Chemical engineering education

Material Information

Chemical engineering education
Alternate Title:
Abbreviated Title:
Chem. eng. educ.
American Society for Engineering Education -- Chemical Engineering Division
Chemical Engineering Division, American Society for Engineering Education
Publication Date:
Annual[ FORMER 1960-1961]
Physical Description:
v. : ill. ; 22-28 cm.


Subjects / Keywords:
Chemical engineering -- Study and teaching -- Periodicals ( lcsh )


Chemical abstracts
Additional Physical Form:
Also issued online.
Dates or Sequential Designation:
1960-June 1964 ; v. 1, no. 1 (Oct. 1965)-
Numbering Peculiarities:
Publication suspended briefly: issue designated v. 1, no. 4 (June 1966) published Nov. 1967.
General Note:
Title from cover.
General Note:
Place of publication varies: Rochester, N.Y., 1965-1967; Gainesville, Fla., 1968-

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University of Florida
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All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
01151209 ( OCLC )
70013732 ( LCCN )
0009-2479 ( ISSN )
TP165 .C18 ( lcc )
660/.2/071 ( ddc )

UFDC Membership

Chemical Engineering Documents


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JUNE 1962


a New Series

from Prentice-Hall


Prentice-Hall is pleased to announce this new series of ad-
vanced works by prominent authors in the field of physical
and chemical engineering. Editing the series is Neal R.
Amundson, Chairman of the Department of Chemical
Engineering, University of Minnesota. Advisory editors are:
Andreas Acrivos, Stanford University; Michel Boudart, Uni-
versity of California, Berkeley; Thomas J. Hanratty, Uni-
versity of Illinois; David E. Lamb, University of Delaware;
John M. Prausnitz, University of California, Berkeley; and
L. E. Scriven, University of Minnesota.
Because of its international appeal, the series will receive
world-wide distribution and will encompass books by
scholars from abroad. Both English and foreign language
editions will be published, in association with Prentice-
Hall International, Inc., United Kingdom and Eire; Pren-
tice-Hall of Canada, Ltd., Canada; and Berliner Union,
West Germany and Austria.

For approval
copies, write:
BOX 903

Vectors, Tensors and the Basic
Equations of Fluid Mechanics
by Rutherford Aris, University of Minnesota
August'62, Approx. 288pp., Text price: $6.75
Multicomponent Distillation
by Charles D. Holland, Agricultural and Mechanical College of
Theory of Energy and Mass Transfer
by Aleksei Vasil'yeivch Lykov and Yuriy Anan'yevich Mikhaylov,
Institute of Power Engineering, Academy of Sciences, Byelorussian
Soviet Socialist Republic, Minsk. Translated from Russian by
William Begell, Royer and Roger, Inc., New York.
1961, 324pp., Text price $9.00
Physicochemical Hydrodynamics
by Veniamin Grigorievich Levich. Translated from the Russian
by Royer and Roger, Inc.
May '62, Price to be announced

PRENTICE-HALL, INC., Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey


June 1962

Quarterly Journal
Published by the

Chemical Engineering Division
American Society for Engineering Education
Albert H. Cooper, Editor


Some Thoughts on the Trends in Engineering Education,
by Barnett F. Dodge . . . . . 1

Introduction to Computer Technique in Stoichiometry,
by Francis P. O'Connell . . . . . 8

The Role of Humanities and Social Sciences in Chemical
Engineering Curricula, by E. B. Christiansen .......... 13

Ethics for Chemical Engineering Teachers,
by C. Fred Gurnham . . . . .. ... 29

A.S.E.E. Summer School for Chemical Engineering Teachers . 34

Chemical Engineering Division
American Society for Engineering Education


1961 1962

Charles E. Littlejohn
Max S. Peters
Joseph J. Martin
M. H. Chetrick
Albert H. Cooper

Max S. Peters
Joseph J. Martin
John B. West
M. H. Chetrick
Albert H. Cooper


1962 1963

(Oklahoma State)

Vice Chairman
General Council, ASEE
Editorial Committee,ASEE

Vice Chairman
General Council, ASEE
Editorial Committee, ASEE

CHEMICAL ENGINEERING EDUCATION, Journal of the Chemical Engineering
Division, American Society for Engineering Education. Published Quarterly,
in March, June, September and December.
Publication Office: Chemical Engineering Department, University of
Connecticut, Storrs, Connecticut.
Subscription price, $2.00 per year.


on the


Barnett F. Dodge
Chairman, Chem. Eng. Dept.
Yale University

I propose to discuss two questions which seem to me to be of vital
importance to the future of engineering education and on which there is far
from unanimous agreement. These are:

1. Should we teach engineering in the undergraduate engineering
curriculum? Another way to state this question is as follows: Should the
undergraduate curriculum be strictly a "pre-engineering" one including only
studies in the basic sciences, in the humanities and social sciences with
no introduction to engineering? This would be analogous to the present
system of education for the professions of law and of medicine.

Another possibility is a curriculum that is a compromise between one
with engineering in it and a strictly pre-engineering one. This is a
curriculum which goes beyond what we usually call the basic sciences and
include some of what are commonly called the Engineering Sciences. These
include thermodynamics, mechanics of solids and of fluids,transfer and rate
processes, electrical sciences, and properties of materials. This type of
curriculum has become quite popular in recent years.

2. Should there be two parallel programs of graduate study in engin-
eering, one of which is research-oriented and the other design- or systems-
oriented? In discussing these two questions I do not intend to limit their
application just to Chemical Engineering, but rather I will direct my
remarks toward all branches of Engineering.

Let us proceed to consider question No. 1 first. The question is by
no means purely academic. It seems to me that the development of courses
in "Engineering Science" and "Engineering Physics" and the like is one def-
inite trend in the direction of displacing courses in engineering with
courses that have little if any engineering in them. Mr. John Gardner,
President of the Carnegie Corp., wrote as follows in "Goals for Americans":

"we are beginning to understand that true professional education takes
place at the graduate level. Students headed for graduate professional
education should spend their years in a liberal arts program, majoring
in one of the scientific or scholarly subjects underlying their future

The trend in all professional education is to emphasize the under-
lying scientific and scholarly fields and to diminish emphasis on "how
to do it" courses. In our rapidly changing technology no student can
learn specifically how to do his future job."

The American Society of Civil Engineers held a conference on Civil Engin-
eering education in 1960 and adopted several resolutions, one of which
reads as follows:


"THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that this conference favors the growth in
universities and colleges of a pre-engineering, undergraduate, degree-
eligible program for all engineers, emphasizing humanistic-social
studies, mathematics, basic and engineering sciences with at least
three-quarters of the program interchangeable among the various eng-
ineering curricula; to be followed by a professional or graduate civil
engineering curriculum based on the pre-engineering program and lead-
ing to the first engineering degree awarded only at the completion of
the professional or graduate curriculum."

In spite of what some engineering educators would have us believe,eng-
ineering is an art and not a science. Ofcourse the engineer uses as much
science as he finds applicable to the problem at hand, but I have never met
a real engineering problem that could be solved by science alone. I believe
it to be true that most of what we call "theory" is oversimplified compared
to an actual situation in practice. In other words, all of our theory has
limitations when it comes to the applications, and it must inevitably be
mixed with empirical knowledge. Until he is called upon to use his theory
the student seldom realizes that nature is never quite as simple as our
mathematical equations might lead us to believe. Empiricism is still, and I
believe always will be, a valuable part of the engineers "stock in trade"
It is very necessary in the solution of practical problems simply because
our knowledge of fundamentals is still so incomplete. I wonder how many of
the decisions made by most engineers are based purely on a mathematical
analysis. Relatively few, I suspect, but admittedly more will be so based
in the future.

Engineering and science differ profoundly in their goals though the
methods and facts employed by scientists and engineers may be almost the
same. Engineering problems--and after all the engineer is primarily a
problem solver--vary greatly in the extent to which science can be applied
in arriving at an acceptable solution. Some require a very sophisticated
approach with the latest and most refined tools of mathematics and the phy-
sical sciences while others are of such a nature that science is of almost
no help and one must fall back on experience and judgement. Even with prdb-
lems of the first type, considerable art is involved in such steps as ana-
lyzing the problem to break it down into more manageable parts, recognizing
what techniques are available and applicable to the solution, making the
simplifying assumptions that are almost always essential with a complex
situation, using judgement in the selection of data and combining all these
and other elements to arrive at a satisfactory result.

This is the very essence of engineering and, to me, it is unthinkable
that the student of engineering should not be exposed to it early in his
career. The earlier in his career that he is introduced to the methodology
of engineering, the more likely is he to become really interested in the
field and enthusiastic over the opportunities that it offers. Some say
"teach the engineering student only the fundamentals and leave the applica-
tion to on-the-job training or at least to graduate work." This is one of
the surest ways I know of to turn the student away from engineering. If he
is exposed only to courses in mathematics and science he naturally gets the
idea that this is all there is to engineering. Why undertake graduate work
in engineering if science is the whole basis of engineering? Not having
much conception of the real nature of engineering, he will naturally turn
toward advanced courses in math and pure science especially since the var-
ious media of publicity make no distinction between the scientist and the
engineer and describe most of the great engineering achievements of the
past decade or two as wonders of science. Unless we give our students a
concept of what professional engineering work is like, we may expect to
lose many of them to science. They can only acquire this point of view by
doing something in college which at least bears some resemblance to engin-

June 1962


The student of science is accustomed to thinking of problems as having
single, rather precise, answers. This is the type of problem he meets in
his courses in math and science. Very few engineering problems are of this
type. They have multiple answers and much of the work of the engineer con-
sitth in selecting the one best suited for the particular situation. To
give the student early in his career a real grasp and understanding of this
simple fact, is a potent reason why at least an introduction to real engin-
eering problems should be in the undergraduate curriculum.

It is quite generally agreed by those who have given much thought to the
subject that design is the characteristic function of the engineer. This
means design in its broadest sense---the creation of something new in re-
sponse to a social need. It takes many forms---the design of a new or im-
proved machine, a better process, a new material, a new combination of var-
ious elements into a system designed to yield a product with maximum econ-
omy just to mention a few examples. If this is true,it seems inconceivable
to me that we should not give the student an opportunity to practice this
art early in his career.

I find that many undergraduates feel abused if a problem isn't so clear-
ly stated that the method of solution is almost obvious, or if some data
which they feel they need are missing, or if the problem doesn't have a
clear cut single answer. But this is precisely the kind of problem he is
likely to meet in professional practice and we should prepare him for it.
One reason that he resents this type of problem is because in so many of
his courses in science he has been conditioned to problems which are pre-
cisely stated and which do have unique solutions. The design problem offers
a quite different experience and this is why it is so important. It is also
important because it can demonstrate to the student of engineering that
some of the science and math he has been learning can be put to practical
use and this is an important motivating factor.

Let us return for a moment to the question of a pre-engineering course
analogous to the pre-medical or pre-law courses. The analogy is not a very
good one because of the great difference in these professions. The doctor
and the lawyer generally deal directly with the public and their accomp-
lishments are open for all to see and well understand. The situation is
quite different in the case of the engineer. He seldom deals directly with
the public and his part in an end result is never clear. A college student
who has only had an introduction to math and the basic physical sciences
can begin to practice the art of engineering in a limited way i.e. at least
by his sophomore year. This is probably not true of the law or the medical
student. Apparently more maturity is required before one can accomplish
anything in a professional way.

I agree that graduate work is becoming more and more important in the
study of engineering and that one of the important objectives of the under-
graduate course is preparation for graduate work. This is used by some ed-
ucators as a reason for omitting engineering -- that is, design-- frbm the
undergraduate curriculum. I must insist that an undergraduate course with
no engineering in it is hardly good preparation for graduate work in engin-
eering. It may be desirable for a career in research but this is not eng-
ineering.Engineers frequently engage in research,and I mean to make a dis-
tinction between research and development, but usually for the purpose of
developing data or correlations for use in design. When they do this they
are acting as scientists rather than engineers and the only essential diff-
erence between research by a scientist and that by an engineer is the ob-
jective. I think it is an excellent thing for every engineering student to
have some research experience if only for the purpose of giving him a
real feeling for what is involved in establishing a simple fact. But let's
not delude ourselves into thinking that research commonly undertaken by
students of engineering, is truly engineering.

June 1962


I think that engineering educators themselves are partly to blame for
the flight of good students away from engineering and into the basic
sciences. They themselves have been emphasizing science at the expense of
engineering by introducing more and more courses into the curriculum which
are mostly science and math with very little engineering even though they
often carry engineering labels. Good students can see through this decept-
and rightly conclude that if engineering is only a degraded and dilutedform
of science, why not do it right and become first-class, instead of second-
class scientists.

Instead of trying to blur the distinction between the scientist and the
engineer and helping to create the impression that the engineer is really
only a second-class scientist, I suggest we reverse this trend and take
every occasion to emphasize the difference between the two, at the same
time showing how each has his own contribution to make and that each
depends on the other.

I am strongly urging that we stop squeezing all the engineering out of
the curriculum in order to put in more science. I would like to start some
elementary design in the first or at least the second year and continue
through the undergraduate years and on into the graduate study.Such courses
I am convinced, can be made just as interesting and challenging,perhaps more
so, than any pure science course. Futhermore they will go a long way
toward giving the student an insight into what the practice of engineering
involves and, I hope, arousing enthusiasm for the possibilities for service
that the profession offers. In addition -- and I am sure this will be con-
sidered heresy in some quarters -- my own experience has convinced me that
the best way to gain an understanding of scientific principles is to have
to apply them to solve a practical problem in other words, to study eng-

Unfortunately, I think that some engineering teachers are really more
interested in the science content of the courses they teach than they are
in the engineering aspects. In fact I have been a little shocked to find
that some engineering teachers I know are not really interested in what I,
at least, consider to be engineering. One reason for this is simply the
plain fact that they have never done any real engineering. I have the
feeling that some engineering teachers are not only uninterested in design
but actually look down on it as a second-class endeavor not worthy of their
best efforts. This is cause for considerable concern when one considers
that design is generally recognized as the most characteristic activity of
the engineer.

I think we need to attract into the teaching profession more men who
have had experience in the practice of engineering and in some cases it
should be engineering of a very up-to-date and sophisticated character.
Perhaps we can begin by bringing in young engineers with 5-10 years of
practical experience on a part-time basis. I would like to see this avenue
explored more fully. I would agree that some of the members of the engin-
eering faculty should be scientists rather than engineers but scientists
with an interest in application and who are willing to work with engineers.
This is becoming increasingly important now that science is developing so
rapidly and the science that the engineering student learned in college is
likely to become obsolescent in 5 to 10 years. I am concerned, however,
with maintaining a good balance between the applied scientists and the eng-
ineers on our engineering faculties.

I certainly wouldn't quarrel with the idea that the modern engineer
needs as much science as it is possible to acquire and not just superficial
knowledge but knowledge in depth. But there is a limit to the amount that
the average engineering student can absorb and really understand without

June 1962


being given the opportunity to use some of it in the solution of a pract-
cal -- as distinct from a purely artificial -- problem. All through
the student's academic career, I think the science and math courses should
be paralleled by courses,or at least one course,that offers the opportunity
of applying them. At this point I should like to emphasize again that few
real engineering problems and I am using the word "problem" in the broad
sense of a situation calling for an action, a question demanding an answer
which may or may not be quantitative can be satisfactorily solved with
the tools of science alone. These must usually be combined with empirjcal
information and especially with economic balance among various alternatives.
The balance may be of a rather crude, semi-quantitative type or it may be
of a highly sophisticated character requiring an electronic computer to
solve. This points up one of the most important differences between the
engineer and the scientist. The former is continually preoccupied with
costs and economic balances and the latter almost never is. This makes a
profound difference in their attitude and approach to problems.

There are, in my view, four areas that should be included in all eng-
ineering curricula. These are:
1. Humanities
2. Basic Science
3. Engineering Science
4. Design
I am not concerned with No. 1 in this discussion. Let us accept without
argument that something like 20-25% of the time of the undergraduate course
should be devoted to this area. In passing, let me say that I think there
is considerable room for improvement in the way in which this time is used,
but that is another story.

No. 2 needs no discussion and I will merely say that I think the
proportion in the curriculum should lie between 25 and 35 percent.

Area No. 3 builds directly on No. 2 and is essentially an extension of
it to develop tools that the engineer can directly use. Perhaps an example
or two is needed here to clarify the point. The student learns the basic
principles of thermodynamics both in physics and in physical chemistry but
anyone who has taught thermodynamics as an engineering science knows how
far the student is from being able to use these principles. They need to
be amplified and illustrated in many ways before the student can expect to
have any facility in their use. This is the reason why engineering teachers
give courses in this subject. I should like to choose one other example
and this time from the field of chemical engineering. In his physical chem-
istry course the student learns the basic principles on which the unit op-
eration of distillation depends but here again these need to be supplement-
ed and illustrated in much greater depth before he is in any position to
use them in the solution of an engineering problem. This area might occupy
from 25 to 35 percent of the curriculum.

I would like to emphasize again that mere knowledge of the "tools of
engineering" does not constitute an ability to practice it. Admittedly, the
student will do most of his learning about how to apply these tools after
he graduates but I firmly believe that he should have some introduction to
this art in school. This brings us to a consideration of the fourth area
in my list.

This area is the only real engineering part of the curriculum. Without
it the course should not carry the label of engineering. It should probably
constitute from 15-20% of the curriculum. It should consist of problems or
projects for which no single answer exists and which demands some kind of
original thinking. In chemical engineering, the only field about which I
can speak with any authority, it usually takes the form of a choice between

June 1962


several processes or courses of action, based on an economic criterion.
Naturally the problems will initially be very simple and then gradually
increase in scope and difficulty.

Admittedly we should not even attempt in the 4-year undergraduate
course, and probably not even in the graduate courses, to turn out pro-
fessional engineers but it does seem to me that we should teach them the
engineering approach to problems and try to arouse an interest in profess-
ional work. I fear that some of us seem to lose sight of the fact that we
are supposed to be educating engineers and not scientists. Whereas work of
a truly professional character must be deferred until after graduation we
cannot begin too soon to inculcate the habits of thought and the attitudes
of the engineer. Some of these are:

1. The willingness to accept a rather vague assignment and to go ahead
and define the problem himself.

2. The courage to go ahead and make a decision when the available in-
formation on which it has to be based, is quite incomplete.

3. A questioning attitude toward facts and formulae.

4. Recognition that few engineering problems have a single solution
and that one needs to learn how to exercise judgement in selecting the
best one.

Such attitudes of mind can only be acquired by tackling problems of a type
that will call them into play. If they are not acquired early in the stud-
ent's academic career, contrary habits will be formed which are very diff-
icult to change.

The problem with a single numerical answer has two great advantages
for the teacher over the design-type. It is much easier to make up and also
easier to judge and grade but it does not help much to develop judgement;in
fact it tends to discourage it.

Let me now turn to the other question which I said at the very begin-
ning I intended to discuss. It is not unrelated to the first one. As I see
it, the common pattern for graduate work in engineering consists of more
textbook-type courses but of course more advanced plus sometimes a brief
introduction to research leading to a master's degree and then further re-
search leading to the doctorate. The main objective is to train men for
careers in research, or teaching. For this it is well suited and conforms to
the general theme I have been developing, which applied to this case simply
says that the best way to train men for research is to have them do some
research. But I submit that a large proportion of our engineers in industry
are not doing research but are engaged in other kinds of professional
activity. My point is simply this: that for those students who are more
interested in these other activities, for example design, development, pro-
duction, systems analysis, technical service, etc. another type of graduate
education would seem to be more suited to their needs. In other words we
need two distinct types of graduate programs, one of which is research-
oriented and the other directed more toward professional engineering or

The program of the first or research-oriented type would consist of
advanced courses in applied mathematics and engineering sciences followed
by a research problem. As at present it would be desirable to have two
levels of degrees, a master's and a doctor's degree. The main difference
between them would be the amount of time spent on research. In the case of
the master's degree one could only offer a biief introduction to the tech-
nique of doing research and little in the way of results of value could

June 1962


be expected. In the case of the doctor's degree the research would be more
thorough and should lead to publishable results.

In the case of the profession-oriented or design-type of graduate pro-
gram, the first part of the program would be quite similar to that of the
previous type, namely advanced courses in applied math and the engineering
sciences, but in place of research the student would undertake one or more
projects involving engineering design or planning or analysis of systems
with a view of optimization. Again there might well be two degrees corre-
sponding to the two levels of accomplishment.

The names of the degrees for these two parallel programs naturally
should be different. For the first type, which is the one commonly offered
by most of our universities and institutes of technology, we might retain
the present names of Master of Science (MS) and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.).
For the second type I would suggest the designations of Master of Engineer-
ing (ME) and Doctor of Engineering (DE). Some schools now offer these four
degrees but in most if not all of these cases with which I am familiar the
difference between the programs leading to the MS and to the ME or those
leading to the Ph.D and the DE are quite trivial. I think it is time that
we recognize that there are these two different interests among students of
engineering and provide these two avenues of training with a real differ-
ence between them.

One of the difficult problems involved in administering the second
type of graduate program is that of securing competent teachers. They must
be men who have had actual design or systems-engineering experience in in-
dustry or government. By contract,competent teachers for the research orien-
ted type of programs need never to have worked outside the walls of an aca-
demic institution though I am sure they would be better teachers for some
experience in industry.

I have discussed two points related to engineering education which are
somewhat controversial and have tried to give you one man's thoughts based
on many years experience in the field of education and some years of indust-
rial experience. I offer these mainly for the purpose of stimulating dis-
cussion and not to "lay down the law" on what should be done. In fact I am
going to confess that I still have an open mind on these questions and am
as perplexed as anyone about what is our best course.

June 1962



Francis P. O'Connell
Asst. Prof. of Chem. Eng.
University of Detroit
Detroit, Michigan

Needs for Computers

Many educators have seen the need for computer technique by the under-
graduate chemical engineering student. This need arises from a number of
sources. We have observed in recent years the extensive use of computers
in such fields as research and development, where they are used for design
of experiments to give the best statistical choice, and in many other app-
lications. Computers have also come into wide use in plant design, where
they are used for making tedious calculations as required for multicompo-
nent distillations, rating of heat exchangers, optimization of design par-
ameters, numerical solution of differential equations, and various other
computations of this sort. We have also seen computers being used in such
new engineering disciplines as systems engineering and operations research.
Also, wide application is now being made in engineering economic studies.
There are very few engineering offices today which do not make use of
computers. Some of the most conservative engineering offices are now ac-
quiring computers, because they see that they are at a competitive disad-
vantage with those organizations which do use computers.

This has been due to the fact that computation jobs which were un-
thinkable in engineering a few years ago now have become practical. In
minutes or hours, it is often possible with the aid of computers to accom-
plish calculations which used to take a man several months or years to

Intimate Knowledge Necessary

As regards the knowledge of computers required of the chemical engin-
eering graduate, it is the author's belief that a reasonably intimate know-
ledge of computers is necessary, if he is to be considered a professional
engineer. Many have argued that intimate knowledge of computers is not re-
quired because the engineer can depend on professional computer operators
and mathematicians to translate his engineering problem to a computer pro-
gram. At first glance this sounds good. However, many times in actual
practice the professional computer operators and mathematicians are too

busy to give full attention to a given individual's problems. Then too,
communications often break down and the engineer has difficulty in explain-
ing what he is trying to accomplish. If he has an intimate knowledge of the
computer, the engineer is much better able to communicate and to visualize
his problem.

Moreover, a more intimate knowledge of the machine will give him a
much better appreciation of its potentialities. Inexperienced persons are
often awed by a computer and will blindly accept the machine answer as
absolutely correct. Personal experience wmth a computer, however, will
soon impress the operator with the general limitations of these machines.
They cannot, for instance, rise to an occasion not provided for in their
program. If, in the course of a computation, the machine must subtract two
functions which have unexpectedly similar values, most of the significant
figures will be lost, and an answer with no physical meaning will be fur-

nished. Only an intimate knowledge of the physical parameters, as well as
the machine's limitations, will give the necessary confidence to question a
computer result.

Why Stoichiometry ?

Perhaps the first question that may enter our minds would be why pick
stoichiometry as a means of introducing the chemical engineering student to
computer technique. As a matter of fact many educators propose special
early training courses devoted solely to the topic of computers and not in-
terwoven necessarily with other specific academic courses(l). Stoichiometry
does lend itself as a medium by which the student can be introduced to com-
puter technique. But it certainly does not rule out other courses for the
same purpose.

First of all, stoichiometry is usually one of the first chemical eng-
ineering courses a student takes. This is generally given in the second or
third year. The conventional stoichiometry course is characterized by
incessant drilling in the performance of heat and material balances around
chemical plants. The essence of the problem is always the same, but as the
course proceeds, the computations become more complicated, tedious,and time
consuming. The student may start with the simple conversion from mol comp-
osition of a gas to weight composition. Then he may take problems in heat
and material balances around a natural gas or coal-fired furnace. Finally,
the complexity of the problem may be increased until he is making a balance
around something as complicated as a pig iron blast furnace.

In all these exercises the pattern of computation is the same. The
only thing that changes is the degree of complexity. A general formula
which might be used for all of these problems is:

(energy in) : (energy out) + (accumulation)
(mass in) : (mass out) + (accumulation)

With the current modern trend in engineering education to include more
and more principles in the curriculum at the expense of practice and fact-
ual information, it becomes necessary for us to review the treatment of
such subjects as stoichiometry, which has been strictly a drill-course. In
essence, the only principles which the student has learned in this course
is energy and material balance.

It was with this view in mind that the author decided to attempt int-
roduction to computer technique in the stoichiometry course. The problems
are of such a tedious and repetitious nature that they lend themselves to
demonstrating the value of computers.

Tried in the Classroom

The author has had the opportunity on two different occasions to in-
troduce computer technique in a stoichiometry class. A class term consists
of ten weeks, in which there are eight contact hours during any one week.
Two hours are set aside for lectures, and the other six are set aside as
recitation-laboratory periods, wherein the students are allowed to work
their problems under teacher supervision. This schedule was very amenable
to the introduction to computers, because this extra laboratory time made
it possible to teach the basic knowledge of the machine rapidly.

The IBM 650 was chosen as the computer for this course,chiefly because
this was the computer with which the author was most familiar. Also, the
basic machine language of the IBM 650 is relatively simple, and this type
of computer is widely used.

An outline of how this material was presented to the class may be of
interest. First of all, the author took the students through the convent-


ional stoichiometry drills for about four of the ten weeks. In this time
the degree of complexity was gradually increased up to cases such as oil
and coal-fired furnaces. By this time the students also had such problems
as equilibrium flash calculations.

At this point the students were given a furnace problem in which they
were required to calculate the material balance using purely algebraic sym-
bols and no numbers. This was a break with tradition since engineers are
usually discouraged from doing problems by algebraic formulation. Rather,
we were taught to go through logical numerical steps so that we could vis-
ualize the problem as we went. This also minimized the possibility of
ridiculously great numerical errors. It can be understood that this alge-
braic approach was meant to condition the students for setting up the algor-
ithims by way of computer programming. It was explained to them that the
algebraic solution of one of these problems was one extreme, whereas the
conventional numerical solution of these problems was another extreme, and
that programming them on a computer would be somewhere between.

The students were then allowed one to two weeks for familiarization
with an IBM 650. They were given the usual diagram explaining the input,
output, the storage drum or memory, the arithmetic unit or accumulator, and
all the various other essential components. Their interrelation and funct-
ioning were explained. The students were given an explanation of the oper-
ation code of the machine. Then they got simple problems in arithmetic
with whole numbers, just to demonstrate the functioning of the equipment.
This was followed by an introduction to floating decimals, and with this
they were able to program simple material balances in which there was no
chemical reaction. After this, they were able to make multiple additions
and subtractions according to the directions of the streams in and out of
the systems studied.

Iteration processes were introduced together with the use of index
registers. This allowed the students to calculate, say, temperatures from
vapor pressures by trial and error solution of algebraic relationships.
Then they were given exercises in coding furnace-type problems with basic
machine language. With the basic idea of programming somewhat mastered, the
students were then required to use their knowledge of programming vapor
pressure-temperature relationships in coding equilibrium flash calculations.
These were complicated enough to demonstrate the utility of a computer in
this realm. The students eould well appreciate this because previously they
had done an equilibrium flash calculation by hand and spent considerable
time in trial and error calculations.

There was just enough time left in the course to mention such topics
as compilers, but the author felt that the students had acquired quite a
bit of know-how, appreciation,and competence in the application of comput-
ers to chemical engineering calculation.

Students Enthusiastic

The reaction of the students to this program has been one of enthus-
iasm. Our general feeling is that they take this as something new, excit-
ing, scientific, and to their liking. This program in the stoichiometry
course came as a surprise to them and they feel it is going to help them
solve problems in the future. Also, the author has noticed that students
feel that they have benefited from the course as regards training. They
believe that they need this subject, that it is going to be useful to them,
and that it is going to give them a more mature viewpoint toward the solv-
ing of problems.

This situation is further intensified by the fact that our students
are on co-operative education and spend alternate 10-week periods working
in industry and working in the classroom. Many of these co-operative stud-
ents have been exposed to computers in their industrial work and have a

June 1962


mature appreciation of the need for computers. In a couple of cases the
author has found students who try to teach him about the computer. These
students had been actually working on programming or in some capacity re-
lated to the utilization of computers. In the case of many of these co-op
students they know what they need in their engineering training. They can-
not be fooled.-They have been out in the world; they have seen what are
being used as the basic tools of the engineers around them.

Teaching with Compilers Alone

Intimately involved in this discussion is the question as to whether
machine language should be taught to the students or simply compilers, such
as MAD, GAT, or FORTRAN. The author's opinion is in favor of teaching
basic machine language to the student if time permits. It is felt that in
this instance, time is not a problem. In the case of the IBM 650, the mach-
ine language is relatively simple. It does not take more than a week or two
to familiarize the student with it. But compilers would have been covered
more thoroughly had there been enough time. However, it was felt that
machine language was more important for the student to learn, because it is
more basic. Once the machine language is understood, and the student has a
working knowledge of it, he can easily pick up the use of a compiler, but
the converse is not true.

Also it is felt that the student should be as close to the machine as
practicable, and learning the basic machine language first is one way of
attaining this objective. This more intimate knowledge of the machine, as
mentioned before, helps in the liaison between the engineer and computer
personnel. If the practicing engineer's program written with a compiler
does not work, he may then need an intimate knowledge of machine language
for the debugging step.

Also it is believed that a knowledge of the basic machine language
gives the student a better appreciation of the machine's possibilities in
purely logical programs rather than algebraic computation programs.

Need for Experimental Knowledge

Tied in with this topic is the question of the need by the student for
experimental knowledge of the computer. Is it sufficient that he be taught
how to write programs in the classroom, or should he actually be able to
get near the machine, and actually feed input information to the machine by
pushing the proper buttons and sitting at the console, and actually operat-
ing the machine? Does he need to do all this? Well, it is the difference
between experimental knowledge and abstract knowledge. When the student
actually puts numbers in and gets numbers out of the computer, his know-
ledge and appreciation take on a new dimension. He gets a greater feel for
the machine. To learn to write programs without getting familiar with the
physical operation of the machine would be like a man studying the rules of
football without ever having played the game or seen it played. Even
though the student may never expect to become a professional computer oper-
ator. it is felt that he should get some minimum familiarization with the

With this attitude it became necessary for the author to seek some
means by which the student could gain this experimental knowledge. There
was a Burroughs computer available on the premises of this institution not
similar enough to the IBM 650 to use for experi-demonstration. Therefore,
the author arranged for the local IBM sales office to give lecture demon-
strations of the IBM 650 at local computation offices. During one term the
facilities of the Chrysler Corporation were made available to us, whereby
an IBM lecturer would use one of Chrysler's IBM 650's to give a lecture
demonstration in the use of the machine. In the other term, the facilities
of the Michigan Bell Telephone Company were used. The author believes that
this is not the ideal way of doing it. However, this inter-cooperation with
local industry has a beneficial effect on the students, on the educational

June 1962


institutions, and on the industrial concerns themselves. The author is very
much in favor of inter-cooperation between industry and educational insti-
tutions in enterprises of this kind.

Value of Mental Training

It is believed the students not only benefit from this training be-
cause of the increasing widespread use of computers in industry, but also
there is a certain inherent mental training that goes along with the indoc-
trination which the student receives. It introduces the student to a whole
new philosophy of approach to problems. Most of us have been accustomed to
attacking numerical computations by a kind of pragmatic, feel-as-you-go
approach. When most people make complicated calculations, they find it hard
to keep track of where they came from and where they are going. We tend to
"muddle through" in our calculations. Now, with the introduction of the
concept of writing flow sheets to represent a computation we have to think
out the problem attack with logical exactitude. This opens up a whole new
horizon in the general philosophy of problem solving. This particular con-
tribution of computer technique to the education of engineers is of itself
well worthwhile.

Future Work Planned

In future stoichiometry classes the author hopes to continue this work,
which is necessarily of an experimental nature. One significant difference
in the coming year is that we hope to switch from the IBM 650 to the IBM
1620, chiefly because the 1620 replaces the 650, but also, this institution
has acquired an IBM 1620 which will be available for use. Whether the in-
creased complexity of the IBM 1620 will force an abandonment of basic mach-
ine language is yet to be determined. We hope to assign a limited number of
problems, which the student can actually solve on the machine. The IBM 1620
is part of the equipment in our newly formed computer center. This will
guarantee that competent computer personnel will be available to assist
various teachers who wish to introduce the use of computers into their
course work.

Serious study is also under way by various segments of the faculty to
provide introduction to computers at the freshman or sophomore level. One
possibility is to give the students a course under a computer center math-
ematician, but because of the squeeze on the engineering curriculum this
would probably have to be a one-semester-hour course. Also, the Engineering
Graphics department is making an effort to introduce freshman and soph-
omores to computers during their regularly scheduled engineering graphics
courses. They are covering the use of the analog, as well as digital, com-
puters. Such steps as these, it is hoped, will eliminate the need for basic
computer instruction in stoichiometry and allow time for study of more ad-
vanced problems.

Other Courses

We hope that we will be able to integrate the use of computers,analog,
as well as digital, in all courses where applicable computations are in-
volved. It is a tool which can be applied to other disciplines and more diff-
icult calculations that will come along in the later courses. This is in
keeping with the findings of Dr. Katz and co-workers in the computer project
at the University of Michigan(l).
(1) Katz, D. L. Organick, E. I., "Use of Computers in Engineering Under-
graduate Teaching," Journal of Engineering Education, Vol. 51, no. 3,
pp. 183-205, December 1960.

June 1962

E. B. Christiansen
Professor and Head
Chemical Engineering Department
University of Utah


It is now clear that we are living and may continue to live for decades in
an era of continuing peril in which our culture or way of life, democracy, free-
dom, and many other human values we hold precious, face the real possibility of
rapid destruction or of slow, insidious erosion. The ominous inner threats of
complacency, ignorance, anti-intellectualism, purposelessness or despair,
materialism, conformity, and immoral, selfish, irrational and irresponsible
behavior coupled with the external threat of world communism, unchanging,
"single-minded," and pathological in its dedication, yet devious and strategic
in its methods, require an immensely greater commitment of our intellectual
and material resources to meet the challenge than most seem now prepared to
make. Freedom is being lost not because it cannot be defended or because we
cannot defend it, but because we are not defending it effectively. It seems
axiomatic that the outcome of this struggle will depend on the "balance of (1)
human commitment and (2) disciplined creative intelligence brought to bear."
[1] These are matters of education and suggest a serious re-examination of
educational objectives, methods, and processes in the home, public schools,
and universities.

I believe universities in our culture have been achieving increasing effec-
tiveness in developing intellectual capacity -- power in clear, critical, crea-
tive thinking and in technological or scientific and engineering competence.
However, many of our students are not adequately challenged and there still re-
mains much sub-university activity in many university programs. Too many pro-
grams are information or technique-centered. Also much has to be learned in
the art and science of encouraging creativity.

Although there is much room for improved performance in the development of
disciplined creative intelligence, our most serious and conspicuous shortcoming
or weakness is insufficient effectiveness in developing human commitment to
greatness in discovery, engineering and other service to human well-being and
progress. There are still too many intellectually able individuals who are not
preparing themselves by appropriate formal education and otherwise for the high-
ly creative contributions to society of which they are potentially capable.
Furthermore, too few of those who complete suitable baccalaureate or graduate
degree programs are deeply committed to great causes.

Human commitment is a consequence of human values, one of the principal
concerns of the humanities and social sciences, and these we have not so
successfully or, at least, not so wisely influenced.

In discussing values, we may refer to the conditions or activities which
we feel affect our well-being [2] or to the intensity of feeling in consequence
of our evaluation of the impact of a condition or activity on our well-being.

June 1962


Values vary from the highly positive sought by the individual to the
negative avoided by the individual. Values are developed by experience or the
individual's interpretation of experience. They do not necessarily conform to
reality. But, most important to this discussion, our values do gyern our
behavior. Values have been referred to as our ultimate concerns, the real
determiners of our action. The values of concern in this discussion are those
contributive to greater self-relization and personal well-being and to the
progress of man such as knowledge, understanding, discovery, self-mastery,
integrity, morality, excellence, service to great causes, progress of mankind,
and freedom.

It is customary in our democratic universities to provide a comprehensive
environment for the free, unprescribed development of values by each student.
The objective is to provide the student with a rich broad experience in scholar-
ly examination and evaluation of the answers to vital issues of the past and
the present, from which it is intended he will acquire wisdom and personal
values and perhaps perceive new values more supportive of fuller individual and
general human realization. Ultimate values appear to be difficult for man to
agree upon and universities are reluctant to inculcate human values. However,
universities do implicitly or explicitly support to varying degrees, values
such as integrity, knowledge, scholarship, understanding, discovery, and moral-
ity. I believe most feel

(1) tha among its responsibilities the American college should
include a conscious concern for the character of its students;
(2) that it is not desirable to separate the training of the
intellect from values which impinge on the life and thought of
the student; (3) that basic convictions and values are formed
in the early years and primarily in the home, but the college
can modify convictions and values both for good and for ill.[3]

Values supporting character and service to great causes automatically
generate drive to achieve intellectual excellence, including engineering excel-
lence. It seems, at present, most urgent to adopt values we perceive most valid
and pertinent to preservation of freedom, those supportive of character and
commitment to human progress and to encourage explicitly their development with
all the energy and intelligence we can bring to bear in order to preserve the
very freedom to adopt ultimate or more meaningful human values as we may dis-
cern them.

Human values are a major concern of humanities-social science programs
which are designed toprovide a broad stimulating environment for the develop-
ment of values supportive of the well-being and progress of mankind.

The subject matter commonly included in the humanities concerns the arts--
music, painting and other fine arts, literature, language arts, logic, history
and philosophy. The social sciences include economics, political science, and
the behavioral sciences--psychology, anthropology, and sociology.

In the past (and, at present, to a certain extent) many practicing engin-
eers and some professors of engineering have not been convinced that the
humanities-social science programs should constitute an important part of the
undergraduate engineering program. A more generally favorable attitude appears
to be developing, presumably in consequence of an increasing awareness of


1. the sobering impact of technology on society,
2. the increasing responsibility placed on engineers for leadership,
3. the direct contribution of humanities-social science programs to
engineering excellence; development of capacity to understand and deal
effectively with others, deeper dedication, improved engineering design
(design for safety, compatibility with desirable human response, etc.[3a]
4. the experience in observing the healthy impact of effective humanities-
social science programs on engineering students,
5. the obvious urgent need for more responsible citizenship and greater
commitment to noble human values.

Technology, Engine of Social Change: Technology (science and engineering) is
commonly considered the "engine" of social change. The profound influence which
the products of technological advances, for example increased lifespan (espec-
ially in underdeveloped countries), the automobile, jet aircraft, radio and
television, rockets and nuclear weapons have had and will continue to exert on
our social, economic and political activities and organization is evident and
has been widely discussed.

In general, technological advances provide stimulus and opportunity for
advances of mankind to enriched, more meaningful human living by providing,
for example, means (devices, time, etc.) for new and broader human experience,
for more education, for creative individual and group activity contributive to
improved social, economic and political or cultural conditions, increased time,
energy and facilities for research into the fundamental nature of man, other
forms of life and the physical universe and for other means for more meaningful
living. Our values have not been motivating to take full advantage of these
opportunities for human progress in knowledge, understanding, and creative

For the first time in history a society, through technological progress, has
achieved for the great majority of its people relief from excessive physical
toil and, at the same time, satisfaction of the basic material human needs --
food, clothing, shelter--and in addition, undreamed of uncommitted time and
means for pursuance of his other values.

Unfortunately material success has encouraged values incompatible with
great human living and progress. All are witness to the effect of material
opulence on human values. The variety and abundance of material things and
frivolous entertainment available to all have developed these as the major
values for many, and time and means are too often employed in self-indulgence
rather than in contributions to individual growth and general human progress.

In the minds of too many, material wealth is success. Luxurious homes,
automobiles, clothing and capacity for self-indulgence and consumption of
material goods have gained highregard or value. Consider the large proportion
of our national effort or energy now devoted to luxury in transportation, homes,
food, and clothing and to frivolous or trivial entertainment; and on the other
hand, consider what might be accomplished by devotion of much of this effort
to research into the nature of man, life and the physical universe, and other
endeavor contributive to human progress. Material wealth, which frequently
accompanies great contribution to human progress, has become the ultimate
concern or the motivating value of too many in place of greatness itself.

With technological advance, a large portion of our society has lost iden-
tification with the product of their efforts, pride in its excellence and mean-


ing in the job. The job has become merely a means for off-the-job satisfaction
of needs, too many of which are basically trivial. Unfortunately, a large per-
centage of the graduates from engineering programs appear to have this concept
of work rather than as an opportunity for dedicated creative service. The
causes of the latter development should be of grave concern to engineers and
their employers.

With respect to the future for example, the impact of automation and con-
comitant elevation of job competence to the point where a large segment of our
society may not have the required capacity for effective technological service,
may require major economic and social adjustment. The trend to "town-meeting"
government in effect, through television public debate and the growing possi-
bility of a return to "town-meeting" government in fact with personal living
room voting machine identification, radio transmission of votes and machine tab-
ulation, make preparation for greater individual responsibility in government an
urgent social and political problem. Great political, social, or economic
sophistication was not usually required to cope with local community "medicine
men" of the past. The national master television "medicine men" in our present-
day living rooms influencing our values and opinions is another matter.

Pages could be devoted to speculating on what the future holds. One thing
is certain, barring human disaster, technological discovery and development will
be greater and more dramatic than any now foreseen and the accompanying social
and economic changes may be equally dramatic and profound. With wise prepara-
tion and guidance, the future of mankind can be great.

Chemical Engineers in Executive Function: An increasingly larger percen-
tage of technological decisions which effect so profoundly our economy and
social structure are being made by engineers. An ECPD publication indicates
that 34 per cent of all engineers acquire high executive responsibility and
that 40 per cent of all executives are engineers.[4]. A few years ago, half of
the vice-presidents and over twelve board members of Standard Oil of New Jersey
and 90 per cent of Union Carbide top executives were reported to have engineer-
ing training. Of the seven top Atlas officers, three were engineers, three
were chemists, and one was a lawyer [5]. Howard S. Bunn, a chemical engineer
who became president of Union Carbide in 1958 and vice-chairman of the board
in 1960, reports that in mid-1960, 46 per cent of the chemical engineers em-
ployed by this company had management responsibilities [6]. At present, (1962)
the presidents of the Standard Oil Company of California, the American Oil
Company and the du Pont Company are graduates of chemical engineering programs
to name a few.

Chemical engineers, in consequence of uniquely broad and fundamental learn-
ing in both science and engineering, the key role played in a large percentage
of technological advances, and capacity for understanding most technological
developments, are uniquely qualified to interpret science and engineering to
their fellow citizens, appraise them of the nature and material implications
of technological developments, and serve as competent and wise counselors in a
technological age. Also, on the average, the chemical engineer has unusual in-
tellectual capacity, and modern chemical engineering education is fashioned
to develop power in clear critical thinking in analysis and synthesis, thus
making the chemical engineer potentially a very effective and much-needed
member and leader in modern society.

The engineer is a responsible professional man, whose
every professional act has human and social consequences.

June 1962


Whether he is aware of it or not; he is instrumental in
the creation of a new society and a new economic order, as
well as a new physical environment. One result of his pro-
fessional accomplishments is that he is being called upon
to accept an increasingly responsible role as a leader in
his community.

To meet his growing responsibilities and to realize his
capacities as a human being, the engineer needs both profes-
sional competence and a broad understanding of himself and
of the world in which he lives [7].

It would seem obvious that engineers as responsible, effective citizens,
as professional engineers, and especially as executives who make major deci-
sions affecting our society, need the best possible preparation in knowledge
and understanding of mankind, his potential and aspirations and factors con-
tributing to personal well-being and the progress of man, and values consis-
tent with these.

The chemical engineer both as a responsible and respected citizen and as
a creator of technological change deserves the best possible education to
dedicatedly and competently include or integrate social as well as technolo-
gical factors into designs and all other decision making.

Objectives of Humanities-Social Science Programs

The philosophies of most university general education programs are related
to the Socratic theme "the unexamined life is not worth living." or better,
'the examined life is worth living."

In the four years of continuing enlightenment, every course,
every professor, every campus activity should make a contri-
bution in its own fashion and degree to the examined life which
now is worth human living. The result may be the beginning
answer not merely to Who is man? but to Who am I? The edu-
cated student emerges with a sense of what it really means to
be a human being [8].

In general, the objective of all humanities-social science programs is to
prepare the student for enriched, purposeful living which will contribute a
maximum to the well-being and advancement of the individual and of mankind.
Such living is dependent on (1) knowledge, a thirst for knowledge, and ability
to acquire or ferret out pertinent facts and principles; (2) power in clear,
critical, imaginative thinking (analysis and synthesis) to deduce meanings,
vital principles, and arrive at sound conclusions and decisions from the facts
and principles; and (3) values motivating or committing to living in accord
with the implications of the facts and principles and in the interest of the
advancement of mankind. The objective as suggested here includes the develop-
ment of wisdom, attitudes, and values contributing to the noblest character
defined as

...intelligent direction and purposeful control of conduct by
definite moral principles. Thus, character is found in action
based on principles rather than pressure or expediency. In
this sense, character is reflected in the conversion of commit-
ments into consistent application to the complex and varied

June 1962


activities of life. The word "moral" is used to connote
excellence in practice or conduct [9].

The Hammond Report lists the following more specific competence which the
engineering student is expected to acquire in humanities-social science programs.
1. The understanding of the evolution of the social organization
within which we live and of the influence of science and
engineering on its development.
2. The ability to recognize and make a critical analysis of a
problem involving social and economic elements, to arrive
at an intelligent opinion about it, and to read with discrim-
ination and purpose towards those ends.
3. The ability to organize thoughts logically and to express
them lucidly and convincingly in oral and written English.
4. An acquaintance with some of the great masterpieces of
literature and an understanding of their setting in and
influence on civilization.
5. The development of moral, ethical, and social concepts
(and values) essential to a satisfying personal philosophy,
to a career consistent with the public welfare, and to a sound
professional attitude.
6. The attainment of an interest and pleasure in these pursuits
and thus of an inspiration to continued study [10].

Some other more or less related objectives are frequently stated:
1. Free the student from slavery to the contemporary and the narrow,
and broaden his perspective so that he can interpret life and
humanity in terms of the broad expanse of history and the entire
spectrum and depth of human knowledge.

2. Give the student a deep understanding of and capacity to live
within the freedom-responsibility relationship.

3. Develop in the student an understanding of andcommitment to the
concept that living for the maximum personal well-being is
coincident with living for maximum contribution to society and
human progress, that truly "getting the most out of life" is, in
fact, giving the utmost to humanity. The success of democracy
is dependent on this concept.

4. Develop a sense of mission or commitment to a great cause.

5. Broaden capacity for critical creative thinking, discovery, analysis
and synthesis, by giving the student experience in these activities
in areas other than the physical sciences and engineering; reduce
barriers to transfer of power in analysis and synthesis; aquaint
the student with new concepts in analysis and synthesis.

Characteristics of Humanities-Social Science Programs [11]

Humanities-social science programs vary surprisingly. In general, they
consist largely of formal courses and seminars in the humanities, including
the arts -- music, painting and other fine arts, literature, language and
logic, philosophy and historyp-and of courses and seminars in the social
sciences including economics, political science, history, and the behavioral

June 1962


June 1962

sciences -- psychology, anthropology and sociology. Under ECPD's 1961 state-
ment of criteria for accreditation, accepted curricula should include at least
the equivalent of one-half year's course work "selected from such fields as
history, economics, government, literature, sociology, philosophy, psychology,
or fine arts" excluding "such courses as accounting, industrial management,
finance, personnel administration or ROTC" [12]. Freshman English courses in
which mechanics such as grammar are emphasized, are also not ordinarily in-
cluded for obvious reasons.

At present, the humanities-social science course work content in engineer-
ing curricula in U. S. universities averages 13-17 per cent [13] and varies
from about 1/8 (a frequent figure) to about 1/3 of the total engineering pro-
gram. Part of the variation is due to variations in definition. ECPD recom-
mends that 20 per cent of the engineering program be devoted to humanities-
social science course work. Concentration of these courses in the first two
years is most typical [14]. However, there are many five-year programs, in-
cluding the 3-2 programs (three years at a liberal arts college followed by
two years in a professional school) which provide for distribution of humani-
ties-social science course work over three years and an increasing number of
engineering programs which require distribution over the entire four (or five)

In approximately half of those universities responding to a recent sur-
vey [15] the student is given great latitude in selecting humanities-social
science courses. At these institutions the student selects from a tabulation
of courses in humanities-social science areas, many of which are especially
organized for the program and which may be broad integrative courses crossing
departmental boundaries. In some institutions, the student must include some
well-conceived sequences in his program and in others some penetrating upper
division (junior and senior level) integrating courses [16].

It is my opinion (and this is shared by others [17] that in many present
university and engineering college environs, the student commonly makes his
choice based on scheduling convenience or other trivial grounds with interest
in the hours rather than in the educational content and, in some cases, simply
because a course is considered a "breeze." This is not to say that these pro-
grams are necessarily unsuccessful--but if the student has complete freedom to
select his course work, a university, and especially an engineering college
atmosphere, strongly supportive of the humanities-social science program, is a
requirement for success as is indicated later.

On the other extreme, at some institutions, courses are prescribed with
little or not choice left to the student. In many programs, part of the course
work is prescribed and part is selected by the student [18]. Courses, whether
prescribed or elected, vary from conventional introductory courses to highly
integrated, inter-disciplinary courses. The latter are a development of the
humanities-social science movement and are designed especially to give those
who do not specialize in the humanities-social science areas the most mean-
ingful experience within the rather limited time and to provide a basis and
motivation for continued study.

In a typical integrated humanities course, three to five great periods in
Western civilization, in which most significant contributions to cultural dev-
elopment were achieved, are selected for study in considerable depth. The res-
ponses of great individuals and people to problems and forces as represented
in their literature, fine arts, and philosophy are critically examined, in

June 1962


social and economic context, for inter-relationships, validity, meaning, etc.,
and also for contemporary relevance. Periods such as the Golden Age of Greece,
and Rome, the Renaissance, etc., and literary works, for example, such as
those of Sophocles, Plato, St. John, Machiavelli, Calvin, and Shakespeare,
might be considered. Integrated courses in the humanities-social science area
assist the student to gain a broader integrated vision of inter-relationships
between the various arts and the social sciences and the factors that make
people and nations great and those that cause disintegration and provide an
excellent basis for more meaningful additional study.

Integrated courses may be aesthetically, culturally, or philosophically
oriented but usually combine these approaches. Philosophically oriented
courses may be restricted to one great issue such as human freedom. The same
great periods and many of the same books, etc., used in a general integrated
humanities or social science course might be used, but one great issue, human
freedom, would be the central theme and concern.

In recognition of the present reality of world citizenship, Oriental cul-
tures or civilizations are subject matter in many humanities-social science
programs, and very appropriately so.

There is evidence that the most effective programs consist of an uninue-
rupted sequence of courses, each building on its predecessor, extending through-
out the four (or five) years. These permit systematic development of concepts
and adjustment of content and procedures to the increasing maturity of the stu-
dent. Also, there appears to be virtue in an initial two-year prescribed
sequence of integrated humanities-social science courses followed by two (or
three) years of approved courses elected by the student to meet special inter-
ests he may have developed. A general integrated course is very appropriate
for the mature senior.

Procedures which involve the student extensively in personal experiences
and discussion are most effective. There is a trend to fewer lectures and
more small-group discussions or conferences. In an interesting innovation,
the University of Kansas chemical engineering staff members conduct discus-
sions involving about a half-dozen students or so as part of a carefully out-
lined humanities-social science program.

Required attendance at the drama, symphony, great issues forums and
debates is effective.

Starting about five years ago, a humanities-social science program was
adopted for an undergraduate chemical engineering seminar at the University of
Utah. In this program, sophomore, junior, and senior chemical engineering stu-
dents attend the one-hour seminar each week and a minimum of 15 high-quality,
cultural events during the school year. Many of the events are made more mean-
ingful by having artists, for example, discuss and explain dramatic and musical
productions, etc., prior to attendance. For instance, one of America's out-
standing choreographers and teachers of ballet discussed the meaning of a forth-
coming ballet and had one of his students, a member of the ballet troupe,
demonstrate ballet routines. (I might add that his student was a pertyoung
lady in the customary attire and, needless to say, very few students slept dur-
ing this seminar.) On another occasion, an outstanding pianist in Salt Lake
City to present a concert, discussed and illustrated characteristics of the
great composer whose music he was going to use in the concert, before a joint
chemical engineering-music department seminar. In addition to these "pre-


event" programs, the most outstanding scholars and creative individuals of the
University of Utah faculty, representing all fields of scholarly endeavor, are
invited to lead discussions and present lectures on topics including in most
cases, research in which they are enthusiastically and deeply involved. Some
most stimulating discussions are generated by these scholars. The great sense
of mission, commitment to excellence and enthusiasm for their work and profes-
sion displayed by these artists and scientists from many areas make a deep im-
pression on the students. These seminar presentations have, in many cases,
been the subject of discussion among students sometimes for months after the

Experiences with greatness through literature, music, history, or course
work independent of the area of learning -- arts, sciences or engineering-- is
a most important aspect of any humanities-social science program and especially
if with the individual in person. Such experiences give the student an image
of greatness, concepts of the ingredients of greatness (excellence, dedication,
etc.), and the rewards of greatness which should stimulate the student to more
purposeful living. Greatness breeds greatness!


There is little doubt that in certain areas of learning, carefully planned
and skillfully and scholarlyconducted humanities-social science programs are
successful. Many present humanities-social science programs are effective in
stimulating the student to the acquirement of knowledge in the humanities and
social sciences and in the development of capacity for critical creative think-
ing (analysis and synthesis) and discriminating insight in the social sciences
and the humanities. It seems clear that in many existing programs, students
acquire intellectual capacity to arrive at intelligent decisions in the areas
of the humanities and social sciences.

It is not nearly so clear that any of the existing programs are more than
partially effective in stimulating students to make intelligent decisions and
follow through with the indicated action. In other words, their values are
not, in general, greatly affected and this seems especially true in the area of
ethics, honesty, integrity, morality, character, and commitment to causes
affecting the general well-being of mankind wherein immediate personal gain is
to them not obvious.

1. Intellectual development, the acquiring of knowledge, and capacity in
analysis, synthesis, and discrimination in the humanities and social
sciences is significant as evidenced by written and oral examination.
Students do acquire a more thorough knowledge of social science, the
principles of economics, psychology, political science, the arts,
music, etc., the history of their development and the interplay and
influence of these in shaping history. They acquire knowledge of
the attributes of man and insights into the nature of man's aspira-
tions and potential. They become familiar with the great achieve-
ments of man in the arts and social sciences, the qualities, principles,
ideals, or forces which played a vital role in the development of our
culture; and understanding of the pertinent forces, principles and
ideals or values and how they have operated in the rise and fall of
nations and cultures.

2. They acquire increased skill in discerning the operation of principles
of economics, psychology and morality, human values, etc., in the shap-

June 1962

June 1962


ing of history and can apply these to an increased extent in creating
or prescribing solutions to personal and public social problems.

3. They do acquire capacity for fuller living. They can and do more know-
ingly, intelligently, and interestingly engage in discussions in the
arts and social science areas. They have greater capacity for aesthetic
experience, for critically and competently examining art, social develop-
ments, and other achievements of man on a greatness scale. In conse-
quence of humanities-social science programs, many become actively in-
terested in anrparticipate in art events and public affairs, in some
cases for the first time in their lives.

Many students who take the music appreciation course at the University
of Utah develop interest in fine music and become more or less regular
participants in the symphony and other fine music presentations. Some
University of Utah chemical engineering students become interested in
the legitimate drama through the humanities programs. Since the adop-
tion of a five-year engineering program with increased emphasis of the
humanities and social sciences at Rice University,

...there has been an increasing participation by engineering
students in student affairs, notably in student government
and in such activities as dramatics, service clubs, etc...
An increasing number of students discover before completion
of their undergraduate program that they have live interests
in such things as literature, art, music, history, politics,
etc. [19].

4. Good humanities-social science programs can have a desirable influence
on performance of students in engineering course work. It has been
frequently observed that through good humanities-social science programs,
many students "come alive intellectually and professionally," become
more discriminating, more intellectually curious, more committed to
excellence and in some cases dedicated to a mission in life, and be-
come "alive and creative intellectually in their approach to engineer-
ing"[ 20],

Although the foregoing indicates development of values in the arts (taste)
for good drama, music, etc.) and, to some extent, in public responsibility on
the part of engineering students, some studies of the influence of the univer-
sity on student values or ideals are not so encouraging. For example:

A study of what happens to the values of American students
of today shows that their college experience barely touches
their standards of behavior, quality of judgment, sense of
social responsibility, perspicacity of understanding, and
guiding beliefs [21].

Such reports should not discourage, for all of us are aware of many cases where
students "find themselves" through a great teacher, class, a special project,
etc. Many professors can be cited who seem to be very effective in developing
a sense of mission in their students as judged by the record of post university
performance. The unusual performance of graduates from certain colleges is
further evidence that values can be and are changed by university experiences.
We need to learn much more about how it is accomplished so that means to more
general success can be developed and employed. On the other hand, we may not
be employing means already available to full advantage [22].


Means for Strengthening Humanities-Social Science Programs:

The most important element in the humanities and social science programs
is the development of values supporting character and service to the progress
of man and, as suggested above, this appears to be the weakest link in these
programs since our understanding of how, in terms of effective teaching and
evaluating procedures, is not adequately developed. Many recent studies and
conferences have been devoted to this task and progress is being made [23].

It is interesting to consider the potential outcome of an investment in
research into the nature of man and human behavior comparable to our present and
contemplated investment in space exploration!

A few means of strengthening the teaching of values and humanities-social
sciences programs in general follow:

1. Strengthen the general university support of humanities-social science
programs. The humanities-social science program and its objectives
must be conceived not as a group of courses or as the responsibility
of a college division but as a university undertaking superimposed upon
the already existing structure and a specific responsibility of all
colleges and departments. It must be considered an integral part of
of professional education. The general university atmosphere has a
most significant influence on value development. Witness the identify-
ing characteristics of Harvard, M. I. T., and especially Reed College
graduates, to name a few. A general university atmosphere and tradi-
tion which embodies or emphasizes broad insightful learning and the
highest standards in moral, ethical, and responsible social behavior
and human aspirations, and has a built-in expectancy of student per-
formance and behavior in accord with these ideals stimulates and en-
courages the development of corresponding values in the students. This
strong influence of college atmosphere, including expectance, was ob-
served and emphasized in an extensive research study by Eddy and others

University atmosphere is a summation of the effect of the surrounding uni-
versity environment (physical, intellectual, and spiritual) and the values of
the founders, present and past administrators, and especially of the staff.

If, as our evidence seems to indicate, the faculty member
plays such an important role in the development of the student,
we need to know more about him. Where does he come from? Where
is he heading? What are his motives, his attitudes, his values?
If the student is silent, is it because the generation before
him is even more quiet? Here is a project deserving serious
study [25].

Care in the selection of new staff and education of existing staff can make a
difference. University atmospheres change slowly and not without superb effort
on the part of those concerned. But university atmospheres have been and are
being upgraded. Many of the important factors have been identified and thus
many means for upgrading are available[26, .

2. Generate a more strongly supporting atmosphere in the engineering col-
lege. The college of engineering staff, especially, must value and be
actively committed to the objectives of the humanities and social science

June 1962

June 1962


program. For the program to be successful, the student must come to re-
gard the humanities and social science course work and program in gen-
eral to be a main-line constituent of the engineering program and the
development of this concept is importantly dependent on the engineering
college staff attitude. According to the report on the ASEE humanities-
social science research project, it must be recognized that "Literature
and philosophy and social organization are, like science itself, basic
concepts of human activity in which depth of understanding provides the
only sound foundation for the students further growth." [27] The
engineering staff must, in fact, regard the humanities and social sci-
ence stem to be a vital constituent of engineering education.

The sober truth is that the attitudes of the engineering faculty
communicate themselves to the engineering students. ... At insti-
tutions where the engineering faculty displayed a sympathetic
understanding of the humanities and social science, student resis-
tance to the program was at a minimum.
This whole matter of atmosphere, difficult though it may be to pin
down, is of central importance in education. ... Perhaps it is not
too far-fetched to say that the college environment conditions the
future intellectual development of the young man in the same way
that the home environment conditioned his emotional development as
a child. In both instances, the basic attitudes of those around
him are communicated indirectly, by subtle signs and clues
dropped in the course of conducting quite ordinary affairs. If
the engineering faculty are to hope for a maximum return from the
time invested into a humanistic-social program, they must help
provide a climate of opinion coggenial to all serious intellec-
tual inquiry [28].

The student in class, and especially through personal contact, senses
the values and attitudes of the staff and tends to adopt them. The
real message or meaning of a superficially innocent statement such as
"See if you can find a three-hour humanities course to fill that spot,"
is sensed by the student. Staff regard for the humanities and social
science program can be improved by careful staff selection and educa-
tion through joint humanities-social science staff-engineering staff
seminars, committees, etc.

3. In further support of the humanities-social science program, institute
humanities-social science teaching as an explicit function of the en-
gineering staff to be achieved as a concomitant and in integrated part
of engineering course work. As suggested in the foregoing, concomitant
learning or acquirement of values through staff "aside" comments, be-
havior, attitudes, classroom procedures, standards, and other revela-
tions of staff values, is occurring in the engineering course class-
room and in other studert-engineering staff contacts. In the develop-
ment of values such as integrity, ethics, and morality--character--
the staff play a very important role.

Indeed, one of the largest forces for developing a sense of
dignity and integrity will build up from within the special-
ity. Moral and ethical attitudes, for example, are rather more
likely to develop from the codes of fellow scholars in the
speciality than from sermons delivered in general courses [29].


By insisting on, demonstrating, and encouraging the highest standard
of morality, ethics, honesty, integrity, and responsibility in all
student contacts (we cannot "let our hair down" in some areas) these
values are developed in the student. Also, in the area of motivation,
for example, staff interest and enthusiasm for research and passion
for learning in engineering (and in the humanities and social science
areas) is contagious, as I am sure most of us have had personal occa-
sion to observe. The history of engineering, historical background,
and technical and social significance of science and engineering
discoveries, for example, can often be very effectively introduced
into engineering course work and with gain in technical achievement.
The engineering staff should be explicitly selected for their poten-
tial extensive and healthy influence on students. Through staff
conferences, discussions, committees, etc., the staff should be en-
couraged to be meticulously careful to reflect through their behavior
only the highest moral values and interest in the humanities and social
sciences. Also, explicit and calculated means should be introduced
into engineering courses, procedures, and subject matter, to show
relevance of the humanities and social sciences in engineering and
great living and especially to develop character and commitment to
causes vital to human well-being and progress.

It is important to note that the major conclusion of an investigation
conducted by Eddy and others was

...that the college's unique and beat contribution to character
is a direct product of a properly balanced emphasis on learn-
ing. We found that the conditions conducive to the develop-
ment of character are, in many ways, the same ones which are
conducive to good teaching and sound learning. In similar
fashion we would hold that the elements in the campus commun-
ity which encourage character are those which also encourage
learning [30].

It is suggested that each engineering college or engineering depart-
ment organize a committee consisting of engineering college staff,
humanities and social science area staff, and education college staff
to develop more effective classroom and counseling procedures suppor-
tive of the humanities-social science program objectives including
strong character and dedicated, creative living.

4. Increase the extent of course work in humanities-social science area
by adoption of a five-year engineering program. In many cases, effec-
tive humanities-social science programs have been developed by adopt-
ing a five-year program. However, some five-year and 3-2 programs
are believed to be no more effective (some less) with respect to the
objectives of humanities-social science programs than are many four-
year programs. The ECPD research project committee reported the
evidence to be inconclusive [31].

5. It is suggested that engineering curricula be re-examined to determine
if the objective might be better achieved by changing and/or dropping
some course work to provide additional time for humanities-social
science course work.

In developing a university curriculum, the objectives in terms of the
information, intellectual qualities, and values or ideals to be acquir-

June 1962

June 1962


ed by the student must be first clearly defined and explicitly stated.
Next, the procedure, namely,"the how, where, and whens" can be out-
lined as far as possible. Course content and teaching methods are
selected explicitly and clearly to achieve most effectively the objec-
tives. Information and activities which do not contribute to the
objectives are excluded. It is my experience that such procedures
have not been generally followed and that, worse, few departments
have provided means forcontinual discussion and re-evaluation to
insure that all staff members are aware of the general objectives or
the specific role assigned a particular class in the achievement of
of the objectives, and to insure that objectives and means for
achievement are continually revised to conform to increased knowledge
and wisdom. Some of the courses of action which have been taken or
which might be taken in accordance with the findings in a re-examina-
tion of an engineering curriculum follow:

(a) Some engineering schools are dropping or making elective such
courses as business law, accounting, engineering economics, business
administration, speech and report writing [32]. The functions of
some of these courses such as, for instance, speech and report
writing and economics, may be integrated into humanities-social
science and engineering course work.

(b) Many freshman composition courses are not humanities courses
since the major concern is with the mechanics of writing. It is
suggested that competence in the mechanics of writing--grammar,
spelling, punctuation, etc.,--be made an entrance requirement.
(Those not competent in the mechanics of writing may be required
to take remedial non-credit course work.) Restructure the fresh-
man course as a university-level course in the language art of
effective communication, as many have suggested [33]. Or, devote
the freshman composition course credit hours to the humanities
and social sciences and make the development of power in communi-
cation an integral part of humanities, social science, and engi-
neering course work. M. I. T. makes writing an integral part of
the first and second years, good mechanics thus being assured.
In any case, increase the extent of writing and speaking in engi-
neering course work and insist on the highest standards in mechanics
and in communication effectiveness in all written and oral work, in-
cluding examination. Base the grade in all engineering course work,
to an important extent, on the quality of communication. To insure
continued emphasis on the mechanics of writing, the Chemical Engineer-
ing Department at the University of Utah has for several years employ-
ed English Department instructors and, more recently, a retired
English teacher to grade student reports for mechanics. Up to 50
per cent of the report grade may be determined by the quality in
communication. This approach is effective.

(c) At some schools a specialized approach in technical course
work has been replaced with a more general and fundamental approach
and with a significant saving in time.

(d) The elimination of unnecessary duplication, for instance, in
physics and engineering mechanics has been a means of saving time.

(e) Experimentation with integration in engineering course work as
a means of saving time has been suggested [34].


Effective humanities-social science programs are supportive of excellence
and greater achievement in engineering course work.

They are successful in achieving intellectual objectives such as increas-
ing knowledge of humanity and capacity for critical, creative thinking, and
arriving at sound conclusions in humanities-social science areas. However,
more effective means for the development of compelling values stronger
character supportive of ethical, moral, responsible behavior including
service to humanity and commitment to great causes must be found or developed
and reduced to practice. Humanities-social science programs are also success-
ful in achieving aesthetic objectives.

The most effective humanities-social science programs are likely total
university undertakings which consist not only of course work in the area but
include general campus activities and especially activities and policies in
the department of specialization explicitly conceived for strong support of
the humanities-social science program objectives.

The values of staff members, especially in the department of specializa-
tion, have a very important influence on student values. Staff selection and
education to support the objectives of the humanities-social science program
are suggested.

Our nation' presidents have called for increased spirituality. To me,
spirituality includes a sense and concept of purpose in the universe, a sense
of mission in life; ultimate concern for the well-being of mankind, that is,
compelling values in service to great causes basic to the well-being of
humanity and to human growth. Freedom, the discovery of facts and principles
in science and engineering, engineering achievement (new materials, structures,
devices) enabling more significant human living, broader human experience,
greater efficiency in human endeavor, relief from disease, malnutrition and
sub-human activity are such causes. Every humanities-social science program
should have at its core effective elements for the development of greater
spirituality, a requirement for realization of great human progress and pre-
servation of freedom.

The progress of humanity, with freedom as a basic condition, must become
an individual and national purpose. In this, university humanities-social
science programs can play a vital role.

For extensive presentations of the philosophies, objectives, nature, specific
examples with details, and evaluations of the wide variety of humanities-
social science programs see especially references 7, 11, and 35.

June 1962


1. McMurrin, Sterling M., "The University of Utah and the Task of American
Education," Commencement Address, University of Utah, June, 1961.
2. Woodruff, A. D., "The Roles of Values in Human Behavior," Jrl. Soc. Psych.
vol. 36, 97-107 (1952).
3. Eddy, E. D., "The College Influence on Student Character," Washington,
D. C., American Council on Education, 3, 1959.
3a. Peters, J. I., Chem. Eng., vol 68, no. 20, p. 116 (1961).
4. "Engineering--A Creative Profession," Engineers' Council for Professional
5. Gottshall, R. K., C.E.P., vol. 51, 403 (1955).
6. Bunn, Howard S., Chem. Eng., vol. 67, 239-242 (1960).
7. American Society for Engineering Education, "General Education in Engineer-
ing," A Report of the Humanistic-Social Research Project, U.S.A., 6, (1956).
8. Op. cit., Eddy, 169.
9. Ibid., 2.
10. Hammond, H. P., "Report of Committee on Aims and Scope of Engineering
Curricula," Jrl. Eng. Ed., vol. 30, 555-566 (1940).
11. Fisher, James A., "The Humanities in General Education," Wm. C. Brown Co.,
Dubuque, Iowa (1960).
12. Engineers' Council for Professional Development, "Twenty-ninth Annual
Report," (1960-61), 33.
13. Miller, Herbert, Jrl. Eng. Ed., vol. 51, 39 (1960).
14. Mayhew, L. B., Jrl. Eng. Ed., vol. 51, 143 (1960).
16. Gullette, G. A., Jrl. Eng. Ed., vol. 51, 158 (1960).
16. Buchard, John E., "This is M.I.T.," Cambridge: Massachusetts Institute of
Technology, 1960.
17. Op. cit., ASEE, 32.
18. Op. cit., Fisher.
19. William Marsh Rice University, "Notes on Five-year Engineering Curriculum,"
February, 1961.
20. Ibid.
21. Jacob, Philip E., "Does Higher Education Influence Students' Values?"
Spotlight on the College Student, Washington D. C., American Council on
Education, 3, 1959.
22. Rogers, Carl.R., "Implication of Recent Advances in Prediction and Control
of Behavior," University of Chicago (see Teachers' College Record, vol. 57,
23. Ibid.
24. Op. cit., Eddy.
25. Ibid., 181.
26. Ibid.
27. Op. cit., ASEE, 4.
28. Ibid., 3.
29. ~ETcit., Buchard.
30. Op. cit., Eddy, 176.
31. Op. cit., ASEE, 46.
32. OE.cit., Gullette, 161.
33. Pittman, James H., Jrl. Eng. Ed., vol. 47, 759 (1957).
34. Op. cit., ASEE, 46.
35. Mayhew, Lewis B., Ed., "General Education: An Account and Appraisal,"
Harper and Brothers, 1959.

Ethics for Chemical Engineering Teachers

Professor of Civil and
Chemical Engineering
Illinois Institute of Technology
Chicago 16, Illinois

The title of this essay is not intended
to imply that chemical engineering teach-
ers should subscribe to some unique code
of ethics; or even that chemical engineer-
ing teachers differ in their ethical prac-
tices from other chemical engineers or
other teachers. Instead it is a recognition
that this group, like any other group,
has its particular interests and activities,
and so differs from other groups in its
relationship to a broad and general code
that covers all engineers, all teachers, or
even all civilized people.
The very broadest code of ethics, for
all Christian people, has been laid down
in the Golden Rule and the Ten Com-
mandments. Other religious faiths have
corresponding statements, generally simi-
lar but not identical. Recognition of some
such code, and an honest attempt at ad-
herence to it, is one mark of a civilized
person. Another mark is respect for the
codes of other groups, although such re-
spect need not include approval and
emulation in all details.
But, in the complexities of modern
civilization, these very broad ethical
principles are not enough. Any profes-
sional man who takes his responsibilities
seriously, be he in medicine, theology,

An A.I.Ch.E. subcommittee, under
the chairmanship of R. P. Dins-
more, is preparing a commentary
on ethics for the chemical engineer-
ing profession. The first paper, for
the teaching group, is published at
this time to provoke discussion.

law, engineering, or something else, wel-
comes a specific code to cover his own
area. The Canons of Ethics for Engineers,
prepared by Engineers' Council for Pro-
fessional Development, present such a
philosophy and principles. More spe-
cifically, the American Institute of Chem-
ical Engineers publishes a code of ethics
as a fundamental part (Article VIII) of
its Constitution.
All chemical engineers, including
teachers, are expected to guide their pro-
fessional activities by these rules. In order
to keep this code under continuing re-
view, to interpret and clarify it, and to
prevent any tendency toward stagnation,
A.I.Ch.E.'s Professional Development
Committee has established a special sub-
committee on the Background of Profes-
sional Ethics, under the chairmanship of
R. P. Dinsmore. The author has the spe-
cific assignment of "University Profes-
sors," and will devote the remainder of
this paper to that topic. The manuscript
has been reviewed by the subcommittee,
but has not been formally approved. It is
published here in hopes of provoking
further discussion and criticism.

Special Features of Teaching
Many professional codes, after general
statements on integrity, justice, and cour-
tesy, are subdivided into such sections
as relationship to the public, to the em-
ployer or clients, to employees, and to
fellow engineers. Perhaps a similar class-
ification or interpretation of the general
codes is in order for teachers, particularly
3 Jrl. Eng. Ed., V. 52, No. 7, Mar. 1962


in this exploratory paper. Let us investi-
gate the chemical engineering teacher's
ethical relationships: to his students; to
his department head, dean, and other of-
ficers; to his teaching associates; to other
engineers; to the public; and his ethical
obligations as an individual. Some of
these topics pertain to a broader base
than chemical engineering teachers alone;
such will be covered but briefly in hopes
of inspiring further study and writing by
those most interested.

Relationships to Students
The primary duty of teachers is to
teach; hence the principal obligation of
the teacher is to his students. This is quite
apparent for the teacher who does noth-
ing else; it is just as true for those who
engage in research, writing, administra-
tion, consulting, or any of the other
duties usually expected of good teachers.
All of these are subordinate to the
teacher's responsibility to his students.
The first responsibility to the students
is to provide good teaching. Obviously
the teacher should know his subject mat-
ter thoroughly, and he should use the
most effective teaching techniques. He
should keep up to date on chemical en-
gineering technology, and on pedagogy,
by all possible means including reading,
attendance at meetings, responsible con-
sulting, and research. Each time the
teacher meets his class, he should be as
thoroughly prepared as possible-even
prepared to handle the unexpected ques-
tion or situation which he did not spe-
cifically anticipate. Inadequate prepara-
tion cannot long be concealed from the
student, and is a disservice to him.
A second obligation of the chemical
engineering teacher to his students is
the courtesy of sympathy. It is frequently
the teacher's duty to chastise his students
for poor work by low test grades, failing
term marks, or even expulsion from the
university. Most students, even after
severe discipline, are willing and eager
to accept advice, even though this may
be directed toward the student's future
outside of engineering or away from fur-
ther academic training. It is the teacher's
duty to advise, to the best of his ability,

students who need minor discipline, or
repetition of a course, or transfer to an-
other field of study or to a job without
further study. This form of sympathy
and recognition of the student as a fellow
human being, though possibly not as a
future chemical engineer, may be par-
ticularly difficult for the younger teach-
ers who lack experience with other people
and who are overly engrossed in the tech-
nical aspects of their profession instead of
the humanitarian.
A necessary qualification of the chem-
ical engineering teacher is the ability to
make decisions, and to stand by them
unless they are proved to be in error. In
the American manner of education, the
teacher must "grade" his students at reg-
ular intervals, based on individual papers,
recitations, assignments, and a cumula-
tion of all these. Although the good
teacher has some degree of personal re-
lationship with each student, his grades
must be as objective as he can honestly
make them. The grades should not there-
after be changed because of special
pleading by the students, or for unre-
lated circumstances.
This is not to deny that a grade may
be changed if the instructor has made
an honest technical error. A mistake in
grading, particularly if it applies to a
large segment of the class, may call for
an apology, and usually some correction
of the grade. Both younger and older
teachers may find this difficult: the
younger because they are building their
reputation and resent any admission of
an error as a slur on their ability; the
older because they have made most of
the possible mistakes that can be made,
and now hold themselves beyond the
possibility of error. Fortunately, most
teachers fall into neither of these cate-
To the best of his ability, the chemical
engineering teacher should strive to im-
part not only technical knowledge but
also some concept of professionalism.
The dignity and value of engineering, the
competence and integrity necessary in
those who practice it, and the obligations
and duties associated with it: all these
can be brought to the students' attention.


Perhaps better than a formal lecture on
the subject is the frequent and casual
comment and, of course, the example.
The implication here is that each in-
structor should be thoroughly imbued
with a truly professional attitude.
In addition to the broad obligations
listed above, the chemical engineering
teacher owes special duties to particular
groups. Graduate students, even though
they are learning to be self-reliant, need
advice on choice of courses, conduct of
research, acquisition of equipment,
preparation of seminars, and almost
countless other topics. Seniors need guid-
ance on the decision between graduate
study or employment, and on individual
opportunities within each category. The
poorer students seek encouragement, or
help in choosing an easier schedule, or
even a different field of study. Personal
advice cannot be forced on the students
but it is often sought; it should be given
honestly and respectfully.
Such subjects as politics, religion, and
race do not customarily belong in the en-
gineering classroom. They may be dis-
cussed with an individual student if they
represent problems on which he is
honestly seeking advice. The teacher, as
a thinking individual, has the obligation
to respect all sides of any many-sided

Responsibilities to the University
It is quite apparent that the chemical
engineering teacher, like any other
teacher, has a very considerable responsi-
bility to the university, which provides
his employment, furnishes his working
facilities, and pays his salary. Some of
the more tangible obligations are really
responsibilities to the students, and have
already been discussed. Also in the tan-
gible class is the fairly general obligation
to do more than teach: most teachers
should also be active in research, writ-
ing, professional committee work, or per-
haps all of these. Research should, when
possible, be a balance of both funda-
mental and applied. The teacher should
also expect to attend seminars, to serve
on university committees, and to study
and discuss all of the usual academic

problems: courses, curriculum, student
discipline, laboratories, and the hundred
and one similar matters. A less tangible
obligation is the requirement of loyalty
to his university and to his department
and college, and a reasonable amount
of school spirit that is sincere though
perhaps less uninhibited than that of his
Life on the academic campus is gen-
erally less rigorous than in an industrial
organization. The department head, dean,
and other administrative officers are not
so much "bosses" as associates with
lesser or greater degrees of authority.
Nevertheless this authority must be re-
spected, and the teacher's superior must
be consulted and obeyed on all matters
of administrative concern: office hours,
contacts with individuals or organiza-
tions outside the department, sharing of
facilities with other faculty members,
absences from the campus, consulting
work, political activities, and the like.
Perhaps some of these activities do not
require approval by the administrative
officer, but the courtesy of keeping him
informed is certainly obligatory.

Responsibilities to His Associates
The chemical engineering teacher's
responsibilities to his associates are more
in the nature of courtesies than obliga-
tions. Thus he is not obliged to prepare
a "guest lecture" for another's class, but
it would be a strange and unsocial in-
structor who would not gladly do so.
Many academic problems can be solved,
or at least alleviated, by discussions
among the faculty of a department or
school. These problems include new or
untried teaching techniques, research
bottlenecks, criticism of papers, student
discipline, student guidance, and many
other facets of academic life. The mature
professor can be helpful to the younger
in problems involving teaching and per-
sonalities; the younger can often be an
inspiration to the older because of his
enthusiasm, more recent technical train-
ing, and spirit of venture. It is foolish
(not to mention unprofessional) for either
to deride or overlook these different at-
tributes of the other.


Research and writing are best con-
ducted in an atmosphere of encourage-
ment. Only part of this can come from
the university administration; each fac-
ulty member has an obligation of this
nature toward his professional associates.

Responsibilities to Other Engineers
All engineering codes of ethics include
some discussion of the responsibilities of
engineers to each other. The chemical
engineering teacher is not immune from
these matters of mutual concern; perhaps
it needs to be called to his attention that
he has such an obligation. Most important
is that he should join with nonteaching
engineers in their societies and activities,
in order that he may be conscious of him-
self as a member of the profession, and
that his fellow engineers may recognize
his kinship and his differences.
Certainly any American chemical en-
gineering teacher who takes his profes-
sion seriously is a member of the Amer-
ican Institute of Chemical Engineers,
and participates in its affairs as actively
as time, finances, and his university will
permit. Probably also he is similarly ac-
tive in the American Chemical Society,
and most likely in the American Society
for Engineering Education. Beyond these
three basic associations, there are many
others of specific interest. The teacher
need not be merely a "joiner," but he
should participate with other engineers
to a real degree.
The teacher is no different from other
chemical engineers in these responsi-
bilities, but perhaps needs special re-
minding of them lest he hold himself
aloof from the nonacademic members of
his profession. He has much to offer
them, and has much to gain for himself
by stepping outside the cloistered walls

Responsibilities to the Public
All chemical engineers have certain ob-
ligations to the public, the teacher per-
haps more so than the rest. The public
holds the engineering teacher in high
esteem and, rightly or wrongly, holds
itself entitled to bring to him its ques-
tions on all sorts of personal and business

problems. Perhaps the teacher at a gov-
ernment-supported school receives the
larger number of these inquiries, but they
come to all. Within reason, the teacher
should try to be helpful, thus continuing
his teaching duties beyond the class-
room. He should be particularly assiduous
in this activity when matters of public
or private health and safety are involved,
when representatives of government re-
quest his technical advice, and when the
press needs his engineering judgment.
He should graciously refuse to answer
questions that are not in his domain, or
that are in areas in which he is not com-
petent. He may reasonably excuse him-
self from persistent inquirers who de-
mand unusual efforts or time on his part,
perhaps referring such inquirers to a
regular consultant, perhaps even to him-
self on a consulting basis. But it is his
duty to be as helpful as he can without
detracting from the obligations to his
students and university, and without en-
croaching on the domain of the profes-
sional consultant.

Obligations as an Individual
The chemical engineering teacher has
all the individual obligations of any re-
sponsible citizen in the community. Per-
haps he should feel this obligation more
deeply than most men, because an edu-
cator is looked up to as an example by
his students, by other engineers, and by
the public. His responsibilities in general
are not different, but may be more

Responsibilities of Administrators
The chemical engineering dean or de-
partment head has a special set of re-
sponsibilities to the faculty members
under his jurisdiction. He must act as an
administrator, just as the foreman or de-
partment superintendent in industry; but
he must keep in mind that he is dealing
with a different type of person. It is often
necessary to refuse a request, but it is
usually desirable to explain the reasons
for it if possible. The university professor
is rarely satisfied with an unreasoned and
arbitrary pointblank refusal.
The administrator must give advice


and counsel to his faculty members, espe-
cially to the younger individuals. He may
suggest teaching techniques and advise
on grading policies and discipline. He
may appear to be arbitrary at times in
assigning teaching and nofiteaching
duties, but it should be assumed that the
overall good of the department and uni-
versity is in his mind as well as the needs
and desires of his faculty. Course con-
tent, too, must often be defined rather
closely, in order that the entire curricu-
lum can be adequately integrated. Often
such matters are debated by a faculty
committee or by the whole faculty, yet
final decisions must be made by an in-
dividual administrator.
Despite the desirability of the admin-
istrator's advising his faculty, he must
also leave them alone to the degree that
they can develop responsibility and ini-
tiative. To the greatest possible extent,
the individual teacher should be free to
plan his courses, choose his textbooks,
schedule and formulate his quizzes, and
calculate his own course grades.

Only the very simplest code of ethics,
such as the Golden Rule standing alone,
can be fully free from conflicts of inter-

pretation. When codes multiply and spe-
cialize, increasing difficulties are inevit-
able. In general, the more basic code
takes precedence over the more spe-
cialized; but each individual must study
each problem situation as it arises, as
honestly and as objectively as he can.
The guidance of older engineers, df more
experienced teachers, or even of official
committees on ethics may be sought in
particularly troubled cases. Journal ar-
ticles on the subject of professional ethics
should be required reading for all de-
veloping engineering teachers, in order
that they may better judge the relative
importance of conflicting (or apparently
conflicting) codes.

The chemical engineering teacher has
the same ethical responsibilities as other
chemical engineers, as other teachers, as
other citizens. He has a few special added
obligations peculiar to his profession, and
he must bear in mind that he is con-
stantly on display to the younger genera-
tion as an example of true professional-
ism. That most of our teachers meet these
responsibilities with enthusiasm and
pride is a tribute to them and to their



The Fifth A. S. E. E. Summer School for Chemical Engineering
Teachers is being held at the University of Colorado,August 20-25.

The general theme of the six-day program is "Dynamic Object-
ives of Chemical Engineering Education". The program will have
49 speakers, and will include sessions on the following topics:

Unit Operations and Physical Separations

Materials Engineering

Computers, Servmechanisms, and Automation

Undergraduate Kinetics

Chemical Content of the Chemical Engineering Curricula

Modern Industrial Design

The Purpose of the Undergraduate Laboratory

Industry's Opinion of the Chemical Engineering Graduate

General Chairman Lloyd Berg, Montana State College
Chairman, Publicity Max Peters, University of Colorado
Chairman, Publications M. H. Chetrick, University of Louisville
Chairman, Facilities and Housing, B. E. Lauer, University of Colorado

The papers presented at this Summer School will be published in the

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Transport Phenomena
all of the University of Wisconsin.
Stressing the continuum approach, rather than a molecular explanation, the
authors treat the subjects of momentum transport (viscous flow), energy transport
(heat conduction, convection, and radiation), and mass transport (diffusion).
Their point of view is that transport phenomena, because of its importance in
engineering analysis, should be considered as one of the key "engineering
sciences," along with thermodynamics, mechanics, and electromagnetism. The
main theme of the book is the organization of all topics around the "equations
of change:" the equations of motion, energy, and continuity. All topics lead up to
or are developed from these equations.
1960. 780 pages. $13.75.*

Principles of Unit Operations
all of Lehigh University.
The unit operations are presented in this book as unified groups stemming from
identical fundamentals. The developments are built up from a simplified physical
model or a basic mathematical relation or both, using generalized notation. After
a thorough coverage of the simplified models, the treatment progresses to the
more complicated handling of realistic problems by applying the general equations
to the specific operations. Emphasis is always placed on the general principles
underlying groups of operations.
1960. 578 pages. $15.00.*
*Textbook edition available for college adoption.

Send for your examination copies.


440 Park Avenue South

New York 16, N.Y.

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by DONALD N. HANSON and GRAHAM F. SOMERVILLE, both of the University of
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separation processes in the form of Fortran computer programs used to solve
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Ready July 1962. Price and size to be announced.
by R. E. COLLINS, University of Houston. A unified treatment of all aspects of
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by FREDERICK A. ZENZ and DONALD F. OTHMER, both of Polytechnic Institute
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by ROBERT J. HENGSTEBECK, American Oil Company. Here is all the information
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by GEORGE D. DICKEY, P.E., Consultant. A modern account of solid-liquid
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by THOMAS B. DREW, Columbia University. A probing treatment of the vector
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