Trends in Engineering Education Indicate Need for Five-Year Curricula
- R.L. Langenheim (The University of Tulsa) | E.T. Guerrero (The University of Tulsa)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Journal of Petroleum Technology
- Publication Date
- August 1959
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 23 - 25
- 1959. Original copyright American Institute of Mining, Metallurgical, and Petroleum Engineers, Inc. Copyright has expired.
- 4.1.2 Separation and Treating, 6.1.5 Human Resources, Competence and Training, 4.1.5 Processing Equipment
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In the training of engineers, engineering education has and continues to perform a major role. This paper analyzes trends in engineering education and accreditation and points out the role that educators and professional engineers must assume in guiding it. Curricula in chemical, mechanical, and petroleum engineering are presented for 1925 and 1958 in order to show significant trends that have occurred in the past 33 years.
The 1958 curricula are compared with the ASEE and ECPD accreditation recommendations and the differences discussed. The authors express personal views regarding current accreditation procedures and the emphasis placed on the humanities and number of semester hours included in curricula.
It is concluded that engineering education should be recognized as a five-year program and that engineering societies should join educators and participate actively in determining future trends.
Engineering can generally be defined as the application of science to machines, vehicles, processes and procedures for the improvement of living conditions. It is through engineering that scientific discoveries are applied and the necessity for additional investigation discovered. Science and engineering are strongly interdependent, yet are distinct fields of endeavor. A vast new source of energy has been discovered through nuclear fission yet it remains for engineers to find practical uses for it. In the training of engineers, engineering education has and continues to perform a major role. It is the objective of this article to analyze trends in engineering education and accreditation and to point out the role that educators and professional engineers must assume.
Typical Engineering Curricula
Engineering curricula vary in content depending upon where the work is offered and the major field of concentration. In order to use some degree of quantitative interpretation in this discussion, mechanical, chemical, and petroleum engineering curricula of three major universities were selected. These are shown in Table 1 with the most current and late 1920's curricula included. Note that in the basic sciences, chemical and petroleum show an increase in physics requirements and a decrease in chemistry. Petroleum also shows a decrease in geology.
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