Haha, this discussion of distinction (in English language, but not limited solely to it) is somewhat asmusing, and reminds me of an anecdote a friend told me how the best course of action in Italy if one's car breaks down is to address the mechanic as inginiure
meaning engineer, otherwise he's most likely to take offence and do a botch job...
Of course, it boils down to the matter of etiquette but there's always a grain of truth, in even wildest of jokes.;)
I think the new trend in EU is some sort of points based system, based on formal education. It might be a nifty method, but PE might be welcome addition. Speakig of my own country, there were three levels of education for professions in mechanical 'engineering' field- dedicated high school education, and 2½ and 4½ year university courses (ing.
and dipl. ing.
respectively), and with switch to bologna the latter two got (IIRC) split to 3 and 5 year courses resulting in tiles of baccalureate* and univ. mr. ing. mech
(in the meantime there was one quasi-uni like course of 3 years introduced to complicate things even further, but those poor sods got screwed up the best- because their knowledge was almost on par with fully fledged dipl. ing.
, but had rank of mere ing
). IMHO, there is no way of sorting the mess unless a merit based post-graduate evaluation of performance (open to any, regardless of whether they have expirience in the field instead of uni education).
* and this is grade noone ever does- because of virtually no chance of being employed, so basically our unis produce nothing but univ. mr. ing.
Edited by Wolf, 07 January 2012 - 02:02.