Virtual On line
June 22, 2020
June 22, 2020
June 26, 2021
Abstract The primary objective of this study is to present design problems and case studies in a civil and environmental engineering discipline that encourages ethical decision-making among students. Specifically, this study will focus on the first canon of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Code of Ethics: “Hold Safety Paramount”. The principles of this canon indicate that engineers will conduct their professional duties to ensure the safety, health, and welfare of the public. The engineering community has experienced multiple scandals involving ethical lapses among large companies or government agencies during recent times. Traditional engineering education focuses on skill acquisition rather than behavior change. Harding et al. (2006) have presented a study that indicated that unethical behavior during college might translate into unethical behavior at a professional level. Therefore, it is necessary to train students to make ethical decisions. To promote ethical decision-making among civil and environmental engineering students, we implemented design problems and case-studies in two courses at the junior level and one course at a senior level. The two junior-level courses are Fluid Mechanics and Sustainable Civil and Environmental Engineering, whereas Foundations Engineering is a senior elective course. The student responses were assessed by a one-question survey similar to the study presented by Sleep and Rohwer (2019). These courses were offered in Fall 2019, and the assessment results from these courses have been analyzed. Our results indicated that the students were able to recognize the value of safety in civil engineering. Majority of the students have indicated that reviewing the ethical canons has strongly influenced their final selection. Therefore, engineering educators should challenge students to make ethical decisions by using realistic design problems and case studies.
Torlapati, J., & Bauer, S. K., & Zhu, C. (2020, June), Assessment of the Impact of Civil Engineering Design Problems for Promoting Ethical Decisions Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--34194
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