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Total Design Experience In Civil Engineering Education

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1999 Annual Conference


Charlotte, North Carolina

Publication Date

June 20, 1999

Start Date

June 20, 1999

End Date

June 23, 1999



Page Count


Page Numbers

4.555.1 - 4.555.5

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Nabil Kartam

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

Session 2660 TS/ 2

Total Design Experience in Civil Engineering Education

Nabil Kartam Kuwait University, Kuwait


This paper identifies the need to incorporate design concepts into Civil Engineering Curriculum from the freshman through the senior years. The existence of a single requirement for a capstone senior-level design course, which is implemented in most engineering programs as per ABET basic requirements, does not fulfill the goal of preparing design-oriented, creative engineers. This paper describes an integrated approach to the inclusion of design aspects in those courses most geared towards design. It also demonstrates that design is a total educational and learning experience, and its success depends on the implementation of a program which integrates a number of desirable educational approaches. Special emphasis is given to the corner-stone and capstone design courses.

I. Introduction

This paper presents an integrated program which will incorporate design concepts into the civil engineering course curriculum from the freshman through the senior years. This program not only includes design in civil engineering course contents, but also outlines teaching mechanisms and educational activities which enhance design value for both faculty and students.

Since the Fall of 1994, the Civil Engineering program at Kuwait University has included a senior-level capstone design course in its curriculum structure. While the inclusion of this single course is an essential ingredient of a program which trains competent design-oriented engineers, it nonetheless falls short of achieving this goal due to a variety of factors.

Studies have shown that engineering design is a crucial concept in the total educational and learning experience [1], and its success depends on the implementation of a program which integrates a number of desirable educational approaches. These approaches include, but are not limited to: creative thinking, active learning, increased awareness and participation, integrated research, teamwork, decision making, communicating, managing conflicts and interacting with the public and the professional community. [2] describes these educational approaches in detail.

Kartam, N. (1999, June), Total Design Experience In Civil Engineering Education Paper presented at 1999 Annual Conference, Charlotte, North Carolina.

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