An Approach to Forensic Engineering Education in the USA

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Proceedings of the ICE - Forensic Engineering


Over the past three decades, the Technical Council on Forensic Engineering (TCFE) of the American Society of Civil Engineers has worked hard to establish and promote forensic engineering as a respected profession. The ultimate goal of forensic engineering is to improve quality and safety of constructed facilities. This paper reviews the development of TCFE in the USA with particular emphasis on educational activities, which have made considerable progress over the last decade. Much work has been done in the area of integrating failure case histories, failure case studies and forensics into graduate and undergraduate engineering education. These include a book, a web site and a series of US and international workshops for faculty. The US National Science Foundation has funded three research projects to further this effort. This paper discusses different approaches to teaching with failure cases, using the Hyatt Regency walkway collapse case as an example. In addition, international developments in forensic engineering are discussed. Many of the recent efforts of the TCFE have been focused on outreach to other countries