The EOP Framework

Transforming Curricula The EOP Framework

The EOP Framework is a cornerstone of the EOP initiative, the first of its kind to guide coursework, teaching tools, and student experiences that define what it means to be an engineer who is equipped to protect our planet and the life it sustains. It provides faculty with a vetted menu of competencies that every graduating engineer, regardless of subdiscipline, needs to acquire to design, code, build, and implement solutions that are socially and environmentally sustainable.

The desired result of this framework will be a pipeline of engineers, inventors, and innovators who create structures, designs, products, and services that help people and nature flourish. It will foster a future in which engineers account for social and environmental impact as much as they do for cost and user experience — a future in which solutions to the world’s biggest problems will simultaneously contribute to the care of our planet because sustainability will have been stitched into their fabric from the start.

The Framework is a platform for change, redefining what it means to be an engineer. It’s not just about changing engineering courses — it’s about changing the course of engineering.

Co-developed with experts from a range of identities, lived experiences, geographies, and sectors, the Framework was designed to be widely adaptable and adoptable by engineering faculty and administrators, and is structured around core student learning outcomes under the categories of “systems thinking,” “knowledge and understanding,” and “skills experiences and behavior.” Although “mindsets” are not explicitly categorized, acquisition of the Framework learning outcomes also cultivates sustainability mindsets. The Framework was launched in 2020, piloted in 2020-2021, and is being updated in 2022 to better reflect diversity, equity, inclusion and justice principles and topics of social sustainability.

1. Systems thinking

Systems thinking is a critical approach for engineers to understand that designs rely upon and exist within systems, to identify the impacts and influences of the different and interconnected environmental, economic and social factors of the design system and to recognize that their designs themselves are systems.

2. Knowledge and understanding

A series of interdependent and interconnected skills, experiences and behaviors are divided into technical skills, including environmental impact measurement, materials choice and design, and leadership skills, including critical thinking, communication and teamwork.

3. Skills, experiences, and behavior

A series of interdependent and interconnected skills, experiences and behaviors are divided into technical skills, including environmental impact measurement, materials choice and design, and leadership skills, including critical thinking, communication and teamwork.

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