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Using Student Developed Comics to Promote Learning of Transport Phenomena Concepts

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2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Columbus, Ohio

Publication Date

June 24, 2017

Start Date

June 24, 2017

End Date

June 28, 2017

Conference Session

Novel Pedagogical Techniques II: Potpourri

Tagged Division

Chemical Engineering

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Paper Authors


Jennifer Pascal University of Connecticut

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Jennifer Pascal is an Assistant Professor in Residence at the University of Connecticut. She earned her PhD from Tennessee Technological University in 2011 and was then an NIH Academic Science Education and Research Training (ASERT) Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of New Mexico. Her research interests include the integration of fine arts and engineering and developing effective methods to teach transport phenomena.

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Tiffany Lauren Pascal New Mexico State University-Carlsbad

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Tiffany Pascal received her Master of Fine Arts at the University of North Dakota and is currently an Assistant Professor of Digital Multimedia Technology at New Mexico State University-Carlsbad. She is also a comic book artist and has published two educational comics through Cause Vision, an anti-human trafficking organization. Her comics have been distributed to over 12,000 children and adults in under-informed communities in Cambodia, Indonesia, and Colombia.

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Anecdotal evidence indicates that current undergraduate engineering students spend numerous hours per week reading popular science-based Internet comics, such as and, for example. Thus, it makes sense that comics can be leveraged as a learning modality for engineering students. The use of comics in STEM education is not new, however, they have yet to be utilized extensively in higher education to teach engineering. Having taught a senior level mass transport course numerous times, a common challenge for students that persists is applying mathematical concepts to describe binary diffusion. Thus, here we will present the implementation of a project in which teams of students developed comic books with a goal of deriving and explaining the most general form of Fick’s first law of diffusion to an average freshman chemical engineering student. This was piloted in a senior level chemical engineering mass transport course, and is also currently be conducted in an elective transport phenomena course. Initial feedback from students was positive, revealing a desire to be creative and explore complex engineering topics from a unique perspective.

Pascal, J., & Pascal, T. L. (2017, June), Using Student Developed Comics to Promote Learning of Transport Phenomena Concepts Paper presented at 2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Columbus, Ohio. 10.18260/1-2--29088

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