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Besteams: Student Team Experience Differs By Institution Type

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2000 Annual Conference


St. Louis, Missouri

Publication Date

June 18, 2000

Start Date

June 18, 2000

End Date

June 21, 2000



Page Count


Page Numbers

5.123.1 - 5.123.7



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Paper Authors

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Steven Brown

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Sarah Mouring

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Patricia F. Mead

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Marjorieanne Natishan

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James Greenberg

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Corinna Lathan

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David Bigio

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Indranil Goswami

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Linda Schmidt

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

Session 8230

BESTEAMS: Student Team Experience Differs by Institution Type L. Schmidt, P. Mead, M. Natishan, D. Bigio, J. Greenberg University of Maryland C. Lathan, S. Brown, S. Mouring, I. Goswami Catholic University of America/United States Naval Academy/Morgan State University

1. Introduction

Project teams are the standard working group in many engineering fields and engineering college curricula. Teams are ultimately judged by the quality of their work product. Teams are a learning environment and a proving ground. Great engineering professionals exhibit excellence in work content and team process skills. Unfortunately, standard engineering curricula do not teach skills for successful team performance. The BESTEAMS Project was formed to develop engineering project team training systems to breach this gap in our curricula. “BESTEAMS” is Building Engineering Student Team Effectiveness and Management Systems.

The BESTEAMS Project seeks to transform the professional engineering environment into one comfortable for all by training engineering students to recognize and accept diverse learning, communication, and behavior styles in their colleagues. BESTEAMS Partners are The Catholic University of America (CUA), Morgan State University (MSU), the United States Naval Academy (USNA) and the University of Maryland (UM) engineering programs. Our partnership represents a wide spectrum of cultural environments with diverse student and faculty populations. We include private and public universities, a historically black college and university (HBCU), a military academy, and majority institutions.

2. BESTEAMS Training Materials

Teams are collections of individuals interacting as the team learns and performs. An effective way to learn to interact in a team is to study ones self through an attribute filter. An attribute filter is a set of characteristics used to classify individuals into categories of similarity (e.g., Myers Briggs Personality Type, gender, or GPA level). The BESTEAMS Engineering Project Team Training System (EPTTS) introduces students to a relevant categorization system allowing them to learn about themselves. The EPTTS exercises explore the effects of different types of diversity on team performance. BESTEAMS is currently testing an EPTTS using learning styles, as defined by the Kolb1 model.

The EPTTS pilot program includes training in basic team skills. Our intent is to give each student guidelines for effective team functioning. The EPTTS includes short segments in both major area team skills and diversity awareness. Our strategy is to teach team members about a kind of diversity that is relevant to them. We’ve chosen learning styles as the focus for our EPTTS for two reasons. First, there is intrinsic value in a student knowing his or her own style.

Brown, S., & Mouring, S., & Mead, P. F., & Natishan, M., & Greenberg, J., & Lathan, C., & Bigio, D., & Goswami, I., & Schmidt, L. (2000, June), Besteams: Student Team Experience Differs By Institution Type Paper presented at 2000 Annual Conference, St. Louis, Missouri. 10.18260/1-2--8182

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: © 2000 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