June 14, 2015
June 14, 2015
June 17, 2015
K-12 & Pre-College Engineering
26.1040.1 - 26.1040.10
Investigating the Impact of an Outreach Activity on High School Students’ Attitude towards STEM Disciplines AbstractSelf-efficacy and motivation have been found to be the key factors that mediate students’academic performance, interact with learning processes, and reflect changes in learning context.To promote students’ self-efficacy and motivation in learning STEM disciplines, the projectteam designed and implemented an outreach activity for high school students using submarinesand submersibles. The activity, which had a duration of eleven hours and was delivered over thecourse of a week, consisted of six interrelated educational modules: Introduction to Submarinesand Submersibles, Buoyancy and Control, Environmental Aspects, Pressure and StructuralStrength, Introduction to the Product Development Process, and a Short Design Competition.This paper investigates the impact of the outreach activity on high school students’ self-efficacyand motivation in STEM. Specifically, this study tested two hypotheses. First, K-12 students’self-efficacy and motivation in STEM disciplines can be improved through the proposed outreachactivity. Second, the content and format of outreach activity impact students’ attitude towardsSTEM disciplines from different aspects.A total of 35 students were involved in the study and the majority of them were under-representative minority students in STEM fields. Pre- and post-survey data about high schoolstudents’ self-efficacy and motivation in STEM and their perceptions on the outreach activitywere collected through a 6-point Likert-style scale and open-ended questions. Cronbach’s alphawas employed to test the reliability of the survey. Quantitative and qualitative data wereanalyzed through statistics analyses and grounded theory, respectively.The preliminary results assessed students’ attitude towards and perceptions of each module,supported the research hypotheses of the impact of the outreach activity, and indicated thepotential relationships between students’ academic goals and their self-efficacy and motivation.Finally, limitations of the present study are discussed and a future study is proposed.
Huang, S., & Degen, C. M., & Ellingsen, M. D., & Bedillion, M. D., & Muci-Kuchler, K. H. (2015, June), Investigating the Impact of an Outreach Activity on High School Students’ Attitude Towards STEM Disciplines Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.24377
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