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Globalization Of Engineering Ethics Education

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2005 Annual Conference


Portland, Oregon

Publication Date

June 12, 2005

Start Date

June 12, 2005

End Date

June 15, 2005



Conference Session

Wider Contexts of Ethics for Engineers

Page Count


Page Numbers

10.671.1 - 10.671.7



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Paper Authors

author page

Matthew Carroll

author page

Nael Barakat

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

Globalization of Engineering Ethics Education Nael Barakat, Ph.D., P.Eng., Assistant Professor, Mechanical Engineering, Matthew C. Carroll, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Mechanical Engineering, School of Engineering and Technology, Lake Superior State University 650 W. Easterday Ave., Sault Ste. Marie, MI. 49783 Voice: 906.635.2031 – Email:

Abstract Borderless ethics and the attempt to develop a global engineering code of ethics have formulated significant driving forces behind trends in engineering ethics education. This is because engineering is no longer limited by borders and therefore the differences in culture and values from one country to another become a significant factor in the outcome of an engineering project, product, or undertaking. There are many sides to the issue of ethics globalization. As educators in this field continuous attempts are made to look at these issues systematically and assess the required modifications for our ethics education to produce engineers that are globally successful.

Endeavors by the authors to “internationalize” instruction in engineering ethics include the solicitation of input from engineering and technology students at Lake Superior State University with regard to changes in the ethics component of the engineering curriculum. This past year third-year students were given a survey soliciting their views on what ethical values are “universal” and what values are specific to a given national and/or cultural setting. Additionally, students were asked to suggest contributions that the American engineering professional community can make to the development of a comprehensive international engineering ethics code, and what Americans in turn can learn about ethics and values from their foreign counterparts.

This paper includes a discussion of the results of this survey; views differed widely from student to student, as expected, but certain common threads of thought were found throughout the entire surveyed group. The discussion is carried out in light of professional level surveys’ results that were published recently by professional societies of engineers.

Introduction Society and technology today seem so intertwined that it is almost impossible to ignore the influences exchanged between them. In addition, both society and technology have a dynamic nature, which adds another level of complexity to their relation. Since technology is the heart of the engineering profession, engineers’ interaction with the society, through their profession, becomes of paramount importance. Therefore, educational resources have been allocated towards educating engineers about the societal impact of their practice of the engineering profession. To support bringing these concepts into the engineering classroom, with a level of enforcement, the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) most recent criteria included emphases Proceedings of the 2005 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright© 2005, American Society for Engineering Education

Carroll, M., & Barakat, N. (2005, June), Globalization Of Engineering Ethics Education Paper presented at 2005 Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon. 10.18260/1-2--14952

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: © 2005 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