Asee peer logo

Community Engagement in a First-Year Engineering Communication Course: Increasing Student Numbers from Handfuls to Hundreds.

Download Paper |

Conference

2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Indianapolis, Indiana

Publication Date

June 15, 2014

Start Date

June 15, 2014

End Date

June 18, 2014

ISSN

2153-5965

Conference Session

Impact of Community Engagement on Students

Tagged Division

Community Engagement Division

Page Count

10

Page Numbers

24.292.1 - 24.292.10

DOI

10.18260/1-2--20183

Permanent URL

https://strategy.asee.org/20183

Download Count

196

Request a correction

Paper Authors

biography

Laura M. Patterson University of British Columbia

visit author page

Ms. Patterson is a Senior Instructor at the University of British Columbia, Okanagan campus in the School of Engineering. She has taught technical and professional communication to engineering students since 2001.

visit author page

Download Paper |

Abstract

Community Engagement in a First-Year Engineering Communication Course: Increasing Student Numbers from Handfuls to Hundreds.Engaging first-year engineering students in their mandatory first term communication course canbe a challenge when some may not yet understand how these communication skills will be usedin their day-to-day professional interactions. However, adding a real client with real needswhere the students’ work can have real impact adds immediacy and interest. To those ends, acommunity service learning team proposal project was created in 2011 for 60 students of a firstterm, first-year engineering writing course, which is a part of a common first-year engineeringcurriculum. In this assignment, students had the opportunity to practice the communicationskills required for engineering through team fundraising proposals and presentations for localnot-for-profit organizations. A proposed idea from one student team was implemented by thecommunity organization the following summer. The not-for-profit used the idea to raise over$18,000, and it has since become one of their annual fundraising events.After the success of the first iteration of the project, it was offered to all 220 incoming first-yearengineering students in 2012. The 2012 iteration of the team proposal project marked the firsttime that an entire cohort of students was able to participate in community service learning inany discipline at that small university campus. The team proposal project was offered again in2013.There are multiple considerations for this type of project in terms of logistics and sustainability,especially for yearly participation of 220 students in this project. This paper will discuss thestrategies involved in adapting a community service learning project originally designed for 60students to a larger scale project for 220 students while maintaining the academic robustness ofthe proposal assignment and the good will of the partnering community organizations.

Patterson, L. M. (2014, June), Community Engagement in a First-Year Engineering Communication Course: Increasing Student Numbers from Handfuls to Hundreds. Paper presented at 2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Indianapolis, Indiana. 10.18260/1-2--20183

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2014 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015