ABET Accreditation Process and the Geological Engineering Program

ABET is a nonprofit, non-governmental organization that accredits applied science, computing, engineering, and engineering technology programs in colleges and universities throughout the United States. ABET accreditation is voluntary and achieved through a peer review process. The accreditation process provides assurance that a college or university program meets the quality standards established by the profession.

ABET was founded in 1932 under the name Engineers’ Council for Professional Development (ECPD). This council was an engineering professional body dedicated to the education, accreditation, regulation, and professional development of the engineering professionals and students in the United States. Since 1989 ABET has provided consulting services to accreditation boards around the Globe.

Why Accreditation Matters to our Students?
– Because ABET accreditation helps verify that the quality of the educational experience meets the standards of the profession.
– Because a degree from an ABET degree program helps increasing employment opportunities. For example, many employers, including the federal government, require graduation from ABET-accredited programs to be eligible for employment in certain fields. Also, multinational corporations are increasingly requiring graduation from an ABET-accredited program for overseas positions.
– Because accreditation is often required for eligibility for federal student loans, grants, and scholarships.
– Because many state professional boards require graduation from ABET-accredited programs as a minimum qualification for registration.

Geological Engineering Program’s Educational Objectives and Student Outcomes

To meet the accreditation process, the GLE Faculty, with advisement from the Board of Visitors, developed a set of Educational Objectives and Student Outcomes. The program strives to accomplish these objectives and outcomes by designing a challenging academic curriculum and by assessing and evaluating the work of its students and the accomplishments of its graduates. Using these data, the GLE faculty established a process of continuing improvement to help provide the best possible educational experience to all our students.

Program Educational Objectives
Graduates will be prepared to assume positions as Geological Engineers upon graduation. After proper training and exposure to a comprehensive education in our program, our graduates will demonstrate during the five years after graduation their ability to:
– apply geological engineering principles, analyses, and synthesis to design and implement projects in the natural and built environment;
– incorporate economic, environmental, political, ethical, social, safety, and global considerations to generate sustainable solutions in the natural and built environment;
– exhibit strong communication, leadership, and teamwork skills;
– serve others through professional responsibility and participation in professional and public activities and good citizenship; and
– demonstrate a continuing commitment to and interest in their own and others’ education.

The Geological Engineering program will demonstrate that our students attain:
a. an ability to apply knowledge and principles of mathematics, science, and engineering to geological engineering problems;
b. an ability to design and conduct experiments, as well as to analyze and interpret data;
c. an ability to design a system, component, or process to meet required needs within realistic economic, environmental, social, political, ethical, health and safety, constructability, and sustainability goals;
d. an ability to function on multi-disciplinary teams;
e. an ability to identify, formulate, and solve geological engineering problems in space and time;
f. an understanding of professional and ethical responsibility;
g. an ability to communicate effectively;
h. the broad education necessary to understand the impact of engineering solutions in a global, economic, environmental, and societal context;
i. a recognition of the need for and the ability to engage in life-long learning;
j. a knowledge of contemporary issues as related to geological engineering; and
k. an ability to use the techniques, skills, and modern engineering tools necessary for engineering practice.

# of GLE BS Degrees Conferred

(in Spring 2015)


Current Undergraduate Enrollment

(as of Fall 2015)



For more information, please contact:

Dante Fratta, PhD, PE
Associate Professor
Geological Engineering
2218 Engineering Hall
1415 Engineering Drive
Madison, WI 53706-1691
Tel: (608) 265-5644
E-mail: fratta@wisc.edu