Iowa State partners with Canadian, New Zealander professors on online course module

Doug Gransberg, Donald F. and Sharon A. Greenwood Chair in Construction Engineering and professor
Doug Gransberg, Donald F. and Sharon A. Greenwood Chair in Construction Engineering and professor

Iowa State University’s College of Engineering Continuous Improvement Initiative for Undergraduate Education has benefited international instruction in the construction engineering program.

Doug Gransberg, the Donald F. and Sharon A. Greenwood Endowed Chair in Construction Engineering and professor of civil, construction and environmental engineering at Iowa State, coordinated a tri-national course module in total asset management. He and Iowa State students partnered with Susan Tighe, professor of civil and environmental engineering at University of Waterloo (Canada), and Eric Scheepbouwer, assistant professor of civil and natural resources engineering at University of Canterbury (New Zealand), and their students.

All students benefited from each instructor’s section of the three-week module. The lectures were recorded for the student teams to watch live online. In the first week Dr. Tighe taught the theory behind asset management and the Canadian approach to pavement assets. Total asset management is prioritizing funding to a given jurisdiction’s infrastructure asset preservation/replacement projects i.e. bridges, roadways, and buildings. In week two Dr. Gransberg applied theory to asset valuation, probabilistic life cycle costing, and the U.S. approach to bridge assets. In the final week, Dr. Scheepbouwer discussed procurement of asset management projects.

In addition to online lecture, multinational student teams developed a comprehensive asset management plan for the mythical state of New Candamerica.

“The module promotes international nuances in a classroom context, including culture, economy and difference of practices,” Dr. Gransberg said. “It has proven to be a huge success.”

Dr. Gransberg predicts that a future international asset management instruction module would be taught in a three-day workshop setting.