needed probably by the end of February and asking a couple of people you respect to read (probably on an iPad) it is always worthwhile. You should go through the report line-by-line and check all the Attributes are covered and that your CPD is up to scratch.

You should also consider booking a Mock Review so we can give you initial feedback on where your strongest and weakest areas are, and to get practice of the interview situation and have two Written Exercise questions written for you based on your submission.

And I would consider asking someone who is not an engineer to check the flow and style of English. You need to have it ready to email when you are asked to do so and there may be a few (very minor) mistakes still in there but getting it off immediately will give your reviewers a good chance to read it without rushing.

A leisurely read allows the reviewers to get a good idea about you and all your experience and to think carefully about areas to explore specifically for you. A rushed read tends to get generate questions that are general and less specifically aimed at you.

If you want to try and earn yourself a James Rennie Medal nomination, see this interview with Nick Borner.


So you are taking the step and paying the fee and you and your sponsors think you are ready for the accolade of Chartered Civil Engineer. I will add my Good Luck to you and wish you well on the day!