World Expertise LLC organized a pre-conference workshop at the annual meeting of the Société européenne pour la formation des ingénieurs (SEFI) at Copenhagen on 12-14 September 2001. SEFI is the European Society for Engineering Education, a parallel organization to the American Society for Engineering Education in the US. The pre-conference was designed to introduce US engineering educators to issues and opportunities in European engineering education, while increasing the participation of US educators in the SEFI annual meeting. US participants were engineering faculty and administrators who want to bring greater familiarity with international issues to their teaching and service responsibilities at their home institutions.

The short, concentrated workshop took place in the day and a half preceding the SEFI conference – on Monday evening, 10 September 2001, and all day Tuesday, 11 September 2001. Participants attended presentations and discussions providing a comprehensive overview of current trends and issues in European engineering education. Particular attention was paid to explaining the relevance of these topics to US higher education at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. In addition, selected sessions of the SEFI conference were coordinated with the workshop in order to draw the US educators into dialogue with colleagues on broader themes on international engineering education.


Monday evening:           Evening reception

                                    Overview of the workshop   

                                    Introduction of speakers


Keynote presentation by President of SEFI, Torbjorn Hedberg of     Lulea University of Technology, Sweden, on status of European engineering education

Tuesday:                       Presentations:  

Curriculum developments – Ingemar Ingemarsson, Linkoping University, Sweden

Continuing education – Patricio Montesinos, Universidad Politecnica de Valencia, Spain

Accreditation/quality assurance – Giuiano Augusti, Universita de Roma, Italy

Mobility of engineering students and of engineers – Hans Peter Jensen, Technical University of Denmark, Denmark; and Gaston Wolf, Swiss Technical Association, Switzerland

Industry perspectives – Kruno Hernaut, Siemens AG, Germany

                                    Lunch talk:

                                                European Union/Commission

End of day: SEFI annual meeting introduction; SEFI opening reception

Wednesday through Friday

                                    Participation in regular SEFI program

Particular emphasis on participation in an electronic conference session, as a model for future international conferences on engineering education. The electronic conference ran for several weeks prior to the SEFI session, involving a worldwide poster session of engineering educators from developing countries. The final electronic conference wrap-up panel session, to be distributed back to participants in the poster session worldwide, was conducted during the SEFI conference.


            Outcomes of this workshop included:

Greater participation in SEFI annual meetings by US engineering educators

Increased transatlantic dialogue

Infusion of international issues into curriculum at participants’ home institutions

Increased collaborative teaching, research, and service activities between US and European engineering educators