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SUSTAIN SLO: Reenergizing Learning

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Conference

2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Seattle, Washington

Publication Date

June 14, 2015

Start Date

June 14, 2015

End Date

June 17, 2015

ISBN

978-0-692-50180-1

ISSN

2153-5965

Conference Session

Multidisciplinary First-year Experiences

Tagged Division

Multidisciplinary Engineering

Page Count

29

Page Numbers

26.1448.1 - 26.1448.29

DOI

10.18260/p.24785

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/24785

Download Count

42

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Paper Authors

biography

Lizabeth T. Schlemer California Polytechnic State University

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Lizabeth is a professor at Cal Poly, SLO in Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering. She has been teaching for 22 years and has continued to develop innovative pedagogy such as project based, flipped classroom and competency grading. Through the SUSTAIN SLO learning initiative she and her colleagues have been active researching in transformation in higher education.

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biography

Kylie Hensley SUSTAIN SLO

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Kylie graduated from Cal Poly SLO with a B.S. Environmental Engineering in 2012 and now works with SUSTAIN SLO, a community-based learning initiative.

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Rachel Pittman

biography

Jada Golland SUSTAIN SLO

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Jada is a 4th year student at Cal Poly concentrating in watershed management/hydrology and minoring in Geographic Information Systems. She first became involved with SUSTAIN SLO as a freshman where she had the opportunity to help build a rainwater harvesting and filtration system for a local community. In her free time, Jada enjoys hiking, biking, baking.

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Abstract

SUSTAIN SLO: Reenergizing LearningAbstract dueAs we look for transformative learning through high impact practices like project-based, multi-disciplinary activities, or first year experience, we find it is difficult torepresent the significant learning that occurs. Of course there is a baselinerequirement of achieving institutional outcomes like retention and grades, but forthose of us involved in these practices we know there is more to be said. This paperuses interviews and qualitative narrative analysis to communicate outcomes fromone such multi-disciplinary, first year experiences. The paper will describe thecontext and components of the SUSTAIN SLO, a multi-disciplinary freshmenexperience. We will also discuss the research done and the results found. In order toresearch the experience 22 student interviews were completed one year after, withthe intent of asking two questions: 1) How is SUSTAIN different than the traditionalcourse experience? and 2) How did SUSTAIN affect you? These interviews wereanalyzed by a team made up of one faculty member, a recent graduate, and fourundergraduate students. This team used qualitative narrative analysis techniques togain insight beyond typical institutional measures.As reported by students in interviews, SUSTAIN SLO was different than traditionalexperiences as it included 1) open assignments and structure, 2) a new look ateducation and learning, 3) different relationship with faculty and peers, 4) arecognition of the importance of space to be yourself and 5) significant collaborationand team building. As for the impact of these differences, students reported 1)increased capacity for personal reflection, 2) new sense of ownership in education,3) a discovery of internal motivation and joy of learning, and 4) deepened friendshipsincluding collaboration and risk taking, which resulted in increased support andresilience. There were also a significant number of negative comments about theexperience and an analysis of this is also included. The paper will conclude with areflection by the undergraduate researchers on their experience in performing theresearch.  

Schlemer, L. T., & Hensley, K., & Pittman, R., & Golland, J. (2015, June), SUSTAIN SLO: Reenergizing Learning Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.24785

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