Exploring making-based pedagogy in undergraduate mezzanine-level engineering courses

Michael Scott Sheppard, Shawn Jordan, Micah Lande, Ann McKenna

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


The purpose of this study is to better understand how utilizing Making as a pedagogical approach can increase student engagement and transfer of knowledge in engineering courses. Techniques of engagement and knowledge transfer in engineering education are continuously evolving to meet the growing expectations for developing students' skill sets, mindsets, and technical competency necessary to solve increasingly complex engineering problems. One such technique is the growing influence of the Maker movement into engineering curricula. Makers represent a culture encompassing, but not limited to, students and entrepreneurs that are technology-driven toward the creation of physical objects or software to gain a better understanding of engineering properties, concepts, and practical problem-solving skills. This work in progress (WIP) paper provides an overview of our study that explores how elements of Making have been integrated into specific engineering courses to emphasize real-world context, and increase student engagement. We utilized a case study approach of three engineering courses at Arizona State University. These courses were selected to reflect three distinct required subject areas that fall within the mezzanine, which designates the middle sophomore and junior years. Our case study approach includes data collection through faculty interviews, observations, and course related documents. Preliminary analysis of the interview data reveals that faculty members utilize Making approaches in a variety of ways. Evidence of Making in the engineering curricula includes aspects of active learning, "building" something to represent concepts, as well as having students connect concepts and ideas to real world contexts. This work in progress presents a brief review of the literature that guides this work, an overview of the study, insights from the preliminary data analysis, and a discussion of future work.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalASEE Annual Conference and Exposition, Conference Proceedings
StatePublished - Jun 23 2018
Event125th ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition - Salt Lake City, United States
Duration: Jun 23 2018Dec 27 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)


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