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What representations am I using in my courses? Here’s an “app” for that!

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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 I: Online, Electronic, and Apps!

Tagged Division

Chemical Engineering

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Paper Authors


Elif Miskioglu Bucknell University

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Elif Miskioglu is currently an Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering at Bucknell University. She graduated from Ohio State University in 2015 with a PhD in Chemical Engineering, and is interested in student learning in engineering.

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As engineering educators, we are preparing technical experts with the skills to succeed in their profession, as well as make significant contributions to society. Problem solving and critical thinking skills are the foundation of engineering. These require not only technical (content) skills, but also fluency in engaging with a variety of information. Consequently, students who have are comfortable with engaging multiple representations of information are likely also more robust problem solvers and critical thinkers. With this in mind, we believe it is useful for educators to be able to identify and track the representations used in their individual classes, as well as throughout degree programs. This work was conceived following a study at a large Midwestern that indicated different instructors exhibit similar tendencies on exam problem representations for the same course. Furthermore, students were less successful on concept inventory problems using representations that were under-utilized by their instructors. Instructors involved in the study were interested in further utilizing the “representations rubric” developed for this study, and curious as to whether these representation biases persisted through other courses in their degree program. To this end, we are developing an “app” that allows instructors to track the diversity of course experiences they are exposing students to by recording the “experience type” (e.g., lecture, homework problem, exam question) and the representation used (e.g., active, intuitive, visual). The “app” will record this information, and present longitudinal summaries of representations favored by the instructor, highlighting which representations students may not be frequently exposed to. Used across a course or a degree program, this technology can serve as both a formative and summative assessment of instructional strategies. In this paper, we will describe the “app”, its features, and plans for beta-version testing. We will also highlight how this “app” will be used to study prevalent representations used across disciplines and institutions, and if diversifying course experiences leads to greater problem solving capabilities in students.

Miskioglu, E. (2017, June), What representations am I using in my courses? Here’s an “app” for that! Paper presented at 2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Columbus, Ohio. 10.18260/1-2--29119

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