June 24, 2007
June 24, 2007
June 27, 2007
12.1103.1 - 12.1103.9
New Inquiry-Based Curricula for Bioengineering Education
The INSPIRES Curriculum (INcreasing Student Participation, Interest and Recruitment in Engineering and Science), funded by the National Science Foundation, is being developed in response to the need to introduce, recruit, and retain more students to STEM-related fields. The first module in the curriculum, “Engineering in Health Care: A Hemodialysis Case Study,” has been completed and is available for adoption. The curriculum is designed to be very flexible to accommodate student learning at a variety of levels, from high school to undergraduate. At the start of the curriculum, students are introduced to a hemodialysis patient and her doctor through a professionally produced video segment. The purpose of this segment is to provide societal context for the module topic. Following the video, the students go through a series of hands-on activities, demonstrations and a web-based tutorial that teach about the engineering design process and principles of engineering, such as mass transfer and fluid flow, that are essential to hemodialysis systems. Next, the students are issued a challenge to design, build and operate their own hemodialysis systems via another video segment. Before moving into the actual design project, students have access to a web-based simulation that allows them to adjust parameters (such as flow velocity, flow direction, membrane pore size and surface area) to observe how each affects the efficiency and cost of a hemodialysis system. After the students successfully complete the computer simulation, the patient and doctor (via video segment) discuss their visions of hemodialysis for the future and reiterate the challenge to design and build a hemodialysis system that meets performance criteria. Using the simulation results in conjunction with their understanding derived in the tutorial, student groups then proceed through the engineering design process and build their own prototype system to remove “waste” from “blood”. The curriculum ends with an inspirational video of engineering and medical students discussing why they chose their particular fields of study.
To date, the “Engineering in Health Care” module has been tested in a number of high school classrooms, and engineering summer camp, and with undergraduate chemical engineering majors. In this presentation we will demonstrate the curriculum module and will present and evaluate student learning, interest and attitude data.
The need to recruit more students into engineering fields in the U.S. is urgent. Although increased employment opportunities for engineering careers are forecast for the future, national enrollment in engineering disciplines has been declining1,2. These diverging trends are likely to create a shortfall of trained engineers in the U.S. in the near future1,2,3. While women and minorities comprise an increasingly large percentage of the total workforce, representation in engineering careers remains low at nine and four percent respectively1,2. In order to alter the enrollment trends, more students must be attracted to engineering careers and be prepared to pursue engineering study at the college level. To meet this challenge, new innovative high school curricula are needed. Indeed, the recent report entitled “Rising Above the Gathering Storm” issued by the National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and
Ross, J., & Russ, G., & Parker, C., & jarrell, B., & Raczek, J., & Bayles, T. (2007, June), New Inquiry Based Curricula For Bioengineering Education Paper presented at 2007 Annual Conference & Exposition, Honolulu, Hawaii. 10.18260/1-2--2690
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