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Exposing Students To Innovative Construction Technologies In The Undergraduate Civil Engineering Technology Curriculum

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2002 Annual Conference


Montreal, Canada

Publication Date

June 16, 2002

Start Date

June 16, 2002

End Date

June 19, 2002



Conference Session

Trends in Constr. Engr. Educ. I

Page Count


Page Numbers

7.553.1 - 7.553.14



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Paper Authors

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Andrew Rose

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Main Menu Session 1421

Exposing Students to Innovative Construction Technologies in the Undergraduate Civil Engineering Technology Curriculum

Andrew T. Rose University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown

Abstract Incorporating new and innovative construction technologies into the undergraduate curriculum is often difficult due to time constraints. Field trips, seminar speakers, and multimedia provide opportunities to expose students to new and emerging technologies outside of the traditional lecture format. Each of these can be highly visual to facilitate student interest and learning, but all have advantages and disadvantages that affect their use. One field trip and one seminar speaker, in cooperation with the Pittsburgh District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, provided this opportunity for Civil Engineering Technology students at the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown. In another case a video was used. Student response on the effectiveness of these different learning experiences was also obtained.

Introduction New technologies are continuously being developed and implemented in civil and construction engineering practice. Incorporating these new technologies into Civil Engineering Technology (CET) curriculum is difficult due to limited time available in class and the wealth of basic concepts that must be covered. Although it is impossible to incorporate all technological advances into the undergraduate curriculum, exposing students to some of these technologies is desirable. In addition to the new technologies themselves, discussing how and why new technologies are developed and implemented benefits students in their education as well as their careers. Not only do they become aware of a specific recent development in their field, they also can develop an understanding of how existing technology leads to new developments in a particular field. This provides the foundation for life long learning opportunities as many new technologies will likely be introduced and implemented in practice during their careers.

Several ways to incorporate new technologies into the curriculum include field trips to innovative project sites, presentations by guest speakers from industry, videos of innovative projects, selected readings on recent innovations, and lectures by course instructors regarding innovations in practice. Each has advantages and disadvantages. This paper considers the use of field trips, guest lectures and videos as a way to present innovations to undergraduate CET students in a junior level Soils Engineering course.

Field Trips Field trips provide students an opportunity to see the actual application of recent technological developments in construction and civil engineering technology. Students greatly enjoy the break from classroom lectures and are left with lasting visual images. Field trips require a certain degree of instructor coordination and may be subject to student schedule conflicts. Depending on the project’s location, transportation and travel time may make trips to the most interesting sites difficult.

Proceedings of the 2002 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright Ó 2002, American Society for Engineering Education

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Rose, A. (2002, June), Exposing Students To Innovative Construction Technologies In The Undergraduate Civil Engineering Technology Curriculum Paper presented at 2002 Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada. 10.18260/1-2--10709

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