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Teaching Engineering Knowledge With Understanding In The 21 St Century

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2004 Annual Conference


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 20, 2004

Start Date

June 20, 2004

End Date

June 23, 2004



Conference Session

Multidisciplinary Courses and Issues

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.1177.1 - 9.1177.11



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Paper Authors

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John Mingle

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Tom Roberts

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

Session 1171


John O. Mingle, Ph.D., J.D., Tom C. Roberts, P.E. Kansas State University


The authors have published manuscripts concerning the impact of Generations Theory on engi- neering education at the ASEE National Meeting in 2002 and ASEE Section Meetings from 2001 onward. These publications position the current generation alignment of the engineering faculty with senior faculty as Boomers, younger faculty as Xers, and students as Millennials. The refer- ences describe Generations Theory as it applies to this faculty alignment. In this manuscript, the authors move into the engineering curriculum arena and provide evidence how the current gen- erational alignment possesses the dynamics to move toward undergraduate knowledge learning instead of traditional information teaching.


This paper represents “Teaching Knowledge with Understanding: The Engineering Education Challenge for the Millennial Generation,” and the challenge is for the whole engineering profes- sion, but it will fall more heavily upon the engineering college faculty. Further, it will be a con- tinuing challenge for the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) during the 21st Century.

Futurists believe the cybernetic revolution of today is occurring in two phases: the information age that is winding down and the knowledge age that is underway. A century ago, the engineer- ing profession evolved in the industrial revolution and during that time the engineer created and handled scarce but valuable information.1 Today, such information is common. Consequently, engineers are trained today to primarily handle routine information, and the long-range conse- quences are that the cybernetic revolution with its ever more efficient computers will make engi- neers redundant or obsolete.

Engineers must shift into the knowledge age in order to survive as professionals.2 Just as the in- formation age eliminated middle managers, engineers may become expendable unless they em- brace new learning concepts. Thus, this paper is about the early aspects of the knowledge age with accent upon engineers learning knowledge from professors that are teaching both informa- tion and knowledge.

Traditionally, ordinary knowledge is obtained from systematic, purposeful, organized informa- tion; contrariwise, higher knowledge is produced by the use of insight and other creative mind

Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright  2004, American Society for Engineering Education

Mingle, J., & Roberts, T. (2004, June), Teaching Engineering Knowledge With Understanding In The 21 St Century Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--14021

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2004 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015