Integrating Sustainability Across the Curriculum: Engineering Sustainable Engineers
2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition Proceedings
Engineering Sustainable Engineers is a program designed to improve student knowledge of and competency in addressing sustainability issues in engineering design and problem solving. Three (3) engineering departments at The University of Texas at Arlington -Civil (CE), Industrial (IE), and Mechanical Engineering (ME) -are collaborating to infuse their curricula with sustainability concepts of varying degrees of complexity from the freshman through the senior year. The expected outcomes of the
... outcomes of the project are to (1) increase students' knowledge of sustainability concepts, (2) increase students' ability to analyze project components for sustainability, (3) increase students' ability to propose mitigation strategies for reducing negative impacts and (4) provide opportunities for students to apply their knowledge of sustainability to real-world projects and problems. These outcomes are being achieved through three (3) key program elements: • Sustainability Learning Modules. 11 cross-cutting and targeted sustainability modules have been developed for integration into 17 traditional engineering courses. These courses include Introduction to Engineering (a course that is required for all engineering freshmen), required sophomore/junior level CE, IE, and ME courses and Senior Project. The modules are complete faculty-ready "grab-and-go" curricular units that include objectives, PowerPoint lecture slides, reading materials, discussion questions/other active learning activities, homework problems, and assessment questions. • Multidisciplinary Senior Design Project. The team implemented a multi-disciplinary senior design project focusing on sustainability. Students from all three departments collaborated to design a biodiesel production refinery for the campus. • Quality Sustainable Engineering Internship. The project team designed and implemented a "Quality Sustainable Engineering Internship Checklist" to identify companies with exemplary sustainable engineering design practice. Surveys and pre-and post-tests were used to assess whether program objectives and outcomes were achieved. This paper provides: 1. Descriptions, implementation information, and assessment data for the modules; 2. Summary information for the senior design project and sustainable engineering internships, described in detail elsewhere; and 3. An assessment of achievement of project objectives and outcomes.