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Revealing the Invisible: Conversations about -Isms and Power Relations in Engineering Courses

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Conference

2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 23, 2018

Start Date

June 23, 2018

End Date

July 27, 2018

Conference Session

Revealing the Invisible: Engineering Course Activities that Address Privilege, -Isms, and Power Relations (Interactive Session)

Tagged Divisions

Minorities in Engineering, International, Liberal Education/Engineering & Society, and Design in Engineering Education

Tagged Topics

Diversity, ASEE Diversity Committee, and Faculty Development Constituency Committee

Page Count

11

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/30937

Download Count

53

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Paper Authors

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Joel Alejandro Mejia University of San Diego Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0003-3908-9930

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Dr. Joel Alejandro (Alex) Mejia is an assistant professor of General Engineering at the University of San Diego. His current research investigates the funds of knowledge of Latinx adolescents, and how they use these funds of knowledge to solve engineering problems in their communities. Dr. Mejia is particularly interested in how Latinx adolescents bring forth unique ways of knowing, doing, and being that provide them with particular ways of framing, approaching, and solving engineering problems. Dr. Mejia’s primary research interests lie at the intersection of engineering education, literacy, and social justice. He is particularly interested in engineering critical literacies, Chicanx Cultural Studies frameworks and pedagogies in engineering education, and critical consciousness in engineering through social justice.

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Diana A. Chen University of San Diego Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/https://0000-0003-3616-1538

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Dr. Diana A. Chen is an Assistant Professor of General Engineering at the University of San Diego. She joined the Shiley-Marcos School of Engineering in 2016. Her research interests are in areas of sustainable design, including biomimicry and adaptability in structural, city, and regional applications. She earned her MS and PhD in Civil Engineering from Clemson University in South Carolina, and her BS in Engineering from Harvey Mudd College.

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Odesma Onika Dalrymple University of San Diego

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Dr. Odesma Dalrymple is an Assistant Professor in the Shiley Marcos School of Engineering at University of San Diego. She conducts research on tools and techniques that can be readily applied in real engineering learning environments to improve student learning and teaching. In this respect her two prominent research contributions are with: 1) artefact-inspired discovery–based pedagogy, i.e., learning activities where students’ exploration of STEM knowledge is self-directed and motivated by interactions or manipulations of artefacts; and 2) the development of faculty expertise in outcomes-based course design through the use of the Instructional Module Development (IMOD) system, a self-guided web-based training tool.

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Susan M Lord University of San Diego

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Susan M. Lord received a B.S. from Cornell University and the M.S. and Ph.D. from Stanford University. She is currently Professor and Chair of Electrical Engineering at the University of San Diego. Her teaching and research interests include electronics, optoelectronics, materials science, first year engineering courses, feminist and liberative pedagogies, engineering student persistence, and student autonomy. Her research has been sponsored by the National Science Foundation (NSF). Dr. Lord is a fellow of the ASEE and IEEE and is active in the engineering education community including serving as General Co-Chair of the 2006 Frontiers in Education (FIE) Conference, on the FIE Steering Committee, and as President of the IEEE Education Society for 2009-2010. She is an Associate Editor of the IEEE Transactions on Education and the Journal of Engineering Education. She and her coauthors were awarded the 2011 Wickenden Award for the best paper in the Journal of Engineering Education and the 2011 and 2015 Best Paper Awards for the IEEE Transactions on Education. In Spring 2012, Dr. Lord spent a sabbatical at Southeast University in Nanjing, China.

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Abstract

How could we talk about race in an engineering classroom? What about other socially constructed identities? Although diversity and inclusion have become important topics discussed and researched within engineering education, these are not easy concepts for most engineering educators to discuss with students in the classroom. In this paper, we describe examples of class activities that we have used in two engineering courses to help students learn about privilege, its relationship to different –isms, such as racism, sexism, classism, ableism, and heterosexism, and the role engineering plays/can play in maintaining or dismantling that privilege. Specifically, we describe activities in a required User Centered Design course for first or second year students, and an Engineering and Social Justice course required for third year students in General Engineering and open as an elective to other engineering majors. As engineering professors, we also describe our own positionality as the instructors. We hope that these examples will be helpful to others interested in integrating such content into their courses.

Mejia, J. A., & Chen, D. A., & Dalrymple, O. O., & Lord, S. M. (2018, June), Revealing the Invisible: Conversations about -Isms and Power Relations in Engineering Courses Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Salt Lake City, Utah. https://peer.asee.org/30937

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