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Testing and Refinement of e-Learning Modules on Metacognition and Motivation

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2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Indianapolis, Indiana

Publication Date

June 15, 2014

Start Date

June 15, 2014

End Date

June 18, 2014



Conference Session

NSF Grantees’ Poster Session

Tagged Division

Division Experimentation & Lab-Oriented Studies

Tagged Topic

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Page Count


Page Numbers

24.1182.1 - 24.1182.6



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Paper Authors


Michele Miller Michigan Technological University

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Dr. Michele Miller is an associate professor of Mechanical Engineering at Michigan Technological University. She teaches classes on manufacturing and does research in engineering education with particular interest in hands-on ability, lifelong learning, and project-based learning.

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Sheryl A. Sorby Ohio State University

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Apurva Anil Kambale Michigan Technological University

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Megan Farrish Michigan Technological University

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Testing and Refinement of e-Learning Modules on Metacognition and MotivationEngineering graduates of today must be prepared for a lifetime of learning and adaptation. Thus,one of the goals of engineering education is to create independent, lifelong learners. This projectis developing e-learning modules in support of that goal. The modules are designed to teachundergraduate engineering students about metacognition and motivation as well as strategies toimprove learning. Both modules begin with an instrument (learning style inventory ormotivation questionnaire), then a tutorial that gives students a first hand experience of theinfluence of learning style or motivation, then questions of understanding, then a tutorial aboutlearning style or motivation strategies, and finishing with reflection questions and an evaluationof the module. The learning style module creates the “first hand experience” by asking studentsto learn material that is presented in different learning styles. The motivation modulemanipulates task value and control beliefs in its presentation of new material to learn.The modules have been implemented in two mechanical engineering classes: a sophomore levelmanufacturing class and a junior level design processes class. We have collected data for fivesemesters. To test the effectiveness of the modules, we compare results from a number ofmeasures, including a lifelong learning readiness instrument, a brain dominance instrument, andgrades in design courses as well as overall GPA. For the lifelong learning readiness scale, weexamined four factors: curiosity, viewing learning as a tool for life, responsibility for learning,and self-confidence.Based on student evaluations of the modules in the early semesters, we made significantmodifications to both modules. For example, students reported they were already familiar withtheir preferred learning style based on the categories of visual, auditory, tactile, and kinesthetic.In response, we replaced the Barsch learning style inventory with the Felder-Silverman one toexpose students to additional less familiar aspects of learning styles. Also, in the first version,students found the tutorial materials on topics such as osmosis, mitosis, and Punnett squares tobe boring. The second version includes topics that students will find more relevant to their lives,such as food and nutrition. This paper will describe the evolution of the module content andpresent updated results from the data analysis.

Miller, M., & Sorby, S. A., & Kambale, A. A., & Farrish, M. (2014, June), Testing and Refinement of e-Learning Modules on Metacognition and Motivation Paper presented at 2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Indianapolis, Indiana. 10.18260/1-2--23115

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