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Implementation and First-Year Results of an Engineering Spatial Skills Enhancement Program

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Conference

2018 Mid Atlantic Section Fall Meeting

Location

Brooklyn Technical High School, Brooklyn, New York, New York

Publication Date

October 26, 2018

Start Date

October 26, 2018

End Date

October 27, 2018

Tagged Topic

Diversity

Page Count

8

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/31455

Download Count

29

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Paper Authors

biography

Alexander John De Rosa Stevens Institute of Technology (School of Engineering and Science)

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Alexander De Rosa is a Teaching Assistant Professor at Stevens Institute of Technology. He gained his Ph.D. in 2015 from The Pennsylvania State University. Alex specializes in teaching in the thermal-fluid sciences and has a background in experimental combustion. At Stevens he advises the Society of Automotive Engineers and enjoys research in various areas of engineering education including diversity and deeper learning.

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Maxine Fontaine Stevens Institute of Technology (School of Engineering and Science)

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Abstract

Spatial visualization skills are correlated with higher-level problem solving ability and associated with increased performance and retention in STEM fields. These skills are malleable but not typically taught in schools. To identify and assist first-year engineering students with low spatial ability, all first year engineering students in the class of 2021 (N=459) took the Purdue Spatial Visualization Test: Rotations (PSVT:R). Students who scored below 70% were encouraged to participate in a 4-week spatial skills training workshop. Of the 134 female and 325 male first-year students, 37% of women and 19% of men did not initially pass the PSVT:R. Eighty-three percent (83%) of these women and 67% of these men elected to participate in the workshop. After completion of the workshop, the overall pass rate increased from 63% to 81% for women, and from 80% to 91% for men. The success of this workshop was notable based on participation, as well as post-workshop improvements in test scores, particularly for women.

De Rosa, A. J., & Fontaine, M. (2018, October), Implementation and First-Year Results of an Engineering Spatial Skills Enhancement Program Paper presented at 2018 Mid Atlantic Section Fall Meeting, Brooklyn Technical High School, Brooklyn, New York, New York. https://peer.asee.org/31455

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