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Investigating Student Retention of Surveying Course Material from Sophomore Year to Senior Year Using Pre- and Post-Tests

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Conference

2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access

Location

Virtual Conference

Publication Date

July 26, 2021

Start Date

July 26, 2021

End Date

July 19, 2022

Conference Session

Enhancing Teaching and Research

Tagged Division

New Engineering Educators

Page Count

26

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/37399

Download Count

148

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Paper Authors

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Kweku Brown P.E. The Citadel Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0001-6497-8479

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Dr. Kweku Brown is an Associate Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at The Citadel. He received his Civil Engineering Master’s degree from the University of Connecticut and his Doctoral degree at Clemson University. He is active in the transportation engineering communities including the South Carolina Department of Transportation, Institute of Transportation Engineers, and Transportation Research Board. His research focuses on transportation safety utilizing geographic and spatial analysis methods.

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Dimitra Michalaka P.E. The Citadel Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0001-7001-0579

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Dr. Dimitra Michalaka is an Associate Professor at the department of civil and environmental engineering at The Citadel. Dr. Michalaka received her undergraduate diploma in civil engineering from the National Technical University of Athens (NTUA), after which she entered into the transportation engineering graduate program at UF. She graduated with a Master’s of Science in 2009 and with a Ph.D. in 2012. Her research is primarily focused on traffic operations, congestion pricing, traffic simulation, and engineering education. Dr. Michalaka is a registered Professional Engineering in the state of South Carolina. Also, she recently, in December 2020, graduated with a Master of Science in Project Management from The Citadel.

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Nandan Hara Shetty The Citadel

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Dr. Nandan Hara Shetty is an assistant professor of Civil & Environmental Engineering at The Citadel, located in Charleston, South Carolina. He received his BE from Dartmouth College and his MS/PhD from Columbia University, researching the performance of rain gardens and roof gardens. He also worked for 11 years as an environmental engineer on construction and research of green infrastructure for the New York City Parks Department. Nandan is highly interested in engaging students, while pursuing dialogue with cities on urban climate and water research.

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William J. Davis P.E. The Citadel Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0002-3812-8654

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William J. Davis is Dept. Head & D. Graham Copeland Professor of Civil Engineering and Director of Construction Engineering at The Citadel in Charleston, SC. His academic experience includes: transportation infrastructure planning and design, infrastructure resilience, traffic operations, highway safety, and geographic information systems. His research interests include: constructing spatial databases for better management of transportation infrastructure, improving transportation design, operation, safety and construction, understanding long-term effects of urban development patterns, and advancing active living within the built environment for improved public health. He teaches courses in interchange design, transportation engineering, highway design. engineering management, geographic information systems, and land surveying. He has served in numerous leadership positions in ITE, ASCE and TRB.

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Abstract

One of the primary goals of a pre-test and post-test analysis is to obtain a comparative measure of growth in student knowledge on a subject matter at the end of a semester or after some number of weeks of course instruction. The pre-test is a background probe while the post-test is an assessment of the knowledge gained over the course of instruction as the results of the post-test are juxtaposed to that of the pre-test. Studies have shown that there is significant growth in knowledge gained based on pre-test and post-test performance. However, what happens to this knowledge when students have completed the final examination for the semester and perceive that they are not going to be tested on the course material in subsequent semesters? Do these students consciously or unconsciously forget the material?

This paper investigates students’ retention of material from a surveying course during and after the semester of instruction over several years. This investigation utilizes the following scenarios; Pre-tests on the first day of class during the fall semester of sophomore year; Post-tests on the last day of class during the fall semester of sophomore year; Post-tests on the day of exams during the fall semester of sophomore year; Post-tests at the start of the spring semester of sophomore year and a post-test in the junior year and another in the senior year.

In this research, the question format (multiple choice vs short answer vs numeric) and the specific surveying topics are analyzed to investigate their influence on students’ performance across years. To add to this, students’ performance on questions that cover concepts reinforced in surveying labs are compared with more theoretical questions to investigate the hypothesis that surveying labs positively influence student retention of surveying course material.

Preliminary test results show the following percent increases in post-test scores when compared to pre-test scores: Over 75% increase for post-tests on the last day of class during the fall semester of sophomore year; Over 100% increase for post-tests on the day of exams during the fall semester of sophomore year and; Over 60% increase for post-tests at the start of the spring of sophomore year and an average of 55% increase over the junior and senior year. These results highlight that, students made measurable gains in acquired knowledge for the surveying course and that retention of material past their semester of instruction is significantly high.

Brown, K., & Michalaka, D., & Shetty, N. H., & Davis, W. J. (2021, July), Investigating Student Retention of Surveying Course Material from Sophomore Year to Senior Year Using Pre- and Post-Tests Paper presented at 2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual Conference. https://peer.asee.org/37399

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