There is widespread talk about transformative change in engineering education. A variety of visions of what engineering and engineering education should become have been put forward, and governments the world over have thrown or are throwing millions if not billions of dollars to change engineering education, but as the French put it so nicely, plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose-the more things change, the more they are the same. The difficulty is exacerbated by the degree of change being called for in many of the reports; the change demanded is substantial. We are talking about transformation notimprovement or simple change.
5 Enemies to Transformative Change
In engineering education there are a number of enemies to effective transformative change. Here we consider five:
- Thinking the existing organization can transform.
- Mistaking lists for change initiatives.
- Tick-the-box change response.
- NIMBY committees & logrolling.
- Mistaking professorial effort for transformative change.
Each is discussed briefly in turn here.