Integrating ethics across the engineering curriculum through sustainability and legislative topics

Diana Adela Martin, Eddie Conlon, Brian Bowe

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
32 Downloads (Pure)


The paper explores the inclusion of sustainability and legislation related coverage in Engineering programmes in Ireland in the context of increasing calls for integrating ethics across the curriculum. It is part of a broader study examining engineering ethics education conducted in cooperation with the national accrediting body, Engineers Ireland. The study includes 23 Engineering programmes from 6 institutions in Ireland that underwent accreditation between 2017-2019. Mixed research methods have been employed, such as documentary analysis of module descriptors and of materials submitted for accreditation, as well as interviews with evaluators serving on accreditation panels and lecturers within the participant programmes. This led to the identification of policy and sustainaility as two main themes employed to convey ethical content that are deemed to be suitable candidates for the integration of ethics across the curriculum, with coverage present in a wide variety of modules, such as technical modules, design modules, professional formation modules, final year projects, work placement, business and legal studies modules. We examine how each of these two main themes purporting to sustainability and legislation have been employed for the integration of ethics across the curriculum, by looking at the teaching and assessment methods employed. Our contribution thus aims to provide insights and examples that can guide programme chairs and lecturers in the implementation of ethics in varied module types across the curriculum
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSEFI 48th Annual Conference Engaging Engineering Education, Proceedings
Subtitle of host publicationEngaging Engineering Education
EditorsJan van der Veen, Natascha van Hattum-Janssen, Hannu-Matti Järvinen, Tinne de Laet, Ineke ten Dam
PublisherEuropean Society for Engineering Education (SEFI)
Number of pages11
ISBN (Electronic)978-2-87352-020-5
Publication statusPublished - 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • engineering ethics
  • Engineering education
  • Policy
  • Engineering ethics education
  • Sustainability
  • Holistic engineering


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