June 15, 2019
June 15, 2019
June 19, 2019
The RePicture App (RePicture.com) is a new way to introduce students and the public to engineering and interdisciplinary engineering teams. It uses the stories of engineering and engineers to change perceptions of engineering. The App’s goal is to increase interest and diversity in engineering and can be used in introductory engineering courses to increase students’ persistence.
Research shows that high school teachers and students generally do not understand what engineers do and the public does not know that engineers play a vital role in saving lives. Even engineering students often mistakenly think that most engineers sit alone at desks doing math. They may not fully understand the breadth of engineer’s work or its benefits to society. This lack of understanding impacts engineering students’ persistence in engineering.
Stories about actual engineers show that engineering is creative, collaborative, and makes a real difference in people’s lives. The RePicture App uses engineering projects all around us to tell the stories of how engineering projects are benefiting communities and the teams that make projects come to life. The App also tells the stories of individual engineers, including what they do daily on the job and why they like their job. These stories show how the work done by engineers is shaping our future and introduces students to the many different types of engineering jobs. The App also highlights that all types of people (e.g., women and other underrepresented groups) are successful engineers.
There is no cost to use the RePicture App and it is freely available for any course where students will benefit from learning more about engineering projects or engineers. The App was developed based on a review of research regarding how to increase students’, including female students’, interest in engineering as a career.
This paper discusses the potential benefits of using the App in introductory engineering courses. Because most of the data currently contained in the App regards civil engineering, we expect civil engineering courses initially will be most interested in its use. During the coming months, more stories will be added for other engineering disciplines. This is a work in progress and our goal is to present research results at a future ASEE conference.
Mayo, L., & Voter, C. (2019, June), Board 15: Introducing Students to Engineering by Helping Them RePicture Their World Paper presented at 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Tampa, Florida. 10.18260/1-2--32265
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