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Board 155: Engaging Secondary STEM Teachers in Automotive Engineering and Alternative Energy Research at a University Site

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2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Tampa, Florida

Publication Date

June 15, 2019

Start Date

June 15, 2019

End Date

June 19, 2019

Conference Session

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Tagged Topics

Diversity and NSF Grantees Poster Session

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Paper Authors


Xia Wang Oakland University

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Dr. Xia Wang is a professor in the department of Mechanical Engineering at Oakland University. Her research and teaching interests lie in the areas of fluid mechanics and heat transfer, with an emphasis on fuel cell and battery technology.

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Anica Gwenell Bowe Oakland University Orcid 16x16

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Dr. Bowe is an Assistant Professor at Oakland University in Rochester Michigan. She earned a Ph.D. in Education Psychology with a focus in Quantitative Methods in Education. Her interests are in evaluation practices for school-based initiatives, instrument development, the psycho-social development of immigrant adolescents, and education evaluation within the Caribbean.

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Chris J. Kobus Oakland University

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Director of Outreach, Recruitment and Retention, and Associate Professor
School of Engineering and Computer Science (SECS)
Director, HTech Jobs of the Future Program
Director of Engineering and Energy Education
OU Inc Clean Energy Research Center (CERC)
OU Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CETL) Faculty Fellow
Oakland University
Rochester, MI 48309

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The department of mechanical Engineering at Oakland University was awarded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) a three year Research Experience for Teachers(RET) grant to support a group of secondary STEM teachers to conduct Automotive Engineering and Alternative Energy research at Oakland University. The program has run successfully for three consecutive summers between 2016 and 2018. The program aims to inspire K-12 STEM teaching and learning by engaging the secondary STEM teachers in the research project as well as exposing them to engineering education pedagogy. A total of 36 teachers from 12 different schools have taken part in the program. More than half of the participants were female teachers, and nearly half of the participants taught at urban schools with high percentage of students of color. The RET participants worked in teams with graduate students and faculty mentors on automotive engineering and alternative energy related projects, and participated in other activities such as research seminars, machine shop training, CAD workshop, and industrial sites visit. Another important element of the program is engineering related course module development. The RET participants took 16 hours course module development workshop during the course of the program, and each participant was expected to design and develop a course module in the summer and implement it in the classroom in the following academic year. Over the 3 years of the program, the RET participants created 29 engineering modules to implement inside their classrooms. The purpose of this paper is to share the experience of organizing and running such a research and teaching program for the teachers and to report the program organization, outcomes and some assessments results.

Wang, X., & Bowe, A. G., & Kobus, C. J. (2019, June), Board 155: Engaging Secondary STEM Teachers in Automotive Engineering and Alternative Energy Research at a University Site Paper presented at 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Tampa, Florida. 10.18260/1-2--32273

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