June 26, 2011
June 26, 2011
June 29, 2011
K-12 & Pre-College Engineering
22.1581.1 - 22.1581.15
University Partnership with High School Teachers to Establish a Pipeline of Engineering StudentsMultiple approaches to achieve increases in college enrollment and retention in engineering wereexplored under the first four years of a National Science Foundation funded program. The initialapproach during the first year was to form a team in each of the seven engineering departmentsconsisting of a high school teacher, a faculty member and five undergraduate students. Theobjective was for each team to work with the teacher to develop engineering-based curriculummodules and class demonstrations that the undergraduate team would implement in the teacher’sclassroom. The modules/demonstrations would then be revised as appropriate and offered toother teachers.Assessment during the first year determined that this initial approach was not as effective asdesired due to an inadequate fit between the focus of the specific department and the specificteacher. A new approach was tried the second year. Seven teachers were invited to a daylongworkshop where each student team presented the demonstrations and modules developed duringthe first year. Each teacher filled out a worksheet for each team identifying where in theircurriculum specific activities would fit and also suggesting where that teacher could work withthat specific team for class visits and further module development. This modified approachresulted in improved partnerships with teachers and greater opportunity for each teacher andclass to become more familiar with multiple engineering fields.The successful approach of the second year was expanded for the third and fourth years withgreater than 30 teachers representing more than 20 schools attended the teacher workshop eachyear. This resulted in many more requests from teachers for teams to visit classrooms. Toaccommodate these additional requests, the undergraduate teams were increase from fivestudents to as many as 14 for one team. This addressed another objective of the program,retention. Assessments during the first two years clearly showed that outreach participation andmentoring by college students plus the team and faculty interaction significantly increasedundergraduate excitement in engineering and had a positive effect on retention.The paper provides specific examples of the experiences of the first four years of the program,describes the level of interaction with teachers, describes some of the successfulmodules/demonstrations that have been developed, and presents detailed quantitative assessmentresults.
Richerson, D. W., & Furse, C., & Bergerson, A. A. (2011, June), University Partnership with High School Teachers to Increase Student Awareness of Engineering Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC. https://peer.asee.org/18785
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