Click for next page ( 10


The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement



Below are the first 10 and last 10 pages of uncorrected machine-read text (when available) of this chapter, followed by the top 30 algorithmically extracted key phrases from the chapter as a whole.
Intended to provide our own search engines and external engines with highly rich, chapter-representative searchable text on the opening pages of each chapter. Because it is UNCORRECTED material, please consider the following text as a useful but insufficient proxy for the authoritative book pages.

Do not use for reproduction, copying, pasting, or reading; exclusively for search engines.

OCR for page 9
1 Definition of Engineering Introduction The advancement and application of technology have become increasingly complex activities and involve people with a broad scope of training, skills, and experience. Engineering has not in the past and will not in the future be the sole province of individuals with degrees from accredited engineering institutions and engaged in designing products or services. To analyze the complexity of the subject, the Panel on Infrastructure Diagramming and Modeling went about the task of defining engineer- ing by first discussing, as individual topics, the mission of engineering, the credentials of engineers, the functions and activities within engi- neering, and the context of engineering work. Based on these discus- sions, the panel arrived at the following conclusions: The mission of engineering is to apply knowledge derived from mathematical and physical sciences in creating or delivering useful products or services of a technical nature. The credentials of people in the engineering field include experi- ence in applications as well as evidence of formal education and train- ~ng. The functions of engineering extend from research through tech- nical operations and include direct management of technical or engi 9

OCR for page 9
10 INFRASTRUCTURE DIAGRAMMING AND MODELING peering activity but do not include general management or such support functions as purchasing or sales. The context of engineering includes lousiness, government, aca- demia, and self-employment. In parallel with the preparation of working definitions, the panel also developed a flowchart of education and engineering experience, rang- ing from secondary school graduation through an individual's exit from engineering work. To quantify the flows, the panel reviewed available data sources. In doing so, it became clear that there is an engineering community composed of people who are or have been actively engaged in work within the mission and context of engineering but who may have had no formal training in engineering. They may have degrees in the physical or biological sciences, in liberal arts, or, particularly, in computer science, or they may have had no formal training at all before entering engineering work. It also became clear that the engineering community included individuals who had had training or experience in engineering but who were not currently employed in either engineering or in engineering support. These people may be employed in general management in technology-l~ased compa- nies or elsewhere in the economy, or they may lie unemployed, but they are a reserve pool that is available, particularly to industry, for engineer- ing work if there is a surge in demand for engineering talent. Together, the structural and flowcharting approaches led to the working definitions that are given below. For simplicity, the panel combined the mission and context aspects into the single definition of engineering, and it defined the engineering communityl~roadly enough to include people with current or recent credentials or employment in engineering work. The definitions of engineer, engineering technolo- gist, and engineering technician differ only slightly from those used in other studies. {For a discussion of the historical context of definitions of engineer and engineering, see Appendix A. ~ The notion, however, of an "engineering community" far broader than a " community of engineers" is a departure from previous stud- ies and is a novel feature of the panel's work. Chapter 3 shows clearly and quantitatively why it is important to recognize the contributions, at both professional and support levels, of people without formal engi- neering training, and of the "engineering reserve," which contains people available to meet surges in industrial demand Definitions As discussed in the Executive Summary and in Appendix A, the panel found it necessary to establish definitions, with particular application

OCR for page 9
DEFINITION OF ENGINEERING 11 to its own work and to that of the Committee on the Education and Utilization of the Engineer, and on which to base accurate data collec- tion and display, and analyses of data about the profession. The panel recognizes that this challenging task is subject to controversy and, indeed, emotionalism, but it was essential for the purposes described. The following definitions were adopted by the panel. Engineering Business, government, academic, or individual efforts in which knowledge of mathematical, physical and/or natural sciences is employed in research, development, design, manufacturing, sys- tems engineering, or technical operations with the objective of creating and/or delivering systems, products, processes, and/or services of a technical nature and content intended for use. Engineering Community People meeting at least one of the follow . . . . ng cone .ltlons: actively engaged in engineering, as defined above; . ~ . . . . ~ . actively engagec ~ in engineering education; qualified as an engineer, engineering technologist, or engineering technician, as defined below, and actively engaged in such engineering support functions as engineering management or administration, tech- nical sales, or technical product purchasing; qualified as an engineer, engineering technologist, or engineering technician, as defined below, who was but is not now actively engaged in engineering, engineering education, or engineering support. Engineer A person having at least one of the following qualifica- tions: college/university B.S. or advanced degree in an accredited engi- neering program; membership in a recognized engineering society at a professional level; registered or licensed as an engineer by a governmental agency; current or recent employment in a job classification requiring engineering work at a professional level. Engineering Technologist A person having at least one of the fol . . . ... . owlug qua .lilcatlons: a bachelor's degree from an accredited program in engineering technology; current or recent employment in engineering work, but lacking the qualifications of an engineer as defined alcove.

OCR for page 9
12 INFRASTRUCTURE DIAGRAMMING AND MODELING Engineering Technician A person having at least one of the follow- ing qualifications: a degree or certificate from a one- to three-year accredited techni- cal program; current or recent employment in engineering work, but lacking the qualifications of an engineer as defined above and at a lower job level than that of an engineering technologist.