This research paper examined the connectedness of STEM faculty to others both within and across academic departments who might be potential resources for diffusion of Learner-centered practices, and the impact of participants' social networks on their Learner-centered beliefs and practices. The research question under investigation was: To what extent is the degree of social connectedness among faculty within and among STEM departments related to the degree of implementation of Learner-centered practices? Participants were recruited from Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics departments, and from departments in the College of Engineering. The sample began with 21 randomly-selected faculty from each department engaged in the STEM instruction of first and second year engineering students. The second level consisted of the colleagues identified by the first level as people they utilize as resources for improving their instruction. The connectedness of faculty in the network was examined using network analysis, focusing on both number of connections, and depth of connections. Attitude and Observation Protocol measures were used as outcomes. Results show that faculty classified as Learner-Centered had deeper and more extensive social networks. Results are discussed in terms of the need for intra- and inter-departmental faculty professional development experiences that both introduce and encourage faculty to trial new tools and techniques, but that also run for the longterm, supporting collaborative organizations of faculty working together to transform early engineering experiences.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication2016 ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition
PublisherAmerican Society for Engineering Education
StatePublished - Jun 26 2016
Event123rd ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition - New Orleans, United States
Duration: Jun 26 2016Jun 29 2016


Other123rd ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityNew Orleans

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)


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