Resources for Accreditation, Assessment & Innovation

Professional development is a critical component of maintaining the highest quality volunteer force. ABET offers several different types of professional development opportunities, each intended to be completed during specific phases of one’s service as an ABET Program Evaluator or Team Chair.

ABET offers resources in accreditation, assessment, and innovation in technical education. Please take time to explore these resources – we hope you find them informative, insightful, and helpful in developing your expertise in program evaluation and accreditation. If you’d like to recommend additional resources, please contact our Professional Services Department.

Professional Development Hours Are Available
ABET workshops, training, and symposia are eligible for Professional Development Hours, which may be used to fulfill individual licensing or certification requirements.

ABET Symposium
ABET's premier annual event!  Join colleagues from around the world to share your successes and challenges in assessment, accreditation, and innovation in technical education. The ABET Symposium provides a stellar opportunity to engage with the extended ABET community to assure quality in technical education.

Accreditation Resources

Accreditation Webinars
ABET's free webinars guide you through the ABET accreditation process, covering topics such as preparing the self-study, preparing for the site visit, understanding the Accreditation Policy and Procedure Manual, and accreditation updates.

Accreditation Reading List

Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) has an extensive reading list. Of particular interest are:

  • Talking Points: Accreditation, Students and Society (June 2013)
    With the recent attention that has been brought to accreditation, these talking points were developed to key in on the importance and value of accreditation to higher education, students, and society.
  • The CHEA Initiative - Final Report
    The CHEA Initiative, a multi-year national conversation on the future of accreditation, sought to build support to (1) sustain a balance and distinction between accountability to the federal government and the academic work of accreditation – its focus on institutional mission and independence, peer/professional review and quality improvement – and (2) enhance accountability in accreditation.
  • An Overview of U.S. Accreditation (PDF)
    Description of the key features of U.S. accreditation of higher education and recognition of accrediting organizations. An excellent introduction to the broader national system of regional and programmatic accreditation.
  • Accreditation and Recognition in the United States (PDF)PowerPoint overview of the primary quality control mechanisms in U.S. higher education.

Engineering Change: A Study of the Impact of EC2000
Highlights the findings from a comprehensive study published in 2006 on the impact of ABET's outcomes-based accreditation criteria on engineering programs and their graduates. The study conducted by the Penn State Center for the Study of Higher Education.  The Executive Summary is available online; the full report may be purchased from ABET.

Engineering Education Quality Assurance: A Global Perspective
Arun Patil and Peter Gray, Springer, 2009.
A global perspective on the past, present and future of engineering education quality assurance, including the history of engineering education quality assurance and a world-wide review of existing quality assurance schemes in engineering education.  Available in hardcover from Springer.

Assessment Resources

ABET's Program Assessment Workshops
Participants will broaden their understanding of the continuous quality improvement of student learning through the design of assessment processes, development of measurable learning outcomes, and application of new data collection methods that can be implemented when they return to campus.

ABET's Institute for the Development of Excellence in Assessment Leadership (IDEAL)
IDEAL provides a professional development opportunity for those responsible for leading their faculty in the development and implementation of a program assessment plan to improve student learning and document program effectiveness.

Assessment Webinars
ABET's free webinars cover the basics of assessment - defining student outcomes, developing rubrics and surveys, and choosing assessment methods.

Assessment Reading List

Designing Better Engineering Education Through Assessment
Joni Spurlin, Sarah Rajala, and Jerome Lavelle, Stylus, 2008.
This book is written for engineering faculty and department chairs as a practical guide to improving the assessment processes for undergraduate and graduate engineering education, written by engineering faculty and assessment professionals who have many years of experience in assessment of engineering education and of working with engineering faculty.

Innovation in Technical Education Resources

Presentations from ABET's 2011 Annual Conference - Innovation in Technical Education - are online.
Of particular interest are the two keynote speakers:

Innovation Reading List

Workforce Imperative: A Manufacturing Education Strategy (PDF)
A report by the Society of Manufacturing Engineers describing the talent crunch in manufacturing along with recommendations for educators, industry, professional organizations, and government to solve the crisis.

Innovation With Impact: Creating a Culture for Scholarly and systematic Innovation in Engineering Education (PDF)
This Executive Summary from a 2012 report from the American Society for Engineering Education describes the vibrant engineering academic culture necessary for scholarly and systematic innovation to ensure that the U.S. engineering education enterprise keeps pace with changes in the engineering profession and in the world.

The Engineer of 2020
The National Academy of Engineering Committee on Engineering Education conducted this two-phase project in 2004 to forecast future performance demands for professional engineers as well as opportunities to provide leadership in a range of business and public venues beyond their technical fields. Phase II considers curriculum content and delivery models helpful in preparing engineering students to meet these challenges.

Engineering for A Changing World: A Roadmap for the Future of Engineering Practice, Research and Education (PDF)
This 2008 report, authored by former University of Michigan president and engineering school dean James Duderstadt itemizes changes in engineering practice and the global workforce and new technologies and concludes that graduates of engineering degree programs must master a set of skills well beyond traditional scientific and technical disciplines. Among its recommendations are broadening the focus of undergraduate engineering programs, establishing graduate professional schools of engineering, and creating more structured forms of lifelong learning for engineering professionals.

Rising Above the Gathering Storm, Revisited (PDF)
A 2010 update to the 2005 National Academy of Engineering report Rising Above the Gathering Storm, which was prepared in response to a request by a bipartisan group of Senators and Members of Congress who asked the National Academies to respond to the following questions: What are the top ten actions, in priority order, that federal policymakers could take to enhance the science and technology enterprise so that the United States can successfully compete, prosper, and be secure in the global community of the 21st century?

Featured ABET Event

ABET Facts

Accredited Programs at HBCUs

Howard University was the first historically black college or university to have ABET-accredited programs. ABET's predecessor, the Engineers' Council for Professional Development, accredited three engineering programs there in 1937.