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Teaching Teamwork: A Training Video Designed for Engineering Students

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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

New Engineering Educators Division Technical Session 3

Tagged Division

New Engineering Educators

Tagged Topic

Diversity

Page Count

8

Page Numbers

26.1492.1 - 26.1492.8

DOI

10.18260/p.24829

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/24829

Download Count

63

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Paper Authors

biography

Madeleine Arvold Seattle Pacific University

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Madeleine Arvold is a second year industrial-organizational psychology master's student at Seattle Pacific University. Madeleine is interested in organizational and team cultures, and particularly on the effects of those cultures on the attraction and retention of women in the technology industry.

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Steven David Mow Seattle Pacific University

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Steven D. Mow is and Industrial-Organizational Psychology M.A. student at Seattle Pacific University. He has four years of formal leadership and team development experience which he uses to influence and enrich his involvement with various training and development research based projects purposed to build effective and impactful teams and leaders.

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Zachary W. Cook Seattle Pacific University

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Zachary W. Cook is a master's student in Industrial-Organizational Psychology at Seattle Pacific University. He is passionate about developing people, and utilizing research based practices in this endeavor.

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Natalie Goode Seattle Pacific University

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Natalie Goode is a Master's student at Seattle Pacific University studying Industrial-Organizational Psychology.

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Caitlin H. Wasilewski Seattle Pacific University

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Caitlin H. Wasilewski is an Industrial-Organizational Psychology PhD student at Seattle Pacific University. During her graduate studies she has been involved in several research projects investigating students, faculty, and graduates of STEM disciplines with the goal of improving engagement and retention in these populations.

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Rida Y. Al-Hawaj Seattle Pacific University

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Rida Al-Hawaj is a master’s student at Seattle Pacific University. He is majored in Industrial-Organizational Psychology. He received his B.S in psychology from Portland State University. He got interested in the topic of “Educating Engineering Students on Effective Team Skills” because he started his academic journey by majoring in electrical engineering and faced many problems in teams because of the lack of team skills. In his spare time, he enjoys doing photography and learning new things. You can reach him at: alhawajr@spu.edu

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Melani Plett Seattle Pacific University

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Prof. Melani Plett is a Professor in Electrical Engineering at Seattle Pacific University. She has over seventeen years of experience in teaching a variety of engineering undergraduate students (freshman through senior) and has participated in several engineering education research projects, with a focus how faculty can best facilitate student learning.

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Abstract

Educating Engineering Students on Effective Team Skills According to a study conducted by Darling and Dannel (2003), 70% of practicingengineers believe their career advancement is dependent upon their communication skills, yetindustry reports indicate that engineering graduates show skill deficiencies in the corecompetencies of communication and teamwork (Prescott, El-Sakran, Albasha, Aloul, & Al-Assaf, 2012). While most engineering undergraduate programs include team projects, there isoften little to no integration of curriculum on effective team practices and skills. Due to theimportance of these skills for engineers, Dannels, Anson, Bullard, and Peretti (2003) encouragetheir integration into the engineering classroom, suggesting that curriculum should emphasize thevalue of communication and teamwork, as well as reinforce the importance of teamwork instudent’s future engineering careers. In an effort to facilitate the teaching of these competenciesand skills in engineering classrooms, we created a research-based video that instructors canutilize to effectively teach team skills. In a study published in the Journal of Engineering Education, Borrego, Karlin, McNair,& Beddoes (2013) sought to determine the curriculum that engineering educators need toeffectively teach team skills by integrating theory from industrial-organizational (I-O)psychology, a field which studies human behavior at work. Their research on engineering studentteams identified five core constructs of effective teams that are critical to address inundergraduate engineering projects: social loafing (i.e., lack of team contribution),interdependence (i.e., the dependency of task completion on collaboration), conflict resolution,trust, and shared mental models (i.e., mutual understanding of roles and responsibilities thatguide team behaviors). We sought to expand on the work of Borrego et al. (2013) by using theseconstructs as the foundation for our video, but also incorporated additional research in I-O oneffective teams, as well as the current practices of well-known engineering institutions to fosterteam skills in their students. The result is a learning tool that puts all of this research into a formthat instructors can easily utilize in the classroom. The storyline of this research-based video follows a senior design project team of fourengineering students during three key points in their senior project: team formation, mid-pointcheck-in (where the team evaluates their processes halfway through the project), and projectcompletion. The video was developed with the assistance of performing arts students, who modelvarious scenarios that research indicates engineering students are likely to encounter. The videotakes approximately 15 minutes to watch, and can therefore be easily incorporated into classtime. This approach of creating a video rather than preparing curriculum for instructors to teachis especially helpful for those instructors who do not feel comfortable teaching these concepts,while still ensuring that students receive this information. In our presentation, we will review the research on and importance of teaching teamskills to engineering students to communicate its value. In addition, we will discuss howinstructors can integrate the video into their classrooms effectively and show brief clips from thefilm so that instructors can preview its content. Keywords: teamwork, engineering students, teaching team skills ReferencesBorrego, M., Karlin, J., McNair, L. D., & Beddoes, K. (2013, October). Team effectiveness theory from industrial and organizational psychology applied to engineering student project teams: A research review. Journal of Engineering Education, 102(4), 472-512.Dannels, D. P., Anson, C. M., Bullard, L., & Peretti, S. (2003, January). Challenges in learning communication skills in chemical engineering. Communication Education, 52(1), 50-56.Darling, A. L., & Dannels, D. P. (2003, January). Practicing engineers talk about the importance of talk: A report on the role of oral communication in the workplace. Communication Education, 52(1), 1-16.Prescott, D., El-Sakran, T., Albasha, L., Aloul, F., & Al-Assaf, Y. (2012). Teambuilding, innovation and the engineering communication interface. American Journal of Engineering Education, 3(1), 29-40.

Arvold, M., & Mow, S. D., & Cook, Z. W., & Goode, N., & Wasilewski, C. H., & Al-Hawaj, R. Y., & Plett, M. (2015, June), Teaching Teamwork: A Training Video Designed for Engineering Students Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.24829

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2015 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015