The Need for Another Step
The introduction of graduate attribute assessment accreditation criteria by the CEAB was not an end in itself, but rather a means by which to catalyse a shift towards continuous program improvement practice in Canadian Engineering Programs. This shift has been established as being necessary if our engineering education is to keep pace internationally.
With the introduction of the new criteria, it was natural that the first step engineering programs took was to address the accreditation requirements, with some thought to longer term planning, but more focus on short term criteria fulfillment. The emerging challenge that has been identified across the country is that of shifting the campus mindset from one that views program review process as an event that occurs at regularly (usually accreditation visit aligned) intervals, to one in which continuous program improvement principles are effectively implemented.
The EGAD Project team has already begun the process of developing resources to support the additional step that has been defining itself in workshop conversations as “Closing The Loop”. This is the area in which we would focus the next phase of our work. Implementing effective Continuous Program Improvement Practices will lead to the education standards for Canadian engineers challenge the best that the world has to offer in the 21st Century.