June 15, 2014
June 15, 2014
June 18, 2014
24.494.1 - 24.494.11
Engineering Economics as a General Education Course to Expand Quantitative and Financial LiteracyThis paper conceptualizes why an engineering economics course should be a commonly acceptedgeneral education course. Currently, most engineering courses are not considered adequate forthe general education of a college or university student. In the past an engineering economicscourse focused primarily on financial mathematics; however, the modern engineering economicscourse centers on financial decision making in addition to financial mathematics. These topicsare applicable, if not mandatory, for students pursuing interests in engineering, law, productdevelopment, public service, entrepreneurship, marketing, business, finance, political science,sociology, government, and ethics. This pursuit is timely because schools at various levels (e.g.,K-12, community colleges, and universities) are including the concepts of quantitative andfinancial literacy into their required curricula, with some being required by state law.There is enormous pressure on curricula at public universities from legislatures to reduce thenumber of credits for graduation, while increasing graduation and retention rates and maintaininga substantial level of general education (or similarly named programs, such as: core curriculum,foundation curriculum, etc.) for the graduate. A reduction in credit hours is particularly difficultfor engineering due to ABET accreditation requirements. Typically, the general education of agraduate includes a number of credits in composition, humanities, social sciences, physicalsciences, mathematics, and physical education. Engineering courses, in general, are notconsidered general due to the advanced mathematics and science requirements for the courses.However, the argument of this paper is that the current topical coverage of an engineeringeconomics course satisfies the requirements for social sciences recognition.The paper also argues that including more engineering courses as general education coursescould aid in the recruitment and retention of students who would not have consideredengineering as incoming university freshmen. Thus, engineering economics as a generaleducation course could aid in the recruitment and diversity of the engineering student body, andeventually the engineering workforce.
Wilck, J., & Lynch, P. C., & Kauffmann, P. J. (2014, June), Engineering Economics as a General Education Course to Expand Quantitative and Financial Literacy Paper presented at 2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Indianapolis, Indiana. https://peer.asee.org/20385
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