terrelationships: synthesis and processing, structure, properties, and performance of all classes of materials. The area of synthesis and processing has suffered neglect in our universities and in industry. A particularly compelling need is to provide undergraduates with a thorough grounding in the science of the engineering of processing and its relation to manufacturing. At the graduate level, students exposed to synthesis and processing research activities will be better equipped to contribute (and more interested in contributing) to this area of industrial need.
New courses and new textbooks, dealing generically with all materials, are needed at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. A special need is evident in the area of synthesis and processing, covering the spectrum from processing science to manufacturing.
Undergraduate materials engineering education should be centered in materials departments. Such departments should interact strongly with other science and engineering departments to develop interdisciplinary materials-related educational programs.
Graduate education in materials science and engineering should emphasize a sound education in a specific discipline, while providing understanding of, involvement with, and respect for the goals, philosophies, methodologies, and tools of complementary disciplines.
Existing institutions for continuing education should be expanded and should be more widely publicized, and badly needed appropriate textbooks should be produced. Assistance and encouragement from industrial and professional associations are critical to both endeavors.
The many professional societies associated with materials sciences and engineering should establish mechanisms for cooperative action to advance the field as a whole.
Perhaps most importantly, the annual production of bachelor’s degrees for materials-related departments is currently about 1000 per year, a figure that has changed little from the early 1970s. The number of doctorates is just under 700, again a figure little changed from the early 1970s. Thus the production of educated professionals has remained essentially constant in the face of greatly increased needs and opportunities in the field and expansion of the field to include new materials such as electrooptical materials, advanced composites, and high-temperature superconductors. Additional educated personnel are required to meet these needs and opportunities. National strengthening of synthesis and processing and of performance will require additional manpower.