Sunday, June 2, 2019
Excellence in Engineering Education :: Education Engineer Educating Essays
How should we describe the excellent organize and what kind of education is demanded by such a person? several(prenominal) issues argon involved. One of these is the character of our times that is, the best engineer out of the science engine room model of the 1950s may have little apprize in the early 21st Century. Another issue is the concept of education. How do education and training differ and how is excellence achieved? Finally, clearly, there is the issue of what we would expect of an engineer who is truly excellent.Fortunately for us, ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology) seeks to define the excellent engineer and the excellent engineering program by outlining a number of criteria that should be met by any accredited program in engineering education. It is important to note, at the outset, that ABET begins with an overarching criterion that engineering programs moldiness prepare graduates for the practice of engineering at a professional level. (My empha sis) This must mean something more than mere vocational training. As a professional, the engineer must exercise considerable liberty and use intelligent individual judgment. The professional engineer can be no mere employee he/she must become a partner in the development of technology. By its in truth nature a professional partnership involves certain viewpoints, methods, and birthards developed by the community of professionals, who have common interests and objectives, and these must stand independent of those who would employ or otherwise seek the service of these professionals.Three of the five criteria developed by ABET recognize aspects of the educational institution that, I suspect, all will agree with without much hesitation. Students of high quality must be attracted and served well. Faculty of high quality must be attracted and retained. Educational objectives must be stated clearly and publicly some form of evaluation must be in place to assure that these objectives are achieved. The one lamentable aspect of the new ABET criteria is what appears to be an overwhelming emphasis on quantitative assessment, phrased in terms of outcomes. While it is one thing to plan for and trust for significant outcomes, it is another to expect that genuinely desirable outcomes will always be so objective that quantitative assessment is remotely possible. At the very least, there should be some allowance for the obvious fact that certain outcomes take longer than others to be realized. It is true, of course, that the longer an outcome takes, the more complex are the factors that contribute to it.