Evaluation Results of an E and ET Education Forum Page: 56
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for equipping and maintaining laboratories
needed in the first two years would dramati-
2.2 Option 2: Pre-Engineering Degree
It is also conceivable that engineering colleges would
consider becoming, in the future, professional schools
much like medical and law schools, requiring a four-
year baccalaureate pre-degree for admission. As in the
pre-med option, the pre-engineering degree could be
in any field but would include certain requirements of
mathematics, sciences, engineering, and technology. A
BS degree in an ET field would surely be a most fit-
ting pre-engineering degree. An apparent benefit of
either option is that colleges and schools of engineer-
ing would be able to devote more of their resources to
graduate engineering programs, leaving freshman- and
sophomore-level engineering classes to ET programs.
3. Forum Evaluation Results
3.1 Evaluation Focus
To understand the impact of the forum, the organiz-
ers retained the services of external evaluators to ex-
amine effectiveness. The evaluation plan focused on
examining data collected from participants (via surveys,
electronic communication, and observations during
the forum) against three motivating factors articulated
by the organizers:
1. A renewed focus on the engineering pro-
fession, specifically on the tasks an individ-
ual performs three to five years after going
through the educational system to earn a de-
gree that the employment system finds valu-
2. A premise that a university's offerings of engi-
neering and engineering technology degrees
can be designed and implemented to sub-
stantially increase the number of qualified
individuals entering the engineering profes-
sion while improving institutional resource
3. A pressing need for laying out a road map for
the next decade that could potentially trans-
form the way an individual prepares for and
enters the engineering profession to lead a
fulfilling and rewarding career.
In terms of evaluating the impact of the forum, the
motivating factors raise several relevant questions:
* Did proposed curriculum models present a vi-
able option for addressing any of the concerns
raised by the forum participants?
* If the models were viable, was there any indica-
tion that participants would be willing to pilot
test the ideas?
* Was there any indication of the long-term impact
of the forum, as described by forum participants?
These factors and questions provide the framework
for the evaluation activities and interpretation of re-
3.2 Post-forum survey
The external evaluators for the project administered
a post-forum survey to gauge participant perceptions
and attitudes regarding the ideas and issues discussed
during the forum. Specifically, the survey presented
several Likert-style items in which participants were
asked to provide perspectives on the utility and feasibil-
ity of the proposed curricular models. Figure 1 high-
lights attitudes toward the two-year common curricu-
When participants were asked whether they would
support this model being implemented at their institu-
tion, 71% indicated they would. However, when asked
whether they thought implementation of this model
would be feasible at their institution, 59% responded
A second set of items centered on the pre-engineer-
ing professional model (Figure 2).
Seventy-six percent of participants indicated they
would support this model being implemented at their
institution. However, when asked whether they thought
implementation of this model would be feasible at their
institution, 69% responded "No."
The survey also provided an opportunity for open-
ended responses. Each open-ended item is presented
along with a brief analysis of responses:
"Has your position regarding the value and feasibility
of the proposed 2-year common curriculum model for
E and ET changed as a result of your participation in
this forum? Explain." (35 respondents)
* 15/35 respondents that did not previously sup-
port the model shifted to "support" after the fo-
* 1/35 supported the model before the forum but
changed to "not support".
"What actions, if any, are you likely to take rela-
tive to the issues and ideas discussed in the forum?"
(34 respondents including four ambiguous responses
["none," "not decided," "not sure yet," and "hope"]). Of
the remaining 30 responses,
* 18 described doing something locally, within
* 9 described actions that could be taken across
56 1 Journal of Engineering Technology * Fall 2011
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Ramos, Miguel; Chapman, Lauren; Cannady, Mac & Barbieri, Enrique. Evaluation Results of an E and ET Education Forum, article, 2011; [Washington, DC]. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc122182/m1/3/: accessed November 21, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT College of Engineering.