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Work in Progress: Faculty choice and reflection on teaching strategies to improve engineering self-efficacyThis work-in-progress paper seeks to examine faculty choice of teaching strategies to improve students’ engineering self-efficacy ,  (belief in one’s abilities to successfully accomplish tasks in engineering) as well as their reflections on the effectiveness of the teaching strategy. Increases in self-efficacy have been related to improved academic and career outcomes , especially for women in non-traditional fields such as engineering. The goal of the study is to determine simple yet effective strategies that can be implemented in engineering classrooms to improve self-efficacy. Seven engineering faculty members participated in a faculty learning community (FLC), a semester long program to learn about teaching strategies in each of the four areas of self-efficacy; mastery experiences (e.g., active learning, scaffolding), vicarious learning (e.g., guest lectures, peer mentors, group work), social persuasion (e.g., constructive feedback, positive self-talk), and emotional arousal (e.g., test anxiety, building rapport). The faculty then chose and implemented strategies in each of the four areas in one of their engineering courses. Monthly meetings of the FLC during implementation allowed faculty to share their experiences and suggestions for refinements in their teaching strategy. The paper examines the faculty member choice (why they chose to use particular strategies in their course) asmore »Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 26, 2023
The concerns and perceived challenges students faced when traditional in-person engineering courses suddenly transitioned to remote learningThis research evaluates the impact of switching college engineering courses from in-person instruction to emergency remote learning among engineering students at a university in the Midwest. The study aimed to answer the question: What were the concerns and perceived challenges students faced when traditional in-person engineering courses suddenly transitioned to remote learning? The goal of this study is to uncover the challenges students were facing in engineering online courses and to understand students’ concerns. Our findings can help improve teaching instruction to provide students with previously unavailable educational assistance for online engineering courses. We collected online survey responses during weeks 8 and 9 of the academic semester, shortly after the COVID-19 shutdown and emergency transition to remote learning in Spring 2020. The survey included two open-ended questions which inquired about students’ feedback about moving the class online, and one two-item scale which assessed students’ confidence in online engineering learning. Data analysis for the open-ended questions was guided by the theoretical framework - Social Cognitive Career Theory  that explores how context, person factors and social cognitions contribute to career goals, interests and actions. A phenomenological approach  was conducted to understand the experience of these students. Open coding and axialmore »Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 26, 2023
The outbreak of COVID-19 and sudden transition to remote learning brought many changes and challenges to higher education campuses across the nation. This paper evaluates the impact of the transition to remote learning on the engineering-related social cognitions of self-efficacy (belief in one’s abilities to successfully accomplish tasks in engineering) and outcome expectations (beliefs about the consequences of performing engineering behaviors). These social cognitions can be attributed to important academic and career outcomes, such as the development of STEM interests and goals (Lent et al., 2019) and may be especially important in the success of women in non-traditional fields such as engineering. As an extension to a NSF RIEF (Research Initiation in Engineering Formation) study evaluating engineering social cognitions, students in 8 engineering classes were surveyed at the beginning of Spring 2020 semester (N=224), shortly after the transition to remote learning (N = 190), and at the end of the semester (N=101). The classes surveyed included a common early engineering class at the sophomore level (Engineering Statics) and required junior level courses in different departments. The students were surveyed using reliable and validated instruments to measure engineering self-efficacy (Lent et al. 2005, Frantz et al. 2011), engineering outcome expectations (Lentmore »