June 22, 2008
June 22, 2008
June 25, 2008
13.951.1 - 13.951.11
Ontologies and Web-Semantics for Improvement of Curriculum in Civil Engineering
The National Academy of Engineering (NAE) and the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) recommended that engineering education becomes more responsive to continual changes in society. We propose to address these challenges of improving engineering education through the application of ontology and web semantics. These fields of information technology allow computers to interpret the vast body of knowledge dispersed throughout the web. The long term objective of our research is to develop an ontological approach for improving curriculum in civil engineering as well as other fields of engineering. In the future, we envision that the curriculum information on university websites will be interpreted by computers through ontological tools for the ultimate benefits of students, educators and engineers. This paper reviews the background and premises of our research and summarizes some preliminary results about the application of ontological concepts for describing, analyzing and improving undergraduate programs in civil engineering. Future work will enhance curriculum using ontological tools using best-practice educational evaluation and accounting for NAE and ASCE recommendations.
This paper reports on preliminary results of a research that aims at improving engineering education through the application of ontologies and web information semantics. These fields of information technology aims at interpreting the vast body of knowledge dispersed throughout the web. Currently, the information on engineering curriculum web sites is heterogeneously organized with different terminologies. Presently when users want to request information from web sites, they issue a search using a word-based search engine (e.g., Google or Yahoo). The essential problem here is that searches are word-based, and the information is not clearly meaningful on the web sites. This is where ontologies effectively and practically describe information on web sites using a meaning-based as opposed to word-based approach. The objective of our research is to support the understanding and querying of the contents, relationships, and practices in engineering education, and to develop analysis, advisement and student performance assessment tools that facilitate the improvement of engineering education, and explore alternative delivery and content packaging strategies. Following the introduction, the first section reviews the background about engineering education; the second section defines the concepts of ontology and reviews ontological examples; and the last section presents some preliminary results.
In two recent reports1, 2 on engineering education, the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) raised the following question about the future of engineering: “What will or should engineering education be like today, or in the near future, to prepare the next generation of students for effective engagement in the engineering profession of 2020?” NAE recommends that research be
Bardet, J., & McLeod, D., & Ragusa, G., & Mokarram, N. (2008, June), Ontologies And Web Semantics For Improvement Of Curriculum In Civil Engineering Paper presented at 2008 Annual Conference & Exposition, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. https://peer.asee.org/3868
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