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Using Intellectual Property To Enhance Engineering Education

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2005 Annual Conference


Portland, Oregon

Publication Date

June 12, 2005

Start Date

June 12, 2005

End Date

June 15, 2005



Conference Session

IP, Incubation, and Business Plans

Page Count


Page Numbers

10.1413.1 - 10.1413.12



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Paper Authors

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John Kaplan

author page

Kathleen Kaplan

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

Session Entrepreneurship

Using Intellectual Property to Enhance Engineering Education

Kathleen M. Kaplan, D.Sc., Lt Col John J. Kaplan (Ph.D., J.D.) USAF

Howard University/USAF


Intellectual Property (IP) is oftentimes overlooked in engineering education, but should be center stage. In performing any type of research, a student should access all intellectual property, not merely cite copyrighted references. This includes patent and trademark searches, which can be easily incorporated into any engineering assignment. Teaching and using IP in an undergraduate engineering curriculum does not need to replace any ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology) or any other accreditation board criteria. In fact, it reinforces the goals of accreditation; of the eleven criteria required under ABET Criterion 3, stating the requirements for engineering graduates, IP knowledge would be included in seven, including “an ability to design,” “a knowledge of contemporary issues,” and “an understanding of professional and ethical responsibility.” IP encompasses design and identifies the latest contemporary issues associated with engineering. More importantly, it is an engineer’s professional and ethical responsibility to research claims prior to publication or use. Also, it the engineering educator’s responsibility to teach future engineers how to protect his or her rights of creation. For example, does every student know the connection between presenting research in a public forum and the time to file a patent on this research? Yet, by ignorance alone the student may lose his or her rights for a patent by not knowing this connection. Educators must note that by the lack of IP instruction, students are unaware as to the protection of their creations. This impacts their futures as they will be entering the creative field of engineering without IP knowledge and may miss precious opportunities to benefit from their creations.

This paper, written by a patent agent and patent attorney, both holding doctorate degrees in computer science and electrical engineering, respectively, will introduce the concepts of intellectual property with respect to engineering and examine ways to introduce IP into an undergraduate engineering curriculum.

“Proceedings of the 2005 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright 2005, American Society for Engineering Education”

Kaplan, J., & Kaplan, K. (2005, June), Using Intellectual Property To Enhance Engineering Education Paper presented at 2005 Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon. 10.18260/1-2--15001

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