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The Perpetual Challenge: Finding a Complementary Balance of Depth and Breadth in an Engineering Curriculum -- Approach of the Electrical Engineering Faculty

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Conference

2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Atlanta, Georgia

Publication Date

June 23, 2013

Start Date

June 23, 2013

End Date

June 26, 2013

ISSN

2153-5965

Conference Session

New Trends in ECE Education I

Tagged Division

Electrical and Computer

Page Count

10

Page Numbers

23.1225.1 - 23.1225.10

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/22610

Download Count

12

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Paper Authors

biography

Robert J. Albright P.E. University of Portland

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Robert J. Albright received the B.S. and M.S. degrees in electrical engineering from Oregon State University, Corvallis, in 1963 and 1965, respectively, and the Ph.D. degree in electrical engineering from the University of Washington, Seattle, in 1971.
He is a Professor and Chair of Electrical Engineering at the University of Portland, Portland, OR. A member of the faculty of the University of Portland since 1970, he has served 34 years as Chair of Electrical Engineering, 12 years as Chair of Computer Science, and one year as Acting Dean of Engineering. He has been honored as a Tyson Distinguished Professor at the University of Portland. His teaching, research, and consulting interests include energy conversion, power systems, control systems, and engineering education.
Dr. Albright, a registered engineer in the State of Oregon, is a senior member of the IEEE and a member of the ASEE.

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Abstract

The Perpetual Challenge: Finding a Complementary Balance of Depth and Breadth in an Engineering Curriculum -- Approach of the Electrical Engineering Faculty AbstractThe faculty of the School of Engineering conducted a thorough review of its ABET-accreditedundergraduate degree programs during the 2011-2012 academic year. The aim of the intensiveyear-long study was to assess and evaluate possible changes to our curricula, both School-wideand ones specific to the programs, that would maintain the principal strengths of depth, yet allowmore opportunities for students to gain additional breadth in preparation for success in a widerange of professional careers during the increasingly global nature of engineering in the 21stcentury.As engineering educators, we are certainly aware that finding such an appropriate balancebetween depth and breadth of education, especially one with complementary aspects, is anongoing challenge. The balance point is not stagnant, but varies from time-to-time and place-to-place depending on societal needs and technological developments.The focus of this paper will be to summarize our curricular changes, with their rationale,beginning with the ones that apply to all of our School's curricula, including reinstituting acommon first-year of study to aid students in selecting a major, enhancing the capstone designsequence to encourage and facilitate more multi-disciplinary projects, and designating ninesemester hours of existing credits as "professional electives" that can be, for example, inengineering, business, or foreign languages. The specifics of these curricular changes as adoptedand adapted for our Electrical Engineering program are detailed in this paper.

Albright, R. J. (2013, June), The Perpetual Challenge: Finding a Complementary Balance of Depth and Breadth in an Engineering Curriculum -- Approach of the Electrical Engineering Faculty Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. https://peer.asee.org/22610

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