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The National Science Digital Library As A Platform For An Engineering Education Database.

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2009 Annual Conference & Exposition


Austin, Texas

Publication Date

June 14, 2009

Start Date

June 14, 2009

End Date

June 17, 2009



Conference Session

Using Information Technology to Create New Information Resources

Tagged Division

Engineering Libraries

Page Count


Page Numbers

14.1235.1 - 14.1235.8



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Paper Authors


Nestor Osorio Northern Illinois University

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Nestor L. Osorio is professor and subject specialist for science and engineering at Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL, e-mail:

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Andrew Otieno Northern Illinois University

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Andrew W. Otieno is associate professor at the Department of Technology, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL, e-mail:

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

The National Science Digital Library as a Platform for an Engineering Education Database


Studies about the literature of engineering education have clearly demonstrated that a substantial gap exists between the yearly production of articles in this field and the current and historical coverage included by major standard engineering databases. It is estimated1 that half of the literature produced in English, including those from the USA and Canada, do not have a permanent archival record. This paper proposes the creation of a bibliographic database for engineering and technology education.

The National Science Digital Library (NSDL) would be an appropriate platform for such an initiative. NSDL has built, or provides access to, extensive collections of documents and objects in all areas of science and engineering. Well known NSDL projects, such as Annals of Research on Engineering Educations (AREE) or National Engineering Education Delivery System (NEEDS), whether fully or partially funded, are integrated within the NSDL Engineering Pathway (EP). An engineering education database would be a valuable supplement to the robust collections and services provided by EP. The proposed database would be built utilizing the already existing and highly-recognized technical infrastructure of the NSDL. This will be a collaborative project where professional organizations such as the Engineering Library Division (ELD) of the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE), the Science and Technology Section (STS) of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL), and the Engineering Division (ED) of the Special Libraries Association (SLA) can play an important role.


The literature of engineering education is complex and extensive. In a recent publication, Powell2 describes the components of engineering education that include, for example, courses and programs; assessment and evaluation; learning resources and practices; advising; research opportunities; retention; teaching methods; research methods; hiring; promotion; tenure; strategies and tools used in the classroom; assessment and evaluation to improve specific courses; models for engineering programs; and many others. Other topics not mentioned by Powell are: the teaching of fundamental engineering concepts at the K-12 level, international education collaboration, and lifelong learning. Jesiek, et al.3 however, point out that there have been improvements and "an impressive expansion of engineering education has been underway since at least the early 2000s. This domain now boasts an infrastructure comprised of funding and granting agencies, publication outlets, conference venues, and academic units."

The engineering education literature is produced in a variety of formats. De Petro4 describes a selection of the formats and indicates that articles in journals and articles in conference proceedings constitute the largest percentage. Other formats include books, book chapters, theses, reports, manuscripts and others. De Petro also states that engineering education is often

Osorio, N., & Otieno, A. (2009, June), The National Science Digital Library As A Platform For An Engineering Education Database. Paper presented at 2009 Annual Conference & Exposition, Austin, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--5154

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