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Exploring instructors’ decision-making processes on the use of evidence-based instructional practices (EBIPs) in first-year engineering courses

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2019 FYEE Conference


Penn State University , Pennsylvania

Publication Date

July 28, 2019

Start Date

July 28, 2019

End Date

July 30, 2019

Conference Session

M1B: WIP - Learning Experiences 2

Tagged Topic

FYEE Conference - Paper Submission

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Paper Authors


Nicole P. Pitterson Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University Orcid 16x16

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Nicole is an assistant professor in the Department of Engineering Education at Virginia Tech. Prior to joining VT, Dr. Pitterson was a postdoctoral scholar at Oregon State University. She holds a PhD in Engineering Education from Purdue University and other degrees in Manufacturing Engineering from Western Illinois University and a B.Sc. in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from the University of Technology, Jamaica. Her research interest is eliciting conceptual understanding of AC circuit concepts using active learning strategies.

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Todd P. Shuba Virginia Tech Orcid 16x16

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Todd P. Shuba is a New Horizons Graduate Scholar in the College of Engineering and a Graduate Teaching Assistant in the Department of Engineering Education at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. His research interests include transfer of learning, collaborative learning, and student motivation and engagement. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Engineering with a concentration in Environmental and Ecological Engineering and a minor in Mechanical Engineering, as well as a Master of Science in Education with a concentration in Educational Psychology and Research Methodology, from Purdue University-West Lafayette.

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Evidence-based instructional practices (EBIPs) are pedagogical practices demonstrated by validated research findings to have a significant impact on student learning. These practices encompass learner-centered learning environments, including guided inquiry, frequent formative feedback, guided notes, and demonstrations, and knowledge-centered learning environments, including problem-based learning, and just-in-time teaching. Over the last twenty years, engineering educators have sought to create engaging learning experiences for students. However, while some educators have had small scale impact on the design of engineering learning systems, previous research have shown that teaching in engineering classes remains largely unchanged. This work in progress (WIP) seeks to highlight how first-year engineering instructors decide what types of instructional practices to use in their classes and how they incorporate these strategies in their course design and content delivery. As part of a much larger study, this paper will explore some of the practices used in first-year engineering courses, how instructors decide on which practices to use based on their experience teaching first-year engineering courses. We will also highlight challenges instructors face in incorporating EBIPs in their classes and share useful strategies they have used to overcome these challenges.

Key words: evidence-based instructional practices, first-year engineering, engaged student learning,

Pitterson, N. P., & Shuba, T. P. (2019, July), Exploring instructors’ decision-making processes on the use of evidence-based instructional practices (EBIPs) in first-year engineering courses Paper presented at 2019 FYEE Conference , Penn State University , Pennsylvania. 10.18260/1-2--33692

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