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Board 121: Innovating Teamwork Instruction in High School: Using Pandemic (Work in Progress)

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2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 23, 2018

Start Date

June 23, 2018

End Date

July 27, 2018

Conference Session

Pre-College Engineering Education Division Poster Session

Tagged Division

Pre-College Engineering Education

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Paper Authors


Joshua Alexéi García Sheridan Virginia Tech Orcid 16x16

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Joshua García Sheridan is a PhD student in the Department of Engineering Education at Virginia Tech. He received his Bachelor's of Science in Electrical Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. His current research work include gaming and game-like interventions in engineering education and designing interactive educational tutorials for radio engineering, with research interests in explicitly mapping childhood stages of cognitive development to engineering knowledge and skills for K-12 curricula.

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Kenneth Reid Virginia Tech

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Kenneth Reid is the Assistant Department Head for Undergraduate Programs in Engineering Education at Virginia Tech. He is active in engineering within K-12, serving on the TSA Board of Directors. He and his coauthors were awarded the William Elgin Wickenden award for 2014, recognizing the best paper in the Journal of Engineering Education. He was awarded an IEEE-USA Professional Achievement Award in 2013 for designing the nation's first BS degree in Engineering Education. He was named NETI Faculty Fellow for 2013-2014, and the Herbert F. Alter Chair of Engineering (Ohio Northern University) in 2010. His research interests include success in first-year engineering, engineering in K-12, introducing entrepreneurship into engineering, and international service and engineering. He has written two texts in Digital Electronics, including the text used by Project Lead the Way.

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Pre-engineering in K-12 incorporates teaming as one of the major professional skills. Multiple pre-packaged curricula such as Project Lead the Way include teaming as such a skill. Teamwork skills are explicitly addressed within standards such curricula are based on, such as the NGSS or the Common Core English Language Arts Standards. Attempts to effectively integrate engineering knowledge, skills, and abilities in K-12 can be constrained by teachers lacking time and funding to consider major revisions or additions to their curriculum implementations.

Pandemic is a board game that can be used to teach teamwork in an entertaining, yet serious manner. The game’s features promote interdependency among players by constraining player actions and requiring the leveraging of special roles each player possesses to beat the game as a team. Using a lesson plan developed to teach six core teamwork skills, a high school Project Lead the Way class was administered a game-based intervention. Two rounds of the game were played, with a debriefing in-between sessions of play connecting the gameplay with teamwork skills. Students were assessed for understanding of teamwork in a pretest/posttest format using written reflective essays. These essays were coded using a rubric that categorizes which teamwork skills are emphasized by students and how. Descriptive and comparative analyses of essay content was employed to determine the effectiveness of the intervention in generating awareness and understanding of the six teamwork skills.

Results demonstrated evidence of gains in students’ understanding of teamwork. The ability of students to relate teamwork skills to their gameplay experiences appeared to reinforce their understanding. Using the lesson plans with games moderated by debriefing segments can engage students constructively without generating tedium as traditional classwork does. Additional analysis and data gathering shall hopefully reinforce these findings.

García Sheridan, J. A., & Reid, K. (2018, June), Board 121: Innovating Teamwork Instruction in High School: Using Pandemic (Work in Progress) Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--29899

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