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A Teaching Methodology That Works! Organizing A Class

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1996 Annual Conference


Washington, District of Columbia

Publication Date

June 23, 1996

Start Date

June 23, 1996

End Date

June 26, 1996



Page Count


Page Numbers

1.43.1 - 1.43.7



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Paper Authors

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Karl F. Meyer

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Stephen J. Ressler

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Thomas Lenox

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

Session 1675

A Teaching Methodology that Works! Organizing a Class

Stephen J. Ressler, Karl F. Meyer, Thomas A. Lenox United States Military Academy

Introduction This is the first in a series of papers which describe a structured methodology for planning and conducting engineering classes. These papers are being developed in conjunction with a National Science Foundation- sponsored project entitled “Teaching Teachers to Teach Engineering”, establishing an annual one-week workshop for engineering educators who want to be better teachers. * The teaching methodology described in this paper is used extensively by faculty members in the Department of Civil and Mechanical Engineering at the United States Military Academy. The methodology predates both of the authors’ experience at West Point and, indeed, may trace its origins to the earliest years of the Academy’s existence. Though it can hardly be considered new or innovative, the technique is both effective and flexible. It has been used successfully throughout the civil and mechanical engineering curricula, from sophomore-level engineering mechanics courses to senior level design courses. It is highly structured, yet easily adaptable to the needs of individual courses and instructors. Each year, this methodology is taught to new faculty members as part of an intensive five-week new instructor training program. Most new instructors find it so effective that they choose to continue using it for the remainder of their teaching careers. On course critiques and surveys, the vast majority of students rate it as the most effective teaching style they have experienced.

The Methodology The process of preparing for and teaching a class generally consists of five distinct activities, performed in the following sequence: q Research e Organize the class q Practice the class . Prepare the classroom . Teach the class This paper will focus primarily on organizing the class. We will briefly discuss some aspects of teaching as well, but only to illustrate the implementation of a class organized according to our model. Subsequent papers will address practice, preparation of the classroom, and teaching in detail.

* This no-fee workshop will be conducted at West Point every summer, starting in 1996; it will be open to faculty from two-year and four-year institutions, from all engineering disciplines. For more information, contact the authors.

{~xii~ 1996 ASEE Annual Conference Proceedings ‘..+,yyp .

Meyer, K. F., & Ressler, S. J., & Lenox, T. (1996, June), A Teaching Methodology That Works! Organizing A Class Paper presented at 1996 Annual Conference, Washington, District of Columbia. 10.18260/1-2--6329

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