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An Integrated Approach To Evaluation Of Program Educational Objectives And Assessment Of Program Outcomes

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2004 Annual Conference


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 20, 2004

Start Date

June 20, 2004

End Date

June 23, 2004



Conference Session

IE Accreditation and Program Issues

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.185.1 - 9.185.11



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Paper Authors

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Eleanor Nault

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Michael Leonard

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

Session 1657

An Integrated Approach to Evaluation of Program Educational Objectives and Assessment of Program Outcomes Using ABET Criteria for Accreditation of Engineering Programs

Michael S. Leonard and Eleanor W. Nault

Clemson University

I. Abstract

For many engineering education programs, the process for evaluating program educational objectives is interpretive; that is, achievement of program educational objectives is inferred from achievement of program outcomes. What is lacking in current practice is a systematic way to examine the success of a program based on a set of interlinked program objectives evaluation and outcomes assessment processes. The new processes should accommodate differentiation between the data collection efforts associated with outcomes assessment and objectives evaluation. Such a separation is particularly important since ABET has recently adopted a change in engineering accreditation criteria that partitions outcomes assessment and objective evaluation data at the day of graduation. The procedures described in this paper accommodate the changes in criteria while providing a systematic approach that eliminates redundancy in data collection, targets relevant constituents for input, and reduces strain on limited resources. Application of the procedures in an industrial engineering program is discussed.

II. Introduction

Since ABET, Inc. (ABET) distributed the first edition of Engineering Criteria 2000 (EC 2000) in 1995 1 , EC 2000 requirements have changed little. Modifications have been limited to minor rewordings of text of the criteria and the dropping of the criterion related to cooperative education. However, the 2004-2005 version of the Criteria for Accrediting Engineering Programs (which now include only the EC 2000 Criteria) contains several important changes adopted by the ABET Board of Directors in November 2003 2. At first glance, the alterations to Criterion 2 and Criterion 3 appear to be relatively insignificant clarifications defining the focus for each criterion. The change to Criterion 2 adds the wording:

Although institutions may use different terminology, for purposes of Criterion 2, program educational objectives are intended to be statements that describe the expected accomplishments of graduates during the first several years following graduation from the program.

The change to Criterion 3 adds the statement:

Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2004, American Society for Engineering Education

Nault, E., & Leonard, M. (2004, June), An Integrated Approach To Evaluation Of Program Educational Objectives And Assessment Of Program Outcomes Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--13130

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