June 22, 2008
June 22, 2008
June 25, 2008
Two Year College Division
13.810.1 - 13.810.5
Service Learning in a Freshman Engineering Course Abstract
This paper presents an account of the implementation of a new Service Learning Project as a component of a freshman engineering course. A significant part of the required work for this course is comprised of team projects. The service learning project required each team to work in a different area of urban housing renovation. One team would work on foundations, another team on plumbing, another team on electrical wiring, and so on. The team assignments were made by the Instructor in consultation with the contractor in order to assure equivalent workloads for each team.. The project concluded with a report and a presentation by each team to the class. The team presentations and reports covered a broad area of engineering applications related to residential construction that also provided a forum to exchange ideas and lessons learned during the project.. The planning, implementation, and results of this service learning project are examined and the project effectiveness is evaluated.
Project Goals The primary goal of this project was to introduce freshman engineering students to authentic problems encountered in everyday activities that are representative of engineering problems in general, and that can be analyzed within their level of expertise. The project was also intended to increase students’ attention to details and enhance their problem solving abilities. These goals support the larger effort to attract and retain students in the field of engineering. Specific learning objectives for the course in general and this project in particular are: • Students will be able to work productively with fellow students. • Students will be able to identify the distinctions between the various disciplines and functions within Engineering. • Students will be able to use word-processing, spreadsheet, and presentation software to write and present reports on assignments and projects.
Project Description This Service Learning project initially involved 24 students enrolled in one section of the Introduction to Engineering course during the 2007 Spring Semester at San Antonio College. This course addresses five primary themes: • orientation to the engineering curriculum • academic success strategies • team building and community activities • personal development • professional development
As part of the normal required coursework, the students are organized in teams to work together on three projects. The projects are mandatory and each one contributes 20% of the final course grade. They are designed to expose students to various elements of real life
Dimitriu, D., & O'Connor, J. (2008, June), Introduction Of Service Learning In A Freshman Engineering Course Paper presented at 2008 Annual Conference & Exposition, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. https://peer.asee.org/3200
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