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The Oas Efta/Laccei Accreditation Workshops: Evolving With Latin America And The Caribbean For Quality Assurance, Capacity Building And Economic Development

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2010 Annual Conference & Exposition


Louisville, Kentucky

Publication Date

June 20, 2010

Start Date

June 20, 2010

End Date

June 23, 2010



Conference Session

Opportunities and Challenges in Developing International Engineering Research

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Page Count


Page Numbers

15.1248.1 - 15.1248.9



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Paper Authors

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Zenaida Otero Gephardt Rowan University

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Gisela Coto Quintana SINAES

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Maria M. Larrondo Petrie Florida Atlantic University

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Oscar Harasic Organization of American States

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Ivan Esparragoza Pennsylvania State University

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

The OAS-EftA/LACCEI Accreditation Workshops: Evolving with Latin America and the Caribbean for Quality Assurance, Capacity Building and Economic Development Abstract

Accreditation is an essential element in the standardization of global engineering education and is a means of quality assurance for engineering programs and their graduates. For developing countries, this is especially important if they are to play a significant role in the development of global engineers who can be strong contributors to the world economy. The Latin American and Caribbean Consortium of Engineering Institutions (LACCEI), in collaboration with the Organization of American States (OAS) and Engineering for the Americas (EftA), has developed and presented accreditation workshops at its annual conference for the last five years. The accreditation workshops have included efforts from several institutions and sponsors. These workshops provide a framework to help institutions of higher education prepare for accreditation, select an accreditation model, and implement procedures to meet accreditation requirements.

This work describes the evolution of the OAS-EftA/LACCEI accreditation workshops and their impact in Latin America and the Caribbean. The key components of the workshops applicable to institutions throughout the world are highlighted. The program under development to assist institutions to prepare for accreditation, select the best accreditation method, identify and select peer-evaluators and peer-assistants, and implement accreditation procedures that integrate accreditation requirements with cultural considerations is described. These workshops provide an infrastructure to promote accreditation that is transferable worldwide and serves to enhance capacity building, economic development and to promote global engineering education and quality assurance in engineering programs.

Introduction and Background

Education is a critical component of progress for countries throughout the world. Countries with strong and accessible educational systems are characterized by greater development and their peoples enjoy a higher quality of life. Engineering education is especially important in enhancing the quality of life because technology is such a critical component of progress and development.1-6 Historically, the competencies of engineers and technology practitioners have been strongly linked with individual countries.7 This is inconsistent with the internationalization of engineering education resulting from the explosion of the global economy in more recent years. The need to educate engineers that are technically strong and can face the challenges of a global economy is a common theme in engineering education.8 Engineers and technology practitioners create and disseminate the knowledge required to fuel the engine of the global knowledge economy. Engineering education has an important role to play in sustainably reducing poverty and enhancing the world´s economies. The resulting enhancement in the quality of life serves to promote stability and peace throughout the world3. Latin America and the Caribbean have lagged compared to other parts of the world such as Asia and India in the development of the infrastructure for globally competitive engineering education programs with

Gephardt, Z. O., & Coto Quintana, G., & Larrondo Petrie, M. M., & Harasic, O., & Esparragoza, I. (2010, June), The Oas Efta/Laccei Accreditation Workshops: Evolving With Latin America And The Caribbean For Quality Assurance, Capacity Building And Economic Development Paper presented at 2010 Annual Conference & Exposition, Louisville, Kentucky. 10.18260/1-2--16117

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