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Redeveloping a Senior-level Highway Design Course Considering Industry Feedback

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2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Columbus, Ohio

Publication Date

June 24, 2017

Start Date

June 24, 2017

End Date

June 28, 2017

Conference Session

Innovative Pedagogies for Facilitating Student-driven Learning Experiences

Tagged Division

Civil Engineering

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Steven Kurtis Younkin Iowa State University Orcid 16x16

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Steven Younkin is a graduate student in Civil Engineer with a focus in Transportation engineering. He works as a graduate assistant with Dr. Peter Savolainen. His research interests include traffic safety, engineering education, and geographic information systems. He has been a teaching assistant for the highway design class at ISU the last three semesters. His passion is to study and implement integration of design software into civil engineering curriculum as a teaching aid and professional development tool.

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Peter T. Savolainen Iowa State University

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Dr. Peter Savolainen is an Associate Professor in the Iowa State University (ISU) Department of Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering. His research includes fundamental and applied projects focused on traffic operations, safety, and driver behavior, as well pedagogical approaches to improve transportation engineering education. Dr. Savolainen currently serves on the editorial advisory boards of Accident Analysis and Prevention and Analytic Methods in Accident Research. Dr. Savolainen’s pedagogical efforts are reflected by his selection as a fellow by the American Society of Civil Engineers(ASCE) Excellence in Civil Engineering Education (ExCEEd) and ExCEEd II programs.

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The lack of practical real-world applications in a classroom setting has been identified as one factor inhibiting student interest in STEM fields. One approach to address this concern is the implementation of a course structure that largely mirrors professional practice. To this end, this study details the results of a project oriented toward developing a framework for the implementation of a highway design course that better prepares students entering the profession. To better align the course with industry needs, a questionnaire survey was distributed to public and private transportation agencies in order to assess the importance of various skills, resources, and classroom topics as they relate to the field of highway design. Results of the survey are discussed with emphases on differences between public and private transportation agencies of various sizes.

Younkin, S. K., & Savolainen, P. T. (2017, June), Redeveloping a Senior-level Highway Design Course Considering Industry Feedback Paper presented at 2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Columbus, Ohio. 10.18260/1-2--28785

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