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Making Students Cognizant of Sustainability through a Multidisciplinary Term Project in Low-Level Courses

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Conference

2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Seattle, Washington

Publication Date

June 14, 2015

Start Date

June 14, 2015

End Date

June 17, 2015

ISBN

978-0-692-50180-1

ISSN

2153-5965

Conference Session

Civil Engineering Division Technical Session 5

Tagged Division

Civil Engineering

Tagged Topic

Diversity

Page Count

10

Page Numbers

26.1126.1 - 26.1126.10

DOI

10.18260/p.24463

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/24463

Download Count

208

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Paper Authors

biography

Goli Nossoni Manhattan College

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Dr. Goli Nossoni is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Manhattan College. She received her M.S. and Ph.D. from Michigan State University in Structural Engineering and Materials Science. In addition to her interest in engineering education, Dr. Nossoni specializes in the research area of materials especially concrete and corrosion of steel inside concrete

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biography

Nicole Leo Braxtan Manhattan College

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Dr. Nicole Leo Braxtan is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Manhattan College. She received her Ph.D. from Lehigh University in Structural Engineering and her M.S. from Princeton University in Civil Engineering. In addition to her interest in engineering education, Dr. Braxtan specializes in the research area of structures in fire and fire protection of structural members.

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Abstract

Making Students Cognizant of Sustainability through a Multidisciplinary Term Project in Low Level CoursesCurrent engineering students need to be equipped with a wider knowledge base in terms ofenvironmental, economic, and social attributes of engineered systems, works, and materials.Sustainability is a perspective that can be introduced in early classes and not only as a technicaltopic in upper level classes. Lower level sustainability courses can be related to the knowledgegained in the required math, science, humanities, and social sciences through “mind mapping.”This paper presents a comprehensive term project entitled “Greening the Engineering Building”utilized to engage sophomore civil engineering students’ interest in green buildings through thedevelopment of a sustainable alternative to the current engineering building on campus. Studentswere asked to use passive design strategies to optimize the layout of the building, its location andwindows sizes, utilize green technologies for heating and cooling in the form of geothermal heatpumps as well as solar panels for electricity generation, and improve upon the building envelopeperformance through the selection of proper insulating materials. This project was assigned inCIVL 201: Introduction to Green Buildings. The course focuses on the mix of traditionalengineering topics with emerging concepts of green technology in architecture and engineering.Students from various concentrations within the civil engineering department—environmental,structural, geotechnical, water resource, and construction management—were asked to worktogether in diverse groups of four on the aforementioned project.Prior to the completion of, and at the completion of the project, students were asked a series ofquestions gauging their interest in sustainability, green buildings, green energy, and materials.Outcomes assessed the increase in interest in sustainability as well as the increase in studentlearning and understanding of sustainability related topics. Although the students found theproject somewhat complex at the sophomore level, they indicated that it broadened theirunderstanding of sustainability issue in civil engineering problems and informed them on howcivil engineers are working in a multidisciplinary environment.

Nossoni, G., & Braxtan, N. L. (2015, June), Making Students Cognizant of Sustainability through a Multidisciplinary Term Project in Low-Level Courses Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.24463

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