Institution of Structural Engineers > Membership > Professional Review Interview (PRI)

Professional Review Interview

A Professional Review Interview (PRI) is one of two essential elements you must complete to become a Chartered or Associate-Member of the Institution, the other being the relevant Examination. (You will also need to complete a PRI if you are applying for Technician Membership, though you do not sit an exam). 

The PRI tests your ability and ensures that you have satisfied all the core objectives within your Initial Professional Development (IPD).

You may attempt the PRI before or after the Exam, depending on what suits you best. 
 

Interview format:


The length of your interview is approximately one hour but may vary according to the membership route you have taken, and the length of time the reviewers need to make an assessment. 

As part of the interview you will be asked to make a presentation of no more than 15 minutes (without electronic aids). 

Reviewers will try to help you by asking appropriate questions, but it's essential that you can demonstrate how you have achieved all of your core objectives. 
 

How to apply for the interview:


Complete an Expression of Interest Form (Chartered or Associate-Membership) and you will be entered into the first available interview, depending on your preferences. You can also submit your PRI Form (Chartered or Associate-Membership) at the same time to indicate your interview preferences. 

In addition to the PRI Form, you will need to complete the IPD Final Report Form for each of the 12/13 core objectives. Your forms should summarise how your experience and training has enabled you to satisfy each objective's requirements.

When completing IPD Final Report Forms, remember to:

  • Make it personal
  • Make it positive
  • Clearly state how you have achieved the core objective

Email your applications to pri@istructe.org, or send it via post to the Institution. 
 

Application deadline:


Candidates can submit their EOI form at any time during the year and will be entered into the first available PRI or Exam, based on their preferences indicated on the form. In addition to the EOI form, candidates wishing to take their Professional Review Interview will also need to submit their PRI Form (Chartered or Associate-Membership) according to the following deadlines: 

  • Chartered and Associate-Membership: 1 September (1 April for candidates in Hong Kong)
  • Candidates applying through the Research and Development Route: 1 March or 1 September
  • Technician Membership: 1 March or 1 September

Submit your application well in advance to allow for possible delays. 

All late applications will be subject to a late application fee of £175. No applications will be accepted after 9 September. 
 

Interview schedule:


Interviews (Chartered and Associate-Member grades) are scheduled between October and December (unless otherwise arranged with the Professional Review and CPD Officer).

Provisional dates for interviews are expected to be available from August/September each year. 

Interviews in Hong Kong are usually scheduled between May and August.

Interviews for Technician grade candidates are held twice yearly during April and May and between October and December.
 


FAQs

Eligibility:

Am I eligible to apply for the Professional Review?

Eligibility is based on an academic standard as well as experience level. The academic standards for Chartered and Associate-Membership can be found on the Grades of Membership page. If you are unsure you can ask the Membership Team to check your qualifications.

If you don’t hold an academic qualification that is recognised by the Institution you can still apply, but will go through the Academic Assessment process before moving on to the Professional Review.

You make the judgement on whether you have reached the right experience level to apply. Normally, we would suggest that at least four years’ of experience would be needed, but this can differ from person to person. You should familiarise yourself with the IPD requirements to determine whether you have gained sufficient experience to apply.

If I choose to sit the Examination first, do I need to have completed my IPD?

Not necessarily. You do not have to have completed your IPD although you will not be able to apply for the PRI until you have. We strongly encourage you to make sure that you are ready to take the exam before you attempt it and therefore it could be assumed that you will either have completed or will be close to completing your IPD at this point.

Speeding up the election process is one of the benefits of this new flexible route through the Professional Review, but we do caution candidates against rushing through the process before they are ready. Please make sure you are fully prepared for both your Interview and Exam, as failures in either will slow down your application.

How to apply & application fees:

How much does the application cost?

There are three fees that you will pay as you go through the Professional Review process: the application fee, the PRI fee and the examination fee. Details of fees.

How do I start the application process?

The first step is to submit your Expression of Interest Form for either Chartered Membership (CM) or Associate-Membership (AM). On this form you will tell us whether you are ready for your PRI, your Exam, or both. We’ll then ask you for your PRI Form or Exam Entry Form, based on your preference. We will ask you to pay your application fee on submission of the EOI Form.

What happens if I only want to take my PRI?

If you feel that you’re only ready to take your interview at the moment you just need to tick that box on the EOI Form. We will then ask you to submit your PRI Form along with your IPD report forms so that we can enter you into the next session of interviews. We’ll advise you of the result of your PRI as soon as it is available, and you can then decide when you’re ready to take your Exam. You will still need to pass both the PRI and Exam to be elected.

What happens if I only want to sit the Exam?

If you feel that you’re only ready to sit the Examination at the moment you can let us know via the EOI Form. We’ll then send you the Exam Entry Form so that you can sit the next available Examination. After you have the result of your exam you can let us know when you’re ready to take your PRI. You will still need to pass both the Exam and the PRI to be elected.

What is the deadline for submitting my application forms?

You can submit the EOI form at any time during the year and we will then enter you into the next available PRI or Exam, based on your preference, however, you do need to be aware of some deadlines if you are aiming for a particular Exam or Interview session. Find details of the deadlines.

I have passed my Examination

Do I still have to cover all 13 Core Objectives in my PRI?

Yes. The Professional Review Interview and Examination are two separate elements of the Professional Review. They test your knowledge, experience and ability in different ways which means that you must pass both elements before you can be elected.

Does my ‘Exam Pass’ status expire?

No. Your Examination result is final and will not expire. It is not affected by the number of attempts taken to pass the PRI.

Is there any formal recognition having passed the Examination but not the PRI?

No. The Exam and the Interview are both vital parts of the Professional Review process. Until you have passed both parts of the Professional Review you cannot be elected or gain any official recognition. We don’t issue certificates for Exam passes.

Will my Interviewers know that I have passed the Examination?

No, we will not tell your Interviewers that you have passed the Exam, and we would discourage you from telling them as the result is not relevant to the outcome of your interview. The PRI and the Examination are two separate elements of the Professional Review and test your knowledge, experience and ability in different ways and therefore success or failure in one part will have very little bearing on your success in the other. You have to pass both elements in order to be transferred or elected to Professional Membership.

I have failed my Examination

If I fail my Exam can I still sit the PRI?

Yes. The process is flexible, so even if you fail your Exam, you can still sit the PRI. The deadline for entry into the Professional Review Interview is 1 September each year (or 1 April for candidates in Hong Kong). The result of your Exam will not affect your interview as they test different areas in different ways, and your Interviewers will not know your Exam result.

Is there a limit on how many times I can take the Exam?

No, you can take the Examination as many times as you need to, but there are a couple of rules you need to be aware of if you have passed your PRI, but not your Exam:

  • If you do not attempt an Exam within three years of passing your PRI you will be required to retake the Interview once you have passed the Exam.
  • If you do not pass your Exam within five years of taking the PRI you may be required to retake the Interview once you have passed the Exam.

Very few people fall foul of these rules, but we will be in touch to make you aware of them if it looks like a possibility.

When can I resit the Exam?

The Chartered Member Examination is held in January and July every year. The Associate-Member Examination is held every July. If you fail you will be sent the form to enter the next one.

Can I appeal?

The Institution has an Appeals Procedure contained within the Institution’s Royal Charter and Bye-Laws under 1.16.

I have passed my Professional Review Interview

Can I delay or postpone taking the Examination?

Yes, you can choose when you sit the Examination, but you need to be aware that if you do not attempt the Examination within three years of passing your Interview you may be required to undertake another PRI before you can be elected.

Is there any formal recognition having passed the PRI but not the Exam?

No. The Exam and the Interview are both vital parts of the Professional Review process. Until you have passed both parts of the Professional Review you cannot be elected or gain any official recognition. We don’t issue certificates for Exam passes.

I have failed my Professional Review Interview

I failed my PRI, when can I resit?

Professional Review Interviews are held once per year. The deadline to submit your application for entry into the PRI is 1 September each year. (Apart from candidates in Hong Kong who have a deadline of 1 April). If you fail your PRI we will be in touch to let you know what you need to do next.

I only failed the PRI on three or fewer Core Objectives, when can I resit the PRI?

You will need to wait until the next PRI session for your next interview, but you will only be interviewed against the core objectives that you failed. The deadline for entry into the Professional Review Interview is 1 September each year (or 1 April for candidates in Hong Kong). We’ll be in touch to let you know what you need to do next if you fail the PRI.

I failed the PRI, can I sit the Examination?

Yes. The process is flexible, so even if you fail your PRI you can still sit the Exam. The PRI and the Examination are two separate elements of the Professional Review and test your knowledge, experience and ability in different ways. You will be able to re-take the PRI in the next sitting, if you wish.

I failed my PRI but have already paid to enter the Examination, can I cancel and get a refund of my Examination Entry Fee?

You can cancel your Exam place, but you will not get a refund of the entry fee. The PRI and Exam test your knowledge and experience in different ways, so you do not need to cancel your exam place just because you failed the PRI.

Can I appeal?

The Institution has an Appeals Procedure contained within the Institution’s Royal Charter and Bye-Laws under 1.16.

Process timelines

How long will my application take?

This depends on the order you choose to take your Exam and PRI, and if you meet the deadlines for the application forms. If you need to have your academic qualifications assessed this will add a few months to the overall process.

The quickest application route is to take both elements concurrently:

  • If you take the July Exam and the Oct/Nov PRI this will result in election after approximately 9 months
  • If you take the Oct/Nov PRI and the January Exam the process will take approximately 10 months

By comparison, if you follow the ‘old’ process of taking the PRI and waiting for the result before entering the Exam election could take approximately 15 months.

When will I get my results from the PRI and Examination?

PRI results are issued in December or January. January Exam results are released in April, and July Exam results are released in October.

If I pass both the Exam and PRI when will I be elected?

When your success in both elements of the Professional Review has been confirmed you will be eligible for election as either a Chartered Structural Engineer or an Associate-Member, depending on the route you have followed. This will be approved at the next available meeting of the Membership Committee, and we will write to you to tell you that you’ve been elected and can start using the letters after your name.


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