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Increase student’s learning and performance during an engineering introductory class for civil engineering and construction engineering management.

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2017 Pacific Southwest Section Meeting


Tempe, Arizona

Publication Date

April 20, 2017

Start Date

April 20, 2017

End Date

April 22, 2017

Conference Session

Technical Session 3c

Tagged Topics

Diversity and Pacific Southwest Section

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Paper Authors


Pitiporn Asvapathanagul California State University, Long Beach

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Dr. Pitiporn Asvapathanagul is an assistant professor in Civil Engineering at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB). Her area of study is Environmental Engineering. She received her doctoral degree from University of California, Irvine in 2011. Since 2012, Dr. Asvapathanagul has been teaching a various undergraduate and graduate courses under Civil Engineering program such as Introduction to Civil Engineering and Construction Engineering Management, Fluid Mechanics, Hydraulic Engineering, Environmental Engineering (Fundamental), Environmental Laboratory, Advance Wastewater Treatment Plant Design etc. She has been involving with ASEE PSW since 2013. Her research interest is molecular biology for biological water reclamation processes.

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Students lacked of interests and motivations during a one unit engineering introductory class (CE101: Introduction to Civil Engineering and Construction Engineering Management, general education [GE] class). Most students’ performance for group projects (term paper, presentation and prototypes combined with two assignments) was unsatisfied, which all combined worth more than 50% of the class grades. Two hypotheses were created prior to improving student grades. Accordingly, several instruction strategies were implemented during spring and fall 2016 semesters. The results obtained from midterm and final exams among 4 consecutive semesters, showed the spring and fall 2016 (strategies implemented) exam scores did not display a significant increase of student performance on both exams compared to spring and fall 2015. However, compared data of both exams between spring and fall 2016 (strategies implemented), fall 2016 results were slightly improved. For student presentation and prototype grades, the data from spring and fall 2015 (before strategies utilized) and spring and fall 2016 (strategies carried out), displayed no significant increase of student’s grades. Conversely, the student’s performance for the termpaper category was slight improved from fall 2015 to fall 2016 (77.0±20%, 92.1%±5.7% and 95.1%±3.5 for fall 2015, spring 2016 and fall 2016, respectively) when 90.3%±2.1% was observed in spring 2015. Our outcomes demonstrated inconclusive impacts of the implementations because of several possibilities such as exam modification, rubric changing and large student diversity (freshmen to seniors), which may contribute to ambiguous influences of these supplementary teaching strategies.

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