Curiosity improves in EML infused 1st year engineering design/build course
"Curiosity is a function of overcoming fear. Fear of being wrong. Fear of being right. Fear of being different. If you don’t have the guts to think about bad ideas, you’ll never have the opportunity to execute brilliant ones." Unknown
We know EML is about more than one thing (there are at least three Cs). For teachers striving to help student make progress in more than one aspect of EML, how do we assess these multiple aspects? In other words, how do we decide what to measure, what tools are available, and how do we go about using various tools to generate meaningful assessment results?
This card shares the assessment of curiosity using the 5-Dimensional Curiosity Scale (Kashdan, et al., 2018) and practical lessons learned which is part of a larger study of EML integrated curriculum. We learned these lessons through developing and implementing a comprehensive plan to assess EML in a first-year engineering course at The Ohio State University.
Our 20-month project seeks to integrate EML in ENGR 1182, the second course in a two-semester Fundamentals of Engineering sequence. At Ohio State all incoming freshman engineering students must take a common first-year sequence through the Department of Engineering Education. The course is offered in multiple sections, and each section has a capacity of 72 students. For our assessment, we collected data from 8 sections that implemented the newly developed EML curriculum and 8 sections taught in the traditional fashion. We have the following purposes for the assessment:
1. To assess students' entrepreneurial mindset and attainment of EM related learning objectives.
2. To assess and compare traditional first-year engineering learning in the EML sections and the traditional sections.
3. To evaluate the outcomes of integrating EML into a first year engineering course.
This card is part of a sequence of cards developed to share the overall study, outcomes, and lessons learned. The main card with the overall study plan can be found here
We used the Five-Dimensional Curiosity Scale (Kashdan, et al., 2018) to measure students’ curiosity in the pre- and post-survey. The Scale comprises 25 items that can be categorized into five dimensions: joyous exploration, deprivation sensitivity, social tolerance, social curiosity, and thrill seeking.
We also report on Connections, Creating Value, and Content Knowledge in the course of this study.
This work models ways that students in large courses can engage in real-world problems at scale without compromising technical proficiency and diversity of student experiences. Based on the results presented in the summary attached below (3Cs-5DC&ContentKnowledge&Connections&CreatingValue_Summary.pdf), we have found evidence to suggest that the integration of EML concepts into a first-year engineering course significantly improved student performance with respect to technical learning objectives, increased willingness to take risks, and increased social curiosity (as measured by Kashdans’ 5 Dimensions of Curiosity instrument)– all while creating aptitude in EML-related competencies of creating connections and creating value. The increase in technical learning for the EML version of the course (ITS), was especially surprising given the short exposure time these students had to working directly with the Arduino microcontroller.
This card presents a model way to integrate EML into a large first-year engineering course without compromising technical proficiency or diversity of student experiences.