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Measuring the Impact of Service-Learning Projects in Engineering: High School Students' Perspectives

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2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


New Orleans, Louisiana

Publication Date

June 26, 2016

Start Date

June 26, 2016

End Date

August 28, 2016





Conference Session

K-12 & Pre-College Engineering Division: Home, Parents, and Other Out-of-School Issues Related to K-12 and Pre-College Engineering Education

Tagged Division

Pre-College Engineering Education Division

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Paper Authors


Tamecia R. Jones Purdue University, West Lafayette Orcid 16x16

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Tamecia Jones is currently a doctoral student in the Engineering Education department at Purdue University with a research focus on K-12 engineering education, assessment, and informal and formal learning environments. She is a graduate of Johns Hopkins and Stanford University. Originally trained as a biomedical engineer, she spent years in the middle school classroom, teaching math and science, and consulting with nonprofits, museums, and summer programs.

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Jean M. Trusedell EPICS

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Jean Trusedell is a Nationally Board Certified Teacher with extensive experience working with K-12 Educators and students. She is working with the EPICS (Engineering Projects in Community Service) Program at Purdue University to create curriculum that can be used with students throughout the country to integrate best classroom practices with engineering principles. Previously, she was the Science and Technology Coach for MSD of Decatur Township in Indianapolis, IN.

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William C. Oakes Purdue University, West Lafayette Orcid 16x16

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William (Bill) Oakes is the Director of the EPICS Program and one of the founding faculty members of the School of Engineering Education at Purdue University. He has held courtesy appointments in Mechanical, Environmental and Ecological Engineering as well as Curriculum and Instruction in the College of Education. He is a registered professional engineer and on the NSPE board for Professional Engineers in Higher Education. He has been active in ASEE serving in the FPD, CIP and ERM. He is the past chair of the IN/IL section. He is a fellow of the Teaching Academy and listed in the Book of Great Teachers at Purdue University. He was the first engineering faculty member to receive the national Campus Compact Thomas Ehrlich Faculty Award for Service-Learning. He was a co-recipient of the National Academy of Engineering’s Bernard Gordon Prize for Innovation in Engineering and Technology Education and the recipient of the National Society of Professional Engineers’ Educational Excellence Award and the ASEE Chester Carlson Award. He is a fellow of the American Society for Engineering Education and the National Society of Professional Engineers.

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Monica E. Cardella Purdue University, West Lafayette Orcid 16x16

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Monica E. Cardella is the Director of the INSPIRE Institute for Pre-College Engineering Education and is an Associate Professor of Engineering Education at Purdue University.

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There is a constant need to recruit more students into college engineering programs, as underrepresented students still enter and remain in engineering programs at lower rates, thus impacting the engineering workforce. A large public university implemented a service learning project-based curriculum for engineering undergraduates, Engineering Projects in Community Service (EPICS). EPICS High is a course that uses service-learning to teach high school students design and engineering while benefitting their local communities as they apply their knowledge and skills in context. In order to assess how students change from participating in EPICS High, an instrument based in Social Career Cognitive Theory was developed to assess change in self-efficacy, outcome expectations, and personal interest in high school students who participated in the EPICS High program. It was comprised of survey questions and open-ended responses. This paper presents the results from the analysis of two of the open-ended questions after the instrument pilot administration over 2 years across 11 states. We present its findings confident that it will inform other current programs and inspire the formation of new programs for the precollege populations that intend to increase self-efficacy, impact outcome expectations, and trigger personal interest.

Jones, T. R., & Trusedell, J. M., & Oakes, W. C., & Cardella, M. E. (2016, June), Measuring the Impact of Service-Learning Projects in Engineering: High School Students' Perspectives Paper presented at 2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana. 10.18260/p.25705

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