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Creation and Implementation of an Open-Ended Design Course for a High School Summer STEM Program (Evaluation)

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2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


New Orleans, Louisiana

Publication Date

June 26, 2016

Start Date

June 26, 2016

End Date

August 28, 2016





Conference Session

K-12 & Pre-College Engineering Division Evaluation: Exploring the Impact of Summer Programs on K-12 Youth (Part 2)

Tagged Division

Pre-College Engineering Education Division

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Paper Authors


Victoria G. Bill New York University

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Victoria Bill is an adjunct professor in the First-Year Engineering Program at NYU Tandon School of Engineering. She studied electrical engineering and received her B.S. from the Ohio State University and her M.S. at the University of Texas at Austin. Her previous work included co-directing and teaching the Summer STEM Program for high school students at the Cooper Union.

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Yosef Skolnick Cooper Union Orcid 16x16

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This evaluation paper discusses the design of a new six week course in the university’s summer science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) program for high school students. Existing courses in the program focused on a single engineering discipline (electrical, chemical, mechanical, or civil) with well-defined projects chosen by the professor. The new course focused on open-ended engineering design and multidisciplinary entrepreneurship. Most courses at the high school level utilize a clear design goal so that students can spend their time in design of a solution and construction. However, there are clear advantages to introducing open ended design to students earlier, including addressing the ABET Criteria parts e) an ability to identify, formulate, and solve engineering problems and h) the broad education necessary to understand the impact of engineering solutions in a global, economic, environmental, and societal context.1 It has also been shown that students’ intrinsic motivations in the design of a project can inspire further engagement in engineering. The procedure for creating the course materials and methods of instruction are discussed, as well as student project results and a qualitative and quantitative assessment of the course.

Bill, V. G., & Skolnick, Y. (2016, June), Creation and Implementation of an Open-Ended Design Course for a High School Summer STEM Program (Evaluation) Paper presented at 2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana. 10.18260/p.26590

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