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Does EPICS as a Pre-college Program Foster Engineering Identity Development as Correlated to Doing Engineering?

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Conference

2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access

Location

Virtual On line

Publication Date

June 22, 2020

Start Date

June 22, 2020

End Date

June 26, 2021

Conference Session

NSF Grantees: K-12 Session 2

Tagged Topics

Diversity and NSF Grantees Poster Session

Page Count

10

DOI

10.18260/1-2--34475

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/34475

Download Count

129

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Paper Authors

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Ciera Ferrone Arizona State University

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Ciera Ferrone is a graduate of Appalachian State University in beautiful Boone, North Carolina. She earned bachelors degrees in Psychology and Statistics, and a masters in Experimental Psychology with a focus in quantitative methods. Ciera is now a Research Specialist for the Department of Engineering at Arizona State University, where she conducts research in engineering education.

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Tirupalavanam G. Ganesh Arizona State University

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Tirupalavanam G. Ganesh is Assistant Dean of Engineering Education at Arizona State University’s Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering. He is Tooker Professor in the School for Engineering of Matter, Transport, & Energy. His research interests include educational research methods, communication of research, and k-16+ engineering education. Ganesh’s research is largely focused on studying the impact of k-12 and undergraduate curricula, and teaching-learning processes in both the formal and informal settings. He is also studying entry and persistence in engineering of first generation, women, and under-represented ethnic minorities.

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Jennifer Velez Arizona State University

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In 2013, Velez joined the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering as a Program Coordinator Senior with the K-12 Engineering Education and Outreach team. Since then, Velez has managed such programs as FIRST LEGO League Robotics, MESA, and the National Summer Transportation Institute. She currently coordinates EPICS High (Engineering Projects in Community Service) to engage high school and middle school students in human-centered engineering projects in their communities. Through this program, Velez works to build partnerships with school districts, industry, and non-profits to bring STEM programming to underserved communities across the state. Before joining ASU, Velez spent seven years as an elementary educator at a STEM focus school. She currently holds a Masters of Education in Curriculum and Instruction.

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James Collofello Arizona State University

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Vice Dean of Academic and Student Affairs
Professor of Computer Science and Engineering
School of Computing Informatics and Decision Systems Engineering
Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering

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Kyle D. Squires Arizona State University Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0003-2778-6974

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Kyle Squires is dean of the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering at Arizona State University where he leads the advancement of the Fulton Schools, focused on global leadership in engineering education and research and innovation at scale. Squires is a Fellow of the American Physical Society, holds a B.S. in mechanical engineering from Washington State University and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in mechanical engineering from Stanford University.

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Abstract

Engineering Projects in Community Service (EPICS) is a middle and high school program, with a focus on the engineering design process and delivering real solutions to community partners. In order to evaluate the efficacy of the program, a pre-post test design was implemented to examine changes in attitudinal and behavioral measures. Pre-data were collected at the beginning of the school year, and paralleled the program’s registration process to ensure high response rates; post- data were then collected at the end of the school year. Demographic data demonstrate that of all 2018 - 2019 registered EPICS participants (N = 414), 41 percent were female; 66.6 percent were non-white; and 30 percent held first generation student status. Importantly, 68.5 percent of participants reported that neither parent or guardian is an engineer, and 65.7 percent of participants reported that they “definitely will attend” a four-year university. These data suggest that the current sample is ideal for evaluating EPICS as a pre-college engineering education program, because most participants are not experiencing engineering in the home and may be less susceptible to parental pressures for choosing engineering as a college major and potential career, but have salient intentions to attend college. In addition to collecting demographic information, participants completed a series of measures designed to capture attitudes and behaviors toward engineering as a potential career field. The main measures of interest include Engineering Identity and Doing Engineering. Engineering Identity scores reflect participants’ personal and professional identities as engineers; Doing Engineering scores indicate participants’ prior experience with engineering and its related technical skills. Baseline data on the sample reveal average engineering identities (M = 38.41, SD = 6.44, 95% CI [37.77, 39.05]). A series of t-tests was conducted to examine gender differences in these measures. Men reported significantly higher engineering identities (M = 37.65, SD = 6.58) compared to women (M = 39.54, SD = 6.09), t(360) = 2.95, p = .003, F = .037. Men reported stronger and more frequent experiences with engineering, indicated by their higher Doing Engineering scores (M = 13.75, SD = 5.16), compared to women (M = 15.31, SD = 4.69), t(368) = 3.13, p = .002, F = .003. Interestingly, first generation students reported higher engineering identities (M = 37.45, SD = 6.53) compared to non-first generation students (M = 39.66, SD = 5.99), t(375) = 3.46, p = .001, F = 1.39. To examine the relationship between Engineering Identity and Doing Engineering, a correlation analysis was conducted and a moderate, positive relationship emerged, such that as students’ experience with engineering increased, their engineering identities also increased (R = .463, p > .000).

Ferrone, C., & Ganesh, T. G., & Velez, J., & Collofello, J., & Squires, K. D. (2020, June), Does EPICS as a Pre-college Program Foster Engineering Identity Development as Correlated to Doing Engineering? Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--34475

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