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Board 239: Community as “Surroundings” in a Classroom Ecosystem

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Conference

2023 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Baltimore , Maryland

Publication Date

June 25, 2023

Start Date

June 25, 2023

End Date

June 28, 2023

Conference Session

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Tagged Topic

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Page Count

11

DOI

10.18260/1-2--42680

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/42680

Download Count

74

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Paper Authors

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Renee M Clark University of Pittsburgh

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Renee Clark serves as the Director of Assessment for the Swanson School of Engineering at the University of Pittsburgh. She received her PhD from the Department of Industrial Engineering, where she also completed her post-doctoral studies. Her research has primarily focused on the application of data analysis techniques to engineering education research studies as well as industrial accidents. She has over 20 years of experience in various engineering, IT, and data analysis positions within academia and industry, including ten years of manufacturing experience at Delphi Automotive.

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Matthew Allan Moss University of South Florida

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Autar Kaw University of South Florida Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0002-3976-6375

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Autar Kaw is a professor of mechanical engineering at the University of South Florida. He is a recipient of the 2012 U.S. Professor of the Year Award (doctoral and research universities) from the Council for Advancement and Support of Education and the Carnegie Foundation for Advancement of Teaching. His primary scholarly interests are engineering education research, adaptive, blended, and flipped learning, open courseware development, composite materials mechanics, and higher education's state and future. His work in these areas has been funded by the National Science Foundation, Air Force Office of Scientific Research, Florida Department of Transportation, and Wright Patterson Air Force Base. Funded by National Science Foundation, under his leadership, he and his colleagues from around the nation have developed, implemented, refined, and assessed online resources for open courseware in Numerical Methods (http://nm.MathForCollege.com). This courseware annually receives 1M+ page views, 1.6M+ views of the YouTube lectures, and 90K+ visitors to the "numerical methods guy" blog. This body of work has also been used to measure the impact of the flipped, blended, and adaptive settings on how well engineering students learn content, develop group-work skills and perceive their learning environment. He has written more than 115 refereed technical papers, and his opinion editorials have appeared in the Tampa Bay Times, the Tampa Tribune, and the Chronicle Vitae.

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Rasim Guldiken University of South Florida

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Dr. Rasim Guldiken is the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs of the College of Engineering and an Associate Professor of the Mechanical Engineering Department at the University of South Florida (USF). Dr. Guldiken has been recognized with multiple awards and honors, including the 2022 ASME Fellow, 2022 USF Faculty Outstanding Research Achievement Award, 2022 USF Academic Excellence Award, 2019 and 2012 USF University-Wide Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Awards, 2018 USF Outstanding Graduate Faculty Mentor Honorable Mention and 2014 Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) Ralph Teetor Educational Award.

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Abstract

In this paper, we examine the notion of the “surroundings” in an engineering classroom. We posed an open-ended reflection question to engineering undergraduates at a large US university about their classroom surroundings and its impact on their learning and comprehension. This reflection question was part of an NSF-funded study on the use of weekly reflection in a flipped fluid mechanics course to drive metacognitive development and lifelong learning skills. During class, students were encouraged to collaborate with their peers during problem solving to achieve collective understanding and interact with the instructor. Based on an inductive content analysis of the data from the reflection question related to the classroom surroundings, we obtained an unexpected result for the most frequently mentioned positive classroom “surroundings.” The predominant response of "peers" as positive “surroundings” (46% of responses) was unexpected, as we had expected mostly less-positive responses related to the physical surroundings, such as classroom layout, size, infrastructure, etc. Although students identified the classroom’s physical attributes and conditions as surroundings that had both negative and positive influences on their learning, a second unexpected result emerged with the notion of the instructor and in-person instruction as part of the positive “surroundings.” Upon searching the literature to understand these results, we adopted the Community of Inquiry (CoI) framework. This model consists of the three interacting components of cognitive presence, social presence, and teaching presence, which enable educational experiences and learning. When combined, the Community of Inquiry elements identified in the reflections (i.e., peers, instructor, and in-class instruction) were discussed as positive classroom “surroundings” in 55% of the reflections. Thus, within their classroom ecosystem, students frequently identified their Community of Inquiry as a positive “surrounding.” This “balanced” the 54% of responses that discussed the physical room conditions as non-supportive surroundings. When the classroom’s Community of Inquiry was identified as a positive “surrounding” in the reflections, only 34% of these reflections also discussed non-supportive physical room conditions. When the Community of Inquiry was not identified by students as a positive “surrounding,” 79% of these reflections discussed non-supportive physical room conditions. Thus, the presence of a Community of Inquiry may have diminished the perception or impact of any non-supportive physical room conditions. Overall, our results suggest the positive influence that an interactive flipped classroom structure can have on students’ perceptions of their “surroundings.”

Clark, R. M., & Moss, M. A., & Kaw, A., & Guldiken, R. (2023, June), Board 239: Community as “Surroundings” in a Classroom Ecosystem Paper presented at 2023 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Baltimore , Maryland. 10.18260/1-2--42680

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