Virtual On line
June 22, 2020
June 22, 2020
June 26, 2021
Design in Engineering Education
Peer ratings are often used to help award individual grades from team projects. It is therefore important to understand the extent to which these peer ratings may be influenced by unconscious or implicit bias. Unconscious bias during peer ratings is perhaps more likely to occur among first-year students who may have previously had limited interactions with diverse groups, in particular international students. To explore this issue, about 600 student peer ratings in the Comprehensive Assessment of Team Member Effectiveness (CATME) system were examined. The students were participating in a team bridge design project in a first-year civil engineering course. Teams worked together for 3 to 5 weeks and submitted a single written report. After the project was completed, students rated themselves and their peers in CATME. Male and female students were rated similarly overall, as were Hispanic and majority students. However, international students from Middle East countries and China had lower adjustment factor ratings than majority peers. The largest differences were in the “contributing” category. Middle Eastern students were equally likely to have designed the ‘best bridge’ on their teams. This is counter evidence to the lower contributing score awarded to Middle Eastern students by their peers and implies that bias may have been present in the peer ratings. In addition, it was found that male Middle Eastern students rated females lower than males. The results imply that first-year courses that include team design projects should spend time discussing unconscious bias and cultural styles. Faculty should also consider these issues when using peer ratings to assign students individual grades from team projects.
Bielefeldt, A. R. (2020, June), Unconscious Bias in Peer Ratings of International Students’ Contributions to First-Year Design Projects Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--35407
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