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A Case Study Of Assessment In Materials Laboratory

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2005 Annual Conference


Portland, Oregon

Publication Date

June 12, 2005

Start Date

June 12, 2005

End Date

June 15, 2005



Conference Session

Emerging Trends in Engineering Education Poster Session

Page Count


Page Numbers

10.12.1 - 10.12.10



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Paper Authors

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Rufus Carter

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Claudia Milz

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

A Case-Study of Assessment in Materials Laboratory

Claudia Milz, Rufus L. Carter

University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611 / Marymount University, Arlington, VA 2220

Materials engineering students are often ill prepared to enter the workforce upon graduation. While students master the content knowledge they often lack critical skills for success. Our industry feedback of internship students indicates weakness in the areas of: technical writing, critical thinking, professional attitude & teamwork, analysis, reasoning and decision making.

We have examined the effectiveness of new teaching and assessment methods in the Materials Laboratory classes. Through our use of new materials and assessment instruments support our thesis that will lead to student improvement in the defined areas of weakness. The integration of peer review strengthens teamwork and professional attitude both in the classroom and later in the students’ professional lives. We have used interdisciplinary collaboration as another component to help develop analysis and reasoning skills by utilizing field trips to manufacturers who have quality control and project management programs.

Our feedback system in scoring student reports will likely strengthen their technical writing skills. This works as follows: The group consists of one author and two to three reviewers every week. The roles alternate. The author sends a draft to the reviewers, who in turn review electronically and send the response to both the author and the instructor. This is to make sure the review process can also be graded and the author receives the material in time. The author now makes changes to the report and also responds to the reviewers’ suggestions in writing. The entire report is submitted to the instructor for assessment. The grades for the reviewers and the author alike, including the comments on the documents teach the students where strengths and weaknesses lie.

We have exposed the students to professional engineering centers such as MAIC (Major Analytical Instrumentation Center) and PERC (Particle Engineering Research Center) where they develop better insight and can mirror an appropriate attitude in a professional environment.

Current practice vs. our teaching method

The reality of the learning experience in many colleges of engineering is much different from the ideal. Students typically have contact with the instructor only in the classroom sessions. In many cases students rarely if ever truly interact with the professor.

Proceedings of the 2005 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2005, American Society for Engineering Education

Carter, R., & Milz, C. (2005, June), A Case Study Of Assessment In Materials Laboratory Paper presented at 2005 Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon. 10.18260/1-2--14959

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