Ethics Courses Trending at Graduate Engineering Schools (US News & World Report)

Seager: The article below is from US News and World Report.  It quotes Brad Allenby, a co-Investigator on the NSF grant #1134943, and Ron Kline, a friend from Cornell, who first suggested that students should participate in the design or re-design of ethics games so that they can experiment with the incentive structures and the “win” conditions that reflect their own values.   The article itself doesn’t break any particularly new ground in engineering ethics education methods.  It simply suggests that interest in ethics education is growing from very low levels.

But students say some engineering programs are slow to adopt accrediting body’s new ethics guidelines.

May 31, 2012 RSS Feed Print

Although some students say engineering schools ignore ethics, that appears to be changing.Although some students say engineering schools ignore ethics, that appears to be changing.

When Liz Boatman saw a copy of Ethics in Engineering atop a trash can at the University of California—Berkeley’s College of Engineering in fall 2011, the materials science and engineering doctoral candidate saw a metaphor for what she perceived as Berkeley’s neglect of ethics in engineering. Half a year later, Boatman still stands by an article she wrote for Berkeley Science Review, “Engineering: Throwing Our Ethics into the Trash (Literally).”

“It’s as if the faculty prefer to operate under the premise that ethics conscientiousness is simply implied by being an engineer, although nothing could be further from the truth,” she says. “While it is true that our courses weave in ethical components, simply discussing ‘factors of safety’ for a design problem or receiving isolated sexual harassment training for teaching preparation is an ethical education that falls far short of serious preparation for confronting ethical dilemmas.”

read the full text here

6 thoughts on “Ethics Courses Trending at Graduate Engineering Schools (US News & World Report)

  1. Pingback: Engineering Ethics: Trade Secrets | CEE300 – Engineering Business Practices

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  3. Pingback: Introduction to Engineering Ethics | CEE300 – Engineering Business Practices

  4. Pingback: Engineering Ethics: Trade Secrets | Sustainable Engineering Systems

  5. Pingback: Intro to Engineering Ethics | Sustainable Engineering Systems

  6. Another note: There are 520 ABET accredited undergraduate engineering programs in the United States. There are 37 accredited Master’s degree programs.

    ABET rules do not allow a single University to accredit both a Bachelor of Science (BS) and Master’s program in the same degree program, so if one of the 520 accredited in Civil Engineering at the BS level, it can not also be accredited at the MS level in Civil Engineering.

    The advice from the University of Utah President that students interested in graduate programs should check the accreditation status of the programs that they are interested in is misleading. For example, ASU (like many research intensive institutions) seek accreditation ONLY at the undergrad level. Nonetheless, my course Sustainability Ethics is required for graduate students on the Sustainable Engineering track.

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