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Qualitative Analysis of Skills in a CHE Laboratory Course

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2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access


Virtual Conference

Publication Date

July 26, 2021

Start Date

July 26, 2021

End Date

July 19, 2022

Conference Session

Experiential Learning in Chemical Engineering

Tagged Division

Chemical Engineering

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Paper Authors


Heather C. S. Chenette Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology

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Heather Chenette is an Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology. Her professional interests include enhancing student learning in the classroom and creating opportunities for students to learn about polymers, membrane materials, and bioseparation processes through research experiences.

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Daniel D. Anastasio Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology

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Daniel Anastasio is an assistant professor at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology. He received a B.S. and Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Connecticut in 2009 and 2015, respectively. His primary areas of research are game-based learning in engineering courses and membrane separations for desalination and water purification.

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Gregory T. Neumann Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology

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Gregory received his B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology and later received his Ph.D. in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering from the University of Notre Dame. his research interests are in heterogeneous catalysis as well as engineering pedagogy, in particular, the overlap of the technical research with teaching to improve the quality of laboratory learning.

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To better understand the change in student perception and abilities in a CHE laboratory course, a multi-dimensional survey was administered to two different student cohorts: one with a traditional lab structure and one with a revised lab structure. While quantitative data from the self-assessment and lab skills test has been analyzed [1], this work presents analysis of one of the open-ended responses questions on the lab skills test. This study was motivated by the desire to understand the impact curriculum revisions have on student experience and abilities. The data set for this project consists the text responses to one open-ended question. Open-ended responses were read and sorted based on key themes related to research questions, such as: How well can students connect known principles with specific experiments? How does their equipment familiarity and use of technical terminology improve over time? To assist in reviewing the quality and range of responses, we developed an analytic scoring rubric loosely modeled on the Design Quality Rubric [2]. This work explores student performance on one of several open-ended skills test questions. Overall trends from these research questions will be discussed.

[1] [1] Chenette, H.C.S., Neumann, G.T., and Anastasio, D.A. “What’s Happening in Lab?: Multi-Dimensional Assessment Tools to Track Student Experience through a Unit Operations Laboratory Sequence.” Chemical Engineering Education, 2021 (in press). [2] V. Jain and D. Sobek, “Two Instruments For Assessing Design Outcomes Of Capstone” in Capstone Design II, American Society for Engineering Education, Salt Lake City, Utah. 2004.

Chenette, H. C. S., & Anastasio, D. D., & Neumann, G. T. (2021, July), Qualitative Analysis of Skills in a CHE Laboratory Course Paper presented at 2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual Conference.

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