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WIP: A Case Study of Integrating Inclusive Engineering Skills into a Middle-years Biomedical Engineering Course via Model-based Reasoning

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2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access


Virtual On line

Publication Date

June 22, 2020

Start Date

June 22, 2020

End Date

June 26, 2021

Conference Session

Sociotechnical Integration

Tagged Division

Liberal Education/Engineering & Society

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Paper Authors


Maysam Nezafati Georgia Institute of Technology

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I am a lecturer in the department of biomedical engineering at Georgia institute of technology /Emory University. I have been working on educational research since 2016. My main focus is on problem based learning core courses. But specifically I work on inclusive model based reasoning and interpersonal skills. I have a Phd in bioelectronics and also do research in functional MRI, with the focus on functional network analysis and working memory.

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Mel Chua Georgia Institute of Technology

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Mel Chua ( is a contagiously enthusiastic hacker, scholar, dancer, bimodal polyglot, and perpetual motion machine. She started out in electrical/computer engineering and spent several years wrangling large distributed technical teams in the open source software and hardware world before returning to academia. Mel's research focuses on learning in hacker/maker communities, faculty development, embodied and critical postmodern qualitative research methodologies, and prototyping alternate ontologies of curricular culture in engineering education.

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Joseph M. LeDoux Georgia Institute of Technology

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Joe Le Doux is the Associate Chair for Undergraduate Learning and Experience in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Georgia Tech and Emory University. Dr. Le Doux's research interests in engineering education focus on problem-solving, diagrammatic reasoning, and on the socio-cognitive aspects of the flipped and blended learning environments.

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As engineering educators prepare increasingly diverse cohorts of students to tackle complex global challenges, the need for engineers with inclusive mindsets has become more apparent. One aspect of inclusion is the awareness of our potential for biases in the models we create of the world -- mathematical models that go on to influence the technologies we produce. This paper presents a work-in-progress case study of an intervention in a middle-years analytical course with a heavy focus on mathematical modeling. The intervention is designed to make students aware of biases in mathematical models, their own tendencies towards these kinds of biases, and the sorts of impacts these biases can have on real populations. An important component of the intervention is that it is embedded into the teaching of analytical content, rather than being an additional unit on “inclusion” that remains separate from quantitative work.

Nezafati, M., & Chua, M., & LeDoux, J. M. (2020, June), WIP: A Case Study of Integrating Inclusive Engineering Skills into a Middle-years Biomedical Engineering Course via Model-based Reasoning Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--35517

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