Identifying factors that enhance undergraduate engineering students' global preparedness

Svetlana V. Levonisova, Rachel E. Savage, Scott Charles Streiner, Erin J. McCave, Gisele Ragusa, Cheryl Matherly, Lisa Benson, Mary E. Besterfield-Sacre, Larry J. Shuman

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


The increasingly global scope of engineering requires both academic and industry stakeholders to seek engineering graduates who work effectively with peers from diverse national and cultural backgrounds. As a consequence, U.S. engineering programs are challenged to include international perspectives and experiences through a variety of approaches including curricular and co-curricular activities. Yet, research has not provided sufficient evidence about the types and programmatic components of such learning experiences that best promote the preparation of engineering students for the global workforce. This paper offers findings from the second phase of a multi-university research project, aimed at delineating how particular experiences and their components are associated with engineering students' global preparedness. Using two established assessment instruments, the Global Perspective Inventory (GPI) and the Engineering Global Preparedness Index (EGPI) for measuring outcomes related to global learning, the study investigated a sample of 185 undergraduate engineering students from three universities. Results from relational and predictive statistical analyses indicate that participation in such experiences as study abroad, engineering/non-engineering-focused service learning; engineering/nonengineering courses with a global focus, and personal tourism are associated with increased global preparedness. Further, students' performance on the instruments was found to be correlated with particular programmatic elements of the experiences such as duration of study abroad, the number of non-engineering courses students took with global foci, number of times traveled abroad, and the amount of student reflection that occurred during or after travelling abroad. The study broadens the knowledge base about contextual factors associated with engineering global preparedness.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalASEE Annual Conference and Exposition, Conference Proceedings
Volume122nd ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition: Making Value for Society
Issue number122nd ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition: Making Value for...
StatePublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes
Event2015 122nd ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition - Seattle, United States
Duration: Jun 14 2015Jun 17 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Engineering


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