June 14, 2015
June 14, 2015
June 17, 2015
26.1599.1 - 26.1599.21
Transformation of a large civil engineering department curriculum using the ASCE BOK2 K. Brumbelow1, D. Fowler2, J. Morgan1, W. Anthony1 1 Zachry Department of Civil Engineering, Texas A&M University 2 Center for Teaching Excellence, Texas A&M University Texas A&M University’s civil engineering department (approximately 1000 undergraduate students and 60 faculty) decided to undertake a curriculum transformation project based on concerns of conceptual gaps and redundancies in the degree program and the significant time that had elapsed since the last comprehensive curriculum restructuring. The curriculum redesign was informed by Wolf (2007) and Diamond (2011) models of curriculum design and by ASCE’s Civil Engineering Body of Knowledge for the 21st Century: Preparing the Civil Engineer for the Future, 2nd Edition (BOK2). A large faculty teaching across a civil engineering curriculum typically would not be familiar with all of the detailed learning outcomes in the BOK2. Consequently, one of the first steps of the curriculum redesign process was to acquaint the faculty with the details of the document. The suggested review of the BOK2 document, including details of each program learning outcome, was not met without question and frustration; hence, the curriculum design process was cast as a parallel to the civil engineering project design model to help explain the need for fully understanding the BOK2 learning outcomes. A comparative table of the ABET criteria 3, BOK2 outcomes, and current departmental civil engineering outcomes was created and discussed during a curriculum transformation team meeting. After illustrating that the BOK2 outcomes included all of the ABET required outcomes, the curriculum redesign team adopted the 24 BOK2 outcomes as the new civil engineering program learning outcomes. A set of performance criteria at four defined levels, often termed rubrics, was then created for each program learning outcome. The BOK2 was an extremely valuable resource for this process as well as identified literature such as the ABET Webinars on ‘Developing Rubrics’ by Gloria Rogers which were all shared with the faculty. The process included one‐on‐one meetings with faculty that were the content experts for specific learning outcomes so that they could better understand the expectations for creating rubrics and see some examples. A current draft of the 30 rubrics – one for each BOK2 outcome except “Technical Specialization” for which seven specialty area rubrics were developed – will be shared during the session and a direct correlation made with the BOK2 and the civil engineering rubrics. Well‐defined performance criteria may not yield results if there is no accountability to implementing them across a curriculum. The next step in the curriculum transformation process was to update current courses or design new courses that incorporated all 30 of the civil engineering rubrics. Thus, a curriculum map was created to show how each course (including non‐departmental courses) incorporates specific program learning outcomes at three levels: 1) introducing; 2) reinforcing; and 3) demonstrating. Employer and recent graduate survey results focused on BOK2 outcomes highlighted outcomes needing particular consideration when creating the curriculum map. The curriculum map will be shared and the process discussed, demonstrating that the BOK2 can be used as a curricular foundation even in a very large and diverse civil engineering program.
Brumbelow, K., & Fowler, D. A., & Morgan, J. R., & Anthony, W. L. (2015, June), Transformation of a Large Civil Engineering Department Curriculum using the ASCE BOK2 Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.24935
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