June 15, 2014
June 15, 2014
June 18, 2014
Continuing Professional Development
24.335.1 - 24.335.15
Creating Synergistic Opportunities for Professional Adult Continuing Learners through Engineering and Technology CollaborationsThe engineering and technology educational continuum was formalized in a 1955 report of theCommittee on Evaluation of Engineering Education as part of the American Society ofEngineering Education by then chair Linton Grinter. In the report there was the recognition of adual, yet highly integrated educational continuum spanning the engineering-technologyundergraduate and graduate curriculums.Based on this report, most college and universities went on to associate under a single college orschool the disciplines of engineering and technology. The curriculums were evolved with asingular focus. As time passed, theoretical instruction became more prominent and some ofthese colleges and schools pushed the technology portion of the curriculum to the peripheral,others simply eliminated technology altogether.The College of A’s Division of Engineering Professional Education (A’sEd) and the College ofB’s Center for Professional Education (B’sEd) share a common purpose, mission and vision.Underlying these is the fundamental premise that both serve the graduate educational needs ofprofessional working adult learners in the STEM disciplines; this through credit and non-creditprogram offerings spanning the educational continuum of engineering and technology.Both organizations, A’sEd and B’sEd, recognize the similarities of their mission and sharedpurpose to provide learning opportunities to those in technical professions with careers inprogress. To this end, and aside from common policies, procedures and practices, bothorganizations recognize the significant commonality premised on space (facilities, equipment),distance infrastructure (distance classrooms, capture and delivery mediums), and the engineering– technology educational continuum (professional short courses, business/industry educationalcontinuum needs). This richness in overlap creates an unquestionable synergistic opportunity forefficiency gains, cost savings and increased revenue through enrollments.While it is widely accepted the sharing of resources creates efficiency and subsequently lowersoverall costs, the premise of this paper is solidly grounded in organizational design theory andpractice. A’sEd and B’sEd, through collaboration, anticipate organizational cost avoidance andincreased gross revenue through more efficient utilization of space, distance infrastructure andthe engineering-technology educational continuum; therefore yielding increased net residual tothe university, colleges, departments and faculty.Nearly 14 months ago two colleges opened discussions on collaboration. The manifestation ofthese many earlier discussions culminated in a more focused and targeted series of meetings todetermine areas for collaboration and how that collaboration might look. Primary areas forcollaboration, a result of these many meetings, centers on space, distance infrastructure and theengineering-technology educational continuum.This paper details the organizational challenges of bringing two tier 1 research universitycolleges together for a common purpose; that being the continuing education of professionalworking adult learners.
Springer, M. L., & Schuver, M. T. (2014, June), Creating Synergistic Opportunities for Professional Adult Continuing Learners through Engineering and Technology Collaborations Paper presented at 2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Indianapolis, Indiana. 10.18260/1-2--20226
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