Performance assessment for civil engineering curriculum

Jean Pierre Bardet, Gisele Ragusa, Fred Meyer

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


The accreditation of engineering education programs by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) requires the direct assessment of student's learning to ensure they meet the requirements of particular program outcomes. Past attempts of measuring student's learning in Civil Engineering have largely relied on a few isolated data points and unreliable satisfaction surveys. Hereafter the authors propose a systematic approach for directly assessing the student performance across an entire program which includes the current ABET requirement as well as the Body of Knowledge (BOK) of the American Society of Civil Engineering (ASCE). The approach is based on embedded signature assessments and concept inventories, which originate from the field of educational psychology. These direct assessment methods lead to quantitative assessments of student performance without dramatically increasing faculty work load and generating tedious data collection; they enhance what is typically accomplished in the evaluation and grading of student work. The greatest benefit of using embedded signatures and concept inventories is to provide a rapid, multi-factored, quantitative assessment, and to provide instructors and administrators with the immediate, comprehensive feedback they need to promptly address student needs. This relatively simple yet thorough assessment process enables administrators to devote time to curriculum improvements instead of collecting and compiling assessment data with limited application focus. The performance methodology, although tested in this particular case with Civil Engineering, is applicable to other fields of Engineering.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalASEE Annual Conference and Exposition, Conference Proceedings
StatePublished - 2008
Externally publishedYes
Event2008 ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition - Pittsburg, PA, United States
Duration: Jun 22 2008Jun 24 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)


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