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General Card #1489
Students Teaching Engineering- Making Products for Education
Updated: 10/25/2022 10:36 AM by Michael Johnson
Reviewed: 10/14/2022 2:21 PM by Becky Benishek
An EML project introducing freshman to "making facilities" on campus- teams create a visual aid to teach a class concept. Adapted for HyFlex delivery in F2020

"Students Teaching Engineering" is a flexible hands-on project where students work in teams to create an inexpensive visual aid that illustrates a class concept, then use it to teach someone (a roommate, a relative, a friend, etc.). It can either be a single large homework assignment or a multi-part semester project, and is a great way to provide a hands-on experience in large lecture classes without lab sections. In its expanded form, it provides an opportunity for students to engage with the university maker spaces and fabrication facilities and explore how maker spaces can promote the three Cs: cultivating curiosity, making connections, and creating value. 

Though the project can be tailored based on the instructor's class goals, here is how it was recently implemented in a one-credit "Introduction to Aerospace Engineering"  freshman class with no lab sections and over 125 students:
Part 1: 
1. Students were randomly assigned in teams of four near the start of the semester using CANVAS.
2. On their own time, students visited and learned about campus making facilities and took selfies.
3. The team wrote a preliminary report about their site visits (including selfies) and identified their idea to make an inexpensive visual aid. 
4. The instructor graded the preliminary report and provided guidance on the proposed scope of the visual aid planned for fabrication.
Part 2: 
1. After feedback, the student teams built their visual aid and used it to teach a friend or relative. 
2. Teams wrote a final report and created two PowerPoint slides that included photos of the fabrication and teaching process and a CAD model. Students were not required to turn in the actual visual aid. 
3. After the team report was complete, student wrote individual reflective essays about how making facilities promoted the three Cs.  Students could opt to provide informed consent for their essays to be used for research purposes and to complete an anonymous survey about the project in exchange for a small amount of extra homework credit.  

The anonymous surveys indicated that the students liked the project and were more likely to use the maker spaces in the future because of it. The reflective essays indicated that students perceived that making facilities cultivated student curiosity, were a unique environment for promoting valuable connections, and created enormous value in a university environment.  
As noted earlier, this project can be scaled based  on instructor goals and class requirements. If exposure to making spaces is not a big priority, then the project works well as a large homework assignment, as seen in another KEEN card: "Teams teaching Statics" (link below).

Details of survey and essay results are included in a 2020 ASEE National conference paper (attached below- © 2020 American Society for Engineering Education).

HYBRID "HYFLEX" LEARNING MODE: This card was updated in August 2021 to include materials used in Fall 2020 to accommodate a mix of in-person and remote learners (see final folder). Student feedback indicated that the project can be implemented even for students that are not on campus.

  • Demonstrate constant curiosity about our changing world
  • Integrate information from many sources to gain insight
Creating Value
  • Persist through and learn from failure
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