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Service-Learning as a Driving Force for Continuous Improvement in CCE 1001, “Introduction to Engineering Design"

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2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Atlanta, Georgia

Publication Date

June 23, 2013

Start Date

June 23, 2013

End Date

June 26, 2013



Conference Session

Experiences in Engineering Community Engagement

Tagged Division

Community Engagement Division

Page Count


Page Numbers

23.1066.1 - 23.1066.10



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Paper Authors


Edmund Tsang Western Michigan University

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Edmund Tsang received a B.S. with distinction in Mechanical Engineering from University of Nebraska and a Ph.D. in Metallurgy from Iowa State University. Dr. Tsang's current professional interests include integrating service-learning into engineering, social entrepreneurship, and student success and retention.

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Darrell G. Harden II Michigan Department of Transportation

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Darrell Harden is the region planner for the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) Southwest Region. In that role, he serves as the region coordinator for various programs, including complete streets, Safe Routes to School, and non-motorized transportation. Additionally, he is a co-chair of the MDOT Complete Streets Internal Team, responsible for implementing MDOT's complete streets policy, and he serves on several other statewide committees and teams.
Harden is also a part-time instructor at Western Michigan University's College of Engineering and Applied Sciences. He teaches two sections of CCE 1001, Introduction to Engineering Design, leading the students through the development of a Safe Routes to School action plan for a local elementary school.
Harden earned a bachelor of arts degree in political science from the University of Alabama and a master of public administration degree from Western Michigan University. In his spare time, he enjoys collecting postage stamps, running half marathons, and searching for the perfect latte.

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Danielle Elise Larson- Jaramillo Western Michigan University

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Ms. Larson-Jaramillo is currently a graduate student in Industrial Engineering at Western Michigan University. She has been one of the instructors for the Engineering Statistics course for two years. Her interests include statistics, process improvement and work design.

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CCE 1001 is a first-year design course that has served as the anchor class of a learning community forcivil and construction engineering (CCE) students since 2005 at a state regional university in the upperMid-West. In 2010, the civil and construction engineering programs revised the program educationalobjectives (PEO) to include “Graduates use [their] profession to contribute to society through service tothe community.” In response, Safe Routes to School (SRTS) became the service-learning design projectfor CCE 1001 to align with the CCE PEO’s. SRTS is a federal program to increase the number of K-12students who walk or bike to school by removing barriers that currently prevent them from doing so. Thecommunity partners for the service-learning design project are the state Department of Transportation andK-12 school. The transportation planner in the region office of the state department of transportationworked with the CCE 1001 faculty coordinator in Summer 2010 to revise the curriculum to supportstudents research SRTS background; identify the design specifications; conduct school property andneighborhood audits; brainstorm solutions that take advantage of the positive factors of and address thebarriers to students’ walking or biking to school; evaluate the solutions against SRTS specifications; andcreate an action plan to recommend to the K-12 school partner. The improvements in CCE 1001 in 2011included: a guest lecturer and reading materials on the cause of poverty; use of MDOT design standards, apublic presentation to school and city officials; and revision of CCE 1002, “Introduction to EngineeringAnalysis,” to include proposal writing to seek SRTS funding. Some of the actions recommended by theCCE 1001 students have already been implemented by the city to improve safety and physicalinfrastructure around the partnering schools to support SRTS. This paper will describe the continuousimprovement process and details of the curriculum change as a result of incorporating SRTS to CCE1001. The paper will also include assessment methods and preliminary results on communication skillsand students’ view about poverty as a result of the guest lecturer and reading materials on the cause ofpoverty.

Tsang, E., & Harden, D. G., & Larson- Jaramillo, D. E. (2013, June), Service-Learning as a Driving Force for Continuous Improvement in CCE 1001, “Introduction to Engineering Design" Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. 10.18260/1-2--22451

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