June 18, 2006
June 18, 2006
June 21, 2006
11.469.1 - 11.469.8
Development of an Integrated Construction Management and Civil Engineering Technology Curriculum Introduction
The University of North Carolina at Charlotte’s (UNC-Charlotte) Department of Engineering Technology currently offers three Technology Accreditation Commission of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (TAC of ABET) accredited baccalaureate degree programs; Civil Engineering Technology, Electrical Engineering Technology, and Mechanical Engineering Technology as well as a non-accredited Fire Safety Engineering Technology program. In an effort to strengthen enrollments and to enhance program offerings, the Civil Engineering Technology (CIET) program recently completed an examination of a wide range of potential curricula improvement options including the development of a new construction management program that will be closely integrated with the existing CIET program. This paper examines some of the lessons-learned by the CIET faculty from the academic program improvement and curriculum development effort.
Experience gained from the effort indicates that the development of a new academic program requires the following key elements:
1) Identification of the need, 2) Emergence of key faculty advocate, 3) Alignment with institutional mission and goals, 4) Consideration of accreditation options, 5) Development of curriculum 6) Addressing of administrative approval processes and, 7) Patience and perseverance.
Identification of the Need
The initial step in the planning process for any new academic program is the identification of the need for the program. In UNC-Charlotte’s case the idea for a new construction-related program originated from CIET faculty as part of larger departmental curricula improvement discussions. At the time, all programs within the ET Department were upper division only, 2+2 type programs that only admitted students holding A.A.S. degrees. However, recent trends in program enrollments within the ET Department were either flat or declining while at the same time college and university wide enrollments were increasing significantly. In addition, trends within the community college system suggested that substantial improvements in enrollments using the existing 2+2 model were unlikely.
As a consequence, the ET Department undertook an effort to strengthen its enrollments by transforming its programs into traditional 4-year programs that could also admit freshman and internal change of majors. It was within this context of curriculum change and intense focus on improved enrollments that the possibility of adding a construction-related program to further bolster the CIET program was first raised. The idea was raised based on the observed level of
Gehrig, B., & Cottrell, D., & Brizendine, A. (2006, June), Development Of An Integrated Construction Management And Civil Engineering Technology Curriculum Paper presented at 2006 Annual Conference & Exposition, Chicago, Illinois. https://peer.asee.org/826
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