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Board 7: Partnership for Equity: Cultivating Inclusive Professional Identities for Engineers and Computer Scientists across Four Unique Institutional Climates

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Conference

2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

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

Page Count

5

DOI

10.18260/1-2--32409

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/32409

Download Count

26

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Paper Authors

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Rebecca A. Atadero Colorado State University

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Rebecca Atadero is an associate professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Colorado State University, specializing in structural engineering. She conducts research on the inspection, management and renewal of existing structures, and on diversity, equity and inclusion in engineering education.

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A.M. Aramati Casper Colorado State University

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Dr. Aramati Casper is an education researcher and ecologist. She is currently a post doctoral fellow at Colorado State University doing research on diversity, inclusion, and social justice in undergraduate engineering classrooms.

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Karen E. Rambo-Hernandez West Virginia University Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0001-8107-2898

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Karen E. Rambo-Hernandez is an associate professor at West Virginia University in the College of Education and Human Services in the department of Learning Sciences and Human Development. In her research, she is interested the assessment of student learning, particularly the assessment of academic growth, and evaluating the impact of curricular change.

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Christina Paguyo University of Denver

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Christina H. Paguyo, PhD, is the Director of Academic Assessment at the University of Denver. Her research interests focus on designing and examining educational environments grounded in research, theory, and equity.

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Jody Paul Metropolitan State University of Denver Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0002-7401-9121

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Professor of Computer Science. Member of ABET Computing Accreditation Commission.

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Ronald R. DeLyser University of Denver

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Ronald R. DeLyser is currently an Associate Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering the University of Denver where he has been on the faculty since 1986. He has received all of his degrees in Electrical Engineering: the B.S. degree from the University of Florida, Gainesville, in 1974; the M.S. degree from the University of New Mexico, in 1978; and the Ph.D. degree from the University of Colorado, Boulder in 1991. Dr. DeLyser, a member of the U.S. Air Force between 1965 and 1986, held a teaching position at the United States Air Force Academy, served as a development engineer at the Air Force Weapons Laboratory at Kirtland AFB in New Mexico and was the Requirements Officer for the Nellis AFB Ranges in Nevada. Prior to 2000, his research areas included pedagogy, outcomes based assessment, the study of periodic gratings used as antennas and in antenna systems, high power microwave interactions with large complex cavities, anechoic chambers, and anechoic chamber absorbing materials. Since 2000, he has been concentrating on engineering education pedagogy, engineering program accreditation, and outcomes based assessment for both engineering programs and general education, and inclusive excellence for engineering an computer science programs.

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Abstract

The Partnership for Equity (P4E) project is funded under the NSF IUSE (Improving Undergraduate STEM Education) program. The goal of the project is to cultivate inclusive professional identities in engineering and computer science students. Students with inclusive professional identities will have: (a) the necessary technical knowledge, skills, and abilities to work in their chosen field, (b) an appreciation for how all kinds of diversity strengthen engineering and computer science as disciplines, and (c) knowledge of how to act in inclusive ways and create inclusive environments within their fields.

Project activities are currently occurring at four partner campuses. The project builds on a prior pilot grant and is driven by three primary objectives: (1) to transfer first-year diversity and inclusion activities to three new campuses; (2) to develop, implement and assess diversity and inclusion activities for engineering courses at the sophomore and junior level; and (3) to track students as they move through their degree programs to longitudinally assess the efficacy of the diversity and inclusion activities. Of note, the project espouses a broad definition of diversity (Page, 2007), which includes diversity in terms of problem-solving approaches, personalities, and demographic characteristics. cognitive, social, and person characteristics. This poster will highlight significant products from the second year of the project with respect to four topics.

Activities to promote effective and inclusive teamwork As we have expanded the project, many of the faculty interested in participating have wanted to improve how teams function in their classes. The specific needs mentioned by faculty members are (a) encouraging teams to value and welcome diversity and (b) working effectively in diverse teams. Several activities (n= 12) have been developed and are currently being piloted. For example, in one assignment students were asked to identify a product that did not work well for the entire population (e.g., the pen-tether on credit card screens is sometimes too short for left-handed people) and consider how to construct teams that are more likely to consider a wide variety of users. A second assignment addressed the need for psychological safety in teams via a case study of the NASA Columbia disaster. A third assignment had students watch TedX talks related to why diversity makes teams smarter and reflect on how the students should consider diversity in teams as a strength and a highly desirable quality.

Activities to teach students about diversity within the engineering context This portion of the project has focused on developing activities that fit within technical engineering courses (with or without teamwork) and relate directly to the course content. The poster will discuss at least two example assignments. The first assignment is for Engineering Mechanics: Dynamics and asks students to consider the impact of seatbelts and airbags in car crashes and the effectiveness of these safety devices for different populations of people including drivers that are older or have larger bodies, children, and women . The second assignment is a more course flexible assignment that asks students to put themselves in the role of different design stakeholders for a product or process and to explore the privilege of various stakeholders. The assignment was first implemented for civil engineering students and will be adapted for other engineering disciplines and computer science students.

Efforts to engage and train faculty at each campus The goals of this project cannot be achieved without increasing faculty understanding and appreciation for diversity, equity, and inclusion topics. This portion of the poster will describe opportunities and barriers to engaging faculty at all four project campuses. Each of the four campuses has unique opportunities and barriers related to the culture at each institution, the programs where implementation is occurring, and the students served by each institution.

Preliminary findings from project assessment This section of the poster will highlight findings from across the project activities, including effectiveness of the first-year activities, and preliminary data describing the impact of teamwork and technical content based activities.

Atadero, R. A., & Casper, A. A., & Rambo-Hernandez, K. E., & Paguyo, C., & Paul, J., & DeLyser, R. R. (2019, June), Board 7: Partnership for Equity: Cultivating Inclusive Professional Identities for Engineers and Computer Scientists across Four Unique Institutional Climates Paper presented at 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Tampa, Florida. 10.18260/1-2--32409

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