Asee peer logo

Incorporating Engineering Concepts In The Middle School Science Classroom

Download Paper |


2005 Annual Conference


Portland, Oregon

Publication Date

June 12, 2005

Start Date

June 12, 2005

End Date

June 15, 2005



Conference Session

K-12 Poster Session

Page Count


Page Numbers

10.742.1 - 10.742.7



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors

author page

Cordelia Brown

Download Paper |

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

Session 1510

Incorporating Engineering Concepts in the Middle School Science Classroom Cordelia M. Brown Vanderbilt University Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Nashville, Tennessee 37325


Hands-on engineering based lessons have been developed and implemented in middle school science classes through the Vanderbilt-Meharry-TSU NSF Graduate Teaching Fellows (GK-12) program. This paper presents laboratory activities designed to incorporate engineering concepts into middle school science classrooms. The engineering based labs were designed to enhance and stimulate middle school students’ interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) concepts. Lessons are focused on increasing students’ awareness of engineering in daily tasks. Career opportunities relating to the engineering lesson were presented. The importance of effective teamwork, critical thinking, problem solving, and sound technical communication are emphasized. These engineering labs are available for future use by the partner teacher and the GK-12 program.


The National Science Foundation Graduate Teaching Fellows in K-12 Education Vanderbilt-Meharry-Tennessee State Program is now in its fifth full year1. The major focus of this program is to partner graduate teaching fellows (GTFs) with Nashville middle school science teachers. This GK-12 Program is a partnership between three educational institutions of higher learning, all within a five-mile radius of each other in Nashville, Tennessee.

The 2004-2005 school year brought together 15 Metropolitan Nashville Public School teachers and 11 graduate students in a collaborative effort to improve science instruction and provide opportunities for middle school students to work with scientists. In addition, one undergraduate student from Vanderbilt University assists teachers in two schools to increase the frequency and quality of laboratory activities.

GTFs focus on working with partner teachers to develop and implement hands-on, inquiry-based activities, providing classroom demonstrations, assisting with tutoring students, and directing student research projects. A total of 49 fellows and 56 teachers in 18 schools have been included in the Vanderbilt-Meharry-TSU program to date. In addition to the GTF component, an undergraduate (UGTF) program is also included with

“Proceedings of the 2005 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2005, American Society for Engineering Education"

Brown, C. (2005, June), Incorporating Engineering Concepts In The Middle School Science Classroom Paper presented at 2005 Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon. 10.18260/1-2--14797

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: © 2005 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