International Service Learning for Engineering and Construction Engineering and Management Education

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date



Today’s engineering and construction education paradigm places emphasis on the broader context of globalization, economics, the environment, and society. Divergent from traditional silo-based, discipline specific models, this broad and complex challenge necessitates the continued investigation of innovative interdisciplinary approaches for engineering and construction education. The 360 degree model for educating socially responsible global citizens developed by the authors (360 Global Ed model) addresses these current needs through a structured approach for developing students as global citizens through purposeful engagement. The 360 Global Ed model includes a theoretical framework, educational environment, academic coursework, and evidence-based outcomes. At the core of the model is an international service learning (ISL) experience. The model’s ISL component provides a collaborative, interdisciplinary classroom environment combined with an authentic international field experience. Six years of a mix-methods research assessment demonstrate the 360 Global Ed model’s outstanding results on the impact of student learning in the areas of global citizenship, personal and professional growth, and cultural intelligence. Additionally, over this period, the authors have also observed positive impacts on the host-country participants of the ISL component. This paper provides a background on the need for globalization, social responsibility and service learning in engineering and construction management education, reviews the 360 Global Ed model for educating socially responsible global citizens, and discusses assessment results on the impact of student learning and host-country teacher perceptions on the challenges and benefits of participating in the ISL program.