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Using Remediation To Improve Visualization Abilities In Minority Engineering And Technology Students

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2006 Annual Conference & Exposition


Chicago, Illinois

Publication Date

June 18, 2006

Start Date

June 18, 2006

End Date

June 21, 2006



Conference Session


Tagged Division

Engineering Design Graphics

Page Count


Page Numbers

11.1405.1 - 11.1405.9



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Paper Authors


Nancy Study Virginia State University

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Dr. Study is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Engineering and Technology at Virginia State University. She formerly was a Visiting Assistant Professor in the Department of Computer Graphics Technology at Purdue University, and also taught as an Instructor at Missouri State University in the Department of Technology. Her research interests include the visualization and haptic skills of engineering and technology students.

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Using Remediation to Improve Visualization Abilities in Minority Engineering and Technology Students


Previous research 1 showed freshman and sophomore Engineering and Technology students enrolled in a two-course series of introductory mechanical drawing and CAD at an HBCU had significantly lower than average test scores on the Purdue Spatial Visualization Test: Visualization of Rotations (PSVT) when it was administered during the first week of class. Although the initial group of students’ posttest scores showed some improvement, the mean was still not up to average.

To test a method of improving the students’ visualization abilities, one section of the first course in the series, a primarily 2D-focused course, received remediation in a variety of forms and the posttest scores improved significantly. The remediation exercises included additional classwork and homework assignments which focused solely on sketching and visualization, and students were required to sketch the solution to most CAD assignments and have the sketches checked by their instructor prior to beginning work on the computer. There were sketching and/or visualization components included on each test throughout the semester and also on the final comprehensive exam.

In the semesters following implementation of the remediation in the initial 2-D course, all students who enrolled in the 3D-focused second course in the series, both those who received remediation in the first course and those who had enrolled in a different section, were given the PSVT as a pre and posttest. The test scores of the students who had not received remediation in the first course were significantly lower at the beginning of the course than those who had received remediation, but there was some improvement at the end of the semester in their posttest scores. The posttest scores of the non-remediation group remained lower than those who had received remediation. However, the pre and posttest scores of the students who had received remediation in the 2D course remained unchanged by their instruction in the 3D course.

Student Demographics

Virginia State University is a historically black university (HBCU) with a student population that self-identifies as 98% black. The general characteristics of the subjects in this study include an average high school GPA of 2.62 and mean combined SAT score of 802 2. From 2002-2005 the mean nationwide combined score for all subjects taking the SAT was 1025 and the mean score for blacks nationwide was 858 3. The average age of the subjects in the study was 19 and they were typically first and second semester freshmen, along with some first semester sophomores, and eighty-seven percent of the subjects were male.

Study, N. (2006, June), Using Remediation To Improve Visualization Abilities In Minority Engineering And Technology Students Paper presented at 2006 Annual Conference & Exposition, Chicago, Illinois. 10.18260/1-2--283

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