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Impact of Makerspaces on Student Idea Generation, Self-Efficacy, and More: Results of a Five-year Longitudinal Study

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Conference

2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access

Location

Virtual Conference

Publication Date

July 26, 2021

Start Date

July 26, 2021

End Date

July 19, 2022

Conference Session

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Tagged Topic

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Page Count

4

Permanent URL

https://strategy.asee.org/37285

Download Count

23

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Paper Authors

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Aliya Mahmud Georgia Institute of Technology: IDREEM Lab

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4th-year undergraduate student assistant

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Timothy Sawchuk

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Ethan Hilton Louisiana Tech University Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0003-1623-228X

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Dr. Ethan Hilton is an assistant professor at Louisiana Tech University in Ruston, LA, where he has been since September 2019. He received his Bachelors in Mechanical Engineering from Louisiana Tech and his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology with a focus in Engineering Design Methodology and Engineering Education.

As a member of the Integrated STEM Education Research Center (ISERC) at LaTech, Ethan's primary research area is engineering design education with a focus on developing prototyping skills through both class-based projects and extra-curricular clubs, competitions, and activities. This includes a focus on hand-drawn sketches and how they are used as tools for generating ideas and visual communication, especially when it involves the skill to generate quick and realistic sketches of an object or idea. He has also conducted research on the impact involvement in academic makerspaces has on students in engineering programs.

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Robert L. Nagel James Madison University

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Dr. Robert Nagel is an Associate Professor in the Department of Engineering at James Madison University. Dr. Nagel joined James Madison University after completing his Ph.D. in mechanical engineering at Oregon State University. Nagel teaches and performs research related to engineering design. Specifically, through research, Nagel explores how design interventions commonly used to teach design influence student learning.

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Julie S. Linsey Georgia Institute of Technology

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Dr. Julie S. Linsey is an Associate Professor in the George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technological. Dr. Linsey received her Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering at The University of Texas. Her research area is design cognition including systematic methods and tools for innovative design with a particular focus on concept generation and design-by-analogy. Her research seeks to understand designers’ cognitive processes with the goal of creating better tools and approaches to enhance engineering design. She has authored over 150 technical publications including over forty journal papers, and ten book chapters.

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Abstract

Many universities have formed makerspaces, and much anecdotal evidence suggests tremendous impact, but the empirical data remains lacking. This work attempts to fulfill this gap in understanding and details a longitudinal study focused on investigating the impact of student makerspace involvement. The correlations focused on, with regards to this impact, include idea generation ability, engineering design self-efficacy (EDSE). Data on these correlations were collected from participating freshmen and seniors to analyze how these factors/correlations change across the duration of an undergraduate mechanical engineering curriculum. The impact of the freshman mechanical design course, which required some sections to use the makerspace, was also investigated. Influences of internship/co-op completion and makerspace involvement were also analyzed. Data analysis conveyed that seniors were more likely to be involved with makerspaces, reported higher scores of design self-efficacy, and had higher scoring idea generation metrics for effectiveness (quantity, novelty, and variety). Furthermore, seniors voluntarily involved in makerspaces had higher idea generation quality, while freshmen with prior makerspace related experience generated a larger quantity of ideas. This implies that greater exposure to makerspaces and purposeful involvement for the duration of an undergraduate mechanical engineering curriculum likely lends to increased engineering design self-efficacy and higher quality idea generation ability.

Mahmud, A., & Sawchuk, T., & Hilton, E., & Nagel, R. L., & Linsey, J. S. (2021, July), Impact of Makerspaces on Student Idea Generation, Self-Efficacy, and More: Results of a Five-year Longitudinal Study Paper presented at 2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual Conference. https://strategy.asee.org/37285

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