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The Integrated Civil Engineering Curriculum: Combining Technical Integrity With Business Acumen

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2003 Annual Conference


Nashville, Tennessee

Publication Date

June 22, 2003

Start Date

June 22, 2003

End Date

June 25, 2003



Conference Session

Programmatic Curriculum Developments

Page Count


Page Numbers

8.1147.1 - 8.1147.8



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Paper Authors

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Marlee Walton

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

Session 2615

The Integrated Civil Engineering Curriculum: The Gap Between the Blackboard and Business

Marlee A. Walton Iowa State University


Civil Engineering curricula have been criticized for not effectively preparing engineering students for the workplace. Industry wants technically competent students who also can work as part of teams, manage projects, communicate well and understand the economic, social and political context of their professional activities. The Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET), with Engineering Criteria 2000 has joined industry’s cry and requires programs to show evidence graduates are prepared for the job market. Iowa State University developed initiatives within the Civil & Construction Engineering (CCE) Department to address these demands in a new integrated learning based curriculum.

The new integrated curriculum includes new courses, revisions to existing courses, and collaborative efforts with the Department of English. Some of the new courses focus primarily on professional practice skills as applied in industry. Other new courses offer a synthesis to tie other non-departmental courses to civil engineering practice. Collaboration efforts with the English Department have resulted in the development of a Technical Communication Guide, faculty workshops on effective teaching of communication within the CCE curriculum, and the review and modification of several courses and assignments.


The new curriculum consists of a series of twelve integrated courses beginning in the freshman year and ending in the senior year. Some of these courses cover topics that were included in the previous Civil Engineering (CE) curriculum, such as: § Civil Engineering Projects § Engineering Problems with Computational Laboratory § Graphics for Civil Engineering § Civil Engineering Capstone Design However, the new curriculum places a strong emphasis on the following professional practice skills: § Leadership Skills § Team Processes in CE Practice § Interpersonal Skills § Communication Skills

Proceedings of the 2003 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2003, American Society for Engineering Education

Walton, M. (2003, June), The Integrated Civil Engineering Curriculum: Combining Technical Integrity With Business Acumen Paper presented at 2003 Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee. 10.18260/1-2--12111

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