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Integrating The Development Of Teamwork, Diversity, Leadership, And Communication Skills Into A Capstone Design Course

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2007 Annual Conference & Exposition


Honolulu, Hawaii

Publication Date

June 24, 2007

Start Date

June 24, 2007

End Date

June 27, 2007



Conference Session

How to Effectively Teach Using Teams

Tagged Division

Civil Engineering

Page Count


Page Numbers

12.929.1 - 12.929.30



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Paper Authors

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Joseph Hanus University of Wisconsin-Madison

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Jeffrey Russell

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

Integrating the Development of Teamwork, Diversity, Leadership, and Communication Skills into a Capstone Design Course


The development of teamwork, diversity, leadership, and communications (TDLC) skills in our professional domain is critical to our engineering education program and profession. We solve problems in teams which are diverse, require leadership, and must communicate internally and externally to achieve their team goals. The challenge of developing these skills in the Civil and Environmental Engineering program at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, was addressed through the development of a series of workshops embedded within the senior capstone course. The development of these active learning workshops from traditional knowledge based lectures provided an insight into the student’s cognitive knowledge level and appreciation for the TDLC skills. The students have a greater base of knowledge and experience in the TDLC skills than initially perceived, which resulted in the development of a Learn-Practice-Assess model. The intent of the model is to leverage the student’s knowledge and experience, and develop life-long learning skills. A set of workshops based around the Learn-Practice-Assess model to develop TDLC skills is offered as an effective program to build upon the student’s higher cognitive level, integrate across the TDLC skills, and provide a contextual application in the capstone design course and beyond.


The development of individual skills in the technical and professional domains is paramount to preparing contemporary engineering students for success in the engineering field. The American Society of Civil Engineer’s Body of Knowledge Committee has focused on identifying these skills, as well as how they should be taught and learned and who should teach and learn the skills1. The 15 outcomes in the BOK are categorized into the technical and professional domains 2 . It is the author’s belief that our profession is comfortable and capable of teaching and developing the skills associated with the technical outcomes. However, the technical domain’s skills are necessary, but not sufficient, for individual success in our profession; if not the overall success of our profession. The development of skills in the professional domain carries equal weight in the full development of a successful engineer and professional. Evidence of this position is substantiated by ASCE’s efforts in development of Education for Professional Practice3. This paper will outline the evolution of a program in a senior civil engineering capstone course to develop a set of skills in the professional domain, specifically teamwork, diversity, leadership, and communications (TDLC).

Hanus, J., & Russell, J. (2007, June), Integrating The Development Of Teamwork, Diversity, Leadership, And Communication Skills Into A Capstone Design Course Paper presented at 2007 Annual Conference & Exposition, Honolulu, Hawaii. 10.18260/1-2--2030

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