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Integrating Asset-based Practices into Engineering Design Instruction

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2022 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Minneapolis, MN

Publication Date

August 23, 2022

Start Date

June 26, 2022

End Date

June 29, 2022

Conference Session

ERM: Engineering Identity: (Identity Part 1)

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Paper Authors


Hannah Budinoff The University of Arizona

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Hannah D. Budinoff is an Assistant Professor of Systems and Industrial Engineering at the University of Arizona. Her research interests include additive manufacturing, geometric manufacturability analysis, design for manufacturing, and engineering education. She completed her PhD in 2019 in mechanical engineering at the University of California, Berkeley, where she was awarded an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship. She is the recipient of a 2021 American Society for Engineering Education Educational Research and Methods Division Apprentice Faculty Grant.

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Vignesh Subbian The University of Arizona

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Vignesh Subbian is an Assistant Professor of Biomedical Engineering, Systems and Industrial Engineering, member of the BIO5 Institute, and a Distinguished Fellow of the Center for University Education Scholarship at the University of Arizona. His professional areas of interest include medical informatics, healthcare systems engineering, and broadening participation and promoting servingness in engineering, biomedicine, and computing, particularly at land-grant and Hispanic Serving Institutions. Subbian’s educational research is focused on asset-based practices, ethics education, and formation of professional identities.

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Francesca Lopez

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This work in progress paper presents asset mapping activities as a strategy to foster the development of engineering identities, sense of belonging, and engineering self-efficacy in a diverse student population and presents evidence on feasibility of this strategy. Asset-based approaches highlight and leverage students’ diverse assets for teaching and learning in course activities. Students’ assets or strengths may include community networks, language and communication skills, tinkering skills, and most importantly, their lived experiences. One asset-based pedagogical strategy is asset mapping, where students identify and categorize how their own experiences and backgrounds can provide them with useful skills and insights. Asset mapping has frequently been deployed in community development to help the general public recognize and build on existing resources and capabilities. However, less is known about deploying asset mapping in the engineering classroom. In this paper, we describe implementing asset mapping activities in a first-year engineering course at the University of Arizona, a large land-grant, Hispanic-serving institution. In our College of Engineering, approximately 20% of students identify as Hispanic/Latinx and 30% identify as female. We quantify changes in students’ engineering identity, sense of belonging in engineering, and engineering self-efficacy over one semester for students who participated in asset mapping activities (n=31) and compare these changes to students in a control section of the same course (n=38). In our pilot deployment of asset maps, students tended to identify mostly technical skills (e.g., data analysis, prototyping) in their initial asset maps and in subsequent course activities related to asset development. Implementation lessons learned relating to teaming, discussions of implicit bias, and valuing diverse assets in design projects are also presented. These findings can help the engineering education community implement asset-based approaches such as asset mapping.

Budinoff, H., & Subbian, V., & Lopez, F. (2022, August), Integrating Asset-based Practices into Engineering Design Instruction Paper presented at 2022 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Minneapolis, MN. 10.18260/1-2--41145

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