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Work in Progress: Active Learning Activities to Improve Conceptual Understanding in an Undergraduate Mechanics of Materials Course

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Conference

2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 23, 2018

Start Date

June 23, 2018

End Date

July 27, 2018

Conference Session

Student Advancement in Mechanics of Materials

Tagged Division

Mechanics

Page Count

15

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/31267

Download Count

16

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Paper Authors

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Nick A. Stites Purdue University, West Lafayette (College of Engineering)

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Nick Stites is pursuing a PhD in Engineering Education at Purdue University. His research interests include the development and evaluation of novel pedagogical methods to teach core engineering courses and leveraging technology to enhance learning experiences. Nick holds a BS and MS in Mechanical Engineering and has eight years of engineering experience. He also has four years of experience as an adjunct instructor at the community-college and research-university level.

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Charles Morton Krousgrill Purdue University-Main Campus, West Lafayette (College of Engineering)

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Charles M. Krousgrill is a Professor in the School of Mechanical Engineering at Purdue University and is affiliated with the Ray W. Herrick Laboratories at the same institution. He received his B.S.M.E. from Purdue University and received his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Applied Mechanics from Caltech. Dr. Krousgrill’s current research interests include the vibration, nonlinear dynamics, friction-induced oscillations, gear rattle vibrations, dynamics of clutch and brake systems and damage detection in rotor systems. Dr. Krousgrill is a member of the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE). He has received the H.L. Solberg Teaching Award (Purdue ME) seven times, A.A. Potter Teaching Award (Purdue Engineering) three times, the Charles B. Murphy Teaching Award (Purdue University), Purdue’s Help Students Learn Award, the Special Boilermaker Award (given here for contributions to undergraduate education) and is the 2011 recipient of the ASEE Mechanics Division’s Archie Higdon Distinguished Educator Award.

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Jeffrey F. Rhoads Purdue University-Main Campus, West Lafayette (College of Engineering)

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Jeffrey F. Rhoads is a Professor in the School of Mechanical Engineering at Purdue University and is affiliated with both the Birck Nanotechnology Center and Ray W. Herrick Laboratories at the same institution. He received his B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. degrees, each in mechanical engineering, from Michigan State University in 2002, 2004, and 2007, respectively. Dr. Rhoads’ current research interests include the predictive design, analysis, and implementation of resonant micro/nanoelectromechanical systems (MEMS/NEMS) for use in chemical and biological sensing, electromechanical signal processing, and computing; the dynamics of parametrically-excited systems and coupled oscillators; the thermomechanics of energetic materials; additive manufacturing; and mechanics education. Dr. Rhoads is a Member of the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) and a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), where he serves on the Design Engineering Division’s Technical Committees on Micro/Nanosystems and Vibration and Sound, as well as the Design, Materials, and Manufacturing (DMM) Segment Leadership Team. Dr. Rhoads is a recipient of numerous research and teaching awards, including the National Science Foundation’s Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Award; the Purdue University School of Mechanical Engineering’s Harry L. Solberg Best Teacher Award (twice), Robert W. Fox Outstanding Instructor Award, and B.F.S. Schaefer Outstanding Young Faculty Scholar Award; the ASEE Mechanics Division’s Ferdinand P. Beer and E. Russell Johnston, Jr. Outstanding New Mechanics Educator Award; and the ASME C. D. Mote Jr., Early Career Award. In 2014 Dr. Rhoads was included in ASEE Prism Magazine’s 20 Under 40.

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Edward J. Berger Purdue University-Main Campus, West Lafayette (College of Engineering) Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0003-0337-7607

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Edward Berger is an Associate Professor of Engineering Education and Mechanical Engineering at Purdue University, joining Purdue in August 2014. He has been teaching mechanics for over 20 years, and has worked extensively on the integration and assessment of specific technology interventions in mechanics classes. He was one of the co-leaders in 2013-2014 of the ASEE Virtual Community of Practice (VCP) for mechanics educators across the country. His current research focuses on student problem-solving processes and use of worked examples, change models and evidence-based teaching practices in engineering curricula, and the role of non-cognitive and affective factors in student academic outcomes and overall success.

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Jennifer DeBoer Purdue University-Main Campus, West Lafayette (College of Engineering)

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Jennifer DeBoer is currently Assistant Professor of Engineering Education at Purdue University. Her research focuses on international education systems, individual and social development, technology use and STEM learning, and educational environments for diverse learners.

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Angela Goldenstein Purdue University

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Angela Goldenstein is the Managing Director of MEERCat and comes to Purdue University with a decade of experience in the technology industry working for Google & Cisco. She has a BBA from the Stephen M. Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan and is an MBA Candidate at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. She excels at leading cross-functional projects, and on MEERCat, she drives the Center's overall strategy, operations, and research-to-practice initiatives. At Purdue, Angela’s passionate about driving change in the School of Mechanical Engineering and making the experience even better for future students.

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Abstract

This paper describes the development of a suite of active learning activities for an undergraduate course on mechanics of materials. One of the primary motivations for creating and implementing the new activities stemmed from the physical space in which the course was taught – a classroom specifically designed to encourage peer-to-peer collaboration. The round tables in the room and white-board-lined walls inspired a veteran, mechanical engineering faculty member to collaborate with an engineering education doctoral student to design a series of active learning activities for a mechanics of materials course. The goals of the activities were twofold: 1) to increase the student peer-to-peer collaboration during lectures, and 2) to increase the students’ conceptual understanding of difficult, yet foundational, topics. Preliminary results indicated that the students found the activities helpful to their learning and felt comfortable with the concepts targeted. This work in progress manuscript briefly describes each of the active learning activities and illustrates the pedagogical benefits of interdepartmental collaboration.

Stites, N. A., & Krousgrill, C. M., & Rhoads, J. F., & Berger, E. J., & DeBoer, J., & Goldenstein, A. (2018, June), Work in Progress: Active Learning Activities to Improve Conceptual Understanding in an Undergraduate Mechanics of Materials Course Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Salt Lake City, Utah. https://peer.asee.org/31267

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