June 23, 2013
June 23, 2013
June 26, 2013
Engineering and Public Policy
23.205.1 - 23.205.14
Approaches to Integrating Policy into Engineering EducationThe importance of including policy education in the engineering curriculum has been recognizedby experts from bodies including the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology(ABET), the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), and the NationalAcademy of Engineering (NAE). Several approaches can be taken to ensure that engineeringstudents receive some education in policy. These approaches may range from a brief introductionto a comprehensive program integrating engineering and public policy. However, the goal of allthese curricular interventions is to introduce the concept of public policy and promote anunderstanding of how policy and engineering are interrelated. This paper will outline variousmethods that may be employed to integrate policy into engineering and technology curricula anduse X University as a case study to examine these methods in greater depth.X University has a large population of engineering and technology students and has recognizedthe need for more policy inclusion in the curriculum. However, courses in policy cannot simplybe added to the curriculum firstly because the engineering curriculum is already packed andsecondly because there is a large variation in students’ interest in and prior knowledge of policytopics. Therefore, X University has taken a flexible approach, providing students with a diversityof options to introduce policy knowledge. These options differ in their length, the instructionalapproaches used, the depth of coverage of the various policy topics, and the range of contentcovered. This paper will take a case study approach, describing the options in detail anddiscussing the advantages and disadvantages of the various options. These case studies willinclude: a research project to develop a template for the creation of policy modules ranging from1-3 class sessions in length that can be inserted into pre-existing engineering courses, as well as adescription of the four modules created and piloted using this approach; an undergraduate surveycourse in engineering and technology policy cross-listed across seven disciplines; an experientialstudy abroad class surveying science and technology policy in the United States and theEuropean Union; a semester long course in technology and public policy; a minor in engineeringand public policy; and graduate certificates in various areas related to science and technologypolicy. Supporting materials for each of these case studies, for example syllabi and possibleprojects, will also be provided to encourage deeper examination and broader dissemination ofthese methods.
Ngambeki, I. B., & Depew, D. R., & Dark, M. J., & Chong, R. C. (2013, June), Approaches to Integrating Policy into Engineering Education Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. https://peer.asee.org/19219
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