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Integrated and Effective Assessment Tool to Evaluate Engineering Courses

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2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Indianapolis, Indiana

Publication Date

June 15, 2014

Start Date

June 15, 2014

End Date

June 18, 2014



Conference Session

Civil Engineering Division Poster Session

Tagged Division

Civil Engineering

Page Count


Page Numbers

24.764.1 - 24.764.11



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Paper Authors


Suleiman A. Ashur Indiana University Purdue University, Fort Wayne

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Suleiman Ashur is a Professor of Civil Engineering and the Program Coordinator at Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne. Dr. Ashur is a recipient of several honors and awards including the IPFW Student Organization Advisor of the Year ward, 2012 and 2013; Outstanding Teaching Award, the American Society of Engineering Education, Illinois-Indiana Section; IPFW Outstanding Academic Advisor Award, 2011; and Teacher of the Year Award, Sigma Xi: The Scientific Research Society, 2010.
Dr. Ashur has been successful in publishing his research findings in scholarly referred journals and conferences and in attracting externally funded research contracts from state, federal, and international agencies.
Dr. Ashur is a member of American Society of Engineering Education (ASEE), American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), and registered Professional Engineer in the States of Arizona and Texas.

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Mohammad Alhassan Indiana University Purdue University Fort Wayne

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Integrated and Effective Assessment Tool to Evaluate Engineering CoursesAbstractThe civil engineering program at a regional university was established in the fall of 2006. Theprogram went through ABET accreditation in 2011 and was granted accreditation in August2012. A key component of getting accreditation is the development and implementation of aneffective and continuous assessment based process to identifying strengths and weaknesses andto ensure continuous program improvements.The goal of this paper is to present an integrated assessment tool to assess course outcomes basedon direct and indirect assessment measures. The tool was developed to establish consistency inthe course assessment process, improve efficiency, create a better documentation process, andmeasures the effectiveness of educational and learning of engineering courses.The tool was developed using Excel and report the faculty and student assessments of a course.The tool is flexible and save faculty time when assessing their courses. It provides faculty with achoice to feed raw data or enter students’ final assessment data in the sheet. In addition, it givesfaculty a choice to use suitable criteria and assessment tools that are appropriate to theassessment of their courses. Sample of faculty assessment of a course is shown on the next page.The paper will present the old system of assessment and the need to depart to a new moreefficient system; a detailed description of the tool with real examples, and the impact of the newtool in supporting ABET accreditation of the Civil Engineering program as well other programsin the department. Faculty Assessment of Course - Spring 2012 Course: CE 380: Soil Mechanics Instructor: Instructor comments on recommendation fromSemester: Spring 2012 Section: 1 Number of Students: 11 previous assessment of the course: None. Faculty Assessment Outcomes Tools Used Course Outcomes Criteria Used Course ABET 1 2 3 Achieved? Criteria Limit Value 1) Understand the origin of the soil and geological cycle. a Quizzes Yes, strongly Criterion 2 70% 91% 2) Apply principles of phase diagram for soil properties and perform a Quizzes Yes, adequately Criterion 2 70% 73% basic weight-volume calculations. 3) Understand consistency of soil - Atterberg limits. a Homework Yes, adequately Criterion 2 70% 82% 4) Understand and use AASHTO method for soil classification. a Quizzes Yes, strongly Criterion 2 70% 91% 5) Understand and use Unified Soil Classification System for soil a Quizzes Yes, strongly Criterion 2 70% 91% classification. 6) Understand the basic science of soil compaction. a, e Midterm(s) Yes, strongly Criterion 2 70% 91% 7) Understand basics principles of flow and soil permeability through a, e, k Midterm(s) Yes, strongly Criterion 2 70% 91% porous media including Bernoulli’s equation, Darcy’s Law, and Hydraulic conductivity. 8) Understand seepage in soil include Laplace equation of continuity. a Homework Yes, strongly Criterion 2 70% 100% Instructor comments and observation on current 9) Construct flow nets for water flow calculations. a, e, k Homework Yes, strongly Criterion 2 70% 100% semester. Please comment on the 10) Calculate in situ stress in saturated soil with and without seepage, a, e, k Midterm(s) Yes, strongly Criterion 2 70% 91% recommendations from pervious assessment, if seepage force, and implement measures to control heave in soil. applicable. 11) Understand how stresses are transferred through soils and be able to a, e, k Midterm(s) Yes, adequately Criterion 2 70% 82% Students did well in the class. They have difficulty compute both geostatic and induced stresses due to point, line, and with Mohr circle. They were advised to review their area loads. strength of material course notes and materials. 12) Estimate the amount of consolidation and settlement and time a, e, h, k Final exam Yes, adequately Criterion 2 70% 73% Some students were mixing up the units (US Custom required for settlement under a given load. and SI units). 13) Basic knowledge of shear strength principles including the Mohr- a, e, k Final exam Yes, strongly Criterion 2 70% 91% Coulomb failure criterion. 14) Basic understanding of Lateral Earth Pressure concept and theory a, e, h, k Final exam Yes, strongly Criterion 2 70% 91% including Rankine's theory of active and passive earth pressures with and without sloping backfill. 15) Understand the basic concept of ultimate bearing capacity of shallow a, e, h, k Final exam Yes, strongly Criterion 2 70% 91% foundations including modification of bearing capacity equations for water table, factor of safety, and eccentrically loaded foundations. Criterion 1: The average of students in assessment tool is equal or greater than 75 75 Criterion 2: The percentage of students with grade 70 or more is 70 percent 70% Criterion 3: The percentage of students passing the assessment tool is greater than 75 percent 75% Criterion 4: The average of students passing the class is equal to or greater than 75 75 Criterion 5: Overall, students' participation in a team was effective. Criterion 6: Faculty observation of students' function in a team is satisfactory Course Outcomes Course Contribution to ABET Outcomes Recommendations to improve students' 5.0 5.0 performance in achieving course learning outcomes in future offering: Outcome Achievement Outcome Achievement 4.0 4.0 3.0 3.0 It is recommended that the instructor of the course gives students an assignment or a quiz at the 2.0 2.0 beginning of the semester to measure their understanding of the prerequisite mechanics 1.0 1.0 materials needed in the class. 0.0 0.0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 a b c d e f g h i j k Course Outcomes ABET Outcome

Ashur, S. A., & Alhassan, M. (2014, June), Integrated and Effective Assessment Tool to Evaluate Engineering Courses Paper presented at 2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Indianapolis, Indiana. 10.18260/1-2--20656

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