Salt Lake City, Utah
June 20, 2004
June 20, 2004
June 23, 2004
9.133.1 - 9.133.5
ABET's TEI Project: Focus on Program Improvement Maryanne Weiss, Margaret Weeks, Mark Pagano ABET, Inc./ABET, Inc./Purdue University
ABET, Inc. has been funded by the National Science Foundation's Advanced Technological Education Program since 2001 to lead the Technological Education Initiative (TEI). Over 500 engineering and information technology faculty from 295 institutions have participated in TEI workshops across the nation. The project’s focus has been on continuous quality improvement of academic programs and on outcomes assessment. This paper will describe a methodology behind implementation of CQI in academe and will outline how the information gleaned from TEI workshops can serve the needs of technology educators.
Continuous Quality Improvement
That continuous quality improvement is alive and well is a testament to Deming and his followers.1 CQI processes have been used extensively by industry and other organizations, and ABET is no exception. Over the past three years ABET has implemented its ATE funded Technological Education Initiative, a professional development project for engineering technology faculty that focuses on how to take the tried and true concepts of continuous quality improvement and apply them to technical programs.2
As many are already aware, back in the early ‘90s ABET was hearing from its constituents that its accreditation process and criteria were outdated – and that there was too much reliance on “bean counting.” The criteria were burdensome and far too prescriptive. ABET subsequently spent a great deal of energy to drastically overhaul the engineering criteria, and the result was EC2000.3
Soon the Technology Accreditation Commission decided that its processes and criteria too needed a major overhauling and ultimately the commission, with a great deal of help from the community it serves, developed and published the new criteria for technology programs, currently referred to as TC2K. The new criteria were a move away from input and process (courses taught, faculty credentials, etc.) to outcomes (what students know and are able to do). All eligible engineering technology programs are now being accredited using the new criteria.
Criterion 2 in TC2K is informally referred to as “a through k” and is very similar to the Engineering Accreditation Commissions’ Criterion 3. The following is excerpted from TC2K Criterion 24:
An engineering technology program must demonstrate that graduates have:
Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2004, American Society for Engineering Education
Weeks, P., & Weiss, M., & Pagano, M. (2004, June), Abet's Tei Project: Focus On Program Improvement Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. https://peer.asee.org/13525
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