June 24, 2007
June 24, 2007
June 27, 2007
12.386.1 - 12.386.11
Comparison of Three Unique Student Populations in an Engineering Technology Strength of Materials Course
The Engineering Technology (ET) department at The University of North Carolina at Charlotte has historically been a plus two program, offering only the junior and senior years of the BSET curriculum. In the fall of 2004, the department began offering all four years of its programs, accepting freshman students for the first time. That first freshman class has now matriculated to the junior year, joining a new class of transfer students entering at the same point in the curriculum.
Four-year ET programs also opened the door to transfer students from the engineering science programs on campus, with most arriving from mechanical engineering. Though some students expressed a greater interest in the technology programs, many sought transfer due to academic struggles, particularly in calculus and calculus based physics classes.
Mechanical engineering technology students take a traditional strength of materials course in the fall of the junior year. In fall 2006, this course enrolled 51 students, the majority of which fell into one of three categories: entered ET as freshmen; entered ET as junior transfers; transferred into ET from mechanical engineering. This paper details the experiences of teaching these three unique student populations in a junior level ET strength of materials course.
The Engineering Technology department at The University of North Carolina at Charlotte began operations in 1970 as a plus two program, offering only the junior and senior years of the BSET curriculum. All students entered in the junior year with an associate’s degree, predominately AAS degrees from two-year community college programs. Though outside the national norm, the department continued to operate exclusively as a plus two program through the 2003/2004 academic year.
In order to facilitate growth and to bring its structure inline with current trends, the department began offering all four years of its degree programs in the fall semester 2004, accepting freshman students for the first time. In addition to freshman, the department also accepted numerous transfer students from the engineering science (ES) programs on campus1, with a significant number transferring from mechanical engineering into mechanical engineering technology.
Some of the transferring students expressed a greater interest in the technology programs, reporting that the more practical application of engineering concepts and additional hands-on activities better suited their learning styles2. Many others, however, sought transfer into the technology programs due to academic struggles, particularly in calculus and calculus based physics classes3.
Watkins, G. (2007, June), Comparison Of Three Unique Student Populations In An Engineering Technology Strength Of Materials Course Paper presented at 2007 Annual Conference & Exposition, Honolulu, Hawaii. 10.18260/1-2--2668
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