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Understanding the ‘Us All’ in Engineering 4 Us All through the Experiences of High School Teachers

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Conference

2021 CoNECD

Location

Virtual - 1pm to 5pm Eastern Time Each Day

Publication Date

January 24, 2021

Start Date

January 24, 2021

End Date

January 28, 2021

Conference Session

CoNECD Session : Day 2 Slot 1 Technical Session 2

Tagged Topics

Diversity and CoNECD Paper Submissions

Page Count

16

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/36132

Download Count

8

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Paper Authors

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Bruk T. Berhane University of Maryland College Park

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Dr. Bruk T. Berhane received his bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the University of Maryland in 2003. He then completed a master’s degree in engineering management at George Washington University in 2007. In 2016, he earned a Ph.D. in the Minority and Urban Education Unit of the College of Education at the University of Maryland.
Bruk worked at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, where he focused on nanotechnology, from 2003 to 2005. In 2005 he left JHU/APL for a fellowship with the National Academies where he conducted research on methods of increasing the number of women in engineering. After a brief stint teaching mathematics in Baltimore City following his departure from the National Academies, he began working for the Center for Minorities in Science and Engineering (CMSE) in the Clark School of Engineering at the University of Maryland.
In 2011, he began working directly under the Office of the Dean in the Clark School, coordinating outreach and recruitment programs for the college. In 2016, he assumed the role of director of the Office of Undergraduate Recruitment and Scholarship Programs. His duties entailed working with prospective freshmen and transfer engineering students.
In 2018, he transitioned to the role of Assistant Research Professor in the Department of Bioengineering at the Clark School. His research interests transfer students who first enroll in community colleges, as well as developing broader and more nuanced engineering performance indicators.

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Medha Dalal Arizona State University Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0001-5705-1800

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Medha Dalal is a postdoctoral scholar at Arizona State University. She received her B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Gujarat University, M.S. in Computer Science from New York University, and Ph. D. in Education from Arizona State University. Her research seeks to build capacity for engineering education stakeholders at the grassroots, while also informing policy. Three thrusts that define her research interests at the intersections of engineering, technologies, and education include, ways of thinking that address complex educational challenges, democratization of K-12 engineering education, and online and technology-based learning.

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Stacy S. Klein-Gardner Vanderbilt University

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Stacy Klein-Gardner's career focuses on P-12 science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education, particularly as it relates to increasing interest in and participation by females and URMs and teacher professional development. She is an Adjunct Professor of Biomedical Engineering at Vanderbilt University where she is serving as the external evaluator on the NSF-funded Engineering For Us All (E4USA) project. Dr. Klein-Gardner serves as the chair of the American Society for Engineering Education Board of Director’s Committee on P12 Engineering Education and is a Fellow of the Society.

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Adam R. Carberry Arizona State University Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0003-0041-7060

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Dr. Adam Carberry is an associate professor at Arizona State University in the Fulton Schools of Engineering Polytechnic School. He earned a B.S. in Materials Science Engineering from Alfred University, and received his M.S. and Ph.D., both from Tufts University, in Chemistry and Engineering Education respectively. His research investigates the development of new classroom innovations, assessment techniques, and identifying new ways to empirically understand how engineering students and educators learn. He is currently the chair of the Research in Engineering Education Network (REEN) and an associate editor for the Journal of Engineering Education (JEE). Prior to joining ASU he was a graduate student research assistant at the Tufts’ Center for Engineering Education and Outreach.

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Kenneth Reid University of Indianapolis

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Kenneth Reid is the Associate Dean and Director of the R.B. Annis School of Engineering at the University of Indianapolis and an affiliate Associate Professor in Engineering Education at Virginia Tech. He is active in engineering within K-12, serving on the TSA Board of Directors. He and his coauthors were awarded the William Elgin Wickenden award for 2014, recognizing the best paper in the Journal of Engineering Education. He was awarded an IEEE-USA Professional Achievement Award in 2013 for designing the nation's first BS degree in Engineering Education. He was named NETI Faculty Fellow for 2013-2014, and the Herbert F. Alter Chair of Engineering (Ohio Northern University) in 2010. His research interests include success in first-year engineering, engineering in K-12, introducing entrepreneurship into engineering, and international service and engineering. He has written texts in design, general engineering and digital electronics, including the text used by Project Lead the Way.

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Cheryl Beauchamp Regent University

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Cheryl Beauchamp serves as the Engineering and Computer Science Department chair of Regent University’s College of Arts & Sciences. She is a PhD student in the Engineering Education program at Virginia Tech. She earned her Master’s of Science degree in Computer Science from George Mason University and her Master’s of Education degree from Regent University. Her research interests include Computer Science education, STEM education, teamwork design, online learning, and cybersecurity.

Currently, she is on a research team examining the impacts of the Summer Engineering Education for Kids out-of-school program for racially underrepresented youth.

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Mary Lord Towson University Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0002-4609-8555

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Jennifer L. Kouo, is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Special Education at Towson University in Maryland. Dr. Kouo received her PhD in Special Education with an emphasis in severe disabilities and autism spectrum disorder (ASD) from the University of Maryland at College Park. She is passionate about both instructional and assistive technology, as well as Universal Design for Learning (UDL), and utilizing inclusive practices to support all students. Dr. Kouo is currently engaged in multiple research projects that involve multidisciplinary collaborations in the field of engineering, medicine, and education, as well as research on teacher preparation and the conducting of evidence-based interventions in school environments.

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Darryll J. Pines University of Maryland College Park

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Darryll Pines became Dean and Nariman Farvardin Professor of Engineering at the Clark School on January 5,
2009, having come to the school in 1995 as an assistant professor and served as chair of the school's
Department of Aerospace Engineering from 2006 to 2009.
As dean, Pines has led the development of the Clark School's current strategic plan and achieved notable
successes in key areas such as improving teaching in fundamental undergraduate courses and raising student
retention; achieving success in national and international student competitions; giving new emphasis to
sustainability engineering and service learning; promoting STEM education among high school students;
increasing the impact of research programs; and expanding philanthropic contributions to the school. Today,
the school's one-year undergraduate retention rate is 90%, the university's Solar Decathlon team placed first
worldwide in the most recent competition against other leading universities, our Engineers Without Borders
chapter is considered one of the nation's best, and the Engineering Sustainability Workshop launched by
Pines has become a key campus event. Pines has testified before Congress on STEM education and created
the Top 25 Source Schools program for Maryland high schools. He is also leading a national effort to develop
an AP course in Engineering Design in partnership with the College Board. At $144 million, the school's
research expenditures are at a record high, and the school is ranked 11th worldwide by the Academic
Ranking of World Universities, which focuses on research citations. The Clark School has led the university in
achieving and surpassing its $185 million Great Expectations campaign goal, going on to reach $240 million as
of the most recent accounting. Pines also served on the university's strategic planning steering committee.
During Pines' leadership of aerospace engineering, the department was ranked 8th overall among U.S.
universities and 5th among public schools in the U.S. News and World Report graduate school rankings. Pines
has been director of the Sloan Scholars Program since 1996 and director of the GEM Program from 1999-
2011, and served as chair of the Engineering Council, director of the NASA CUIP Program, and director of the
SAMPEX flight experiment.
During a leave of absence from the University (2003-2006), Pines served as Program Manager for the Tactical
Technology Office and Defense Sciences Office of DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency).
While at DARPA, Pines initiated five new programs primarily related to the development of aerospace
technologies, for which he received a Distinguished Service Medal. He also held positions at the Lawrence
Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), Chevron Corporation, and Space Tethers Inc. At LLNL, Pines worked on
the Clementine Spacecraft program, which discovered water near the south pole of the moon. A replica of
the spacecraft now sits in the National Air and Space Museum.
Pines's current research focuses on structural dynamics, including structural health monitoring and
prognosis, smart sensors, and adaptive, morphing and biologically-inspired structures, as well as the
guidance, navigation, and control of aerospace vehicles. He is a fellow of the Institute of Physics, the
American Society of Mechanical Engineers and the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, and
has received an NSF CAREER Award.
Pines received a B.S. in mechanical engineering from the University of California, Berkeley. He earned M.S.
and Ph.D. degrees in mechanical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

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Abstract

As our nation’s need for engineering professionals grows, a sharp rise in P-12 engineering education programs and related research has taken place (Brophy, Klein, Portsmore, & Rogers, 2008; Purzer, Strobel, & Cardella, 2014). The associated research has focused primarily on students’ perceptions and motivations, teachers’ beliefs and knowledge, and curricula and program success. The existing research has expanded our understanding of new K-12 engineering curriculum development and teacher professional development efforts, but empirical data remain scarce on how racial and ethnic diversity of student population influences teaching methods, course content, and overall teachers’ experiences. In particular, Hynes et al. (2017) note in their systematic review of P-12 research that little attention has been paid to teachers’ experiences with respect to racially and ethnically diverse engineering classrooms. The growing attention and resources being committed to diversity and inclusion issues (Lichtenstein, Chen, Smith, & Maldonado, 2014; McKenna, Dalal, Anderson, & Ta, 2018; NRC, 2009) underscore the importance of understanding teachers’ experiences with complementary research-based recommendations for how to implement engineering curricula in racially diverse schools to engage all students.

Our work examines the experiences of three high school teachers as they teach an introductory engineering course in geographically and distinctly different racially diverse schools across the nation. The study is situated in the context of a new high school level engineering education initiative called Engineering for Us All (E4USA). The National Science Foundation (NSF) funded initiative was launched in 2018 as a partnership among five universities across the nation to ‘demystify’ engineering for high school students and teachers. The program aims to create an all-inclusive high school level engineering course(s), a professional development platform, and a learning community to support student pathways to higher education institutions.

An introductory engineering course was developed and professional development was provided to nine high school teachers to instruct and assess engineering learning during the first year of the project. This study investigates participating teachers’ implementation of the course in high schools across the nation to understand the extent to which their experiences vary as a function of student demographic (race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status) and resource level of the school itself. Analysis of these experiences was undertaken using a collective case-study approach (Creswell, 2013) involving in-depth analysis of a limited number of cases “to focus on fewer "subjects," but more "variables" within each subject” (Campbell & Ahrens, 1998, p. 541).

This study will document distinct experiences of high school teachers as they teach the E4USA curriculum. Participants were purposively sampled for the cases in order to gather an information-rich data set (Creswell, 2013). The study focuses on three of the nine teachers participating in the first cohort to implement the E4USA curriculum. Teachers were purposefully selected because of the demographic makeup of their students. The participating teachers teach in Arizona, Maryland and Tennessee with predominantly Hispanic, African-American, and Caucasian student bodies, respectively. To better understand similarities and differences among teaching experiences of these teachers, a rich data set is collected consisting of: 1) semi-structured interviews with teachers at multiple stages during the academic year, 2) reflective journal entries shared by the teachers, and 3) multiple observations of classrooms. The interview data will be analyzed with an inductive approach outlined by Miles, Huberman, and Saldaña (2014). All teachers’ interview transcripts will be coded together to identify common themes across participants. Participants’ reflections will be analyzed similarly, seeking to characterize their experiences. Observation notes will be used to triangulate the findings. Descriptions for each case will be written emphasizing the aspects that relate to the identified themes. Finally, we will look for commonalities and differences across cases. The results section will describe the cases at the individual participant level followed by a cross-case analysis.

This study takes into consideration how high school teachers’ experiences could be an important tool to gain insight into engineering education problems at the P-12 level. Each case will provide insights into how student body diversity impacts teachers’ pedagogy and experiences. The cases illustrate “multiple truths” (Arghode, 2012) with regard to high school level engineering teaching and embody diversity from the perspective of high school teachers. We will highlight themes across cases in the context of frameworks that represent teacher experience conceptualizing race, ethnicity, and diversity of students. We will also present salient features from each case that connect to potential recommendations for advancing P-12 engineering education efforts. These findings will impact how diversity support is practiced at the high school level and will demonstrate specific novel curricular and pedagogical approaches in engineering education to advance P-12 mentoring efforts.

Berhane, B. T., & Dalal, M., & Klein-Gardner, S. S., & Carberry, A. R., & Reid, K., & Beauchamp, C., & Lord, M., & Pines, D. J. (2021, January), Understanding the ‘Us All’ in Engineering 4 Us All through the Experiences of High School Teachers Paper presented at 2021 CoNECD, Virtual - 1pm to 5pm Eastern Time Each Day . https://peer.asee.org/36132

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: © 2021 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