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Program Evaluation Aligned With The Cdio Standards

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2005 Annual Conference


Portland, Oregon

Publication Date

June 12, 2005

Start Date

June 12, 2005

End Date

June 15, 2005



Conference Session

Program Level Assessment

Page Count


Page Numbers

10.1028.1 - 10.1028.18



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Paper Authors

author page

Edward F. Crawley

author page

Doris Brodeur

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

Program Evaluation Aligned With the CDIO Standards

Doris R. Brodeur and Edward F. Crawley Massachusetts Institute of Technology


The CDIO Initiative is a collaboration of engineering programs at universities in more than eight countries in North America, Europe, Africa, Asia, and Australia. Collaborators have developed a set of twelve standards that characterize CDIO programs and provide the basis for program evaluation. This standards-based program evaluation extends the evaluative criteria of ABET's EC2000 and other outcomes-based approaches. Evidence of overall program value is collected from multiple sources, using both quantitative and qualitative methods. Evidence and results form the basis of decisions about the program and its plans for continuous improvement.

This paper describes a standards-based approach to program evaluation and provides a rationale for the CDIO standards in reforming engineering education. The main objectives of the paper are to • identify key questions that guide program evaluation and set them in the framework of the CDIO standards • compare the CDIO standards with criteria set forth by ABET in EC2000 • give examples of standards-based program evaluation of engineering programs • emphasize the connection between program evaluation and program improvement


In October 2000, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Chalmers University of Technology, the Royal Institute of Technology, and Linkoping University launched a project to reform undergraduate engineering education.1 Sponsored in part by the Wallenberg Foundation2, The CDIO Initiative has expanded to include programs in more than eight countries on five continents. Descriptions of the project and its global implementation can be found at

The vision of the project is to provide students with an education that stresses engineering fundamentals set in the context of Conceiving-Designing-Implementing-Operating (CDIO) real-world systems and products. This context is a generalized description of a complete system life cycle, called in this project, Conceive-Design-Implement-Operate. The Conceive stage includes defining the need and technology, considering the enterprise strategy and regulations, developing the concept, architecture, and business case. The second stage, Design, focuses on creating the design, i.e., the plans, drawings, and algorithms that describe what will be implemented. Implement refers to the transformation of the design into the product, including manufacturing, coding, test and validation. The final stage, Operate, uses the implemented product to deliver the intended value, including maintaining, evolving and retiring the system.

Proceedings of the 2005 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright 2005, American Society for Engineering Education

Crawley, E. F., & Brodeur, D. (2005, June), Program Evaluation Aligned With The Cdio Standards Paper presented at 2005 Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon. 10.18260/1-2--15474

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