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Application Of An Assessment Model To Engineering Economy For Mechanical Engineering Students

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1998 Annual Conference


Seattle, Washington

Publication Date

June 28, 1998

Start Date

June 28, 1998

End Date

July 1, 1998



Page Count


Page Numbers

3.100.1 - 3.100.6

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Paper Authors

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Ryan B. Wicker

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Rolando Quintana

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Michael Camet

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

Session 3666

Application of an Assessment Model to Engineering Economy for Mechanical Engineering Students Michael Camet B.S.M.E, Ryan Wicker Ph.D., Rolando Quintana Ph.D., P.E. Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering The University of Texas at El Paso El Paso, Texas 79968

I. Abstract A quantitative engineering program assessment model has been developed and validated at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP). The model uses an engineering assessment parameter, called the weighted Tarquin number, which is used to assess the impact of programmatic decisions. The Tarquin number is the average score across all subjects for a particular group of students minus that value from the individual score in the particular subject. The weighted Tarquin number in turn is an average of individual Tarquin numbers for each subject area weighted by the number of students taking the particular Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) Examination. In this research, the assessment methodology is used on a case study involving the performance of mechanical engineering students on the engineering economy section of the FE exam. Correlation analyses indicated that having a formal FE exam review course maybe the most important parameter in mechanical engineering students’ performance in the subject of engineering economy on the FE exam.

II. Introduction The most significant obstacle facing universities will be developing quantitative measures for assessing engineering programs and tracking the effects of curricular changes.2,4,5,7 Many of the difficulties result from a lack of available uniform, across institution performance measures. At this time, the only available performance measure taken by a large number of students from many institutions is the FE exam.1,6,8 UTEP has embarked on an effort to utilize the FE exam for assessment and tracking of engineering programs. This effort has been supported by UTEP’s National Science Foundation (NSF)-funded Model Institutions for Excellence (MIE) Program. The following presents the methodology developed for engineering program assessment.

III. Methodology A Fundamentals of Engineering Examination national database has been created in order to make meaningful comparisons. A strong argument in support of using the FE exam for assessment purposes is that many of the topics covered in the exam can be traced back to a course or a set of courses. Even though the FE exam may be biased toward mechanical and civil engineering disciplines, the model proposed in the following will have construct validity for programmatic assessment with respect to the subject areas tested in the FE exam, since engineering students from many disciplines are required to take many of the same courses tested

Wicker, R. B., & Quintana, R., & Camet, M. (1998, June), Application Of An Assessment Model To Engineering Economy For Mechanical Engineering Students Paper presented at 1998 Annual Conference, Seattle, Washington.

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