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Board # 27 : Developing Integrated Standards for Systematic Civil Engineering Course Design

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2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Columbus, Ohio

Publication Date

June 24, 2017

Start Date

June 24, 2017

End Date

June 28, 2017

Conference Session

Civil Engineering Division Poster Session

Tagged Division

Civil Engineering

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Paper Authors


Jim Morgan Charles Sturt University

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Jim Morgan is the father of two daughters and the spouse of an engineer. Before joining Charles Sturt University as Professor of Engineering and Inaugural Course Director in 2015, he was on the faculty in civil engineering at Texas A&M for over 30 years. Jim was active in the freshman engineering program at A&M for nearly 20 years; was an active participant in the NSF Foundation Coalition from 1993 to 2003; also has received funding for his engineering education research from the Department of Education FIPSE program and from the National Science Foundation CCLI program.
He is active in the American Society for Engineering Education, is past chair of the Freshman Programs Division, currently serves on the steering committee. In addition to his teaching in engineering, Jim served several years as Co-Director of the Eisenhower Leadership Development Program in the Center for Public Leadership at the George Bush School of Government and Public Service; and also served as director of Aggie STEM with funding from the Texas Education Agency and the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.

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Professor Euan Lindsay is a Mechatronic engineer, a discipline that integrates computers, electronics and physical hardware. Prof Lindsay’s background is in Remote laboratories, investigating whether remote and simulated access alternatives to the traditional in-person laboratory experience can provide the high quality learning outcomes for students.

Prof Lindsay’s work in Remote and Virtual laboratory classes has shown that there are significant differences not only in students’ learning outcomes but also in their perceptions of these outcomes, when they are exposed to the different access modes. These differences have powerful implications for the design of remote and virtual laboratory classes in the future, and also provide an opportunity to match alternative access modes to the intended learning outcomes that they enhance.

Prof Lindsay is the Foundation Professor of Engineering at Charles Sturt University. His research interests centre largely around online learning – the use of remote and virtual laboratories, MOOCs and other methods for making learning asynchronous, and data analytics for promoting student learning.

Prof Lindsay was the 2010 President of the Australasian Association for Engineering Education. He is a Fellow of Engineers Australia, and a Fellow of the UK Higher Education Academy. Prof Lindsay was the recipient of a 2007 Carrick Award for Australian University Teaching. In 2005 he was named as one of the 30 Most Inspirational Young Engineers in Australia.

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Pamela Roberts Charles Sturt University

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Pamela is a Chemical Engineer with more than twenty years experience working in industry and as an engineering educator. Her current role is Senior Lecturer, Learning Academy, Division of Student Learning and Course Director for the Graduate Certificate in Learning & Teaching in Higher Education. Her research includes curriculum decision making in higher education and the implications for strategic change; research-based teaching and learning, problem-based learning in engineering education and gender inclusive curricula. Pamela also teaches and provides professional development in higher education teaching and learning to academic staff.

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Developing integrated standards for systematic civil engineering course design

The goal of the design process for the engineering program at XXX University was to ensure that every student receives integrated, coherent learning experiences that contribute to their personal, academic, and professional learning and development. The design team includes the Head of School, Course Director, academic staff, and educational designers. Engineering degrees are subject to a range of different quality assurance frameworks, which while often similar in their overall intent, can manifest quite differently. Some have requirements for the structure or content of the program; others have mandated expectations from the graduates.

At XXX University, this means meeting several different criteria before graduation: the Graduate Learning Outcomes (standards for the university), the <National> Qualifications Framework Criteria (standards for the level of the degree), and the XXX competencies (accreditation standards for the professional engineer). In addition to meeting these required standards for graduating as a professional engineer, the XXX degree also pushes its students towards the competencies for <Professional> status; this adds an additional standard to be incorporated into the curriculum design and supported by the program while not explicitly needing to be completely satisfied by any of the graduating students. Further, the program offers exit awards for students seeking to leave the program early after meeting key intermediate milestones. These exit awards must also meet their respective standards, and the early subjects in the degree must ensure that this occurs.

This paper outlines the process of developing integrated standards to incorporate all of these, as well as the mapping of the integrated standards to each of the individual requirements. Whilst the multiple requirements are mostly aligned, the goal of the integrated standards is to inherently satisfy each of the separate requirements in the process of meeting the integrated standards. The integrated standards become the course learning outcomes and provide a framework for the course design that ensures student engineers automatically meet all criteria in the normal process of meeting degree requirements.

Morgan, J., & Lindsay, E., & Roberts, P. (2017, June), Board # 27 : Developing Integrated Standards for Systematic Civil Engineering Course Design Paper presented at 2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Columbus, Ohio. 10.18260/1-2--27818

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