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Get Your Feet Wet! – Experiential Learning Activities along Lost Creek

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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

Global Perspective and Experiential Learning in Civil Engineering

Tagged Division

Civil Engineering

Page Count


Page Numbers

24.642.1 - 24.642.11



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Paper Authors

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Jennifer Mueller PE P.E. Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology

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Sue Niezgoda P.E. Gonzaga University

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Get Your Feet Wet! – Experiential Learning Activities along “_____” CreekSince 2008, _______ Creek, a stream that runs through the _______ campus, has been utilized asan outdoor lab in Civil Engineering classes. Experiential learning activities have primarily beenapplied to a stream restoration course. The course is structured around conducting weekly fieldlabs along _______ Creek. In this environmental river mechanics / stream restoration course,students are introduced through field labs to the concepts of fluvial geomorphology, aquaticecosystems, and sediment transport for application in restoring impaired streams. During thequarter, the students make frequent visits to _______ Creek for the purpose of classifyingchannel morphology and process, analyzing stream habitat characteristics, estimating sedimenttransport, and analyzing stream stability. The data collected during this course contributes tostudent learning, but also contributes to a growing database of pre-restoration monitoring ofbaseline conditions. By integrating experiential learning activities along _______ Creek intoestablished civil engineering courses, we strive to enhance student knowledge of open channelhydraulics and environmental river mechanics. The effects of experiential learning activities onstudent learning of natural stream processes and stream restoration were measured throughqualitative assessment of student comments on course evaluations. Educational outcomes ofexperiential learning have been quite positive based on student feedback. The studentscommented that they gained a lot of valuable experience when conducting field surveys ofstream geometry and sediment characteristics. During summer 2014, a restoration design will beimplemented along _______ Creek, and future courses will continue to monitor stream stability.Student evaluation comments will continue to be examined to determine the impact experientiallearning activities have on the student learning. This has been and will continue to be a uniqueopportunity for students to be involved in a pre- and post-restoration monitoring program of areal world project.

Mueller, J., & Niezgoda, S. (2014, June), Get Your Feet Wet! – Experiential Learning Activities along Lost Creek Paper presented at 2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Indianapolis, Indiana. 10.18260/1-2--20533

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