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WIP: Exploration of Conceptions and Attitudes of Colombian and American Chemical Engineers about Chemical Engineering

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2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 23, 2018

Start Date

June 23, 2018

End Date

July 27, 2018

Conference Session

Works in Progress II

Tagged Division

Educational Research and Methods

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Paper Authors


Cristián Eduardo Vargas Ordóñez Universidad de los Andes

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Colombian chemical engineer with experience in industry, laboratories and educational programs. Currently, I'm candidate of master in Sciencie, Technology and Society and studying a master in Education (STEM). My academical preferences are related with engineering education and education of socially responsible engineers.

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Mariana Tafur-Arciniegas P.E. Universidad de los Andes

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Mariana Tafur is an assistant professor in the School of Education at University of Los Andes, Bogota-Colombia. She is a Ph.D. in Engineering Education from Purdue University, a M.S. in Education and a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from University of Los Andes. She is a 2010 Fulbright Fellow.
Her research interests include engineering skills development, STEM for non-engineers adults, motivation in STEM to close the technology literacy gap, STEM formative assessment, and Mixed-Methods design.

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Background and Purpose: As a Work In Progress (WIP) study, we expect to identify and compare the conceptions and attitudes of undergraduate and graduate chemical engineers about engineering and technology, based on Colombian and American sociocultural and historical identities. In Colombia, chemical engineers’ perception of themselves and engineering is related to the utility that this professional has for the economic development of the country and for solving industrial challenges and problems. It seems that this perception is very appreciated for this community and for the universities which teach this discipline because these are abilities for securing a job. Nevertheless, this perception of engineering seems to be different from the idea that American chemical engineers consider, where, in addition to the previous conception, this agent is closer to normal science investigations. Methodology: A mixed survey questionnaire will be applied to undergraduate and graduate Colombian and American chemical engineers. For deeper information, a semi-structured interview will be done to a smaller population, based on the results of the quantitative moment. Responses will be analyzed employing a genetic-structural convergence approach about attitudes and conceptions. Findings/Conclusions: We expect to recognize the difference between Colombian and American undergraduate and graduate attitudes about engineering related to the socio-historical construction, use and actions around this concept.  Implications: To compare with other countries, the conceptions and attitudes about chemical engineering and chemical engineering technology contributes to making visible the differences and similarities between these concepts related to the sociocultural and historical approach. Additionally, it is an opportunity to set up undergraduate curriculums and policies about engineering education taking into account the context in which they are developed.

Vargas Ordóñez, C. E., & Tafur-Arciniegas, M. (2018, June), WIP: Exploration of Conceptions and Attitudes of Colombian and American Chemical Engineers about Chemical Engineering Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--31250

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