British professional qualifications

Posted by: satguru

British professional qualifications - Mon Dec 17 2012 02:26 PM

We have odd rules here (I don't know if it's worldwide as well) which entitle graduates with a first degree in some disciplines to call themselves professionals, while others either need a specific course or higher degree. And some degrees I haven't included without any known profession attached. I know some but not all by any means, so have begun a table and hoping everyone will pitch in and add the missing parts left (and any more degrees) with spaces. Some will only need a first degree but I don't know which. I also suspect a couple only need a reasonable level of knowledge and no degree at all.

Degree - Title - Requirement

Psychology- Psychologist - Professional course
Economics - Economist
History - Historian
Chemistry - Chemist Chartered Chemist
Physics - Physicist
Law - Lawyer (academic/general)
" " - Barrister/solicitor -Professional course
Accounting - Accountant -Different levels up to chartered
Philosophy - Philosopher
Astronomy - Astronomer
Pharmacy - Pharmacist -Professional course (above degree?)
Statistics - Statistician
Biology - Biologist
Engineering -Engineer
Meteorology - Meteorologist
Geography - Geographer
Languages - Linguist
(I tried leaving spaces between the columns but it wouldn't let me)
Posted by: sue943

Re: British professional qualifications - Tue Dec 18 2012 01:54 AM

Biochemistry - Biochemist
Dentistry - Dentist
Medicine - Doctor - Further specialist training
Veterinary Studies - Veterinary Surgeon
Posted by: ren33

Re: British professional qualifications - Tue Dec 18 2012 06:51 AM

Education- Teacher - Bachelor of Education (a 2:1 degree or higher)+ grade C in Eng and Maths or a 2:1+ degree in your chosen subject and after one year a PGCE (Post Graduate certificate of education) after 5 years teaching an NQT( Newly Qualified Teacher Certificate. ( and the pay stinks!)
Posted by: satguru

Re: British professional qualifications - Tue Dec 18 2012 12:18 PM

Thanks everyone so far, the teacher is an interesting one as it has two similar routes, B Ed (hons) while the fourth year honours are the equivalent to the professional PGCE for any other degree as a fourth year to become a teacher. So for that profession it's very specific, B Education with honours is a teaching qualification, but there was a time where a science degree also waived the need for a PGCE as there was a shortage. I didn't know it needed a 2-1 now but with opening up degrees for so many people now it would need to raise the level.

Dentistry is a specific degree like a vet or an architect, where it's years longer than a bachelor's but the degree is the profession. Medicine is different as you get earlier degrees on the way so can stop early and still come out with something. I think engineers have specific associations for each type but not if postgraduate.

I'll filter it down now to the unknowns I can think of, ie does a bachelor's degree alone allow the use of a professional name as it isn't a legal requirement or through an official association?:

History - historian
Geography - geographer
Sociology - sociologist
Meteorology - meteorologist
Botany - botanist
Physiology - physiologist
Economics - Economist
Philosophy - Philosopher
Astronomy - Astronomer
Pharmacy - Pharmacist
Languages - Linguist
Physics - Physicist
Statistics - Statistician

I'll fill them in as I go along and when it's finished will make a complete table for reference. There's no need to explain why, just being a member here is a good enough reason!
Posted by: stuthehistoryguy

Re: British professional qualifications - Sat Dec 29 2012 05:14 PM

I cannot speak for Britain, but one would be hard-pressed to call oneself a historian in the US without a Masters Degree and employment at a university or, pushing it, a historical society.
Posted by: satguru

Re: British professional qualifications - Sun Dec 30 2012 03:12 PM

That's what I was wondering as well, as half the qualifications here are compulsory, the rest are uncertain at least. I'm wondering if the remainder actually have any official requirement or just up to the individual with the degree to decide. I'm sure more people will come along from the field sooner or later and add some more.
Posted by: satguru

Re: British professional qualifications - Fri Jan 04 2013 05:46 PM

I've been doing a bit more digging, and the general conclusion appears to be that either a profession has a specific requirement, usually postgraduate but not always (I think engineers may qualify as graduates at least), and if not then it depends more what someone does with their first degree than the actual qualifications beyond or otherwise.

Therefore someone with a degree in the humanities who goes into a job requiring that skill, whether academic or practical, they would normally be referred to by that status. I know the German system is the most specific in the world, where each profession is both regulated and part of your name as well as the extra letters (eg Herr engineer Schmidt etc), but otherwise does seem to be an informal designation based on a combination of your first degree and the fact you use it professionally. So if it's economics and you go straight into a firm of brokers doing analysis, do well and get promoted as a top advisor, I would guess they have as much right to be called an economist as anyone with a masters or above.

As these are only observations I'll put them out and see if they can be confirmed or contradicted.
Posted by: Snowman

Re: British professional qualifications - Tue Jan 08 2013 07:01 AM

A clarification is needed for one of your original list--at least in the UK.

You do not need a qualification to call yourself a psychologist in the UK. The title is not protected in that stand-alone form. Properly qualified psychologists are called either "registered" or "practioner" psychologists (as well as other specialisms such as sports psychologist etc.) and these titles are legally protected. Someone who just calls themselves a psychologist is often not properly qualified.
Posted by: satguru

Re: British professional qualifications - Tue Jan 08 2013 09:00 AM

That's a very interesting exception- my own work, counsellor/psychotherapist is entirely unregulated and once or twice there have been attempts to gain government recognition to raise it to that level. I had no idea psychologists meant although there is a professional exclusive route you can use the term regardless, can you imagine that applying to a doctor! It doesn't alter the official route though, as that has been created but does show a strange exception. That also implies any other profession which is not protected could also be used whatever the lack of qualifications simply as there is no legal route to challenge it.

I'll do a bit of checking into one or two specifics here without protected status just to see if a pattern forms, and probably because I can't do it somehow forgot mathematician. I'd give that to anyone with an O level myself, or even anyone who can do equations as you don't need a single qualification to either manage them or not, like an artist. That refers to my own original job as a teacher, which is regulated for state schools (you need O level maths to take the extra year postgraduate) but not private where I worked instead, with many others unable to pass maths O level but some had higher degrees as well.
Posted by: satguru

Re: British professional qualifications - Fri Mar 15 2013 06:01 PM

I've just found a list of chartered professions, some familiar and many others very specialised. They don't say how to get them but would be a lot easier to follow each up by going to their specific pages.

List of chartered professions
Posted by: Jabberwok

Re: British professional qualifications - Sat Mar 16 2013 08:36 AM

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/8303126.stm

Interesting now that everything can be done online. If he'd had to show up to seminars, someone might have noticed!
Posted by: satguru

Re: British professional qualifications - Sat Mar 16 2013 09:41 AM

That's the difference between the official and unregulated bodies- some can be good but there's nothing to stop them doing whatever they like. But in my own field of counselling and psychotherapy Britain is one of the only countries in the world which doesn't recognise it, although it has every right to become chartered as any of the others which have. But getting new areas recognised in Britain is like getting accepted in a remote village, sometimes three generations of a family will still be considered 'newcomers', and unfortunately exactly the same applies to new professions. It took osteopaths about 100 years before they got their charter and counsellors would be incredibly lucky to ever get it, certainly not in my lifetime, it's really a closed set which they don't expect to be opened again under any circumstances. It only needs some large scale tests to see the system works so hardly anything different from what they obviously carried out 1-200 years ago or many more to include all the others.
Posted by: mehaul

Re: British professional qualifications - Sat Mar 16 2013 11:41 PM

I came across this UK outfit researching some Quality Assurance information.


Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education


Sounds like one of your institutions that'd be deeply involved in accredidations accreditations. (Edit: You cannot have it if you cannot spell it! smile )
Posted by: underscored

Re: British professional qualifications - Sat Mar 30 2013 12:08 PM

lmfao 'OUCH'