Many projects in industry and government go over budget and schedule. In most engineering economics courses, the emphasis is on how to compare alternatives and learn about time value of money and interest and inflation rates. The students are usually given the costs and asked to compare the alternatives. However, this is the easy part of the analysis. The hard part of real project evaluations is developing the cost and investment numbers to do the engineering economics analysis. In most engineering economic textbooks, there is at most one chapter on cost estimation. More and more companies and government organizations are concerned that their engineers don't know how to do accurate cost and schedule estimates. Cost estimation is a critical element to doing engineering economic evaluations. For example, one of the authors has presented short courses on cost estimation and economic evaluation to over 10,000 professionals, mostly engineers and engineering managers who are in industry and government. Most of these engineers have taken engineering economics courses while in college, and they have a good grasp of the fundamentals of engineering economics. However, most practicing engineers lack the fundamentals to do accurate cost and schedule estimates. To keep projects from going over budget and schedule, more and more organizations are requiring their engineers and engineering managers to obtain certifications in cost estimation from professional societies. The purpose of this paper is to discuss the current certifications offered so practicing engineers and engineering educators will know what is available and what is required to earn these certifications. The four major cost estimating certifications offered by professional societies in the United States are discussed. Eligibility and certification requirements along with examination information are presented. In addition, because many engineers are working on international projects, cost estimation certifications offered by professional societies in other countries are also summarized.
© 2007 American Society for Engineering Education
Remer, Donald S., Karen Ahle, Kevin Alley, John Silny, Karen Hsin, Elijah Kwitman, and Allison Hutchings. "Cost Estimating Certifications Offered by Professional Societies in the United States and Abroad." Proceedings of the American Association for Engineering Education. June 2007.