In this unit, students will explore the role and importance of engineering in society, at both the national and international level. This will include identifying issues facing engineers such as sustainability, existing trends and practices, and innovations to meet future challenges. Students will examine the development of engineering as a profession and look at the varying disciplines within the profession. This will enable students to establish their own learning and career goals and develop strategies to achieve those goals. Students will also examine the activities that constitute the engineering method as a problem-solving process, and apply the method to an identified problem. Case studies will be presented to students introducing them to descriptions of real situations that provide a context for engineers to explore decision-making in the face of socio-technical issues, such as environmental, political, and ethical issues. Students will work on a number of deliverables that will require them to work both individually and collaboratively, and communicate their work and findings in oral and written forms. Workshops, field trips, and presentations will form an integral part of the unit and attendance will be mandatory.

Unit details

City Campus
Study level:
Credit points:
Unit code:



Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Articulate using appropriate language a range of key roles and features of engineering in the local and global communities as applied in practice;  
  2. Develop their own learning and career goals, and use self-management skills to plan and manage their work;  
  3. Investigate the professional responsibilities of engineers in the community;  
  4. Choose and apply the engineering problem-solving method and its associated steps to an identified problem; and  
  5. Discuss strategies for sustainable and ethical practices in developing solutions to engineering problems.  


Assessment type Description Grade
Essay Individual Reflection Essay 15%
Case Study Individual Case Study Report 20%
Presentation Team Oral Presentations 25%
Project Team Project Report 40%
For any team assessment, a percentage of student's mark is based on observations of their contribution to the overall task, as such; attendance is mandatory in field trips and presentations.

Required reading

Engineering Your Future: an Australasian Guide. 4th edn
Dowling, D, Hadgraft, R, Carew, A, McCarthy, T, Hargreaves, D, Baillie, C & Male, S 2016 S 2016
John Wiley and Sons Australia, Milton, Queensland.

Where to next?

As part of a course

This unit is studied as part of the following courses. Refer to the course page for information on how to apply for the course.

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