June 14, 2009
June 14, 2009
June 17, 2009
K-12 & Pre-College Engineering
14.705.1 - 14.705.38
Improving Early Interest and Confidence in Engineering: Creating Partnerships between Universities, K-12 Teachers, their Students and Engineers
The Design Your Future (DYF) project is part of a California State University (CSU) multi- campus Engineering Academies initiative with the goal of increasing the number of students that enroll in engineering programs. In 2008, Humboldt State University launched a multi-faceted project with three main components. The first component included a hands-on, one week summer DYF Teaching Institute offered to 15 secondary teachers. Secondary teachers participated in a hands-on, problem solving engineering curriculum where they learned and used the design process to complete a service learning project for a local client. The second component focused on building community between local practicing engineers and K-12 educators. Participants attended social events and were later linked through web tools that enable teachers to find engineers who are available to assist in delivering engineering content. The third component was a Fall 2008 “Introduction to Design” class. This college credit class was co-taught by high school and university faculty and offered in a mixed online format for 11th and 12th grade students at the only California public high school on an Indian reservation. Assessment results from the summer teacher workshop show that institute participation improved teacher understanding of engineering and the design process. In addition, confidence in teaching engineering concepts improved. Participants reported that they could on average add 39 more teaching days of engineering-related curriculum into their teaching and were very likely to make changes to increase engineering curriculum. Follow up teacher workshops will assess how much engineering content has been added to the teachers’ classes. No assessment of the community building component has been completed. This fall sixteen high school students started the Introduction to Design course and thirteen finished. This spring the students are implementing their design project as part of a high school credit course. Assessment results from the pilot course indicate that students’ confidence in their ability to succeed in college increased. However, students were not more likely to choose engineering as a major by the end of the first term. Another assessment will occur in May 2009, after the high school students have implemented their design project on their campus.
Keywords: high school outreach, dual-enrollment, co-curricular, introduction to design, underrepresented, Native American, service learning and community partnerships.
California State University (CSU) Engineering Academies
The CSU Engineering Academies project supports 14 of the 23 CSU campuses to use multiple outreach models to increase engineering enrollment by reaching out and attracting diverse underrepresented student populations. The purpose of the academies is to “expand and diversify the pool of incoming students who are well prepared and eager to enter as engineering majors” 1. This expanded diverse pool of engineering students should help meet the governor’s request for
Eschenbach, E., & Virnoche, M., & Grafman, L., & Stamper, F., & Atkins, L., & Raymond, R., & Mills, K. (2009, June), Improving Early Interest And Confidence In Engineering: Creating Partnerships Between Universities, K 12 Teachers, Their Students, And Engineers Paper presented at 2009 Annual Conference & Exposition, Austin, Texas. https://peer.asee.org/5182
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