Skip to content

PPE Ontario – 10 Definitions You Must Memorize

Wouldn't it be nice if you could know exactly what was on your upcoming PPE?

Well, with a little research, you can give yourself a pretty good idea of what to expect so you can prepare yourself accordingly.

In Canada, in order to achieve a P.Eng. or P.Geo. licence, all aspiring engineers or geoscientists must past a Professional Practice Exam (PPE). These are the rules set out by Engineers Canada. It even wrote a guideline on the PPE that's worth a quick glance.  

When you write your PPE in Ontario with PEO there are two parts to the exam:   

  • Part A  - Professional Practice & Ethics
  • Part B - Law

Within each part are 4 questions. Question 1 for both parts is where you really need to know your definitions. These are short answer questions that ask you to 'briefly define or explain'. 

If you want to know what is likely to be asked on your exam for question 1, one strategy is to look at past exam to see if you can see questions repeating. PEO sells old exams on its website and even gives one away for free (but solutions are not provided).

Luckily, in our Ontario PPE Total Prep Course, we have done that for both the short answers and long answers (as well as teach you how to answer them). In this post, I'll share the 5 most frequently appearing Part A (Professional Practice & Ethics) and Part B (Law) definitions.

Download my Ontario PPE Cheat Sheet to get a summarized overview of the key topics and recommended study method.

Top 5 PPE Ontario Ethics Definitions

These are listed in ascending order. 
Click to enlarge

PPE enforcement definition1.  Enforcement - Enforcement is prosecuting individuals or entities that practice engineering without a licence, or offer engineering services to the public without holding a Certificate of Authorization (CofA). For more reading, visit ethics text pg. 53. 

2.   Consulting Engineer Requirements - Requirements in Ontario are A) Be a licenced P.Eng. in good standing. B) Obtain a Certificate of Authorization (CofA) from PEO or work for a company/partnership with one. C) Have 5+ years of experience beyond the 4 required for registration (2+ years of that experience must be for the private sector.) D) Must have professional liability insurance. Designation of Consulting Engineer expires 5 years from the date of issuance. For more reading, visit ethics text pg. 51, 111.    

temporary engineering licence is time sensitive3. Temporary License Requirements and Limitations - This type of license is designed to allow out-of-province engineers to work in the province of the project. Requirements are A)  licensed in another province/territory.  B) qualified to work on a specific project and are familiar with the applicable codes, standards, and laws. C) collaborate with a member of the local Association (this may be waived if the applicant is highly qualified.) Limitations are noted on the licence itself and include A) works, facilities, machinery, equipment to which the license relates. B) name of the Member with whom collaboration is with (if applicable.) C) period of time (max 12 months.) D) name of person, firm or corporation whom the holder is employed or engaged to perform engineering services. For more reading, visit ethics text pg. 42 and General RRO section 42 (1).

4. Discipline - List the purpose and when being disciplined, list 3 penalties/sanctions: Purpose is to reprimand, suspend or expel members who are guilty of professional misconduct. Choose 3 of the following  A) Revoke the licence. B) Suspend the licence. C) Impose restrictions on the licence (e.g. needs to be supervised.) D) Require the practitioner to pay the cost of the investigation and hearing. E) Require the practitioner to take a course or write examinations set by the Association. G) Impose a fine. For more reading, visit ethics text pg. 52-53, 68-69.   

self regulation profession - ppe definition
5. The Meaning of  "Self Regulating Profession" -  Each province/territory has passed an Act to form an Association of professional engineers, which in turn regulate the profession. For more reading, visit ethics text pg. 33, 37.

Top 5 PPE Ontario Law Definitions

Here are the most frequently asked terms to define or explain in question 1, part 2 (law):

1. Rule of Contra Proferentem - A contract term that is ambiguous will be interpreted against the party that drafted that provision. For more reading, visit law text pg. 136.

secret commission ppe term2. Secret Commission - Giving or receiving a bribe or kickback to show favour or disfavor to a person or company. For more reading, visit law text pg. 179-180.

3. Contact A In Tendering (and how it can be breached) - Involves the the ‘tendering phase’ of a contract. Contract A is made when the owner’s offer is accepted by the bidder(s) upon the submission of each compliant bid. Several Contracts A can be formed. The number will equal the amount of compliant tenders submitted. Note: Contract B is the second contract that is formed on an award of the contract. The landmark case of Ron Engineering established this distinction of contracts. For more reading, visit law text pg. 120-128.

professional practice exam is a timed exam

4. Discoverability concept (as it relates to limitation periods) - A claim, lawsuit or action for tort or breach of contract must be commenced within a certain timeframe (Limitation Period) for it to be considered by the courts. The discoverability concept defines that the limitation period commences when a claim is discovered, an injury, loss or damage occurs, or the date of which a reasonable person would have discovered the loss/damage. For more reading, visit law text pg. 71-75.

5. Dispute Resolution Board (DRB) - A DRB is a form of project-based dispute resolution where the persons on the board (usually 3) recommend or decide on solutions to disputes thought the course of the projects. The persons sitting on the board have expertise in the area of the project and ideally make decisions in an unbiased, objective and independent basis. For more reading, visit law text pg. 31-32, 239, 246-247.

PPE Guide For Ontario PEO P.Eng. ExamThere you have it. 5 ethics and 5 law definitions that you need to memorize and hopefully you'll see a few on your exam. 

Now, there are more than 10 frequently appearing definitions that crop up on previous exams. In fact, there are approximately 80 ethics and law terms you really need to memorize. For those who want access to start learning all of these terms through our embedded flash cards and an abundance of practice exam questions, please visit the Ontario PPE Total Prep Online Course page.

Share this

1 Comment

  1. Gavin Simone on September 27, 2016 at 11:00 am

    I hope these 10 definitions can help you with your upcoming PEO PPE.

Leave a Comment