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EC2000a-k Modules
 

Objective

Promote and evaluate instructional materials and instructor's guides for EC 2000 instructional modules developed by the FC. Background: An FC team has developed and tested instructional materials and instructor's guides for various "skills" required in EC 2000 Criteria 3 (a)-(k). In this context we define a "skill" as a knowledge, ability, and expertness in a process, for example, design skill is the knowledge and awareness of the design process, an ability to use the process, and some expertness or proficiency with this process. Since most engineering curricula do not have room for additional courses to teach these skills, programs must add components on specific skills to existing courses. Since most engineering faculty have little or no experience in teaching processing skills, efficient and effective instruction in these skills will require well-designed instructional material that is not widely available at the present time. These new instructional material should include classroom material, student assignments and, most importantly, a guide for instructors.

Progress

We have instructional modules in four general areas: technical skills, communication skills, professional skills, and ethical-social skills. The specific modules are:

Technical Skills Communication Skills
  • Design
  • Problem solving
  • Computation
  • Modeling
  • Experimentation
  • Graphical
  • Written
  • Oral Communications
Professional Skills Ethical-Social Skills
  • Time management
  • Project management
  • Teaming
  • Life-long learning
  • Ethics
  • Contemporary issues
  • Global/societal impact

We designed the instructional modules so that they

  • Fit into any upper-level engineering course
  • Contained material for three 50-minute lectures
  • Made use of active/cooperative learning methods
  • Contained a justification for the material, learning objectives, an assessment process, multiple student assignments along with a set of PowerPoint slides
  • Had activities to build the skill out of context and then bridge it into the discipline-specific course content
  • Included an instructor's guide

Activities

Maintaining the Web Site

We have established a web site and we plan to update it on a regular basis to reflect the current state of the modules. Also, we plan to include some mechanism on the web site to allow others to post comments, suggested modifications, and supplementary material on the site.

Preparing Promotional Material

We plan to prepare a brochure describing our modules and promoting their use.

Contacting Other Schools

We plan to contact all engineering schools with at least two mailings (using both email and surface mail). The web site and the brochure will be used in these mailings. We also plan to focus two additional concentrated promotion efforts: one directed at other FC schools and the second aimed at engineering schools in the southeastern region.

Presenting and Publishing Papers

We plan to prepare ASEE and perhaps FIE papers describing our modules and the results of our initial testing. Also, we will prepare and submit a manuscript to the Journal of Engineering Education on the modules.

Offering Workshops

We will offer workshops at both the ASEE and FIE conferences - these will be similar to the one we offered at he Best Assessment Conference this year. Also we plan to develop a more extensive day long workshop on teaching skills that will describe our approach and then explore methods for promoting and improving our modules along with alternate approaches for providing instruction in the EC 2000 "A-K" skills. We will advertise this second workshop nationally, but concentrate on attracting faculty members form the other FC schools and other southeastern schools. Establishing an Assessment Plan and Tools - We will develop an assessment plan and the associated tools for evaluating our modules. We will develop a tool to determine if instructors who use the modules find them convenient to use and complete. Also we will develop a tool to determine the students' reaction to the modules.

Deliverables

The following deliverable will result from these activities:

  • Web site linking to all the instructional material
  • Brochures describing the modules
  • List of Schools contacted through four mailings
  • Copies of the papers submitted
  • List of workshops and copies of the workshop materials
  • An assessment plan, including the tools, and all results obtained during the year

Team Members

Russ Pimmel
University of Alabama
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Box 870286
Tuscaloosa Alabama 35487-0286
Phone: (205) 348-1753
E-Mail: rpimmel@bama.ua.edu
David Arnold
University of Alabama
Department of Chemical Engineering
Box 870203
Tuscaloosa Alabama 35487-0203
Phone: (205) 348-1741
E-Mail: darnold@bama.ua.edu
Marcus Brown
University of Alabama
Department Computer Science
Box 870290
Tuscaloosa Alabama 35487-0290
Phone: (205) 348-5243
E-Mail: mbrown@cs.ua.edu
Peter Clark
University of Alabama
Department of Chemical Engineering
Box 870203
Tuscaloosa Alabama 35487-0203
Phone: (205) 348-1682
E-Mail: pclark@bama.ua.edu
Chuck Karr
University of Alabama
Department of Aerospace Engineering and Mechanics
Box 870280
Tuscaloosa Alabama 35487-0280
Phone: (205) 348-0066
E-Mail: ckarr@bama.ua.edu
Robert Leland
University of Alabama
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Box 870286
Tuscaloosa Alabama 35487-0286
Phone: (205) 348-9085
E-Mail: rleland@bama.ua.edu
Jim Richardson
University of Alabama
Department Civil and Environmental Engineering
Box 870205
Tuscaloosa Alabama 35487-0205 Phone: (205) 348-1708
E-Mail: jrichardson@bama.ua.edu
Harold Stern
University of Alabama
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Box 870286
Tuscaloosa Alabama 35487-0286
Phone: (205) 348-8669
E-Mail: hstern@bama.ua.edu
Beth Todd
University of Alabama
Department of Mechanical Engineering
Box 870276
Tuscaloosa Alabama 35487-0276
Phone: (205) 348-1623
E-Mail: btodd@bama.ua.edu
John Wiest
University of Alabama
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Box 870205
Tuscaloosa Alabama 35487-0205
Phone: (205) 348-1727
E-Mail: jwiest@bama.ua.edu
 
 

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