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Classroom Demonstration Module for Two- and Three-dimensional Force Analysis: The Montessori-based Engineering (MBE) Model

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2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access


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Publication Date

June 22, 2020

Start Date

June 22, 2020

End Date

June 26, 2021

Conference Session

Making Mechanics Courses Fun and More Effective

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Anuja Kamat Wentworth Institute of Technology

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Anuja Kamat is an Associate Professor in the Civil Engineering Department at Wentworth Institute of Technology, Boston. Prof. Kamat received her Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from the University of Arizona, Tucson and MS in Civil Engineering from the University of Illinois, Urbana - Champaign . She also has a BE in Construction Engineering from University of Mumbai and Diploma in Civil Engineering from Government Polytechnic, Mumbai. Prof. Kamat’s research is in the areas of reinforced and prestressed concrete, concrete blocks and engineering education.

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Hadi Kazemiroodsari Wentworth Institute of Technology

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Hadi Kazemiroodsari is assistant professor at Wentworth Institute of Technology. He earned his PhD in Geotechnical engineering from Northeastern University. His area of expertise are Geotechnical engineering and Earthquake engineering.

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Leonard Anderson Wentworth Institute of Technology

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Leonard Anderson is an Associate Professor in Wentworth’s Department of Civil Engineering and Technology. He has a B.S. in civil engineering from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and an M.S. and Ph.D. in civil engineering from Worcester Polytechnic Institute. He is a certified professional constructor and licensed construction supervisor.

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Statics or Engineering Mechanics 1 is a fundamental course for most engineering disciplines and includes topics such as force systems, equilibrium, truss analysis, centroid, and moment of inertia and typically taught in the first semester of the sophomore year of the four-year engineering degree. It is usually observed that this is a difficult course for students and the passing rate is 60.7% (Vasquez). The author implemented a variety of methods to reduce the failure rate of students in this class. These methods included some hands-on demonstrations based on the ExCEEd model and the Montessori method of education. Hands-on models when used in combination with other active learning methods are engaging and useful in maintain student interest (Steif, 2003). The learning materials are one of the two main aspects of Montessori classrooms that are different from the conventional classroom (Marshall, 2017). The use of this method has been limited to K-8 classrooms. In this paper, the author will describe the classroom demonstration for two- and three-dimensional force analysis, which would be appropriate for use in the Undergraduate Engineering Statics class. Core aspects of the Montessori method, like introducing the color/shape/method scheme with a familiar topic and using the same scheme to introducing a complex topic is done with the intention of making learning accessible to all different types of learners. In this paper the author introduces the scheme for two dimensional analysis and then furthers the scheme for three dimensional models. The assessment of this method which shows clearer understanding of the concepts and increased student enthusiasm is provided in this paper. The procedure for making these models, along with textbook examples for use in the classroom are also presented in this paper.

Kamat, A., & Kazemiroodsari, H., & Anderson, L. (2020, June), Classroom Demonstration Module for Two- and Three-dimensional Force Analysis: The Montessori-based Engineering (MBE) Model Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--34286

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