In their talks, Fromm, Bordogna, Flowers, Duderstadt, and Goldberg variously made the point that there is an on-going need for educational innovation, integration of research and education, and cross-disciplinary synthesis. During breakout section discussions, workshop participants generally agreed that much of the needed change was unlikely to occur unless faculty at all levels, including graduate students as future faculty, were provided with the incentives necessary for them to seriously engage in conducting education research as well as the scholarly teaching that translates education research and traditional engineering research into improved practice. Among the possible incentives identified by various individuals were the following:
Explicit attention to education research, curricular innovation, and scholarly teaching in tenure and promotion criteria,
Greatly expanded opportunities for grant funding for education-focused activities at NSF and other federal agencies including the education aspect of NSF’s Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) awards,
Demonstrable institutional support, such as graduate student support and other allocations of internal funds, for education research, curricular innovation and scholarly teaching,
Public recognition of institutional excellence in education research and curricular innovation such as that provided by the National Research Council rankings departments in terms of technical and scientific research, and
Agreement that the ABET General Criterion 6 on faculty qualifications requires faculty demonstration of continuing attention to their instructional skills (e.g., regular participation in professional development activities).
In their remarks, Orsak, Bordogna and Duderstadt placed great emphasis on the need to broadly engage the stakeholders of engineering education including faculty and administrators, employers, and students. Some workshop participants expressed the view that engineering education could be improved through more regular and structured interaction among these groups. Ideas offered by individual participants included the following:
Actively engage undergraduate and graduate students as collaborators in educational innovations. Olin College very effectively did this in the design of its curriculum.