San Antonio, Texas
June 10, 2012
June 10, 2012
June 13, 2012
25.621.1 - 25.621.17
Exploring the Reasons for Collaboration and Cooperation among Graduate Student ResearchersResearch collaborations among faculty, students, and industry provide opportunities for theadvancement of engineering education research and the development of educational innovations.It is important for graduate students to participate in collaborative research as they develop intofull members of the profession because this participation helps them gain an understanding of thechallenges of collaboration as well as various ways of overcoming challenges. Beyond workingwith faculty and members of industry, graduate students may choose to conduct research withfellow students. Research collaborations among graduate students provide a means to diversifyinterests, develop research skills, and build relationships. Despite their obvious value, thesecooperative experiences are uncommon among graduate students in the engineering educationcommunity. Consider the following example: approximately 800 students are members of theAmerican Society for Engineering Education (ASEE); yet only a small number of papers orposters at the Annual Conference and Exposition are collaborations among graduate students.Currently, little is known about the factors that influence graduate students’ willingness to seekout these collaborations, and how these relationships are developed.The purpose of this study is to explore the factors that affect graduate students’ willingness toparticipate in collaborative engineering education research with other graduate students. Thisresearch was conducted in two phases, a literature review and a pilot study. The first phaseinvolved a literature review to provide insight about the barriers and bridges to multidisciplinaryand dispersed collaborations. The review also provided a theoretical framework for evaluatingthe motivations behind forming research collaborations. Finally, the review was used to identifyprior examples of graduate student collaborations in engineering education and explore thenature of these collaborations. The second phase of the study sought to gain an initialunderstanding of graduate students’ perceptions of collaborative research. A pilot study wasconducted at a graduate student research workshop that was intended to help the attendeesdevelop research questions for collaborative research. The data collected includes both pre andpost survey responses from a small sample of students interested in engineering educationresearch. We intend to examine this initial data set to characterize trends among students’perceptions and to guide future research in this area.The future of engineering education research will depend on collaborations among educators,researchers, and students. The involvement of graduate students in organizing and leadingresearch projects with their peers is important in preparing them to enter a field based onmultidisciplinary collaboration. Through this study, we aim to develop an understanding of thefactors that support graduate student collaborations and develop recommendations to facilitatecollaborative work.
Strong, A. C., & Louis, R. A., & London, J. S., & Ngambeki, I. B., & Sattler, B. (2012, June), Exploring the Reasons for Collaboration and Cooperation Among Graduate Student Researchers Paper presented at 2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, San Antonio, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--21378
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