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Creating A Global Solutions Curriculum

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2013 ASEE International Forum


Atlanta, Georgia

Publication Date

June 22, 2013

Start Date

June 22, 2013

End Date

June 22, 2013

Conference Session

Track 4 - Session II - Student and Curriculum Development II

Tagged Topic

Student and Curriculum Development

Page Count


Page Numbers

21.18.1 - 21.18.11



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Paper Authors


Megan Elizabeth Sharp IUPUI School of Engineering and Technology

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Megan received her Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Ball State University in 2007. The area of focus was International Studies, and the degree was accompanied by minors in International Resource Management and Peace Studies & Conflict Resolution. Following her undergraduate work, Megan attended Taylor University and earned a Masters of Environmental Science in 2009, following an overseas internship with the ACTS Group of Institutions in Bangalore, India. Megan's academic and personal pursuits have provided exciting opportunities to gain international experience in Germany, India, Bangladesh, Guatemala, and Mali. Currently, Megan is working with an environmental consulting firm in Indianapolis and leading the first Global Solutions course at IUPUI. She looks forward to future opportunities to serve others in the field of international development.

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Alison L. Stevenson Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis

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Alison studied at Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis for her undergraduate career and complete her Bachelor of Arts in German, Minor in International Politics, and Certificate in International Leadership in 2005. Upon graduation, she worked in the manufacturing industry for 5 years coordinating marketing between the United States and several European countries. In 2010, Alison returned to academia in the School of Engineering Technology. She is currently pursuing a Master of Science degree in Literacy, Language, and Culture Education through the School of Education at Indiana University. She will complete her degree in August. She teaches a course titled Discovering Technology, and looks forward to future teaching opportunities.

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Creating a Global Solutions CurriculumIn today’s rapidly globalizing society, it is nearly inevitable that an individual pursuing aprofessional career is likely to experience international travel or interact with peers fromdifferent cultural backgrounds. Engineers are working worldwide, with increasing opportunitiesto work on a broad range of development projects. Whether designing a rainwater harvestsystem for a rural village or a hydroelectric dam to power a rapidly growing urban center, thedevelopment engineer will have to work within the context of the local culture, givingconsideration to the particular needs, assets, and cultural characteristics of that community. TheGlobal Solutions curriculum currently under development at IUPUI is designed to provideengineering technology students—along with students from a variety of academicbackgrounds—with the tools necessary to function successfully in a global career.This multidisciplinary curriculum brings together students from various academic backgroundsto provide a range of perspectives that might not be accomplished in a single-disciplineclassroom. Furthermore, this curriculum offers a unique environment that encouragesinvolvement with our international student population. As our international student populationgrows, we attempt to address their needs and harness their experiences to create the best possiblelearning environment for all students.The Global Solutions curriculum is proposed as a three-part course series which will offerstudents an in-depth look at issues of international development. The first course in the series,Global Solutions for International Development, welcomes students from any field of academiato explore the context of development issues and the approaches commonly taken to resolvethose issues. Students explore the forces that contribute to developmental disparities, theories ofintercultural communication, and project planning and implementation. The course thenaddresses the many intertwined fields of development, including water security, food security,education, public health, and economic development.The second course in the Global Solutions series is Global Solutions Designs. This course willhave a heavier focus on the field of engineering. In the second course, students will move awayfrom a hypothetical community development plan and use the theoretical knowledge gained inthe first course to create one or more development projects specific to an overseas partnercommunity. Opportunities for interaction with members of the partner community will beprovided throughout the semester and students will work together with local communitymembers to develop an appropriate solution to meet a real need in the partner community.The Global Solutions series ends with Applied Global Solutions. In this summer program,students have the opportunity to travel overseas to visit the partner community and apply whatthey have learned in the classroom. Students will receive first-hand experience as they work sideby side with members of the partner community to implement the project developed in theclassroom the previous semester.IUPUI’s Global Solutions Program will provide students with valuable life experiences that willmake them more competitive in the engineering field and prepare them for joining the workforceof today’s global society.

Sharp, M. E., & Stevenson, A. L. (2013, June), Creating A Global Solutions Curriculum Paper presented at 2013 ASEE International Forum, Atlanta, Georgia. 10.18260/1-2--17223

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