ASUlogoSchool of Sustainable Engineering & the Built Environment
CEE300 Engineering Business Practice
Fall 2019

1. Instructor Information

Dr. Thomas P Seager

2. Office Hours

Use Slack for phone calls and messaging.  See the CEE300 Communications protocol in ‘Communications in the Digital Age … .’

3. Objectives

CEE300 has several learning objectives, belonging generally to three categories, as described below:

I. Preparation for the Fundamentals of Engineering exam, including the time equivalence of money, cash flow diagrams, real & nominal interest rates, depreciation, taxes, internal rate of return, inflation, and engineering ethics. Specifically, successful students will be able to:

  • Solve problems in engineering economics related to: compound interest, time equivalence of money, present worth and benefit/cost analysis, depreciation, effect of taxes and inflation, and choosing between alternatives.
  • Become familiar with the Fundamental Canons of Engineering Ethics as described by the American Society of Civil Engineers and the National Society of Professional Engineers.
  • Identify correct answers in multiple choice ethics questions.

II. Satisfaction of ABET accreditation outcomes, teamwork, leadership, communications skills (written and oral), ethics, understanding engineering in a global context, and mathematical problem-solving related to engineering finance.  Specifically, successful students will gain:

  • Knowledge of mathematics, science & engineering.
  • The ability to work in, and provide leadership for, diverse, multi-disciplinary teams.
  • The ability to identify, formulate, and solve civil engineering problems.
  • Understanding of professional, sustainability, and ethical issues.
  • The ability to communicate effectively at a personal level and through written reports an oral presentation which utilize professional-quality visual aids.
  • Understanding of issues and impact of engineering solutions in a broad cultural and geographical scale that extends to metropolitan, regional, national and global levels.
  • The ability to take into consideration contemporary issues and environmental impacts in civil engineering practice.

III. Professional development of the students, especially with regard to formulation of engineering problems and awareness of business values, norms, and culture.  While, most of the undergraduate engineering curricula focuses on developing problem-solving, these skills are increasingly becoming marginalized in the global marketplace, as the solutions to well posed engineering problems can now be purchased from off-shore firms staffed with well-educated, bright and hard-working professionals educated in essentially the same way that US students have been for decades.  Consequently, increased emphasis in US engineering education must be placed upon the structuring of new engineering problems from otherwise unstructured challenges.  This is the most difficult learning outcome to teach, most difficult to acquire, and most difficult to assess. Specifically, successful students will:

  • Achieve some competency in critical thinking, creative problem-solving, communication and collaboration.
  • Improve understanding of professional engineering business practices related to communication, performance evaluation, teamwork, proposal writing and presentation, dress codes and other expectations typical of engineering work environments.

4. Grading Policies

Grading Philosophy:  One of the overall goals of CEE300 is to prepare students to make the transition from the classroom to professional engineering.  This process is called professionalization.  Compared with classroom environments, professional environments emphasize communication, teamwork, and acceptance of responsibility for others more, and assessment or evaluation (i.e., grading) less.  Moreover, assignments in professional settings are typically more open-ended, project-based, and judged subjectively (e.g., “exceeds expectations”).  Qualitatively, CE300 grades can be understood as follows:

  •  ‘A’ grades are earned by adding new knowledge to assignments – i.e., ‘A’ students exceed expectations and instructions in such a way that they are teaching the Instructor (and other classmates) and creating new knowledge useful to the world.
  • By contrast, ‘B’ students are demonstrably learning from the Instructor by following instructions.
  • ‘C’ students are typically putting forth consistent effort, but do not show clear evidence of learning relative to instructions.
  • I advise students earning ‘D’ grades to retake CEE300.

A+, B+ and C+ grades may be used, at the discretion of the Instructor.

Grading System:
Grades are based on assignments according to the following:

20% Exams
35% Technical Reports
10% Ethics Reports
15% reading quizzes, problem sets, critiques
10% oral presentations (e.g., videos)
10% Class participation (online)

Additionally, students may improve their grades by earning experience points (XP), which are added to both the numerator and denominator of the grade average resulting from the assignment grades above.  Thus, accumulation of XP can only improve student grades earned on assignments alone.  In the extreme, the limit of the student grade average approaches 100% as experience points approach infinity.

On all assignments with the exception of exams, students are expected to work in groups.

Class participation Students are expected to be attentive, complete short essays, make postings on-line, complete assignments outside of class, participate in discussions and exercises, and dress professionally for all face-to-face or video meetings.  Attendance alone is insufficient to earn full credit for class participation.  Full credit will accrue to those students who display initiative and positive leadership qualities that enhance the learning experience for all.

5. Absence Policy

Participation is an important mechanism for achieving course objectives related to teamwork, leadership, and communication.  Students are responsible for all instructional experiences and knowledge presented during class periods.  Religious and university-sanctioned activities may be accommodated by excusing students from the assignment.

6. Textbook & Other Resources

CEE300 uses a portfolio of instructional and publishing platforms, each accessible thru

Additional websites:

  • is a cloud-based document sharing site that allows students to work collectively when completing writing assignments.  Unlike WordPress (which hosts the course blog), is only open to collaborators that have been invited to join your folder.  Documents loaded there will not be public, but you have to join the CEE300 folder to gain access to assignment guides and other course docs.  Free accounts may store up to 5GB.  Students that want to share docs privately with the instructional team may create their own folders and invite the Instructors to join. Anyone in the class folder may invite classmates to the folder.  Sometimes, will suppress email addresses, and several students have had better luck using gmail accounts for their log-ins.
  • is a cloud-based team collaboration tool.
  • is a platform for facilitating peer review.  Students in CEE300 will be using CritViz to give and receive feedback on several writing and speaking assignments, including professional reports and a digital presentation.
  • is a video sharing service that hosts many of the online lectures.  Students will also use YouTube to post digital presentations. Create an accunt and subscribe to the Instructor’s channel here
  • is a professional networking site analogous to Facebook.
  • is a site that provides tools for understanding your personality and communication style, as well as improving your communication with others.

7. Classroom Ethics & Etiquette

  • It is better to show up late than not at all.
  • Students should be prepared to ask questions that have occurred to them as they thought more about the previous class discussion (or on-line lecture).  Class notes will be valuable in this respect. You will get more out of your reading and listening when you write a journal entry of your thoughts after class.  Students may then refer back to journal entries prior to or during the next class.
  • Smart phones and the internet make us smarter.  They give us access to facts and information that we no longer have to memorize.  Please make us of your network-enabled devices to enhance your learning experience.  However, use of all electronic devices is prohibited during exams.
  • Learning is discussion-based.  Typically, some extroverts participate more readily than others, but it is often the case that one person who asks a question or makes a comment gives voice to something that many others in the class are also thinking.  All students are expected to enhance the classroom experience, and students may be called on by the Instructors to respond to questions.
  • Any violent or threatening conduct by an ASU student in this class will be reported to the ASU Police Department and the Office of the Dean of Students.

Professional Dress: One of the important goals of CEE300 is professionalization of the students, which means giving students an introduction to the norms of the engineering profession.  One of these is professional dressing, which is an appropriate style of dressing when you report to work in any professional organization.  In face-to-face and online video environments, CEE300 students are expected to meet the minimum expectations of professional dress in engineering organizations (typically described as business casual).

During presentations (including digital presentations), students should adopt a higher standard of professional dress than detailed above.

Communications Protocol. Just like many professional civil engineering project teams, we will use an explicit communications protocol in CEE300. Read the article Communications in the Digital Age to learn the protocol and the reasons for it.

Under no circumstances will email attachments be accepted by the CEE300 Instructional team.  Use instead.

8. Academic Integrity and Copyright Laws

Academic Integrity. Students in this class must adhere to ASU’s academic integrity policy, which can be found at Students are responsible for reviewing this policy and understanding each of the areas in which academic dishonesty can occur. In addition, all engineering students are expected to adhere to both the ASU Academic Integrity Honor Code and the Fulton Schools of Engineering Honor Code. All academic integrity violations will be reported to the Fulton Schools of Engineering Academic Integrity Office (AIO).  The AIO maintains record of all violations and has access to academic integrity violations committed in all other ASU college/schools.  Additionally, ASU policy PUR 224 requires all online students to have an official photo on file with the university. If you do not have an official photo on file, please click on this link to upload  one: .  There is no charge for uploading the picture. Test grades will be withheld for any student that does not have an official photo on file.

This course expects cooperation and teamwork on quizzes, class discussions, presentations and papers — on which students may work collectively and share credit.  However, for exams students are expected to work entirely individually.  Students may not share any type of information during exam periods.  Students failing to place their name on their exam, attempting to claim credit for the work of others, attempting to obtain or share information, or using notes, books, or electronic devices (including calculators) during exams will not receive credit for any aspect of the exam. 

Copyright. Course content, including lectures, are copyrighted materials and students may not share outside the class, upload to online websites not approved by the instructor, sell, or distribute course content or notes taken during the conduct of the course. (See ACD 304–06, “Commercial Note Taking Services” and ABOR Policy 5-308 F.14 for more information).

You must refrain from uploading to any course shell, discussion board, or website used by the course instructor or other course forum, material that is not the student’s original work, unless the students first comply with all applicable copyright laws. Faculty members reserve the right to delete materials on the grounds of suspected copyright infringement.

9. Policy against threatening behavior, per the Student Services Manual, SSM 104–02

Students, faculty, staff, and other individuals do not have an unqualified right of access to university grounds, property, or services. Interfering with the peaceful conduct of university-related business or activities or remaining on campus grounds after a request to leave may be considered a crime. All incidents and allegations of violent or threatening conduct by an ASU student (whether on- or off-campus) must be reported to the ASU Police Department (ASU PD) and the Office of the Dean of Students.

10. Disability Accommodations.

Suitable accommodations will be made for students having disabilities. Students needing accommodations must register with the ASU Disabilities Resource Center and provide documentation of that registration to the instructor. Students should communicate the need for an accommodation in sufficient time for it to be properly arranged.

11. Harassment and Sexual Discrimination

Arizona State University is committed to providing an environment free of discrimination, harassment, or retaliation for the entire university community, including all students, faculty members, staff employees, and guests. ASU expressly prohibits discrimination, harassment, and retaliation by employees, students, contractors, or agents of the university based on any protected status: race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, and genetic information.

Title IX is a federal law that provides that no person be excluded on the basis of sex from participation in, be denied benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity.  Both Title IX and university policy make clear that sexual violence and harassment based on sex is prohibited.  An individual who believes they have been subjected to sexual violence or harassed on the basis of sex can seek support, including counseling and academic support, from the university.  If you or someone you know has been harassed on the basis of sex or sexually assaulted, you can find information and resources at

Mandated sexual harassment reporter: As an employee of the University the instructional staff are considered a mandated reportera and therefore obligated to report any information regarding alleged acts of sexual discrimination they are  informed of or have a reasonable basis to believe occurred.

ASU Counseling Services,, are available if you wish to discuss any concerns confidentially and privately.

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