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Engaging Students in STEM Learning through Co-Robotic Hands-On Activities (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

June 29, 2016





Conference Session

K-12 & Pre-College Engineering Division: Robotics in Pre-K-12 Engineering Education

Tagged Division

Pre-College Engineering Education Division

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Paper Authors


Saeedeh Ziaeefard Michigan Technological University Orcid 16x16

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Saeedeh Ziaeefard is a PhD student and research assistant with Nonlinear and Autonomous Systems Laboratory (NASLab) in the Department of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics at Michigan Technological University. Her research interests include engineering education, control and navigation of autonomous underwater vehicles.

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Nina Mahmoudian Michigan Technological University

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Dr. Nina Mahmoudian is an assistant professor in the Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics Department at Michigan Technological University. She is the founding director of the Nonlinear and Autonomous Systems Laboratory (NASLab). She is a recipient of 2015 National Science Foundation CAREER award and 2015 Office of Naval Research YIP award.

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Michele Miller Michigan Technological University

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Dr. Michele Miller is a Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Michigan Technological University. She teaches classes on manufacturing and does research in engineering education with particular interest in hands-on ability, lifelong learning, and project-based learning.

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Mo Rastgaar Michigan Technological University

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Mo Rastgaar received the Ph.D. degree in mechanical engineering from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, VA, USA, in 2008.
He is currently an Associate Professor in mechanical engineering and the Director of the Human-Interactive Robotics Lab. His present research focuses on assistive robots by characterizing the agility in the human gait. Dr. Rastgaar is a recipient of 2014 NSF CAREER Award.

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This paper introduces two co-robotic pedagogical platforms. The goal is to study the effect of meaningful learning contexts and hands-on activities, facilitated through the use of co-robotic platforms, in broadening and sustaining student engagement in STEM. The paper presents a week-long residential STEM learning curriculum designed and implemented to introduce students to hands-on engineering. The week-long program has been offered for middle school level students, and its effectiveness has been studied. Pre and post surveys have been conducted to study the impact of the experience in increasing students’ interest in robotics and engineering. The results of this study show that co-robotic activities increased students’ awareness about the role of engineering in protecting the environment and improving human life.

Ziaeefard, S., & Mahmoudian, N., & Miller, M., & Rastgaar, M. (2016, June), Engaging Students in STEM Learning through Co-Robotic Hands-On Activities (Evaluation) Paper presented at 2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana. 10.18260/p.26975

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