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A Professional Development Survey For Engineering Undergraduates

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2004 Annual Conference


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 20, 2004

Start Date

June 20, 2004

End Date

June 23, 2004



Conference Session

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.87.1 - 9.87.9



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Paper Authors

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Richard Rice

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S. Michael Kilbey

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Scott Husson

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Graham Harrison

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Douglas Hirt

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David Bruce

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Charles Gooding

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Deborah Switzer

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

A Professional Development Survey for Engineering Undergraduates

D.M. Switzer‡, D.A. Bruce†, C.H. Gooding†, G.M. Harrison†, D.E. Hirt†, S.M. Husson†, S.M. Kilbey II†, R.W. Rice† † Dept. of Chemical Engineering, Clemson University, Clemson, SC 29634 / ‡ School of Education, Clemson University, Clemson, SC 29634

This article is the third in a series of ASEE proceedings covering the implementation and assessment of a hierarchical model of mental growth as the basis for developing critical thinking skills and engineering judgment in engineering undergraduates. Our assessment instruments track individual students, allowing us to monitor student growth and evaluate the effectiveness of these teaching and learning devices for populations with different exposures to experimental treatments. Here we detail the development and implementation of the Professional Development Survey for Engineering Undergraduates (PDS). The PDS reliably measures the students’ conscientiousness, perceived intellect, learning goal orientation, performance goal orientation, subject matter attitude, professional development attitude, and attitude toward the field of chemical engineering.


Previously1,2, we introduced an approach to integrate a hierarchical mental growth model into an undergraduate engineering curriculum, described teaching and learning strategies to support that model, and presented preliminary results for the assessment of implementation of those strategies on student development. Briefly, the hypothesis that drives this work is this: Mental growth constitutes a progression through a hierarchy of cognition; the critical thinking and judgment required of engineers lies at an upper level in the hierarchy, and, to reach high levels, an individual must master cognitive skills and reorganize knowledge gained at lower levels.

Our overarching goal is to develop higher-level thinking skills in chemical engineering students before they reach their senior years. To reach that goal, we are applying the hierarchical mental growth model of Egan3 as the basis for developing teaching and learning devices that are used in core sophomore- and junior-level chemical engineering courses. Figure 1 describes the cognitive levels of the model and summarizes other key aspects of the program.

Proceedings of the 2004 ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition Copyright © 2004, American Society for Engineering Education

Rice, R., & Kilbey, S. M., & Husson, S., & Harrison, G., & Hirt, D., & Bruce, D., & Gooding, C., & Switzer, D. (2004, June), A Professional Development Survey For Engineering Undergraduates Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--12776

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2004 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015