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Engineering Prerequisites at Florida Universities

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2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Tampa, Florida

Publication Date

June 15, 2019

Start Date

June 15, 2019

End Date

October 19, 2019

Conference Session

Transfer and Transitions

Tagged Division

Two-Year College

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Paper Authors


Elizabeth Schott Florida SouthWestern State College

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Dr. Elizabeth Schott received a PhD in Industrial Engineering and a MS in Mathematics from New Mexico State University, a MS in Industrial Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology, and a BS in Mathematics from the United States Military Academy at West Point. Prior to becoming a Professor in the School of Pure and Applied Sciences at Florida SouthWestern State College (FSW), she served as a Quartermaster officer in the United States Army, where she retired as an Academy and Associate Professor from the Department of Systems Engineering at West Point. She currently teaches math and engineering courses at FSW, as well as operations management courses for the University of Arkansas. Her research interests include optimization and engineering education.

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Cynthia Orndoff Florida Gulf Coast University

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Dr. Cynthia Orndoff received a J.D in 2014 from Ave Maria Law School and a B.S. in 1984, an M.S. in 1997 and a Ph.D. in 2001, all in Civil Engineering from University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.  Prior to Everglades University, she was an Associate Professor at Florida Gulf Coast University and an Assistant Professor in Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Missouri, Columbia. She has taught courses in infrastructure management, planning, transportation and construction management. Dr. Orndoff has more than ten years of engineering field experience. Her application-based engineering research incorporates sustainability, policy, legal issues, economics, decision-making, planning as well as public administration, policy, finance, and their stakeholders. She is active in engineering leadership and management practice issues. She has also served on several professional committees, including the American Society of Civil Engineers, the NSF Transportation Research Board, American Society of Engineering Educators and economic development initiatives.

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Engineering, being a specialized profession, requires specific courses to be completed prior to entering the junior year of an ABET-accredited program. The subset of the undergraduate population that transfers into an engineering program is a significant part of many student’s path to an engineering degree. This paper expands on the authors' previous research investigating the current Florida community and State college curricula in order to determine the degrees, programs, and courses currently available to students interested in pursuing a degree in engineering at the bachelor’s level. This is the second in a series of papers that seeks to assist the students, the institutions that serve them as well as the region and the engineering profession. Thus, the next step is to identify the prerequisites required for the various engineering programs offered at Florida universities. Transferring as a junior into an engineering Bachelor of Science degree program within the Florida University System is optimal. Because of the unique math and science requirements, it is very challenging to transfer directly into an engineering program. Florida has a strong 2+2 program, but the availability of a two-year degree program specifically set up to allow students the ability to transfer directly into an engineering program as a junior is woefully lacking. By investigating the pre-requisite requirements in the various engineering programs at Florida universities the viability of an AS degree in pre-engineering can be determined. Identifying the needed transfer courses in order to enter the upper level engineering division courses, it is anticipated will increase engineering graduation rates. Moreover, these graduation rates will impact the rate that typically underrepresented populations will enter the engineering profession due to the fact that State colleges and community colleges typically sever a wider minority population. The goal of this paper is to reveal the common prerequisites that are required for select ABET engineering programs in the state of Florida. Many of these prerequisites are common to other engineering program nationwide. As a result of this investigation, options can be explored as to how best meet the needs of students as well as increase the number of quality engineering students who, for possibly many reasons, chose to not enroll in an engineering program as a freshman student at a university. By investigating upper level engineering pre-requisites, it is proposed that new programs or policies be developed that provide guarantee transfer entrance as a Junior into a Florida university engineering Bachelor of Science degree program. An analysis of the pre-requisites for these programs, increases the probability that students desiring to transfer into an engineering Bachelor of Science degree program will be successful.

Schott, E., & Orndoff, C. (2019, June), Engineering Prerequisites at Florida Universities Paper presented at 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Tampa, Florida. 10.18260/1-2--32733

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2019 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015