A Study of the Impact of EC2000



Highlights the findings of EngineeringChange, a comprehensive study on the impact of ABET's outcomes-based accreditation criteria on engineering programs and their graduates. Study conducted by the Penn State Center for the Study of Higher Education. Full report and executive summary available.

Download the executive summary for EngineeringChange (PDF).


Are post-EC2000 engineering graduates any better prepared to enter the profession than were their pre-EC2000 counterparts of a decade ago? That question is at the heart of this three-year study, titled Engineering Change: A Study of the Impact of EC2000.

In 1996, the ABET Board of Directors adopted the new set of standards, called Engineering Criteria 2000 (EC2000). EC2000 shifted the basis for accreditation from inputs, such as what is taught, to outputs—what is learned. The new criteria specify 11 learning outcomes and require programs to assess and demonstrate their students' achievement in each of those areas. EC2000 retains earlier accreditation standards' emphases on the development of students' mathematical, scientific, and technical knowledge, as well as standards for program faculty and facilities, but it also emphasizes developing other professional skills, such as solving unstructured problems, communicating effectively, and working in teams. In addition, EC2000 stresses awareness of ethical and contextual considerations in engineering.

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Accredited Programs at Women’s Colleges

Smith College was the first women's college to have an ABET-accredited program. Its engineering science program has been accredited since 2003.