« PrejšnjaNaprej »
About one and one-third million dollars was spent on engineering research in the land-grant institutions during the year ending June 30, 1928. Of this only about one-half million dollars was supplied by the institution or by State legislatures. Very little was secured from the Federal Government but more than one-half of a million dollars was donated to three land-grant engineering colleges by industries, railroads, and public utilities who cooperated in practical investigations.
The engineering experiment stations at the University of Illinois and Iowa State College were organized in 1903 and 1904, respectively at Pennsylvania State College in 1908, University of Missouri in 1909, Kansas State Agricultural College in 1910, Ohio State University in 1913, State College of Washington, University of Wisconsin and Agricultural and Mechanical College of Texas in 1914, University of Maine in 1915, Colorado Agricultural College and Purdue University in 1917, and 20 since 1920. Only five of these stations receive any special State support and in at least 10 institutions the engineering experiment stations exist only on paper. As a matter of fact, fewer than 10 of the land-grant college engineering experiment stations are receiving support from any source sufficient to develop research in engineering.
Engineering Teaching Staff In the survey of engineering education by the Society for the Promotion of Engineering Education, the figures for 143 engineering colleges are given and these show that about 36.5 per cent of all the teachers hold the bachelor's degree, 9.5 per cent the master's degree, 29.5 per cent professional degrees, 4.5 per cent the doctor's degree, and 14 per cent hold no degrees.
The data upon this matter from 1,425 engineering teachers in the land-grant colleges 3 were not collected upon a basis strictly comparable to those of the Society for the Promotion of Engineering Education study but show that of this group in 1928, eliminating the 119 that did not furnish the information, less than 4 per cent had no degree. Even though it were assumed that all of the 119 who failed to answer this question hold no degrees, the percentage would still fall slightly below that of the Society for the Promotion of Engineering Education study. The land-grant survey returns show that slightly more than 56 per cent of the 1,306 who furnished complete information had a first degree only; approximately 35 per cent the master's degree; and 4.5 per cent the doctor's. Ten had honorary master's and 17 honorary doctor's degrees in addition to those already listed.
The distribution of degrees as shown is supported in general by the record of the number of years training beyond high school received from the same group of staff members. Four hundred and sixty-six did not have more than 4 years; 559 had from 5 to 6; 300 had 7 or more; 100 did not furnish the information.
In connection with the training of the land-grant engineering staffs it is of interest to note that of 495 reporting on the point, 215 had no training in education subjects; 144 had less than 12 semester hours; 64 from 12 to 23; and 72 more than 24 semester hours of credit in professional education subjects.
Professional activities.-One hundred and ninety-three landgrant engineering teachers hold membership in the American
Of this number, 1,270 were employed full time by the institutions- 19 from 75 to 99 per cent of their time, 52 from 50 to 74 per cent, 17 less than half time, and no informa tion was available for 37.
Society of Civil Engineers, 214 in the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, 162 in the American Institute of Mining and Metallurgical Engineers, and 17 in the American Institute of Chemical Engineers. Thus, 616 engineering teachers hold membership in the five major national professional engineering societies. This is slightly less than 38 per cent of the staffs in land-grant engineering colleges teaching in these fields. The percentage should be much greater. In additon to these, 111 are members or fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, 62 of the American Society for Testing Materials, 32 of the American Institute of Architects, and a number of many other national bodies.
The interest that land-grant college engineering teachers have in engineering education is evidenced by the fact that 751 are members of the Society for the Promotion of Engineering Education. This, however, is only one-third of the total number of engineering teachers in the land-grant institutions.
Further information concerning the professional interests of landgrant college teachers of engineering is afforded by reports secured by this survey from 1,425 engineering teachers, approximately twothirds of the entire staff membership. Of this number 1,136 belong to one or more professional or learned societies, 80 per cent of those making returns. Although it is not probable that 80 per cent of the staff's hold such memberships, the number reported by only twothirds of the staff constitutes more than 50 per cent of all the engineering faculties in the land-grant colleges. Further, in 1927-28, 708 report attendance upon meetings of such organizations.
One hundred and seventy-two land-grant engineering teachers are serving on committees of State and national engineering societies. Of 1,425 members of engineering staffs in land-grant institutions, 241 report during the last five years publications, solely of research character; 161 popular publications; and 153 have written both popular and research material. Thus, more than a third of those reporting have been productive through the agency of publication.
Improvement of teaching.–Forty-three land-grant institutions give special encouragement to their younger teachers to pursue graduate study; nearly all, however, favor graduate study at other institutions than the one from which the teacher has the bachelor's degree.
The distribution of time of the engineering staff as between different activities applicable to their institutional time is indicated by Table 7.
Thirty-nine institutions are endeavoring to improve instruction by special conferences, 20 invite special lecturers from the outside, and an equal number arrange for lectures on educational topics by members of their own staff. Twenty-nine offer courses in education for staff members and an equal number of colleges encourage travel.
In only 11 institutions does the school, college, or department of education aid the engineering staff in its efforts to train inexperienced teachers and in studies of their teaching problems. Thirtyone institutions state that their engineering staff receives no aid from the school or department of education.
In only 19 institutions is it customary for the heads of departments and deans to visit classes of engineering teachers. However, 34 institutions encourage the younger and inexperienced teachers to visit classes of older teachers in order to observe teaching methods.
Thirty-nine institutions make a definite effort to aid their younger teachers in improving the mastery of subject matter and also assist them in making contact with industry.
Engineering teaching staffs meet only in frequently to discuss teaching problems and in only seven institutions is there any systematic effort made to help the younger teachers in learning the technique of teaching. In general, heads of departments and deans should take greater responsibility in connection with the training and development of their teaching staffs. Deans of engineering in particular should be educational directors and should have as their main task the improvement of the quality of instruction in their division of the institution. Both heads of departments and deans should be certain that the young and inexperienced teachers are given systematic instruction in the technique of teaching and encouragement to improve the mastery of the subject matter by special courses, by contacts with industry, and by research problems.
Summer schools for engineering teachers.—The Society for the Promotion of Engineering Education, realizing that advances in engineering education can only be made by improving the quality
of instruction given to engineering students, has sponsored five summer schools for engineering teachers, four of which were held at land-grant engineering colleges. About 300 engineering teachers were benefited by these summer schools and their continuation, which is assured by a number of years, should react beneficially to engineering instruction.
In the summer of 1927 summer schools for teachers of engineering mechanics were held at the University of Wisconsin and at Cornell University. Eighty-two teachers attended the sessions and the staff of each school comprised a director, a secretary, three teachers of mechanics, and a group of specialists in various fields. These teachers represented 64 institutions and were distributed as follows: 15 professors, 10 associate professors, 28 assistant professors, 27 instructors, and 2 of other ranks. A professional teacher of education also served continuously on each staff and acted as a general adviser and lecturer. The programs of the two schools included formal lectures, model teaching exercises, demonstration lectures, laboratory exercises, seminars, general group meetings, and committee meetings. Methods of teaching were stressed in all parts of the program. Mechanics was chosen as the first subject, as it is fundamental in all major engineering curricula.
During the summer of 1928 a summer school for teachers of physics was held at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and one devoted to electrical engineering at the University of Pittsburgh in cooperation with the Westinghouse Electric and Manufacturing Co. As in 1927 the schools were each of three weeks ' duration. Forty teachers attended the physics school and 54 the electrical school. The staff of the physics school included 8 teachers of physics, an educational adviser, and 13 special lecturers. The electrical school staff comprised 11 teachers, 2 educational advisers, and 29 special lecturers from industry.
The 1929 session on mechanical engineering was held at Purdue University June 27 to July 18, 1929, and was attended by 88 teachers, who represented 60 institutions located in 36 States of the United States and 2 Provinces of Canada. The staff comprised 23 teachers who came from 13 engineering colleges and 27 lecturers from industry. In addition to these, 13 teachers attended one or more meetings as auditors. A special feature of the program was a 3-day trip to Chicago, where 14 engineers and executives of the Western Electric Co. gave a series of lectures on organization, engi. neering production, inspection, purchasing, cost control, material handling and storage, personnel practices, and development problems of modern industry. Lectures on general educational practices and principles were given at Purdue University by two educational authorities. To provide a background for engineering instruction