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Teaching Architecture, Engineering and Construction Disciplines: Using Various Pedagogical Styles to Unify the Learning Process

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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

Innovative Teaching in Architectural Engineering

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Page Count


Page Numbers

23.1137.1 - 23.1137.10



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Paper Authors


Jill Nelson P.E. California Polytechnic State University

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Jill Nelson is an Assistant Professor for the Architectural Engineering Department at California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly), San Luis Obispo, CA. Professor Nelson came to Cal Poly with over 25 years of structural design and project management experience. She is a registered Professional Engineer and Structural Engineer in the states of California and Washington. Jill Nelson received a B.S. degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Nevada, Reno and a M.S. degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Washington.

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John W. Lawson Architectural Engineering, California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo

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Teaching Architecture, Engineering and Construction Disciplines: Using Various Pedagogical Styles to Unify the Learning ProcessThe Architectural Engineering Department at the ( ) teaches introductory sophomore level staticsand mechanics of materials courses to students in three departments in the College of ( ). Thesecourses are unique in that students in the Architectural Engineering Department sharecoursework with students in the Architecture and Construction Management Departments. Whilelearning and problem solving in these multidisciplinary courses have many advantages, they alsooffer many challenges. The different learning style preference of the students in these threedistinctly different departments requires a fresh approach to the course structure. The courseswere reimagined in 2005 to improve the learning and subsequent passing rates of ConstructionManagement and Architecture students. Currently the structure of the courses utilizes atraditional lecture format coupled with hands-on activities. These lecture and activitycomponents have been developed to embrace various learning styles in conjunction with activelearning.This paper examines the learning preferences of current students spread across the three differentdepartments and compares them to the delivery methods used in the courses. Over a period ofthree years surveys have been taken to determine the mix of learning style preferences within thecourses. The surveys have shown that the majority of the students in a single department have apreference for a specific learning style. However that predominant learning style varies betweenthe three departments leading to the need to craft a complex learning environment. This papercompares course content and student learning strengths to develop correlations for future coursedevelopment. Conclusions have been made and suggestions offered to improve course deliveryand through these avenues improve learning for all students.

Nelson, J., & Lawson, J. W. (2013, June), Teaching Architecture, Engineering and Construction Disciplines: Using Various Pedagogical Styles to Unify the Learning Process Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. 10.18260/1-2--22522

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