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Active Techniques Implemented in an Introductory Signal Processing Course to Help Students Achieve Higher Levels of Learning

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Conference

2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 23, 2018

Start Date

June 23, 2018

End Date

July 27, 2018

Conference Session

Electrical and Computer Division Technical Session 5

Tagged Division

Electrical and Computer

Page Count

21

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/29750

Download Count

44

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Paper Authors

biography

Saharnaz Baghdadchi University of California, San Diego

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Saharnaz Baghdadchi is an Assistant Teaching Professor at UC San Diego. She is interested in scholarly teaching and uses active learning techniques to help students achieve expert-like level of thinking. She guides students in bridging the gap between facts and usable knowledge to solve complex engineering problems.

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biography

Rebecca Anne Hardesty University of California, San Diego

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Rebecca Hardesty is a PhD Candidate in Communication and Science Studies

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Paul Andreas Hadjipieris University of California, San Diego

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Paul Hadjipieris is an instructional designer at the University of California San Diego. He holds an MA, in history from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania. His research agenda is on emerging educational technologies and their application to the classroom. He is deeply involved in SoTL research at the University of California San Diego and currently working with faculty on course design and manuscript construction.

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Jace Hargis University of California, San Diego

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Dr. Jace Hargis currently assists faculty as the Director of the Center for Teaching at the University of California, San Diego. His prior positions include a Professor and Associate Provost in Hawaii; a College Director in Abu Dhabi, UAE; an Associate Professor and Assistant Provost in northern California; and an Assistant Professor and Director of Faculty Development in Florida. He has authored a textbook, an anthology and published over 130 academic articles as well as offered hundreds of academic presentations. He has earned a B.S. in Oceanography from Florida Institute of Technology; an M.S. in Environmental Engineering Sciences and a Ph.D. in Science Education from the University of Florida. Dr. Hargis' research agenda focuses on how people learn while integrating appropriate, relevant and meaningful instructional technologies.

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Abstract

Holding students to high standards and assessing, measuring and evaluating their learning with challenging, authentic problems in the midterm and final exams is the goal of the professors who teach core signal processing concepts. However, the heavy reliance of these subjects on mathematics makes it difficult for students to genuinely grasp the concepts and relate to a conceptual framework. Specifically, analyzing the signals and the functionality of systems in Fourier domain; separating the system level analysis from signal level analysis; and understanding how they are related in time domain and frequency domain are among the most challenging concepts. Students’ lower grades observed over past years in the introductory signal processing course exposed a potential disconnect between the actual level of learning and the high expectations set by the professors. In this paper, we present the active learning techniques that we implemented in one of the summer session offerings of this course in our department. The research explored Peer Instruction, pre-class reading quizzes and post-lecture quizzes. In addition to the mid and end of the quarter survey results, the comparison analysis of the grades students achieved in the active learning integrated course in the second summer session and the standard course offered in first summer session is discussed. According to our results, the developed techniques helped students in the active classroom perform significantly better than their peers participating in standard lectures when tested by challenging questions in their exams.

Baghdadchi, S., & Hardesty, R. A., & Hadjipieris, P. A., & Hargis, J. (2018, June), Active Techniques Implemented in an Introductory Signal Processing Course to Help Students Achieve Higher Levels of Learning Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Salt Lake City, Utah. https://peer.asee.org/29750

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