June 14, 2015
June 14, 2015
June 17, 2015
Community Engagement Division
26.1758.1 - 26.1758.12
WORK IN PROGRESS: THE STEAM POWERED PUMPKIN PATCH –HOW A COLLABORATIVE EXTRACURRICULUAR PROJECT ISREDFINING MULTIDISCIPLINARY TEAMWORK As the focus continues to shift from STEM to STEAM; a unique multidisciplinary project at[name removed] is shedding light on how extracurricular community projects can play a role inhelping students within the fields of art, graphic design, electrical engineering, computer science,mechanical engineering, industrial engineering, and the newly emerging field of computationalmedia build the skills to transverse a world of multidisciplinary interchanges. Today's engineers need more than just hard technical skills education; they will contribute morefully to their job and profession when armed with the professional skills including communicationproficiencies that accrue from working in teams and multidisciplinary interchanges. Such practicalskill sets take time and require contextual application to develop. We are in the first year ofexploring how a traditional extracurricular project at [name removed] is being re-designed to beinstrumental in developing those skills. We report on the first year of a longitudinal multi-yearproject to evaluate and design a problem based extracurricular activity in which students from bothengineering and non-engineering majors collaborate to present a community exhibit using theirwide ranging technical and artistic backgrounds. The project, a community display in which students collaborate to design a living, talking, andinteractive pumpkin patch; focuses on how problem based multidisciplinary teams both extend theknowledge about the field of Engineering to the community in an engaging way as well as helpingus to gain insight into the development processes of soft skill sets within such. The initial methodology implemented for the first year is a student self-assessment survey to seehow students prior to engagement in the project define their soft skill sets, knowledge of basics ofdesign, construction, electrical systems, robotics, etc. A follow-up survey will be conductedfollowing the conclusion of the community exhibit (which will be in mid-November 2014) toassess the student’s perceived areas of growth and knowledge transfer on those same skill sets. Apre and post attitudinal survey will also be administered to determine the perceived value effect ofthe experience. Student teams will also get a community exhibit score based on communityparticipants’ evaluation of the use of multidisciplinary skills, presentation, ability to explain theproject in layman’s terms and overall exhibit quality and showmanship. At the conclusion of this first year we are looking to define a set of assessment guidelines aswell as to refine the problem based approach of the exhibit to include additional dynamics and/orrequirements to refine specific skill set areas that seem to be under utilized/developed during suchan experience. We are also focused on perceived student impact/value of the project and how suchshapes student and community support. Following years will focus on community impact andfurther refinement of the parameters of the project with a shifting focus towards computationalmedia and possible coursework development to incorporate the concepts of this newly emergingfield.
Pitcher, M. T., & Espinoza, P. A., & Gomez, H., & Hemmitt, H., & Perez, O. A., & Lugo Nevarez, H. E., & Anaya, R. H., & Golding, P. (2015, June), Work in Progress: The Steam-Powered Pumpkin Patch – How an Extracurricular Project is Shedding Light on Professional Skills Development Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.25094
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