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Implementing Self-Regulated Learning Process Model and Assessment for Facilitating Civil Engineering Students to Master Engineering Concepts

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2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


San Antonio, Texas

Publication Date

June 10, 2012

Start Date

June 10, 2012

End Date

June 13, 2012



Conference Session

Civil Engineering Poster Session

Tagged Division

Civil Engineering

Page Count


Page Numbers

25.738.1 - 25.738.16



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Paper Authors


Wei Zheng Jackson State University

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Dr. Wei Zheng is an Associate Professor of Civil Engineering at Jackson State University. He received his Ph.D. degree in Civil Engineering from University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2001 and has over10-year industrial experience. Since becoming a faculty member at JSU in 2005, he has made continuous efforts to integrate emerging technologies and cognitive skill development into engineering curriculum.

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Huiru Shih P.E. Jackson State University

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Dr. HuiRu (H.R.) Shih is a Professor of Technology at Jackson State University. He received his Ph.D. degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Missouri. Dr. Shih is a registered professional engineer and a member of ASEE.

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Gordon W Skelton Jackson State University

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Jianjun Yin Jackson State University

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Implementing Self-Regulated Learning Process Model and Assessment for Facilitating Civil Engineering Students to Master Engineering Concepts AbstractLearning and problem-solving involves iterative cyclic processes that require both cognitive strategiesand regulation of efforts. It is authors’ perception that there is a disconnection between teachingtechnological contents and developing effective cognitive strategies in current engineering education.Students who failed in their engineering studies may attribute their failures to lack of ability for learningengineering rather than lack of effective use of cognitive strategies. These students may decide to quitfrom engineering programs due to their frustrations from setbacks. Even though students may succeed inlearning a specific concept and solving a problem, they may not be able to transfer their successfulexperience into other context and benefit their lifelong acquiring and problem-solving skills, if they donot reflect and abstract their experience into their cognitive strategy inventory. Thus, there is a need forengineering faculty to integrate new instruction that can help students to develop cognitive skills andeffectively regulate their learning efforts during their learning and problem-solving processes.Self-Regulated Learning (SRL) has become a research subject and educational practice in the context ofcognitive science. It involves self-monitoring and self-correction of three components of learning: self-regulation of motivation, behavior, and cognition. It refers to active learning that is guided by motivationto learn, metacognition (awareness of one’s knowledge and beliefs), and strategic action (planning,monitoring, and evaluating personal progress, and taking proper action). The SRL theory and its processmodel have helped people improve their performance in fields ranging from sports to healthcare.Collaborative efforts have been made among authors to implement a new instructional framework thatintegrates SRL process model into course instruction for facilitating students to learn engineering.This paper introduces relevant cognitive science development and educational practice on SRL, andpresents the new instructional framework and its preliminary implementation outcomes for twomainstream civil courses: Structural Analysis and Concrete Structures Design. For Structural Analysis, abasic principle is to establish free body diagram and equilibrium equitation. For determining flexural andaxial capacity of reinforced concrete section, strain and stress relations and internal force at the section isa basic concept applied for singly or doubly reinforced beam and column sections. However, students inauthors’ institution often fail in their quizzes and tests on these subjects and have difficulty to correctlyapply these concept and principle in various settings. It is authors’ assessment that these students do notpossess effective learning strategies for their learning efforts and lack efforts to seek resource and support.Within the proposed framework, the instruction based on SRL process model is integrated with coursequizzes and tests on above two topics through self-assessment questionnaires. These questionnairessimulate SRL process model of four phases in series of self-directed feedback cycles, and promptstrategies and self-reflection at the different phases of learning and problem-solving process. Each ofcycles of self-assessment includes plan, identification of priority and resource, practice, and evaluation.Several types of instrument are adapted and developed to evaluate the effectiveness of the proposed instruction,including the pre- and post-test questionnaire for measuring change of students’ academic dispositions;the post-test survey for determining students’ satisfaction level of the proposed instruction and students’learning experience; and the quality of students’ quizzes and exams for qualifying their gain in theacademic performance. Besides, students’ comments and instructors’ judgment on students’ learningprocess will supplement the evaluation. Through these deliberately designed processes, students can learnhow to use different learning strategies, track and assess more effectively their academic learning, makeadjustment for improvement, and eventually enhance their self confidence and self-regulation skills. 1

Zheng, W., & Shih, H., & Skelton, G. W., & Yin, J. (2012, June), Implementing Self-Regulated Learning Process Model and Assessment for Facilitating Civil Engineering Students to Master Engineering Concepts Paper presented at 2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, San Antonio, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--21495

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