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Integrating Practical Experience In A Geotechnical/Foundation Engineering Class: The Role Of The Adjunct Faculty

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Conference

2005 Annual Conference

Location

Portland, Oregon

Publication Date

June 12, 2005

Start Date

June 12, 2005

End Date

June 15, 2005

ISSN

2153-5965

Conference Session

A through K and Beyond

Page Count

14

Page Numbers

10.792.1 - 10.792.14

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/15179

Download Count

26

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Paper Authors

author page

Waddah Akili

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

Integrating Practical Experience in a Geotechnical/Foundation Engineering Class: The Role of the Adjunct Faculty

Waddah Akili

Professor of Civil Engineering (Retired) Principal, Geotechnical Engineering Ames, Iowa, 50014

Abstract:

This paper examines the status quo of adjunct faculty in engineering institutions and argues that adjuncts do enrich an academic engineering program by bringing in their practical experience and by introducing relevant applications and design venues to the classroom. Adjunct faculty do also help in setting up linkages with the industrial sector, which often leads to: employment opportunities for graduates, co-op activities, and potential development of collaborative research programs. Nevertheless, the present status of most adjunct faculty is tenuous, subject to shifting enrollment, and considered as a temporary arrangement, or until a “full-time” faculty is appointed. Unfortunately adjuncts, often with proven records of excellent teaching, are marginalized by the academic systems in place today; and their efforts and contributions to the academic process are undervalued. If fair treatment, and proper recognition are accorded to adjuncts; then, their morale, loyalty to the institution, and their teaching effectiveness would improve markedly. Next, the paper reports on a success story of an adjunct, a practitioner with excellent credentials, who “teamed-up” with a “full-time” faculty, in an attempt to bring-in the “practice” to 4th year students in a geotechnical/foundation engineering class. The success achieved in meeting stated objectives, i.e., including students’ exposure to the “practice”, was attributed, in large measure, to the proper coordination that preceded course delivery. The paper sheds light on this experience, and focuses on the contributions and effectiveness of the adjunct in: course planning, delivery of “practice – related” material, organizing instructional activities, as well as adjunct’s ability and effort in engaging students, in and outside the classroom. The positive outcome of this experience has lead other faculty members to follow the same path, i.e., by searching for practitioners-as adjunct faculty- to assist in bringing the practice into the classroom, in partnership with “full-time” faculty.

Introduction:

If given the opportunity, adjunct faculty who have practiced engineering, could enrich an academic program by bringing in their practical experience and by introducing relevant applications and design venues to the classroom. The practical experience of adjunct faculty manifests itself in various ways. In particular, their familiarity with the “nuts & bolts” of the practice, including: appropriate design and construction methods, customer needs, alternative

Proceedings of the 2005 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2005, American Society for Engineering Education

Akili, W. (2005, June), Integrating Practical Experience In A Geotechnical/Foundation Engineering Class: The Role Of The Adjunct Faculty Paper presented at 2005 Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon. https://peer.asee.org/15179

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