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Effect of Previous Experience and Attitudes on Capstone Project Achievement

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2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Atlanta, Georgia

Publication Date

June 23, 2013

Start Date

June 23, 2013

End Date

June 26, 2013



Conference Session

Capstone and Senior Design Projects Session

Tagged Division

Engineering Technology

Page Count


Page Numbers

23.462.1 - 23.462.17



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Paper Authors


Byron G. Garry South Dakota State University

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BYRON GARRY is an Associate Professor and Undergraduate Program Coordinator in the Department of Construction & Operations Management in the College of Engineering at South Dakota State University and has taught the EET Project Management/Capstone course sequence since 2001.

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Effect of Previous Experience and Attitudes on Capstone Project AchievementThis research was undertaken to see if there are any prior experiences or attitudes that studentsbring in to the senior Capstone course that correlate with group Capstone project level success.Our Capstone course is a two-semester sequence of courses, where the first semester has anemphasis on project management and the second semester mostly the project work itself. Avariety of assessment techniques were used to obtain both quantitative measurements andqualitative indicators in an attempt to find common factors that affect how well the projectssucceed. There were several self-assessments by the students themselves:  a pre- and post-course survey of knowledge of project management tools  a pre- and post-course survey of achievement vs. importance of all ABET-ETAC Criterion 3 Student Outcomes  a pre-course student biography including GPA, course and work experience  a pre-course self-assessment of how past work experience and attitudes have prepared the student for the capstone project  a post-course assessment of the capstone project experiences and success  peer assessment of team functioning at mid-way and at the end of the projectIn addition, there were objective assessments of capstone project success done by the courseinstructor, technical advisors, and other Engineering Technology faculty. The measurements ofCapstone project success were done as a part of demonstrating achievement of ABET-ETACStudent Outcomes:  Assessment of initial hardware and/or software prototype at two months into the project  Design Review of projects approximately half-way through the two-semester project  Assessment of project-tracking web pages done throughout the course of the projects  Course instructor and technical advisor assessment of project success, final reports and initial and final presentations.The qualitative measures of student’s prior experiences and attitudes will be done by usingcontent analysis and keyword frequency count on their self-assessments. The quantitativeanalysis will be done on achievement of student outcomes as measured by assessment rubricsthat have been developed and used by the Capstone course instructor for several years.

Garry, B. G. (2013, June), Effect of Previous Experience and Attitudes on Capstone Project Achievement Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. 10.18260/1-2--19476

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