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At a very basic level—and drawing on two of the main aspects of Montessori education outlined above—is the effect due to the learning materials or to the self-directed way in which children engage with them and can the two be separated? Fifthly, and relatedly, there is the issue of 'treatment fidelity'—what counts as a Montessori classroom?

Not all schools that call themselves 'Montessori' adhere strictly to Montessori principles, have trained Montessori teachers, or are accredited by a professional organisation. Finally, the numbers of children participating in studies are usually small and quite narrow in terms of their demographics, making generalisation of any results problematic.

These methodological issues are not limited to evaluations of Montessori education, of course—they are relevant to much of educational research. Of these, the lack of randomised control trials is particularly notable given the recognition of their importance in education. This means that if a study finds a benefit for Montessori education over conventional education this might reflect a parent effect rather than a school effect. Montessori schools are often fee-paying, which means that pupils are likely to come from higher SES families; children from higher SES families are likely to do better in a variety of educational contexts.

Arguably the most robust evaluation of the Montessori method to date is that by Lillard and Else-Quest. Careful thought was given to how to overcome the lack of random assignment to the Montessori and non-Montessori groups. All children had entered the Montessori school lottery; those who were accepted were assigned to the Montessori group, and those who were not accepted were assigned to the comparison other education systems group.

Post-hoc comparisons showed similar income levels in both sets of families. Although group differences were not found for all outcome measures, where they were found they favoured the Montessori group. For 5-year olds, significant group differences were found for certain academic skills namely letter-word identification, phonological decoding ability, and math skills , a measure of executive function the card sort task , social skills as measured by social reasoning and positive shared play and theory of mind as measured by a false-belief task. For year olds, significant group differences were found on measures of story writing and social skills.

Furthermore, in a questionnaire that asked about how they felt about school, responses of children in the Montessori group indicated that they felt a greater sense of community. The authors concluded that 'at least when strictly implemented, Montessori education fosters social and academic skills that are equal or superior to those fostered by a pool of other types of schools'.

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Children in these classes were 3—6 years old, and they were tested at two time-points: towards the beginning and towards the end of the school year. Although the study lacked random assignment of children to groups, the groups were matched with respect to key parent variables such as parental education. Children in the high-fidelity Montessori school, as compared with children in the other two types of school, showed significantly greater gains on measures of executive function, reading, math, vocabulary, and social problem-solving.

Furthermore, the degree to which children were engaged with Montessori materials significantly predicted gains in executive function, reading and vocabulary. In other words, treatment fidelity mattered: children gained fewer benefits from being in a Montessori school when they were engaged in non-Montessori activities. Over a period of 4 months children in the classrooms from which supplementary materials were removed made significantly greater gains than children from the unchanged classroom on tests of letter-word identification and executive function, although not on measures of vocabulary, theory of mind, maths, or social problem-solving.

The authors acknowledge weaknesses in the study design, including the small number of participants just 52 across the three classrooms and the short duration. Nevertheless, the study does provide a template for how future experimental manipulations of fidelity to the Montessori method could be carried out. Fidelity is important because variation in how faithful Montessori schools are to the 'ideal' is likely to be an important factor in explaining why such mixed findings have been found in evaluations of the Montessori method.

These same limitations then make it difficult to interpret studies that have found 'later' benefits for children who have been followed up after a subsequent period of conventional education. In one of the studies discussed earlier, 23 social and cognitive benefits did emerge for children who had previously attended Montessori preschools and then moved to conventional schools, but these benefits did not emerge until adolescence, while a follow-up study 26 found cognitive benefits in Montessori males only, again in adolescence.

Although such 'sleeper effects' have been widely reported in evaluations of early years interventions, they may be artefacts of simple measurement error and random fluctuations. Some studies report positive outcomes for certain curricular areas but not others. One, for example, investigated scores on maths, science, English and social studies tests in the final years of compulsory education, several years after children had left their Montessori classrooms.

What might explain this differential effect? The authors suggested that the advantages for maths might be driven by the materials themselves, compared to how maths is taught in conventional classes. However, the authors were unable, within the design of their study, to provide details of exactly how much time children in the Montessori school had spent doing maths, science, English and social studies, in comparison to the time that children in conventional classes were spending on those subjects. Just as knowing what is going on in the Montessori classroom is vital to being able to interpret the findings of evaluations, so is knowing what is going on in the comparison classrooms.

In some evaluations, the differences between Montessori and conventional classrooms might not actually be so great, which might explain why benefits of being educated in a Montessori classroom are not found. And even if the Montessori approach to teaching a particular curriculum area is different to those used in conventional classrooms, there are likely to be different, equally-effective approaches to teaching the same concepts. This is a suggested explanation for the finding that although children in Montessori kindergartens had an advantage relative to their conventionally-educated peers for base understanding in mathematics, they did not maintain this advantage when tested 2 years later.

While most evaluations are interested in traditional academic outcomes or factors related to academic success such as executive functions, a small number have investigated creativity. For example, an old study 31 compared just 14 four and five-year-old children who attended a Montessori nursery school with 14 four and five-year olds who attended a conventional nursery school matched for a range of parental variables, including attitudes and parental control.

In a non-verbal creativity task, involving picture construction, they were given a blank sheet of paper, a piece of red gummed paper in the shape of a curved jellybean, and a pencil. They were then asked to think of and draw a picture in which the red paper would form an integral part. The group of conventionally-schooled children scored almost twice as high as the Montessori group.

A second task involved the child giving verbal descriptions of seven objects: a red rubber ball, a green wooden cube, a short length of rope, a steel mirror, a piece of rectangular clear plastic, a piece of chalk, and a short length of plastic tubing. Each description was scored as to whether it was functional i. Like the non-verbal creativity task, this task differentiated the two groups: whereas the conventionally educated children gave more functional descriptions e. A third task, the Embedded Figure Test, involved the child first being presented with a stimulus figure and then locating a similar figure located in an embedding context.

Both accuracy and speed were measured. While the two groups did not differ in the number of embedded figures accurately located, the Montessori group completed the task significantly more quickly. The fourth and final task required children to draw a picture of anything they wanted to. Drawings were coded for the presence or absence of geometric figures and people. The Montessori group produced more geometric figures, but fewer people, than the conventional group. The authors were careful not to cast judgement on the performance differences between the two groups.

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They did not, however, compare and contrast the particular features of the two educational settings that might have given rise to these differences. Creativity has been studied more recently in France. Their sample was bigger than that of the previous study, 31 comprising 40 pupils from a Montessori school and from two conventional schools, and pupils were tested in two consecutive years no information is provided about whether pupils from different schools were matched on any variable other than age. For both types of task and at both time-points the Montessori-educated children scored higher than the conventionally-educated children.

Again, the authors made little attempt to pinpoint the precise differences between schools that might have caused such differences in performance. None of the studies discussed so far has attempted to isolate individual elements of the Montessori method that might be accounting for any of the positive effects that they find. There are several studies, however, that have focused on the practical life materials. A quasi-experimental study 33 demonstrated that the practical life materials can be efficacious in non-Montessori classrooms. More than 50 different practical life exercises were introduced into eight conventional kindergarten classes, while five conventional kindergarten classes were not given these materials and acted as a comparison group.

At pre-test the treatment and comparison groups did not differ in the number of pennies posted, but at post-test 6 months later the treatment group achieved a higher score than the comparison group, indicating finer motor control. A nice feature of this study is that teachers reported children in both groups spending the same amount of time on tasks designed to support fine motor control development, suggesting that there was something specific to the design of the practical life materials that was more effective in this regard than the conventional kindergarten materials on offer.

And because the preschools that had used the practical life activities had introduced no other elements of the Montessori method, the effect could be confidently attributed to the practical life materials themselves. An extension of this study 34 investigated the potential benefits of the practical life materials for fine motor control by comparing 5-year olds in Montessori kindergarten programmes with 5-year olds in a conventional programme reported to have similarities in teaching mission and pupil background characteristics on the 'flag posting test'.

In this task, the child was given a solid hardwood tray covered with clay in which there were 12 pinholes. The child received three scores: one for the amount of time taken to finish the activity, one for the number of attempts it took the child to put each flag into the hole, and one for hand dominance to receive a score of 1 established dominance the child had to consistently use the same hand to place all 12 flags, whereas mixed dominance received a score of 0.

Children were pre-tested at the beginning of the school year and post-tested 8 months later. Despite the lack of random assignment to groups, the two groups did not differ on pre-test scores, but they did at post-test: at post-test the Montessori group were significantly faster and significantly more accurate at the task, and had more established hand dominance. However, no attempt was made to measure how frequently children in both groups engaged with materials and activities that were designed to support fine motor control development. Furthermore, the children in the Montessori classrooms were at the age where they should also have been using the sensorial materials, some of which for example, the 'knobbed cylinders' and 'geometric cabinet' are manipulated by holding small knobs, and whose use could potentially enhance fine motor control.

At that age children would also have been using the 'insets for design', materials from the early literacy curriculum designed to enhance pencil control. Therefore, although the results of this study are consistent with the practical life materials enhancing fine motor control, the study does not securely establish that they do. A further study 35 introduced practical life exercises into conventional kindergarten classes, while control kindergarten classes were not given these materials. This time the outcome measure at pre-test and post-test was not fine motor skill but attention.

There were benefits to attention of being in the experimental group, but only for girls—boys showed no such benefits. The differential gender impact of the practical life materials on the development of attention is puzzling. Girls did not appear to engage with the materials more than boys during the time that was set aside for using them, but no measure was taken of whether girls chose them more frequently than boys during the free choice periods. Similarly, there were no measurements of the time that children in both the experimental and control groups spent engaged in other activities that might have enhanced fine motor control.

Nor is it clear whether it was the fine motor practice directly or rather the opportunity to select interesting activities the teachers in the experimental schools commented on how interesting the children found the practical life activities that was responsible for the benefits to attention that were recorded for girls. Finally, it has been found that young adolescents in Montessori middle schools show greater intrinsic motivation than their peers in conventional middle schools matched for an impressive array of background variables, including ethnicity, parental education and employment, home resources, parental involvement in school, and number of siblings.

The authors did not evaluate the Montessori and non-Montessori groups on any measures of academic outcomes, but given the links between academic success and motivation at all stages of education they provide a useful review of this literature , this link would be worth investigating in Montessori schools. This section has discussed studies that have evaluated the Montessori method directly.

To date there have been very few methodologically robust evaluations. Many suffer from limitations that make it challenging to interpret their findings, whether those findings are favourable, neutral or unfavourable towards the Montessori method. However, while randomised control trials could and should be designed to evaluate individual elements of the Montessori method, it is difficult to see how the random assignment of pupils to schools could work in practice hence the ingenuity of the study reported in ref.

Nor could trials be appropriately blinded—teachers, and perhaps parents and pupils too, would know whether they were in the Montessori arm of the trial. In other words, although random assignment and blinding might work for specific interventions, it is hard to see how they could work for an entire school curriculum.

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Furthermore, given the complexity of identifying what it is that works, why it works, and for whom it works best, additional information, for example from observations of what children and teachers are actually doing in the classroom, would be needed for interpreting the results. This final section examines studies that have not evaluated the Montessori method directly, but have evaluated other educational methods and interventions that share elements of the Montessori method. They, together with our growing understanding of the science underpinning learning, can add to the evidence base for Montessori education.

Given the vast amount of research and the limited space in which to consider it, priority is given to systematic reviews and meta-analyses. One of the best-researched instructional techniques is the use of phonics for teaching children to read. Phonics is the explicit teaching of the letter-sound correspondences that allow the child to crack the alphabetic code. English orthography is, however, much less regular: the mappings between letters and sounds are many-to-many, and for this reason the use of phonics as a method of instruction has been challenged for English.

Importantly, phonics programmes have the greatest impact on reading accuracy when they are systematic. However, within systematic teaching of phonics there are two very different approaches: synthetic phonics and analytic phonics. Synthetic phonics starts from the parts and works up to the whole: children learn the sounds that correspond to letters or groups of letters and use this knowledge to sound out words from left to right. Analytic phonics starts from the whole and drills down to the parts: sound-letter relationships are inferred from sets of words which share a letter and sound, e.

Few randomised control trials have pitted synthetic and analytic phonics against one another, and it is not clear that either has the advantage. The Montessori approach to teaching phonics is certainly systematic. One of the criticisms of synthetic phonics is that it teaches letters and sounds removed from their meaningful language context, in a way that analytic phonics does not. Reading for meaning requires both code-based skills and language skills such as vocabulary, morphology, syntax and inferencing skills, 45 and these two sets of skills are not rigidly separated, but rather interact at multiple levels.

No evaluations have yet pitted phonics teaching in the Montessori classroom versus phonics teaching in the conventional classroom, however, and so whether the former is differentially effective is not known. With respect to teaching mathematics to young children, there are many recommendations that Montessori teachers would recognise in their own classrooms, such as teaching geometry, number and operations using a developmental progression, and using progress monitoring to ensure that mathematics instruction builds on what each child knows.

The importance of conceptual knowledge as the foundation for children being able to understand fractions has been stressed. Put simply, EFs are the set of processes that allow us to control our thoughts and actions in order to engage in motivated, goal-directed behaviour. That EFs are critical for academic success is backed by a wealth of research evidence. A review study compared these, including Montessori education, and concluded that compared to interventions such as CogMed that solely target EFs, 'school curricula hold the greatest promise for accessibility to all and intervening early enough to get children on a positive trajectory from the start and affecting EFs most broadly'.

Montessori education has been in existence for over a hundred years. Such longevity could well be due, at least in part, to its adaptability. It has not been possible in this paper to give an exhaustive discussion of all the elements of Montessori education that might be beneficial, for example the lack of extrinsic rewards, the reduced emphasis on academic testing and lack of competition between pupils, the 3-year age-banding that fosters cross-age tutoring, or the presence of a trained teacher in the early years classroom.

Where does this leave Montessori education more than years after its birth, and more than 60 years after the death of its creator? As others have noted, Montessori was a scientist who truly valued the scientific method and would not have expected her educational method to remain static. For example, Montessori was prescient in her views that adolescence was a special time in development where the individual required a specially-designed form of education to address their needs.

Although some Montessori schools take pupils up to the age of 18, they are few and far between, and to my knowledge there are no published evaluations of their effectiveness. Developing a Montessori education for this age group in conjunction with the best of our current knowledge of developmental cognitive neuroscience has the potential to make a very positive contribution. Nor did Montessori consider using her method with the elderly. There is strong evidence for a reduction in difficulties with eating, weak evidence for benefits on cognition, and mixed evidence for benefits on constructive engagement and positive affect.

Benefits have been reported for the adults involved, 72 but whether the children also benefit in particular ways from such inter-generational teaching has not been evaluated. Nor is it known whether a Montessori education in childhood or Montessori-based activities experienced in later life can protect the executive control circuits of the brain, as has been proposed for bilingualism. In sum, there are many methodological challenges to carrying out good quality educational research, including good quality research on the Montessori method.

Arguably the most obvious challenge to emerge from the literature reviewed here is the practical difficulty of randomly allocating pupils to Montessori and non-Montessori schools in order to compare outcomes. Scholarships are awarded to students who plan to perform research or design, or those who have already made significant creative contributions. The university also sponsors a chapter of Engineers Without Borders, as well as a variety of other engineering clubs, organizations, and competitions. Organizations such as the American Society of Civil Engineers Student and Chi Epsilon help promote the status of the field of civil engineering and to connect students with site visits, industry experiences, internships, and social events.

Graduates from this department go on to become highly successful in industry and academia, contributing to decades of advanced research in engineering. Students at Lehigh receive rigorous training in the humanities, social sciences, mathematics, physical sciences, and scientific methods. Students graduate with broad technical knowledge and application skills, as well as the skills necessary to solve problems and think critical. The Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Lehigh is small, hosting just over fifty graduate students, and around a hundred undergraduate students.

Roughly one hundred and thirty credit hours are required to graduate. Sample coursework includes:. Lehigh offers several integral resources to undergraduate engineering students. Students may use these facilities and others to conduct National Science Foundation-sponsored research and integrated learning experiences.

The civil engineering undergraduate program at the University of California—Los Angeles provides a superior technical and theoretical foundation for students hoping to enter into professional practice in civil engineering. The university also offers graduate and doctoral degree programs in the areas of engineering materials, environmental and geotechnical engineering, hydrology and water resources engineering, and structures.

Students have the opportunity to conduct research into one or more of these topics, blending interdisciplinary approaches and studies. The undergraduate program in civil engineering is designed as a capstone major. Students will work individually and with teams to complete original design projects. These projects are heavily researched and resolved, and are ultimately applied to real systems.

Students have access to relevant labs and resources. For example, the Building Earthquake Instrumentation Network operates over one hundred earthquake strong motion instruments on campus to measure the response of buildings during earthquakes. Students work with the U. Geological Survey to monitor the impact of earthquakes and to develop solutions to building integrity issues.

With over 10, alumni spread around the world, the program has an excellent reputation as one of the most distinguished of its kind. Civil engineering students are taught and advised by fifty internationally-recognized and wholly supportive faculty members. Undergraduate students will take two years of foundational courses in scientific and engineering principles.

During the second two years, students will branch out, taking courses that allow them to gain strengths and emphasize in specific research areas. Required courses include:. The university has several strategic partnerships with other universities and organizations, making Austin a working laboratory for many students. Students in the Civil Engineering program at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor receive the broad-based education and extensive skills preparation necessary to pursue a variety of careers and graduate fields of study.

Students may choose to specialize in several focus areas, including but not limited to construction engineering and management, geotechnical engineering, water quality and health, and earth systems. These projects are tackled in interdisciplinary teams and independently, and provide a beneficial supplement to the research project experiences students may choose to undertake on their own ta the university. Students who succeed in these endeavors are often encouraged to consider graduate study. Other required classes include:.

The university offers over a thousand undergraduate research opportunities both on campus and beyond, with a new company launched nearly every month based on University of Michigan technologies. It is ranked the best and most collaborative U. The civil engineering department at Virginia Polytechnic offers a wide range of studies in all major aspects of the practice, including construction engineering, land development, and transportation.

Students are taught by a devoted group of faculty, nine of whom are endowed professorship holders, and six of which are members of either the National Academy of Engineering or National Academy of Construction. With nearly a five to one student to faculty ratio, students receive the utmost attention and hands-on advising. Virginia Tech emphasizes experiential learning and research focused on the future. The campus offers an inclusive, proud culture and alumni body that cultivates an environment for learning. The program is one of the top-ranked in the nation, with the ninth best undergraduate program in civil engineering according to the U.

Because the campus is located in the capital region of Washington, D. The civil and environmental engineering program at Illinois is well-known for its welcoming atmosphere. With a large national and international population, the department consistently ranks among the best programs in the United States and worldwide for both undergraduate and graduate studies.

Courses are taught by world-class experts who are leaders in their fields, and who also support a wide variety of student organizations. These organizations include active student chapters of the American Society of Civil Engineers and Engineers without Borders. The civil engineering department at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign offers a top-ranked, comprehensive curriculum. Students take one hundred and twenty-eight hours of coursework, with the first two years building a solid base of mathematical and scientific understandings. The third and fourth years of study contain civil and environmental engineering courses, as well as a primary and secondary area of study from seven different concentrations.

Required coursework includes:. The university offers a range of scholarships for qualified second-semester and beyond students. These awards are established through donations of private individuals, industry partners, and alumni. The university also features a unique civil and environmental engineering research experience for undergraduates.

This experience provides candidates with the funds necessary to conduct a twelve-week, multi-semester research experiment. The Vanderbilt University School of Engineering is internationally acclaimed for its research and scholarship efforts. Faculty share expertise with students across disciplines to address four research initiatives, including health and medicine, energy and natural resources, security, and entertainment.

The university has strong partnerships with neighboring institutions, partner schools, and the community. Located centrally near Nashville, Tennessee, the university benefits from its proximity to a city named one of the fifteen best American cities for work and family, according to Fortune magazine.

Courses are broad-based and taught exclusively by faculty members who are world leaders in engineering, not just teacher assistants. Students move beyond basic technical competence to establish the foundations necessary for lifelong learning and success in industry, law, government, academia, and research. This approach allows students to integrate educational experiences across academic departments and to obtain close faculty and industry connections. Students may research individual areas of interest and customize their schedules to accommodate for varied interests and career plans. In addition, Vanderbilt runs the Consortium for Risk Evaluation with Stakeholder Participation, a program working to advance strategic and cost-effective cleanup of nuclear facility waste sites.

The College of Engineering and Computational Sciences at the Colorado School of Mines is home to research and outreach programs that are both high-quality and educational. The department houses over three hundred students and one hundred and twenty faculty members, leading to a close-knit, innovative society that has been around since the s. The campus houses five state-of-the-art research facilities.

Through the use of these facilities, students develop a strong basis for graduate study, independent research, and career success. Roughly one hundred and thirty-five credits are required for graduation, including coursework in:. The Colorado School of Mines places a strong emphasis on developing curriculum for students that is both enriching and rewarding, inside the classroom and out. Students engage in summer internships to establish contacts, identify strengths and weaknesses, and apply coursework.

Students are heavily recruited and regarded as having some of the best work ethic in the country. Purdue hosts a lofty status as a major research institution, which offers significant advantages to undergraduate students. Students have access to a dedicated laboratory experience to strengthen hands-on learning, and may pursue specialty areas such as construction, geomatics, hydraulic and hydrological, and materials engineering.


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Other classes students might select include:. Students have exclusive access to a large array of course offerings and the ability to become extensively involved in state-of-the-art research. This involvement, along with the ability to engage in summer internships and cooperative learning experiences, provides students with excellent networking and communication skills before they ever leave campus. The University of Southern California offers students the option of pursuing five different tracks in Civil Engineering. Students may emphasize in construction planning and management, general track, building science, structural engineering, or environmental engineering.

This program is well-rounded and offers optimal flexibility. Since the department was established in , the department has been a leading source of qualified, exceptional civil engineers. In addition to courses specific to their chosen tracks, all students will pursue a general course of study while enrolled in the undergraduate civil engineering program.

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Students will study the following technical areas within the general course of study at the university:. University alumni are highly successful, with nearly , living members in positions of leadership around the world. Nearly half of them still reside in California, making the campus a hub for technological advancement and career networking. It is the eighth best undergraduate civil engineering program among public institutions, and its graduates are highly recruited before even finishing their coursework. With over seven hundred undergraduate students the department of civil engineering has all the benefits of large-campus prestige, such as scholarship, research, and professional service.

At the same time, the small student to faculty ratio of ten-to-one allows students to work closely with excellent faculty and to develop work readiness skills before even leaving campus. Regardless of the pathway chosen, each student will complete a set of core liberal arts and foundational courses before moving on to more advanced classes in civil engineering. The university offers cooperative education in which students study-work, alternating periods of attendance on campus with employment in related industry.

Students receive income and the ability to apply acquired skills and understandings to a real-world setting. At Stevens Institute of Technology, engineering students pursue a broad curriculum that provides experience in engineering, humanities, business, mechanics, and management. Students study in the heart of the tristate area, gaining skills at top firms in the area. The institute partners with industrial and engineering consulting firms, as well as construction contractors and government agencies.

Students learn how to manage natural resources, address hazards, and develop modern marvels of engineering. In addition to high-quality coursework in civil engineering, students also receive hands-on industry experience. This is developed through internships, design projects, cooperative education, and sty abroad. The Stevens Cooperative Education Program is a five-year educational program that allows students to alternate between full-time work and full-time study.

A majority of students finalize their career or education plans before graduation, with over three hundred companies recruiting directly on campus. Over ninety-six percent of graduates secured their career outcomes six months before graduation—a stellar figure that attests to the outstanding network and career services support provided at the institute. The University of Virginia is an ever-changing campus that is continually reinvesting in its laboratories.

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Recently, it upgrade their instrumentation for structures, material testing, and environmental analysis, expanding the research opportunities available to students on campus. The department of civil engineering develops and manages essential research in sustainable futures. Students learn how to address community needs by collaborating across disciplines.

Required courses for the undergraduate program emphasize water, infrastructure, and the environment, with topics such as:. Students are provided with outstanding opportunities to conduct interdisciplinary research. The university offers travel grants that allow students to attend national professional conferences, leading many to finding full-time positions at leading companies and universities. The community at the University of Virginia is small and close-knit, allowing students to form close bonds with each other and professors as they study, work in labs, and travel for research.

The university also features intercollegiate civil engineering competitions and a profound chapter of the American Society of Engineers. The Civil Engineering program at Rensselaer dates back to , as the institute was the very first in the United States to issue a degree in civil engineering. Graduates have been highly successful, going on to such accomplishments as building the Brooklyn Bridge and the Ferris Wheel.

Now, Rensselaer graduates are found at all levels in both private and public employment around the world. This program prepares students for lifelong learning as well as for successful careers in academia, government, industry, and more. Each student must complete one hundred and twenty-eight credit hours. Upon completion of this program, another thirty credit hours are required for an additional Master of Engineering degree.

Rensselaer hosts several unique, cutting-edge research facilities and laboratories right on campus. One of the most prominent is the geotechnical centrifuge facility, which is the fourth largest in the United States and one of the twenty largest in the world. This National Science Foundation initiative contributes to some of the most significant earthquake engineering research in the world. The university also hosts a 1 g seismic shaking table, a water quality laboratory, and an environmental colloid and particle laboratory.


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Worcester Polytechnic employs a unique project-based learning curriculum. Through this approach, students learn how to become stronger and more ingenuous leaders and will collaborate with faculty and industry partners. Through this collaborative, project-based learning program, students will become immersed in local and worldwide communities, working in teams to solve a specific problem that connects science to social need. Students may choose from several concentrations or apply a broad approach to their curriculum design. Regardless of the track chosen, each student will take classes such as:.

Students have an ongoing opportunity to become part of the community at Worcester Polytechnic. The institute hosts several academic groups for students to join, including chapters of the American Society of Civil Engineers, the Associated General Contractors of America, and Chi Epsilon, the civil engineering honor society. The institute also hosts a variety of creative minors that students may pursue for additional resume power, including Industrial Engineering, Materials, and Manufacturing Engineering.

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