CoSci undergraduate program lauded for faculty, facilities

Patrick Suermann

Numerous strengths of the Texas A&M Bachelor of Science in Construction Science program were noted by a visiting team of educators and industry professionals who recently reaccredited the program for six years.

The accreditation team, representing the American Council for Construction Education, found “no issues that could have an adverse impact on the program” during their rigorous and comprehensive evaluation during a Fall 2017 campus visit.

The team noted six strengths: the knowledgeable faculty, the Construction Industry Advisory Council (CIAC), Francis Hall facilities, the innovative BIM Cave, Undergraduate Coordinator Shelley Smith, and student advisors.

CIAC consists of construction industry leaders and former construction science students who advise department administrators and faculty on contemporary construction issues and influence the department's strategic direction and course content.

“The dedicated, generous, and committed CIAC exceeds the depth, breadth, and helpfulness of any other in the nation,” said ACCE evaluator John Schaufelberger, University of Washington Dean of the College of the Built Environment.

The report recognized the recently renovated Francis Hall as the “envy of every other construction program in the nation.”

The evaluating team listed three weaknesses, which were mostly clerical.

ACCE’s report found a safety course listed as an elective which they recommend should be mandatory; a different course’s assignments should be altered to reflect individual, rather than group mastery; and that the ACCE’s Course Learning Objectives should be outlined in all syllabi.

Patrick Suermann, head of the Department of Construction Science, said the first two findings have already been fixed and the latter is in the process of being fixed for all future syllabi.

Texas A&M is also the first school to ever have zero concerns (weaknesses from a previous visit left unaddressed), listed in an ACCE report, which "is a testament to our future direction", said Suermann.

“I am so proud of all of our students, staff, faculty, and administrators,” Suermann said. “Hard work pays off.”

The ACCE team listed four areas which could be improved with monetary support including: a Construction Science Ph.D. program to continue to grow a global reputation as construction leaders; further investment in BIM, virtual design and construction and its corollary research areas; a hands-on indoor/ outdoor construction lab; and new faculty members who focus on partnering construction, engineering and architecture programs.

The Bachelor of Science in Construction Science has held ACCE accreditation since 1978.

The Master of Science in Construction Management program at Texas A&M University is also an ACCE accredited program and was one of the world's first graduate programs to earn the qualification, which it did in 2012.

ACCE, a leading global advocate of quality construction education which promotes, supports, and accredits construction education programs, is recognized by the Council for Higher Education as the accrediting agency for four-year baccalaureate degree programs in construction, construction science, construction management, and construction technology.

 

Sarah Wilson
swilson@arch.tamu.edu

 

 

posted July 9, 2018