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Provoked Emotion in Student Stories of Motivation Reveal Gendered Perceptions of What It Means to be Innovative in Engineering

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2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Tampa, Florida

Publication Date

June 15, 2019

Start Date

June 15, 2019

End Date

October 19, 2019

Conference Session

Entrepreneurship & Engineering Innovation Division Technical Session 3

Tagged Division

Entrepreneurship & Engineering Innovation

Tagged Topic


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Paper Authors


Barbara A. Karanian Stanford University

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Barbara A. Karanian, Ph.D. , Lecturer, formerly visiting Professor, in the School of Engineering, in the Mechanical Engineering Design Group at Stanford University.
Barbara's research focuses on four areas: 1)grounding a blend of theories from social-cognitive psychology, engineering design, and art to show how cognition affects design; 2) changing the way people understand the emotion behind their work with the intent to do something new; 3) shifting norms of leaders involved in entrepreneurial-minded action; and 4) developing teaching methods with a storytelling focus in engineering and science education.
Founder of the Design Entrepreneuring Studio: Barbara helps teams generate creative environments. Companies that she has worked with renew their commitment to innovation. She also helps students answer these questions when she teaches some of these methods to engineering, design, business, medicine, and law students. Her courses use active storytelling and self-reflective observation as one form to help student and industry leaders traverse across the iterative stages of a project- from the early, inspirational stages to prototyping and then to delivery.

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Ville Mikael Taajamaa University of Turku

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Dr.Ville M. Taajamaa, research and teaching focuses on new product development and engineering education especially in the context of sustainable development. The main focus in his research is the creation of new models and metrics for entrepreneurial, innovative and interdisciplinary engineering education where emphasis is more in the first phases of the engineering process when the problem space is spanned in order to find feasible, viable, credible and desirable solutions.

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Christopher Andrew Parlier Stanford University


Mona Eskandari University of California, Riverside

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Mona Eskandari is an assistant professor in the department of mechanical engineering at UC-Riverside, specializing in biomechanics. Prior to joining UCR, she was a researcher at UC-Berkeley and received her doctorate from Stanford University. She was named a University of California Provost's Engineering Research Faculty Fellow, a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow, a DARE Doctoral Fellow, and a Stanford Graduate Science and Engineering Fellow. Eskandari is a recipient of ASEE's Early Engineering Educator Award and the prestigious K. Patricia Cross Future Leaders of Higher Education Award from the Association of American Colleges and Universities.

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Focus on the role of motivation and emotions as part of engineering entrepreneurial definitions pose an intriguing question: Might understanding how college students characterize a new graduate’s entrepreneurial action be crucial for expanding a definition of innovation and infusing new elements in the curriculum? In this paper, we utilized students’ interpersonal perceptions of another to parse out the definition of innovativeness, finding that gender matters for achievement motivation and affiliation motivation in conceptualizing an engineer/founder/CEO. The study included two independent elements (gender cue prompt and gender of participant) and studied effects of these variables on both the story-oriented dependent variable and mood scale reports for the characterization of the engineer/founder/CEO. Eighty-three participants on both coasts of the United States and in Northern Europe provide vivid action shots and stunning motivational characterizations. Findings indicate negativity manifests significantly in an individual’s interpersonal perception of a new graduate’s decision to step away from their founded company, revealing that interpersonal perceptions vary by gender for motivation and negative emotion.

Karanian, B. A., & Taajamaa, V. M., & Parlier, C. A., & Eskandari, M. (2019, June), Provoked Emotion in Student Stories of Motivation Reveal Gendered Perceptions of What It Means to be Innovative in Engineering Paper presented at 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Tampa, Florida. 10.18260/1-2--33213

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