Asee peer logo

Mechanical Engineering Study Abroad Programs In Germany – Experiences And Lessons Learned

Download Paper |


2007 Annual Conference & Exposition


Honolulu, Hawaii

Publication Date

June 24, 2007

Start Date

June 24, 2007

End Date

June 27, 2007



Conference Session

International Case Studies:Collaborations, Exchanges & Interactions

Tagged Division


Page Count


Page Numbers

12.1048.1 - 12.1048.15

Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors


Raghu Echempati Kettering University

visit author page

RAGHU ECHEMPATI is a Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Kettering University (formerly GMI Engineering & Management Institute). He has over 20 years of teaching, research and consulting experience. His teaching and research interests are in the areas of Mechanics, Machine design, and CAE (including metal forming simulation and Design of Machines and Mechanisms). He is very active in the Study Abroad Programs at Kettering University. He is a member of ASME, ASEE, and SAE, and a Fellow of the ASME.

visit author page


Butsch Michael FH-Konstanz, Germany

visit author page

MICHAEL BUTSCH is a professor of Mechanical Engineering at FH-Konstanz in Germany. He is very active in the international exchange programs with many European, Asian and U.S. Universities. His area of teaching and research interest is Automotive Powertrains.

visit author page

Download Paper |

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

Mechanical Engineering Study Abroad program in Germany – Experiences and Lessons Learned


This paper discusses the continued developments and the current status of study abroad programs for the mechanical engineering students at Kettering University. In particular, this paper outlines the study exchange with schools in Germany in which there is an equal number of students in exchange over two or three year span between the Kettering University and the participating schools in Germany. Also, this paper discusses in detail about the assessment and evaluation tools for study abroad programs. Programs at other countries such as Australia and Mexico are also available to the Kettering University students, while efforts are under way to explore opportunities in other parts of Europe and in Asia. Such study abroad programs provide an opportunity and promote understanding across technical programs and other nations.

Kettering University’s engineering academic and cooperative education make it unique among Engineering Schools in the United States. One of the main purposes of the international programs is to provide students value-added technical and cultural experiences. It has been well documented that engineering students who have international study experience are more likely to be hired and prepared for the global market place. During the last three years, the Kettering University study abroad programs have been steadily growing with over 90 engineering students per year participating in study abroad programs in Germany alone. Under these study programs, the students typically live abroad for three to six months and interact with other international students, professors and in some cases industry employers from different cultures and academic and industrial traditions. Students return from these experiences feeling happy, confident and knowledgeable about the world in addition to having a broader technical understanding of their fields of study.

This paper will discuss the current process at Kettering University of setting up of study abroad programs, new international programs structure, course mapping and course equivalency, students’ advisement, grading differences, student expectations, role of the faculty advisors, program assessment and finally, the lessons learned for continuous improvements of such programs. Technical Universities that wish to start new study abroad programs and those who already have study exchange in place would benefit from the experiences, findings and recommendations presented in this paper.


The status of Kettering University’s study abroad programs was discussed and presented at one of the earlier ASEE conferences1. That paper documented the development and implementation of study-abroad programs for engineers and also the evaluation process of these programs

Echempati, R., & Michael, B. (2007, June), Mechanical Engineering Study Abroad Programs In Germany – Experiences And Lessons Learned Paper presented at 2007 Annual Conference & Exposition, Honolulu, Hawaii.

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2007 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015