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“The Engineer as Leader” Course Design and Assessment

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2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Vancouver, BC

Publication Date

June 26, 2011

Start Date

June 26, 2011

End Date

June 29, 2011



Conference Session

Multidisciplinary Poster Session

Tagged Division

Multidisciplinary Engineering

Page Count


Page Numbers

22.1723.1 - 22.1723.18



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Paper Authors

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Don E. Malzahn Wichita State University


Lawrence E. Whitman Wichita State University

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Lawrence E. Whitman is the Director of Engineering Education for the College of Engineering
and an Associate Professor of Industrial & Manufacturing Engineering at Wichita State
University. He received B.S. and M.S. degrees from Oklahoma State University. His Ph.D. from
The University of Texas at Arlington is in Industrial Engineering. He also has 10 years experience in the aerospace industry. His research interests are in enterprise engineering, engineering education and lean manufacturing.

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Zulma Toro-Ramos Wichita State University

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Zulma Toro-Ramos serves as Dean of the College of Engineering and Professor of Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering at Wichita State University. She received a B.S. in Industrial Engineering from the University of Puerto Rico and a M.S. in Industrial and Operations Engineering in from the University of Michigan. She also holds a Ph.D. in Industrial and Systems Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology. Dr. Toro-Ramos has been in academic administration for over sixteen years. Her research interests include engineering education, broadening the participation in higher education, and transformation of institutions of higher education.

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“The Engineer as Leader” Course Design and AssessmentThis paper describes and discusses the assessment of a course developed and offered in responseto the needs of industry and society in general for those with engineering skills to assumeleadership roles. This course uses the constructivist pedagogical model and was designed withthe goal of “significant learning experiences.”The basic components of the course are a series of readings (24), videos (10), and interactionswith practicing engineering leaders applying a “leaders teaching leaders” approach (5) used asprobes to elicit responses from students who then reflect upon and discuss the issues. This isintended to build a vocabulary of leadership concepts that directly relates to their currentcognitive and affective structures. Additionally there are several team lead workshops (10)designed to develop team management skills for the whole class (group decision making,presentations, conflict resolution, meeting management, and project planning and scheduling,etc.). Each of these experiences and activities is examined at the immediate and direct level thenviewed “from the balcony” for analysis.Multiple direct and indirect assessments of leadership development and skill mastery are used.These include detailed peer assessments using the new leadership vocabularies, progress inpersonal skill development, written examinations of skills, peer assessments and feedback fromteam members.

Malzahn, D. E., & Whitman, L. E., & Toro-Ramos, Z. (2011, June), “The Engineer as Leader” Course Design and Assessment Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC. 10.18260/1-2--17292

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