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A Survey Of The American Architectural Engineering Curriculum

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2006 Annual Conference & Exposition


Chicago, Illinois

Publication Date

June 18, 2006

Start Date

June 18, 2006

End Date

June 21, 2006



Conference Session

Technical Issues in Architectural Engineering I

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Page Count


Page Numbers

11.131.1 - 11.131.7



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Paper Authors


Hector Estrada Texas A&M University-Kingsville

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DR. HECTOR ESTRADA is Associate Professor and Chair of Civil and Architectural Engineering at Texas A&M University-Kingsville.

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

A Survey of the American Architectural Engineering Curriculum


This paper presents the results of a comprehensive survey of all ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology) accredited architectural engineering programs. The analysis is based on data collected from a detailed study of the curricula of these programs. Five major groups of courses are discussed: mathematics and science, general education, architecture, other, and engineering coursework. The analysis reveals what is, or is not, being covered in architectural engineering and the implications for future professional practice. The paper discusses the two approaches to teaching architectural engineering (from the architecture schools and from engineering schools), how well curricula satisfy ABET accreditation criteria, and what the current distribution of coursework indicates is the priority of architectural engineering education. Like many other disciplines, it is apparent that the current architectural engineering curriculum is highly specialized when it comes to technical subjects, but rather unfocused regarding liberal arts and other important non-technical skills.


The field of architectural engineering is currently experiencing an exciting growth, as illustrated by the growth and development of the Architectural Engineering Institute (AEI), which is part of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE)1. Also, the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying has recently added a professional engineering licensing exam in the area of architectural engineering. This clearly indicates that the demand for programs in architectural engineering is strong and with the booming building construction industry, the demand for architectural engineers is expected to continue to grow.

There are several sources listing different architectural engineering programs. The Gourman Report6 includes rankings of architectural engineering programs and lists eight programs. The Princeton Review lists twenty-one programs, some of which are architectural engineering technology7. The AEI webpage lists sixteen programs, two of them as new degree programs1. The 20033 and 20042 editions of the ASEE Profiles of Engineering and Engineering Technology Colleges lists seventeen programs, one of which did not list architectural engineering on their website. Table 1 lists the enrolment and number of degrees awarded by these seventeen programs. These data clearly indicates an increasing trend in the number of students pursuing architectural engineering.

Estrada, H. (2006, June), A Survey Of The American Architectural Engineering Curriculum Paper presented at 2006 Annual Conference & Exposition, Chicago, Illinois. 10.18260/1-2--1007

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