Engineering as a Profession:
Reflections and Questions
(a review of the first unit)

technology is developed by people

what do they have?
what do they need?
demand pull--need results in new inventions
technology push--somebody invents something and creates a new need

what technology do the people in power want and not want

what are their ethical views and what do they think the public good is

what are the issues involved in engineering becoming a profession?

where is technology going and how does that affect the future of society?
difference and relationship between technology and science--and how it has changed over time
definitions of technology and science
transition from local ingenuity to craft-based engineering to science-based engineering
the development of engineering as a profession and what it means to be a profession
apprenticeship vs. engineering schools
how the U.S. went from being a third-world country to being a leader in technology
responsibilities of engineers to society, including morals, ethics, responding to public concerns, looking at larger consequences
how society pushes engineering in new directions including regulation

example of nuclear power--what does it show us about
modern engineering:
example of gps and cell phones:

if this is what modern engineering is like how did it get there?
historians are interested in how and why things change over time

blacksmith at Dacusville Farm Days (PEM photo)
what is engineering, what is technology? how did engineering become a profession? is Florman too negative in saying that engineers need to be more widely educated?  Why does he think that?

relationship between technology and society:
how society affects technology
what special problems do engineers face?

  Problems at the warhead assembly and disassembly plant

this page written and copyright  Pamela E. Mack
last updated 9/14/2005