Innovations in multidisciplinary engineering programs: Focus on multilevel communication skills

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Multidisciplinary engineering programs are uniquely positioned to integrate new educational and research initiatives into their curricula. In this paper, we describe an integrated series of continuing innovations in the Engineering Science and Mechanics Department, College of Engineering at The Pennsylvania State University. These innovations include: the introduction of undergraduate student portfolios; the adoption of a new perspective on "Design" for the ABET program criteria; enhancement of the senior research and design project through incorporation of the ABET professional components; incorporation of non-technical abstracts in both undergraduate and graduate theses; professional development seminars for both undergraduate and graduate students; the introduction of an informal education seminar to prepare PhD students wishing to pursue academic careers; and introduction of new courses to support the department's strategic plan. With an underlying focus on the development of multilevel communication skills, the aim of these initiatives is to foster an interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary environment that produces internationally competitive engineers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)8069-8080
Number of pages12
JournalASEE Annual Conference and Exposition, Conference Proceedings
StatePublished - 2005
Event2005 ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition: The Changing Landscape of Engineering and Technology Education in a Global World - Portland, OR, United States
Duration: Jun 12 2005Jun 15 2005

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Engineering


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