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Technology and Design Programs

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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

Engineering Technology

Tagged Division

Engineering Technology

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Paper Authors


Barry M. Lunt Brigham Young University

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Dr. Barry Lunt has taught electronics engineering technology and information technology at Brigham Young University since 1993 where he now serves as full professor and Director of the School of Technology. He has also taught electronics at Utah State University and Snow College. Prior to his work in academics he worked for seven years as a design engineer for IBM in Tucson, AZ. He has consulted for several companies and has worked summer internships for Bell Labs (now Lucent Technologies), Larson - Davis (Utah), IBM (Vermont), and Micron Technologies (Utah and Idaho). His research areas are permanent digital data storage and engineering/computing education.
Dr. Lunt is the author of "Electronic Physical Design" (Pearson Prentice Hall, 2004) and “The Marvels of Modern Electronics” (Dover, 2013) and has produced more than 70 peer-reviewed publications in the areas of electronic physical design, engineering education, and permanent data storage. He has seven U.S. patents and 20 more applied for.

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Technology & Design Programs

During the summer of 2016, visits were undertaken to six post-secondary academic institutions with programs in construction management, industrial design, information technology, manufacturing or mechanical engineering technology, and technology & engineering education. The purpose of these visits was to learn more about how they are structured, their history, their faculty, and other related items. While certainly not representative in terms of numbers, what was learned as a result of these visits is at least a valuable snap-shot of current practices in several technology disciplines, at seven institutions (including the author’s home institution). These seven institutions were (in alphabetic order): Arizona State University, Brigham Young University, New Jersey Institute of Technology, Purdue University, University of Cincinnati, University of Houston, and University of Wisconsin-Stout. This paper will report on observations in areas of faculty, enrollment, local organization, placement, experiential learning, teaching load, scholarship & scholarly productivity, industry experience, industry advisory boards, program accreditation, and terminal degrees of the faculty members. There are four types of faculty: full-time tenure-track – professorial; full-time tenure-track – professional; research only; and adjunct. It was also learned that there are four types of adjunct faculty. The actual name of a program, and the academic unit in which it is housed, varies substantially. These are usually a function of the history of the academic institution, its mission, and the local and state politics where it resides. A few were experiencing, or had recently experienced, substantial growth in enrollments. Most were relatively steady in their student enrollment. All reported two different statistics on placement: the official number, which had varying definitions and was always less than 95%, and the unofficial number, which generally meant how many of those actively seeking a job were able to obtain one. The latter number was nearly always 95-100%. All programs had experiential learning as a core component. There was some variation in how this was accomplished, but not in the commitment to using this as an integral part of their educational program. All had some form of maker space, usually multiple ones, with a wide range of equipment. The teaching load was generally a function of the type of faculty (see above), but at some institutions this is tied to research grant dollars – the more money they brought in, the smaller their teaching load, such that in some cases, the faculty member became a full-time researcher with no teaching load. Where the AAUP (American Association of University Professors – a union) had a chapter on campus, the load was defined by the AAUP contract. Several factors determine the definition of scholarship, including impact, quality of venue, and peer review. Some programs include work with local industry as part of scholarship, as it shows impact. Some institutions valued conference proceeding publications, while others did not. Most institutions allow the programs to define what scholarship means to them. All engineering technology (ET) programs agreed that ET does not have a cultural history of research expectations.

Lunt, B. M. (2017, June), Technology and Design Programs Paper presented at 2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Columbus, Ohio. 10.18260/1-2--28935

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: © 2017 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