June 15, 2019
June 15, 2019
June 19, 2019
Educational Research and Methods
This work-in-progress paper will analyze first year students’ informal reasoning when approaching classroom based scenarios related to diversity and inclusivity. Overall, there is limited understanding of how informal reasoning informs decision-making in the classroom, especially in an engineering-focused space where issues of diversity and inclusivity are not always emphasized. The process for reasoning through decisions, also known as the informal reasoning process, will be examined using the model put forth by Sadler and Zeidler.
In Fall 2018, a think aloud study was performed with 11 first-year engineering students representing all disciplines. This think aloud protocol had students read through 6 classroom based scenarios of an ethical nature which represent widespread issues of diversity and inclusivity in the classroom. The protocol questions were selected specifically to draw out Sadler and Zeidler’s three approaches to informal reasoning; rational, intuitive, and emotive. Student responses were transcribed by a third party and analyzed by the research team using two cycles of qualitative data coding. In the preparatory stages, the holistic coding method was used to identify larger themes in each individual response. Based on these emerging themes, researchers then shifted to a second coding approach, wherein keywords based upon Sadler and Zeidler’s informal reasoning theory were established as “provisional codes” to be pinpointed in the transcripts.
As this is an educationally-motivated research project, the results will hopefully be used to examine and enhance the classroom experience of engineering students. Furthermore, this data could be used to push the creation of explicitly social and ethical classroom content within the engineering curriculum. The work-in-progress paper will discuss the holistic and provisional coding results from one of the six scenarios and will provide an opportunity to get initial feedback on the study prior to further analysis.
Riley, D. R., & Reed, J. B., & Cimino, R. T., & Farrell, S., & Bodnar, C. A. (2019, June), Work in Progress: Students’ Informal Reasoning when Approaching Classroom-based Scenarios Involving Diversity and Inclusion Issues Paper presented at 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Tampa, Florida. https://peer.asee.org/33651
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