Salt Lake City, Utah
June 23, 2018
June 23, 2018
July 27, 2018
Pre-College Engineering Education
The goal of this study was to examine how the use of a newly developed instructional model is related to changes in middle school students’ attitudes toward engineering and participation in engineering careers. Although the literature shows that much has already been implemented in the way of promoting equity in engineering and science, this study uniquely takes place in the context of a science classroom where middle school students propose, support, critique, and revise engineering design solutions, and it helps to elucidates how their attitudes toward engineering change as familiarity with the design process grows. Four prototype engineering design tasks were developed using the argument driven engineering (ADE) framework by the research team to allow students to engage in engineering design by incorporating disciplinary core ideas and math principles, use evidence-based arguments to develop and critique design solutions, and participate in collaborative and individual learning through writing and discourse. The ADE framework was implemented in two middle schools in a southern state of the U.S. with two teachers and a total of over 100 students. Surveys were administered at three time points, scoring students on three attitudinal factors: Engineering Self-Identity, Engineering Interest, and perceptions of Engineers’ Benefit to Society. Student engineering interest and perception of engineers’ benefit to society were both found to decrease on average from one survey to the next, while scores on engineering self-identity stayed the same on average. Additionally, not knowing an engineer was shown to be associated with a disadvantage in the factors of both interest in engineering and perceptions of engineers’ benefit to society. The limitations of the study include a small number of time points, a lack of a control group, minimal collection of open-ended data, and software limitations.
Chu, L., & Sampson, V., & Hutner, T. L., & Rivale, S., & Crawford, R. H., & Baze, C. L., & Brooks, H. S. (2018, June), Argument-driven Engineering in Middle School Science Classrooms: The Study of Engineering Attitudes and Efforts to Broaden Engineering Participation by Exposing All Students to Multiple Engineering Design Tasks (RTP, Diversity) Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Salt Lake City, Utah. https://peer.asee.org/29815
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