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Emerging Themes in a Distance-Delivered Calculus I Course: Perceptions of Collaboration, Community, and Support

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2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Indianapolis, Indiana

Publication Date

June 15, 2014

Start Date

June 15, 2014

End Date

June 18, 2014



Conference Session

NSF Grantees’ Poster Session

Tagged Division

Division Experimentation & Lab-Oriented Studies

Tagged Topic

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Page Count


Page Numbers

24.476.1 - 24.476.22



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Paper Authors


Angela Minichiello Utah State University Orcid 16x16

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Angie Minichiello is a Principal Lecturer in the Department of Engineering Education at Utah State University. She instructs undergraduate engineering courses via distance delivery to students at regional campuses located throughout Utah. She is a registered professional mechanical engineer and has more than 15 years industry experience as a practicing engineer. Angie's research interests include understanding barriers to entry and persistence in engineering, diversity issues in engineering, and distance delivered engineering education. She is member of ASEE, ASME and IEEE.

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Joshua Marquit Utah State University

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Joshua Marquit is an Instructor in the Psychology Department at Utah State University. He has a doctoral degree in psychology, with an emphasis on applied and experimental methodology. He teaches undergraduate and graduate research methods and statistics courses on campus, online, and through distance broadcast learning formats. He has previous research experience with the U.S. National Parks Service, NASA, and Utah Department of Environmental Quality. His research interests include computer-mediated communication, Internet infidelity, online medical information and its impact on the doctor-patient relationship, physical and verbal abuse among college athletes, gender role stereotypes, human interactions with various environments, and religiosity.

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Jim Dorward Utah State University

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Jim Dorward is the Associate Dean for Research and Professor of Education at Utah State University. He specializes in Program Evaluation, Research Methods, and Mathematics Education. His collaborations in STEM project-based research include the National Library of Virtual Manipulatives, the National Center for Engineering and Technology Education, an evaluation capacity building service project for the Math and Science Partnership program, and the Instructional Architect (service software for the National STEM Digital Library).

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Christine E. Hailey Utah State University

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Christine Hailey is Dean of the College of Engineering at Utah State University and a Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering. She has served as a senior associate dean in the college and was the director of the National Center for Engineering and Technology Education, a National Science Foundation-funded center for learning and teaching. She was a member of the ADVANCE-US team, another NSF-funded program to address issues that impact the effectiveness and satisfaction of female faculty in the engineering and science colleges at USU.

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Emerging Themes in a Distance Delivered Calculus I Course: Student Perceptions of Community, Engagement and Support  Abstract Our national interest in educating greater numbers of engineers puts emphasis on creatingundergraduate engineering degree opportunities accessible by traditionally underrepresentedstudent groups, including geographically dispersed and rural residents, working professionals,and women. Currently, new offerings able to accommodate non-traditional student groups areevolving via distance education and online learning. As more engineering programs adoptdistance education as a means to engage a larger, more diverse student pool, significant needs forpedagogy capable of supporting these contemporary learning environments arise. For distanceengineering students, educational intervention within the required calculus sequence may bemost critical: Local data indicates that student success rates in distance delivered calculus can beas low as 48%. This paper describes data gathered during the first year of an NSF sponsored TUES TypeI project entitled “Online Learning Forums for Improved Engineering Student Outcomes inCalculus.” In this three-year quasi-experimental study, we are evaluating the potential of web-based learning communities, as implemented through a freely available, wiki-based onlineplatform, to improve student outcomes in distance delivered calculus. Using quantitative andqualitative data, we will assess similarities and differences in the academic achievement, interestand attitudes toward learning between control and treatment sections of Calculus I and II,delivered using synchronous video broadcast to students located at several regional sitesthroughout the state. A major outcome of this project will be the development and disseminationof a student usage model aimed at facilitating a broader use of online learning forums throughoutScience, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education. Initial data gathered during the control section of Calculus I includes exam scores,student participant observation, instructor reflection, an end of course student survey, and semi-structured one-on-one interviews conducted with students withdrawing from or failing the course.Analysis includes open coding of interview data and factor analysis of survey data to describeemergent themes in the data. Participant observation and instructor reflection data are used totriangulate the analysis. Preliminary findings will be used to inform the implementation of theonline forum in the Calculus I and II treatment sections during the next phase of the project.  

Minichiello, A., & Marquit, J., & Dorward, J., & Hailey, C. E. (2014, June), Emerging Themes in a Distance-Delivered Calculus I Course: Perceptions of Collaboration, Community, and Support Paper presented at 2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Indianapolis, Indiana. 10.18260/1-2--20367

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