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Performance Balanced Team Formation for Group Study and Design Projects

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2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access


Virtual On line

Publication Date

June 22, 2020

Start Date

June 22, 2020

End Date

June 26, 2021

Conference Session

Mechanical Engineering Technical Session: Capstone and Design

Tagged Division

Mechanical Engineering

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Paper Authors


Amir Karimi P.E. University of Texas at San Antonio

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Amir Karimi, University of Texas, San Antonio
Amir Karimi is a Professor of Mechanical Engineering at The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA). He received his Ph.D. degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Kentucky in 1982. His teaching and research interests are in thermal sciences. He has served as the Chair of Mechanical Engineering (1987 to 1992 and September 1998 to January of 2003), College of Engineering Associate Dean of Academic Affairs (Jan. 2003-April 2006), and the Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies (April 2006-September 2013). Dr. Karimi is a Fellow of ASEE, a Fellow of ASME, senior member of AIAA, and holds membership in ASHRAE, and Sigma Xi. He has served as the ASEE Campus Representative at UTSA, ASEE-GSW Section Campus Representative, and served as the Chair of ASEE Zone III (2005-07). He chaired the ASEE-GSW section during the 1996-97 academic year.

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Randall D. Manteufel University of Texas at San Antonio

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Dr. Randall Manteufel is an Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering at The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA). He has won several teaching awards, including the 2012 University of Texas System Regent’s Outstanding Teaching Award and the 2013 UTSA President’s Distinguished Achievement Award for Teaching Excellence, the 2010, 2014, 2018 and 2019 College of Engineering Student Council Professor of the Year Award, 2008 Excellence in Teaching Award for College of Engineering, and 2004-2005 Mechanical Engineering Instructor of the year award, 1999 ASEE-GSW Outstanding New Faculty Award. Dr. Manteufel is a Fellow of ASME with teaching and research interests in the thermal sciences. In 2015-2016, he chaired the American Society for Engineering Education Gulf Southwest section and in 2018-2019 he chaired the Academy of Distinguished Teaching Scholars at UTSA. He is a registered Professional Engineer in Texas.

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Students should learn to work in teams in undergraduate engineering courses. In many cases students form their own teams for group study and design projects. This paper describes a performance based team formation method implemented in two upper division mechanical engineering thermal science courses. The instructor formed teams based on early academic performance in the class. Students with the highest exam scores were assigned as team leaders, and other students were distributed among the teams based on their exam scores in order to balance the talent among the teams. The team members were required to complete a design project together, and were also encouraged to study together on homework assignments. As an incentive, the team members received bonus points. The team formation process was based on student performance has the advantages of being easy to implement and explain to reluctant students. A follow-up survey shows that the majority of students liked the performance balanced team formation method while some suggested broadening the performance metric and inclusion of peer evaluations to assess individual student grades in the team design project.

Karimi, A., & Manteufel, R. D. (2020, June), Performance Balanced Team Formation for Group Study and Design Projects Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--35050

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