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Professional Practices In Civil Engineering: Meeting And Exceeding The New Civil Engineering Program Criteria

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2008 Annual Conference & Exposition


Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Publication Date

June 22, 2008

Start Date

June 22, 2008

End Date

June 25, 2008



Conference Session

Issues in the Professional Practice of Faculty Members in Civil Engineering

Tagged Division

Civil Engineering

Page Count


Page Numbers

13.1004.1 - 13.1004.15



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Paper Authors


Andrea Welker Villanova University

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Andrea Welker, PhD, PE is an Associate Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Villanova University. Among other duties, Dr. Welker serves as the assessment coordinator for her department.

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Frank Falcone Villanova University

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Frank Falcone, PE is an Adjunct Associate Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Villanova University. In addition to his teaching experience, Mr. Falcone spent many years as a consulting engineer and as an officer in the Navy. He has commanded a SEABEE battalion, a SEABEE Regiment, and all Reserve CEC officers for the Atlantic Division of the Naval Facilities Engineering Command. He is a retired Captain in the Civil Engineer Corps (CEC) of the U.S. Naval Reserve.

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

Professional Practices in Civil Engineering: Meeting and Exceeding the New Civil Engineering Program Criteria


The emerging global nature of the worldwide marketplace for products and services coupled with the exponential rise in technological advancement in the industrialized world has led to the near-term, long-term, and critical need for holistic engineering education which includes and stresses a broad range of leadership and management skills in addition to a concentrated traditional technical curriculum. Emerging young engineers will, in many instances, be required to lead teams of diverse professionals and manage budgets and schedules for domestic and/or international projects only a few years beyond completing their formal undergraduate education.

The new program criteria developed by the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE)1, and used by ABET during the accreditation process, recognizes this change and is more closely aligned with the Body of Knowledge2. One major change is that the new criteria now include a statement requiring that students “can explain basic concepts in management, business, public policy, and leadership.”

This paper describes a course entitled “CEE Professional Practice” that can serve as a model for other universities striving to meet and exceed the requirements of the new program criteria. The course focuses on 11 areas of professional practice such as how management and leadership differ, management of self and others, and how organizational structure can influence success. These areas are interrelated through a semester-long keystone project. The project selected for this course must meet certain criteria; the project must be current, large in scope, and controversial with unknown solutions.

At the conclusion of this course, students have had the opportunity to lead, manage, create, and structure groups, interact with project sponsors, develop and evaluate many solutions, and view a major engineering project from a holistic perspective. This course is designed to help students find their initial place in the world of engineering and to offer a much broader perspective of the profession of civil engineering. This will enable them to intelligently and effectively map out the initial stages of their professional careers.

This course was originally developed under the previous ASCE criteria; consequently, only our assessment of the course changed with the new criteria. The assignments and rubrics used to assess this course will be discussed, as well as its placement within our curriculum.

Course Content

CEE Professional Practice (CEE 4601) is a senior-level holistically-oriented course designed to expose mature undergraduate students to a wide range of practical aspects in the profession of engineering, including the following: - An examination of self-abilities and interests - Leadership and management

Welker, A., & Falcone, F. (2008, June), Professional Practices In Civil Engineering: Meeting And Exceeding The New Civil Engineering Program Criteria Paper presented at 2008 Annual Conference & Exposition, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. 10.18260/1-2--3839

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