June 20, 2010
June 20, 2010
June 23, 2010
15.1114.1 - 15.1114.16
Student-Centered Evaluation of a GIS Laboratory in Transportation Engineering
This paper focuses on the implementation of a Geographic Information System (GIS) based transportation module part of a web-based learning system for civil engineering students. This project introduces a series of GIS laboratories customized for specific courses throughout the civil engineering curriculum. This exploratory research presents the results of a student-centered evaluation of the laboratory introduced in a required introductory transportation course. Results showed that students exposed to a 20-minute lecture on traffic safety before starting the laboratory scored significantly higher than the control group on assessment items. The student- centered reflective questions indicated also some weaknesses and associated potential actions to improve the GIS based module. Based on these findings a series of changes to the current tasks in the GIS laboratory were planned.
Transportation Education and Training, Traffic Safety, Crash Data, Geographic Information Systems
The education and practice of transportation engineering has evolved over the past several decades. The task of transportation education, as stated by an Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) Committee1, is not only “to train students in how to do various activities associated with current practice”, but also “to provide students with the tools necessary to solve new problems that arise”. Previous studies, on the other hand, reveal the hourly requirement of transportation-related courses in the civil engineering curriculum offered for undergraduate students as decreasing2,3 and entry-level engineers lack significant exposure to transportation engineering methodologies2. In terms of practice, young graduates face a wide range of increasingly complicated problems from growing congestion, heightened awareness of traffic safety and worsening air quality to environmental preservation and social equity concerns4.
In a survey4 of 360 participants of transportation engineering and planning courses offered at US universities, while assessing the match between the knowledge (topics) and the skills needed for current transportation planning jobs and those covered by their formal degree programs, respondents indicated that their degree programs did not provide enough exposure to any of the 20 skill areas surveyed in the study. In the skills category, GIS received the lowest average rating for coverage. When the topic and skills most in need of additional attention were assessed for transportation planning education, again GIS was identified as one of the top priority skills. The study also showed a greater deficiency in the development of skills than in the coverage of topics in academic programs. This clearly showed the need for inclusion of GIS in civil engineering curriculum especially for transportation planners.
Bham, G., & Cernusca, D., & Manepalli, U., & Luna, R. (2010, June), Student Centered Evaluation Of A Gis Laboratory In Transportation Engineering Paper presented at 2010 Annual Conference & Exposition, Louisville, Kentucky. 10.18260/1-2--16195
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