Stream restoration education and professional development: Working toward a consensus

Sue L. Niezgoda, Donald Carpenter, Janine Castro, Joanna Curran, Garey Fox, Rollin Hotchkiss, Peggy A. Johnson, Christine Pomeroy, David Rosgen, John Schmidt, John Schwartz, Andrew Simon, Louise O. Slate, Peter Wilcock, Tess Wynn

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

The rapid evolution of river restoration technology, in combination with the diversity of disciplines represented in the restoration field, has created ideal conditions for increased market demands for restoration short courses. Therefore, it is not surprising that there exist numerous short courses and certificate programs in stream restoration offered by private consulting firms, government agencies, nonprofit organizations and universities. These courses typically range from one day to week-long classes that introduce the student to basic concepts and principles of fluvial geomorphology and stream restoration. With an abundance of course offerings, it is problematic to determine what is being taught, who is teaching, to whom it is being delivered, and what is really being learned. There is growing concern that many short courses are offered as stand-alone entities, with no prerequisites and no assessment of learning. This can lead disconcertingly to over-confident, over-eager restorationists who do not fully appreciate the complexity and interdisciplinary nature of river restoration projects. In order to address these issues and meet an ever-growing need for restoration professional development, a stream restoration educational materials task committee (TC) of the River Restoration Committee of the ASCE-EWRI Hydraulics and Waterways Council was formed in May 2009. The goals of the TC are to provide the restoration community with (1) a recommended standard curriculum based on needs (technicians, engineers, planners, ecologists, biologists, etc.), (2) a list of educator traits most properly suited to cover that curriculum (not specific individuals or institutions), and (3) logistics of where and how to most effectively disseminate information. The objective of this paper is to present preliminary results from work completed by the TC, including a list of courses and outcomes (and level of cognition) that account for the insights of practicing engineers, needs of graduate programs, and pedagogical and personnel limitations of a specific program.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationWorld Environmental and Water Resources Congress 2010
Subtitle of host publicationChallenges of Change - Proceedings of the World Environmental and Water Resources Congress 2010
Pages1838-1849
Number of pages12
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2 2010
EventWorld Environmental and Water Resources Congress 2010: Challenges of Change - Providence, RI, United States
Duration: May 16 2010May 20 2010

Publication series

NameWorld Environmental and Water Resources Congress 2010: Challenges of Change - Proceedings of the World Environmental and Water Resources Congress 2010

Other

OtherWorld Environmental and Water Resources Congress 2010: Challenges of Change
CountryUnited States
CityProvidence, RI
Period5/16/105/20/10

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Water Science and Technology

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