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Standards Education In Technology Programs

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2009 Annual Conference & Exposition


Austin, Texas

Publication Date

June 14, 2009

Start Date

June 14, 2009

End Date

June 17, 2009



Conference Session

Issues and Direction in ET Education and Administration: Part I

Tagged Division

Engineering Technology

Page Count


Page Numbers

14.1070.1 - 14.1070.6



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Paper Authors


Amin Karim DeVry University

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Amin Karim is the Director of Academic Outreach at DeVry University. Immediately prior to this position, he served as the Director of the College of Technology for approximately eight years at the university. He is a past Chair of the Electronics and Computer Engineering Technology Department Heads Association and served as a TAC of ABET evaluator for engineering technology programs. He also served as a member of the Standards Education Committee for IEEE and the Global Wireless Education Consortium (GWEC) Executive Board.

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Jennifer McClain IEEE

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Jennifer McClain has been with the IEEE for eleven years. She spent eight years with the IEEE Standards Association aiding working groups in the standards development process, editing and publishing standards, and as the Managing Editor of the Standards Information Network, publishing handbooks and guides to help with the implementation and understanding of standards. She currently works for IEEE Educational Activities as the Program Manager for IEEE Standards Education developing online tutorials, case studies and other resources for students, educators and practicing professionals.

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

Standards Education in Technology Programs


During the past two decades, business and trade have been strongly influenced by information technology and globalization. The business environment is extremely competitive in which international standards and standardization systems are playing an increasingly important role in all areas including technology, finance, trade and environmental law. As a result, the ability to apply technical standards has become an essential skill for engineers and technologists. Engineering accreditation criteria require students to acquire “an ability to design a system, component, or process to meet desired needs within realistic constraints such as economic, environmental, social, political, ethical, health and safety, manufacturability, and sustainability”. This criterion implies learning about Regulations and Standards. However, the TAC of ABET General Criteria currently does not have a similar requirement for technology programs. A 2008 survey conducted by the Center for Global Standards Analysis indicated that Standards Education does have a strategic value. This paper presents DeVry University’s initiative for educating its technology students on global standards and standardization systems. It also discusses the IEEE Standards Education Committee’s effort on developing educational material to help learn Standards. A sample student application paper is exhibited.


Standards and codes are a very important part of the practice of engineering and technology. Since products and services are increasingly being developed and delivered from various parts of the world, knowledge and application of standards have become even more crucial. Almost all world trade is affected by standardization. Many businesses will not consider buying products or services that do not meet applicable or common standards for performance, safety and quality. Concerns about sustainability also require products and processes developed according to global standards. The findings of a recent survey conducted in March-July 2008 by the Center for Global Standards Analysis indicated that “standards education is necessary and does have a strategic value” (1). Those surveyed represented 11 major standards organizations from the U.S.A., U.K., China and Japan.

However, although knowledge of standards should be integral to engineering and technology education, standards education is still generally acquired after students graduate from college – in their professional lives and as needed. Private corporations, government agencies and other professional organizations have provided this training for the last century, because most engineering and technology programs in the United States do not have standards education in their curriculums. In the college curriculums, consideration of standards has been generally limited to applications in the design of senior projects.

Karim, A., & McClain, J. (2009, June), Standards Education In Technology Programs Paper presented at 2009 Annual Conference & Exposition, Austin, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--4717

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