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Integrating Art and Engineering: What do faculty think?

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2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access


Virtual Conference

Publication Date

July 26, 2021

Start Date

July 26, 2021

End Date

July 19, 2022

Conference Session

Multidisciplinary Endeavors: Engineering, Art and Society

Tagged Division

Multidisciplinary Engineering

Tagged Topic


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Paper Authors


Cristian Eduardo Vargas-Ordonez P.E. Purdue University at West Lafayette (COE)

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Cristián Vargas-Ordóñez is a Colombian graduate student and research assistant in Engineering Education at Purdue University. He is a Master in Education from the University of Los Andes in Colombia, a Master in Science, Technology, and Society from the National University of Quilmes in Argentina, and a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University of America in Colombia. As part of his research, he has explored Colombian chemical engineers’ social representations about science and technology and the conceptions and attitudes about chemical engineering and their identity as chemical engineers. He belonged to Colombian educational formal and informal ambits like a pedagogic consultant at the Planetarium of Bogotá for the project “Centers of Interest in Astronomy”; innovation, science, and technology instructor and consultant at the science and technology museum Maloka; and school teacher in Chemistry. As part of his research interests, he looks for the integration between the arts and engineering to foster social justice and critical thinking, and the problematization of technology as the core of the engineering identity. He has also worked in primary, secondary, and tertiary sectors in private and public companies across his professional life. He is currently English as Second Language (ESL) and Multiculturalism chair in the Engineering Education Graduate Students Association (ENEGSA) at Purdue University.

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Morgan M. Hynes Purdue University at West Lafayette (COE)

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Dr. Morgan Hynes is an Assistant Professor in the School of Engineering Education at Purdue University and Director of the FACE Lab research group at Purdue. In his research, Hynes explores the use of engineering to integrate academic subjects in K-12 classrooms. Specific research interests include design metacognition among learners of all ages; the knowledge base for teaching K-12 STEM through engineering; the relationships among the attitudes, beliefs, motivation, cognitive skills, and engineering skills of K-16 engineering learners; and teaching engineering.

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STEAM Education is a framework for the disciplinary integration between science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics. In practice, it is possible to consider this integrative framework as cross-disciplinary, multidisciplinary, interdisciplinary, or transdisciplinary dependent upon the educational objectives. On the one hand, schools may consider that STEAM education leads to students' innovative thinking and contributing to society's workforce development goals. On the other hand, STEAM education can be focused on creativity, self-expression, and empathy, which can lead to self-realization and fulfillment. Currently, K-12 settings are the primary users of this framework, shaping the curricular activities, exploring new ways to integrate these five disciplines, and researching the content, pedagogy, and assessment related to this field. However, at undergraduate or graduate levels, this framework has been little explored. This research seeks to understand faculty members’ perception as a factor that may prevent the extensive use of STEAM education by undergraduate and graduate engineering education levels. In that sense, this pilot study focused on exploring how two of the STEAM areas, engineering and art, faculty members from a Large Midwestern University perceive engineering, art, and their integration. This study used Moscovici's and Abric's Social Representation theory, looking for the core and peripheric attitudes and information that faculty participants have regarding the integration of engineering and arts. In total, seven faculty members, three from the College of Engineering and four from the College of Liberal Arts, were interviewed as a way to "enter into the other person's perspective"[1, p. 426], making visible the components of their social representation in the form of feelings, intentions, memories, meanings, or ideas. Data were analyzed using thematic analysis and discussed from the perspective of the social representations.

Vargas-Ordonez, C. E., & Hynes, M. M. (2021, July), Integrating Art and Engineering: What do faculty think? Paper presented at 2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual Conference. 10.18260/1-2--37355

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