Asee peer logo

Creating a Learning Environment that Engages Engineering Students in the Classroom via Communication Strategies

Download Paper |


2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Tampa, Florida

Publication Date

June 15, 2019

Start Date

June 15, 2019

End Date

June 19, 2019

Conference Session

ERM Technical Session 16: Faculty Development and Teaching Contexts

Tagged Division

Educational Research and Methods

Page Count




Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors


Eleazar Marquez Rice University

visit author page

Eleazar Marquez is an Assistant Teaching Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Rice University.

visit author page


Samuel Garcia Jr. Texas State University

visit author page

Dr. Samuel García Jr. currently serves as Educator Professional Development Specialist at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, CA and is an Assistant Professor of Practice for the LBJ Institute for Education and Research at Texas State University.

visit author page

Download Paper |


In this research effort, the authors claim that possessing technical knowledge is not a sufficient asset to establish a learning environment that renders engagement with engineering students during lecture sessions, but rather the integration of various communication strategies that support students’ academic development. Research has noted that classroom context and conditions impact the degree of student learning and engagement and are further enhanced when students feel comfortable communicating with the instructor and with their peers. If such acquaintance is nonexistent, student participation may be stifled and limited despite the technical concerns arising during lecture sessions. Thus, it is imperative for faculty members to consciously and intentionally foster communication before, during, and after lecture sessions, and become sensitive to such academic needs that will enable students to participate with solvency. In this context, four strategies have been identified that eliminate intimidation scenarios and nurture a learning environment to be generated consistently: verbally encourage student participation, learn student names and inquire from them during lecture, have communication with student before and after class, pose non-intuitive question that spark curiosity. Results indicate that utilizing these strategies minimizes traditional classroom power relations, strengthens student-instructor communication, increases student collaboration, and fosters an active learning environment that enhances student engagement and learning.

Marquez, E., & Garcia, S. (2019, June), Creating a Learning Environment that Engages Engineering Students in the Classroom via Communication Strategies Paper presented at 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Tampa, Florida. 10.18260/1-2--32556

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: © 2019 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