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Improving Engineering Guidance: Introduction To Engineering For High School Teachers And Counselors

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Conference

1999 Annual Conference

Location

Charlotte, North Carolina

Publication Date

June 20, 1999

Start Date

June 20, 1999

End Date

June 23, 1999

ISSN

2153-5965

Page Count

9

Page Numbers

4.301.1 - 4.301.9

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/7723

Download Count

17

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Paper Authors

author page

Raymond B. Landis

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Abstract
NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 3453

Improving Engineering Guidance: Introduction to Engineering for High School Teachers and Counselors Raymond B. Landis California State University, Los Angeles

Abstract This paper describes an innovative course designed to improve the effectiveness of high school mathematics and science teachers and college counselors in guiding their students toward engineering as a field of study and a career opportunity. The course titled "Introduction to Engineering for High School Teachers and Counselors" was first offered in Summer, 1997 and has been offered twice each year since then. A generous grant from the ARCO Foundation covered the cost of registration and materials and a modest stipend provided to participants. A total of 116 math and science teachers and college counselors completed the two-credit hour course during the first four offerings. Course evaluations indicated that the course was extremely well received and accomplished the stated objectives. This paper discusses the need for such a course, the course objectives, strategies for accomplishing the objectives, and the participants’ feedback on the course. It is hoped that this paper will motivate other engineering schools to implement a similar course for teachers and counselors in their geographic area. Introduction Historically, student interest in engineering has been cyclical, based to great extent on the perceptions of employment opportunities. Over the past fifteen years, the number of students electing engineering as their college major has declined. For example, over this period the number of first year engineering majors in four-year institutions declined by almost 26 percent, from a peak of 115,303 in Fall, 1982 to 85,375 in Fall, 1996.1 High school teachers and college counselors have the potential to significantly influence their students’ choice of a college major. However, this potential does not appear to be realized for engineering. A 1974 study2 listed the factors engineering seniors reported had influenced their choice of engineering as a field of study. Only five percent indicated talks with high school counselors had any value and only ten percent indicated talks with high school teachers were very important. These results are consistent with a later study3 that reported 59 percent of engineering students were first influenced to consider engineering as a career choice while in high school, but only four percent were influenced by high school counselors and thirteen percent by high school teachers. In an effort to find out why high school teachers and counselors play such a small role in students’ decisions to study engineering, the author conducted an anecdotal survey during visits to local area high schools over a several year period. The following was learned about mathematics and science teachers and college counselors: • They do not feel they have adequate information and background to be effective in guiding their students toward engineering as a field of study and as a career choice. • They view their lack of effectiveness in engineering guidance as a problem. • They would welcome a solution to this problem.

1999 ASEE Annual Conference Proceedings

Landis, R. B. (1999, June), Improving Engineering Guidance: Introduction To Engineering For High School Teachers And Counselors Paper presented at 1999 Annual Conference, Charlotte, North Carolina. https://peer.asee.org/7723

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 1999 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015