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A Successful Professional Development Activity To Infuse Engineering Content For Utah 9 12 Teachers

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2007 Annual Conference & Exposition


Honolulu, Hawaii

Publication Date

June 24, 2007

Start Date

June 24, 2007

End Date

June 27, 2007



Conference Session

Engineering Professional Development for K-12 Teachers – II

Tagged Division

K-12 & Pre-College Engineering

Page Count


Page Numbers

12.135.1 - 12.135.16



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Paper Authors


Steve Shumway Brigham Young University

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Steven Shumway is an Associate Professor and Program Chair for the Technology Teacher Education Program in the School of Technology, Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology, at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. Before joining BYU, Steve was a highly successful high school technology education teacher. He is one of BYU’s co-investigators for the National Science Foundation (NSF) funded National Center for Engineering and Technology Education (NCETE).

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Jared Berrett Brigham Young University


Andy Swapp Milford High School

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After retiring from a great career as an Infantry Sergeant in the U.S. Army in 1996, Andy graduated with honors from Southern Utah University with a BS degree in Technology education. He became a Career and Technology education teacher at Milford High School in the Beaver County school district and a small farm owner in the year 2001. He has been innovating a new renewable energy class under the guise of Advanced Technology. He consults on the side for the UPC wind development group.

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Ronald Terry Brigham Young University

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Ron is a Professor of Chemical Engineering at Brigham Young University and an Associate in BYU’s Office of Planning and Assessment. His scholarship centers on pedagogy, student learning, and engineering ethics and has presented/published numerous articles in engineering education. He is one of BYU’s co-investigators for the NSF funded NCETE.

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Thomas Erekson Western Illinois University

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Dr. Erekson serves as the Dean for the College of Business and Technology at Western Illinois University. Prior to moving to WIU in June 2006, he served as the Director for the School of Technology, a unit in the College of Engineering and Technology at Brigham Young University. He has published more than 60 articles, two books, and has presented more than 100 papers at national conferences. Dr. Erekson was instrumental in securing NSF funding for NCETE, a Center for Learning and Teaching. The NCETE’s focus is to infuse engineering design and analytical methods into K-12 schools through technology education by linking engineering faculty and technology education faculty at nine leading universities.

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

A Successful Professional Development Activity to Infuse Engineering Content for Utah 9-12 Teachers

Steven Shumway, Jared Berrett, Andrew G Swapp, Thomas L. Erekson, and Ronald E. Terry


As part of the National Science Foundation funded National Center for Engineering and Technology Education (NCETE), faculty at Brigham Young University have been conducting professional development activities for Utah 9-12 grade teachers.

The paper discusses two years of professional development activities. Lessons learned from the first year helped build a successful activity that the second-year participants found to be extremely engaging. The paper discusses these lessons learned and reports on how the teachers are implementing the content of the professional development in their courses. A model for engineering design using a problem-solving cycle developed at Dartmouth was taught to the 9-12 grade teachers to help infuse engineering design content in their courses. Specific examples are provided in the paper of how one of the teachers has used the problem-solving cycle in his high school classes.

A key-activity during the second-year professional development was the use of a capstone-like project. This project was to build an electrically powered vehicle to be used in the Electrathon America competition. The participants used the problem-solving cycle to help design and build the vehicle.


The National Center for Engineering and Technology Education (NCETE) is one of 17 National Science Foundation (NSF) funded Centers for Learning and Teaching. It is the only one of the 17 addressing engineering and technology education. The ultimate goal of the center is to infuse engineering design, problem solving, and analytical skills into the K-12 schools. NCETE is made up of 9 partner universities, one of which is Brigham Young University (BYU), Provo, Utah. As part of NCETE, BYU and 4 other partner institutions are responsible to conduct professional development activities for K-12 teachers. The goals of the professional development effort are to: • develop teachers’ instructional decision making so that it focuses on the analytical nature of design and problem solving needed to deliver technological as well as engineering concepts. • facilitate teacher initiated change in program design, curricular choices, programmatic and student assessment, and other areas that will impact learning related to technology and engineering. • develop teachers’ capabilities as learners so that they assume leadership for their professional development activities, and recruit and mentor their colleagues.

Shumway, S., & Berrett, J., & Swapp, A., & Terry, R., & Erekson, T. (2007, June), A Successful Professional Development Activity To Infuse Engineering Content For Utah 9 12 Teachers Paper presented at 2007 Annual Conference & Exposition, Honolulu, Hawaii. 10.18260/1-2--2716

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