June 20, 2010
June 20, 2010
June 23, 2010
15.1271.1 - 15.1271.8
Towards More Efficient Practices and Methods for ABET Accreditation
For many institutions, maintaining ABET accreditation(s) requires a significant investment of faculty and financial resources. This is especially the case since the Technology Criteria 2000 were introduced requiring a greater emphasis on continuous improvement processes and outcome-based assessment. With each review cycle, the standards for demonstrating compliance are raised; consequently, the effort required to plan, prepare and follow-up on general visits places an increasing burden on programs, departments and colleges. This paper discusses the means, methods and techniques developed to efficiently deploy departmental and program resources on small undergraduate institutions.
Our College maintains nine accreditations with both the Technology and the Engineering Accreditation Commissions of ABET. The following practices have been put into place to maximize productivity: (1) prime movers lead, plan and coordinate the process, (2) standardized templates are employed, (3) deliverables are assigned and shared by faculty, (4) useful content is sourced from all programs and (5) faculty are supported with ‘how to’ instructions, examples and assessment tools.
Our approach which encompasses process, methods and tools improves resource efficiency within and across departments. For high level materials, a consistent format is essential for strategic plans, continuous improvement, educational objectives, program outcomes and assessment plans. Additional leverage is gained by standardizing documentation of course improvements, capstone projects and faculty development. Common materials that describe co- curricular multidisciplinary activities and shared facilities are prepared and disseminated at the College level. The purpose of this paper is to present the specifics of our approach and lessons learned from the latest general visit along with recommendations for future improvements.
Our College is part of a private institution with about 900 students of which 400 are enrolled in undergraduate engineering programs. Bachelor of Science degrees, accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission (EAC), are offered in six majors: Acoustical Engineering & Music (new), Biomedical, Civil, Computer, Electrical and Mechanical Engineering. Within the last 10 years, three of the above programs were accredited for the first time. In addition, three of our five undergraduate engineering technology programs, accredited by the Technology Accreditation Commission (TAC), are offered in the following majors: Architecture, Electronic and Mechanical Engineering Technology. The 11 engineering and engineering technology programs, as well as a Masters program with 150 students, are administered by 4 departments with a combined fulltime faculty of 38 and a professional staff of 5.
Our experience parallels other institutions in seeking new and better ways to address accreditation and assessment planning1-9. Given the level of work required to demonstrate
Milanovic, I., & Eppes, T. (2010, June), Towards More Efficient Practices And Methods For Abet Accreditation Paper presented at 2010 Annual Conference & Exposition, Louisville, Kentucky. https://peer.asee.org/15848
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