New Orleans, Louisiana
June 26, 2016
June 26, 2016
August 28, 2016
A 4th year course entitled “Professional Engineering Development” has been offered for the past few years at the University of Canterbury in New Zealand. The course is required for students in the civil engineering and natural resources engineering bachelors’ degree programs. The course was developed based on input from the Institution of Professional Engineers New Zealand (IPENZ). Unlike in the U.S., an engineering degree in New Zealand does not require a substantial general education component. Course topics include engineering history, investigation of failure cases, teamwork, ethics, risk management, and engineering today and tomorrow. This paper details the development of the course to date and its associated assessments, and discusses lessons learnt in teaching professional engineering skills in this format. It also compares trends in education on professional development in New Zealand and in the U.S. During July and August 2015, the third author, a visiting Erskine scholar from the U.S. taught part of the course, offering the opportunity to compare and contrast teaching professional development in the two countries. While the requirement for a robust general education curriculum at U.S. universities should theoretically provide an advantage for U.S. students over New Zealanders with respect to professional development topics, that wasn’t really borne out in this case. The New Zealand professional development course discussed in this paper might be a good model for institutions in the U.S. and elsewhere to consider. However, it does bring its own challenges to be addressed, particularly student acceptance of the need to learn these “non-technical” skills.
Koorey, G. F., & Milke, M. W., & Delatte, N. (2016, June), International Collaboration on a Professional Development Course Paper presented at 2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana. 10.18260/p.25445
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