Sustainability/GREEN: Challenges and changes for educators and the engineering curriculum

Muge Mukaddes, Mary Frances Agnello

Research output: Contribution to journalConference article

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Education for sustainability in general is a process that develops students' awareness, competence, attitudes and values, enabling them to be effectively involved in sustainable development at local, national and international levels, and helping them to work towards a more equitable and sustainable future. In particular, it enables students to integrate environmental considerations into economic decision-making. As a result it is imperative that academics in engineering, construction, education, and other disciplines heed the call for sustainable technologies, policies, and practices. Although since the early 1990's many environmental and professional organizations such as the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and accrediting agencies such as the American Council for Construction Education (ACCE) and the National Architectural Accreditation Board (NAAB) have appealed to universities to provide education for sustainable development and encouraging students to be involved with matters of the environment, the curricula in many universities sparingly offer classes which provide information and current understanding of sustainable development. While professional agencies and organizations have taken lead roles in embracing the emerging sustainable trend, universities are still slow to include sustainable development in their curricula. In all probability this gap will steadily grow if universities do not embrace a concerted interdisciplinary effort to change their curricula and take the challenge to change engineering education to include sustainable development in their curricula. Today's students, as tomorrow's engineers are the people who are going to build future communities; thus it is imperative that they have an understanding of the impacts of their decisions on the environment and natural resources to allow such positive changes to occur. This paper will examine to the challenges posed by introducing sustainability into engineering. It offers a model of K-12 curricular changes to include sustainable/GREEN development into the existing curriculum in Engineering and related discipline programs.

Original languageEnglish
JournalASEE Annual Conference and Exposition, Conference Proceedings
StatePublished - 2009
Event2009 ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition - Austin, TX, United States
Duration: Jun 14 2009Jun 17 2009

Keywords

  • Collaboration
  • Education
  • Green curriculum development
  • Interdisciplinary curricula
  • Sustainability

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