June 23, 2013
June 23, 2013
June 26, 2013
23.722.1 - 23.722.13
Improving the writing of engineering students through portfoliosMark Milke, Creon Upton, Aisling O’Sullivan, Glen KooreyDepartment of Civil and Natural Resources Engineering, University of Canterbury, Private Bag 4800,Christchurch 8140, New Zealand.Email contact: firstname.lastname@example.orgThe Department of Civil and Natural Resources Engineering, University of Canterbury, New Zealand,has trialled the development and assessment of student writing through a portfolio approach. Ratherthan rely on a communications course, students are asked to improve their writing skills using workfrom their professional courses. Students must take samples of work from courses and refine themprior to submission as a portfolio item. Students are supported with written guidance, workshops, andone-on-one tuition. The motivation for this innovative approach is described along with thedevelopment of the programme, the involvement of practicing engineers, and trial results. The trialhas demonstrated that progress is more successful when student work is tied to professional reportpractices and when practicing engineers become involved in delivering the message. Even afterintensive workshops and advice, only 8 out of 43 portfolios were judged to have met professionalexpectations. One key finding of the investigation to date is that students need more advice andpractice at error checking. The Department has the full support of employers to keep the pass barhigh and to fail students who do not demonstrate competence with their standards. Results of the2012 portfolios (submitted in October 2012) will be provided at the conference and in the paper.
Milke, M. W., & Upton, C., & Koorey, G. F., & O'Sullivan, A. D., & Comer, K. (2013, June), Improving the Writing of Engineering Students through Portfolios Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. https://peer.asee.org/19736
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