Early Integration of Computational Methods in the Engineering Curriculum

by Matthew R. Kuhn, Univ of Portland, United States,
Mehmet I. Inan, Univ of Portland, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Computer Utilization in Structural Engineering


Practicing civil engineers are continuing to take greater advantage of computers to solve structural problems of increasing complexity. To prepare for practice, engineering students must learn the basis of efficient computerized analysis methods. As part of its curriculum requirements, ABET prescribes that 'students must demonstrate knowledge of the application and use of digital computation techniques to specific engineering problems. Moreover, computer usage should be incorporated throughout their college curriculum so that they are at ease with the computer as a primary tool for solving the challenging analysis problems that they will face in their course work and in their careers. At the University of Portland, we have attempted to accelerate the students' use of computers as early as possible in the civil engineering curriculum. We have had to carefully coordinate the introduction of computational methods with our teaching of the underlying engineering principles. This paper briefly describes and evaluates this effort toward the early integration of computational methods.

Subject Headings: Computer analysis | Engineering education | Structural engineering | Curricula and extra curricula | Computing in civil engineering | Computer programming | Colleges and universities

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