At the AGM Dr Quarmby described the new Shared Support Examination Route (SSR).
He said that this would not be an easier option than the standard examinations but it would give those, who had left school and the examination system a long time ago or who were disadvantaged in other ways, a route to prove their competence and graduate to Associate level. It was indubitable that there were highly competent demolition designers /engineers out there who, for one reason or another could not sit an academic examination unaided. The Institute was honour bound to assist all its members.
A pilot SSR examination had been conducted. It had been found that the route was challenging and met the stringent standards demanded by the Engineering Council and assessment for the award of the CSCS PQP card.
Unfortunately the route was expensive when compared to the standard examinations due to having a ratio of two candidates to one tutor, who would be a Fellow of the IDE, and the cost of suitable accommodation. However, it was very good value for money. During the long day, eight hours at least, candidates would sit the multiple choice paper and answer the required three questions for the second part of the examination. The Tutors would provide as stress-free an environment as possible and any disabilities would be catered for. Amanuenses would be provided where candidates had difficulties writing their own papers.
The three candidates who were part of the pilot SSR examination day had all expressed their appreciation for the opportunity. They frankly admitted that they would not have remotely considered entering the standard examinations.
Dr Quamby reminded the meeting that provided enough notice was given it was possible to bring an amanuensis to the standard examinations or to receive extra time if one had a disability but was writing one’s own paper. The important thing was to contact the National Secretary in confidence to let her know the difficulty existed. She would be able to suggest the best route with regard to the examinations.
Applying for the Shared Support Examination Route (SSR)
Contact the National Secretary for the application form, which must be returned with the fee, £475, at least a month before the next meeting of the Membership Committee. The Committee will examine the form and if satisfied that the SSR is the best course of action will invite the candidate to accept a place on the next available SSR day. If the Committee believes that the best route would be the standard examinations, with help from a scribe or longer time, the balance of the fee will be refunded.