Introducing mechanical engineering to students in the gulf region

Valérie Eveloy, Peter Rodgers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


The design and implementation of introductory courses in engineering have been well documented in Western education, in the context of how engineering education practices must adapt to meet the needs of the twenty-first century. As Gulf students exhibit characteristic strengths and weaknesses, engineering education in this region faces additional, specific challenges that are associated with economical, social and cultural factors. This paper discusses the adaptation in the Gulf region of Western models of engineering introduced to entry-level students, and describes the strategy adopted at The Petroleum Institute to introduce mechanical engineering (ME) to sophomores. Significant blocks of time are devoted to broadening the students' understanding of the ME discipline and profession, fields, tools and practices. The traditional aspects of ME are concisely covered, enabling emphasis to be placed on the petroleum industry and the broader energy sectors, as well as modern and emerging applications of ME. The course structure and teaching methodology focus on developing key professional attributes identified by ABET, promote student involvement and utilize student strengths while tackling characteristic weaknesses in Gulf regional students. After three-semester offering and evolution of the course, it was found that motivated students could demonstrate excellent proficiency in what constitutes mechanical engineering in the twenty first century.

Original languageBritish English
Pages (from-to)603-614
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal of Engineering Education
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2009


  • Arab
  • Education
  • Engineering
  • Gulf
  • Mechanical


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