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Tools for Comprehensive Assessment of the 7 ABET Student Outcomes in Mechanical Engineering, with Application to Capstone Design

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2023 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Baltimore , Maryland

Publication Date

June 25, 2023

Start Date

June 25, 2023

End Date

June 28, 2023

Conference Session

Mechanical Engineering Division (MECH) Technical Session 10: Capstone and Design Education

Tagged Division

Mechanical Engineering Division (MECH)

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Paper Authors


Alex C. Szatmary King's College, England Orcid 16x16

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Alex Szatmary teaches mechanical engineering in a recently-accredited program at King's College, Wilkes-Barre.

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The seven ABET Student Outcomes are guidance from industry on the abilities that engineering graduates should have and are central to accreditation of engineering programs in the United States. To address the breadth of engineering abilities, some capstone design courses assess all of these outcomes. The recent revision of the 11 “a–k” outcomes into the current seven makes this approach more tractable; however, the change in scope for some of these outcomes requires a corresponding revision to assessment instruments. This paper reviews assessment tools for each of these outcomes. It also shares a comprehensive set of tools for assessing these outcomes, especially for use in capstone design. These tools are described in the context of the known benefits and limitations of assessment. In particular, they are designed to give students experience with the breadth of engineering competency in authentic settings, and to clearly demonstrate compliance with requirements of ABET and other accrediting bodies. Some notable features include a phase-gate product development process, a project management system inspired by agile scrum, and several assignments that call for individual students to make signature contributions to their project. Taken together, these tools are a model assessment system that can be adopted and modified by other programs. In the long run, we envision the engineering education community developing a shared set of assessment tools that are psychometrically sound and that clearly meet accreditor requirements.

Szatmary, A. C. (2023, June), Tools for Comprehensive Assessment of the 7 ABET Student Outcomes in Mechanical Engineering, with Application to Capstone Design Paper presented at 2023 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Baltimore , Maryland. 10.18260/1-2--44505

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