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Engineering by design : a methodology for designing creative engineering activities

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Engineering by design : a methodology for designing creative engineering activities
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Ohland, Matthew William
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xvii, 301 leaves : ; 29 cm.

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Brainstorming ( jstor )
Design engineering ( jstor )
Educational research ( jstor )
Engineering ( jstor )
Engineering education ( jstor )
High school students ( jstor )
Learning ( jstor )
Learning styles ( jstor )
Teachers ( jstor )
Tributaries ( jstor )
Civil Engineering thesis, Ph. D
Dissertations, Academic -- Civil Engineering -- UF
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bibliography ( marcgt )
theses ( marcgt )
non-fiction ( marcgt )

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Thesis:
Thesis (Ph. D.)--University of Florida, 1996.
Bibliography:
Includes bibliographical references (leaves 278-300).
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Also available online.
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Typescript.
General Note:
Vita.
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by Matthew William Ohland.

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University of Florida
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Copyright Matthew William Ohland. Permission granted to the University of Florida to digitize, archive and distribute this item for non-profit research and educational purposes. Any reuse of this item in excess of fair use or other copyright exemptions requires permission of the copyright holder.
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ENGINEERING BY DESIGN:
A METHODOLOGY FOR DESIGNING
CREATIVE ENGINEERING ACTIVITIES














By

MATTHEW WILLIAM OHLAND



















A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT
OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF
DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 1996


UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA L!BRARES



























Copyright 1996

by

Matthew William Ohland


























This dissertation, all that I have, and all that I am are dedicated to my wife, Emily.














ACKNOWLEDGMENTS


I am forever in debt to Dr. Hoit for sticking his neck out for me; this dissertation is far from conventional. This Civil Engineering department and its chair, Dr. Paul Thompson, are also recognized for being receptive to the inroads of educational reform. My research was also helped significantly by the SUCCEED coalition and the National Science Foundation and their efforts to change the culture of engineering education. Of those in SUCCEED, Dr. Rich Felder of NCSU and Dr. Tim Anderson have had a special role for me as mentors, as did Dr. Jonathan Earle of the University of Florida, Dr. Don Steiner of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and Dr. Fred Orthlieb of Swarthmore College.

The members of my committee themselves were selected because they have in common my admiration for their expertise as educators. Each of my committee members deserve special mention for their most prominent contributions to this work; Dr. Hoit for learning right iv








along with me how to conduct educational research, Dr. Kantowski for offering assistance in that journey, but letting us learn for ourselves, Dr. Ellifritt for his collaboration in designing the tributary area laboratory, Dr. Glagola for treating me as a peer and serving as a sounding board, and Dr. Hays for making sure I came to the University of Florida in the first place.

In developing and conducting the Truss Bridge

Laboratory, I have had a great deal of assistance from many sources. Dr. Hoit shared in its design. I am grateful to Renee Alter, Lincoln Smith and Bennett Ruedas for their assistance in preparing truss kits; Ken Simon deserves special mention for his regular assistance in recovering undamaged popsicle sticks. Dr. Hoit, Renee, Linc, and Todd Sessions have all played a part in conducting the laboratory, but preparation of the laboratory space itself has been trusted to Danny Richardson, Hubert Martin, and Bill Studstill. Of those, Danny assists every time the Introduction to Engineering class is held, and earns special recognition as proof that doers can also be teachers.

The SECME institute afforded a number of benefits to this research, and the SECME adminstration and master

v








teachers are duly recognized. Much of my field work has been conducted with SECME teachers. Gold stars go to Dot Turner for helping me develop my ability to teach elementary students and for her very caring approach in all she does. Dr. Hoit graciously assumed responsibility for our part of the institute, to help me in my research. Fortunately, Nneka Jackman, at the University for summer 1995, helped me hold up my end of the bargain.

The HOIST summer institute mentioned herein was also held summer 1995. Many of the arrangements were made by Nneka, who jumped in with both feet. She was joined by Angela Kahoe and Bennett Ruedas as counselors and event coordinators.

Elizabeth Syfrett was essential in the processing and analysis of data to study the Introduction to Engineering course and the two summer institutes. She accomplished a great deal of work to meet tough deadlines.

Clyde Holman has always done his best to meet my needs each time I exceeded the abilities of the computer on my desk. His concern for my success will always be appreciated.



vi








The time that Dr. Cynthia Holland of Newberry High

School, Newberry, Florida, took out of her busy schedule to assist with the preparation of a high school statistics lesson is greatly appreciated. Working with her was not only educational, but a great deal of fun.

I cannot fail to recognize my family and friends, not only for their moral support throughout my education, but also for their special understanding of the level of commitment necessary to complete this dissertation. While out-of-state friends and relatives have scarcely heard from me in the last few months, my wife and mother-in-law have assumed the bulk of my household responsibilities (including caring for my two-year-old daughter, Charlotte) during that same period. This dissertation was primarily completed on a hand-me-down computer from my generous friend Charles Powell. While I could scarce have afforded that computer, I likely would not have finished in a timely fashion without it. My sister, Karen Ohland, also receives special recognition for her assistance in processing the data from the tributary area laboratory.





vii















TABLE OF CONTENTS





ACKNOWLEDGMENTS . . . . . . . . . . iv

LIST OF TABLES . . . . . . . . .. xiv

ABSTRACT . . . . . . . . . . . xvi

CHAPTERS

1 INTRODUCTION . . . . . . . . . 1

The Reform of Engineering Education . . . . 1
Previous Reform Movements . . . . . 1
Proponents of the Current Reform Movement 2 Context of the Current Reform . . . . 5
The demands of industry . . . . 5 Concern of a shortfall of engineers . 9 Weaknesses in the student pipeline . . 14
Summary of Reform Objectives . . . . 18
Design Activities as a Method of Meeting Reform
Objectives . . . . . . . . 19
Traditional Laboratory Exercises . . . 19 Capstone Design Courses . . . . . . 20
Design for Freshmen and Sophomores ..... 21 Design in the K-12 Pipeline . . . . . 22
Student intervention . . . . . 22
Faculty intervention . . . . . 25
Integration into state curricula ..... 27 Typical Design Project Objectives ..... 27 Dissertation Structure . . . . . 29






viii










2 CREATIVE PROBLEM SOLVING ..... . .. . ...... 31

Introduction . . . . . . . . . . 31
The Stages of Problem Solving . . . . 32
Problem Definition . . . . . . . . 33
Idea Generation . . . . ................. 38
The Barriers to Creative Thinking . . . 39
False assumptions . . . . . . 40
There is only one right answer . . . 41 Looking at a problem in isolation . . 42 Following the rules . . . . . 42
Negative thinking . . . . . . 43
Fear of failure . . . . . . 43
Discomfort with ambiguity ....... 44
The Use of Groups in Idea Generation .... 45 Barriers Specific to Group Idea Generation . 47
Evaluation apprehension . . . . 48 Social loafing . . . . . . . 48
Production blocking . . . . . 49
Overcoming the Barriers to Creative Thinking 50 Techniques of Idea Generation . . . . 50
Verbal brainstorming . . . . . 51
Brainwriting . . . . . . . 54
Electronic brainstorming ........ 55 Force-fitting . . . . . . . 56
Morphological analysis . . . . . 56
Idea Evaluation and Selection . . . .. . 57
Solution Implementation . . . . . . . 59
Summary of Approach Chosen for Methodology . . 61

3 LEARNING AND TEACHING . . . . . . . 63

Development . . . . . . . . . . 65
Cognitive Development . . . . . . 66
The preoperational stage . . . . 66 The concrete operational . . . . 69 The formal operational stage . . . 71 Comments on Piaget's theory . . . 72
Personal and Social Development ... .... . 73
Trust vs. mistrust . . . . . . 75
Autonomy vs. doubt . . . . . . 75
Initiative vs. guilt .. . . . ... 76

ix









Industry vs. inferiority ........ 77 Identity vs. role confusion .. . . 78
Moral Development . . . . . . . 79
Preconventional level . . . . . 82 Conventional level . . . . . . 83
Postconventional level . . . . . 84
Overall Effect of Developmental Stages . . 85 Learning . . . . . . . . . . . 85
Behavioral Learning Theory . . . . . 86
Conditioning . . . . . . . 87
Consequences . . . . . . . 88
Extinction . . . . . . . . 92
Discrimination . . . . . . . 92
Generalization . . . . . . . 93
Modeling . . . . . . . . 93
Self-regulation . . . . . . 94
Other applications of behavioral learning
theory . . . . . . . 94
Cognitive Learning Theory . . . . . 95
Interference ... ... . . . . 96
Primacy and recency . . . . . 98
Mnemonics . . . . . . . . 98
Practice . . . . . . . . 99
Organization . . . . . . 100
Common elements of cognitive principles 101 Pedagogy . . . . . . . . . . 102
Educational Aims . . . . . . 103
Goals. ..... .......... . 103
General educational program objectives 104 Instructional objectives ...... 104
An example using all three levels of
educational aims . . . . 105
Bloom's Taxonomy of Educational Objectives 106
Knowledge . . . . . . . 107
Comprehension . . . . . . 108
Application . . . . . . 108
Analysis . . . . . . . 109
Synthesis . . . . . . . 109
Evaluation . . . . . . . 110
Taxonomy of Affective Objectives . . . 111 Effective Instruction . . . . . . 112
Aptitude . . . . . . . . 113
Between-Class Grouping . . . . . 114

x









Within-Class Grouping . . . . . . 115
Learning Styles . . . . . . . 116
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) 117
The Herrmann Brain Dominance Instrument
(HBDI) . . . . . . 119
The Kolb Cycle and the 4MAT System . 121 Felder's learning styles . . . . 124 Comprehensive models of learning style 128
Why and How to Teach to All Learning Types 130 The Non-Constant Nature of Preferences 133 Cooperative Learning . . . . . 134

4 THE ENGINEERING BY DESIGN METHODOLOGY . . . 138

Application of The Scientific Method . . . 138 The Development of Engineering By Design . . 142
Establish Goals . . . . . . . 142
Select a Focus . . . . . . . 143
Brainstorm for Ideas . . . . . 144
Evaluate Ideas . . . . . . . 144
Figure Out the Details . . . . . 148
Establish Specific . . . . . . 153
Improve the Activity . . . . . 154

5 EVALUATION AND ASSESSMENT . . . . . . 159

Evaluation of Educational Systems . . . . 159
Constraints on Educational Research . . 159
Ethical principles . . . . . 161
Legal constraints . . . . . 163
Human relations . . . . . 164
Effects in Research Involving People . . 165
The Hawthorne Effect . . . . . 165 The John Henry Effect . . . . 166 The Pygmalion Effect . . . . . 167 Demand characteristics . . . . 167
Evaluation of Engineering By Design . . . 168
Design of a Tributary Area Activity . . 171
Establish goals and select a focus 172 Brainstorm for ideas . . . . . 172 Evaluation of ideas . . . . 174 Figure out the details . . . . 174 Establish Specific Objectives . . 182

xi









Improve the activity ... ...... 184
Tributary Area Activity Implementation 184
Introduction to laboratory ...... 186 Block tower activity ......... 186 Load distribution brainstorming . . 188 Problem set discussion . . . . 190 Tributary area lab assignment . . 193 Lab assignment discussion . . . 194
Live load reduction brainstorming exercise
. . . . . . . . 194
Live load reduction brainstorming results
. . . . . . . . 196
LRFD live load reduction . . . . 196 Live load reduction laboratory exercise 196 Live load reduction problem discussion 197
Evaluation of the Tributary Area Activity 197
Student evaluation . . . . . 198
Tributary area evaluation results 207 Tributary area post-test . . . . 211 Post-test results . . . . . 214
Student comments on the lab as a whole 218
Design of an 11th-12th Grade Statistics Activity 218
The Design of the Activity . . . . 219 Designing Experimental and Control Groups 223 Introductory Brainstorming Activity ... 223
Central tendency . . . . . . 224
Decreasing observer dependence . . 225 Sources of error . . . . . . 226
Measuring variation . . . . . 226
The Post-test and Results ... . . . 227
Effects Operating in this Experiment . . 230

6 CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS . . . . 232

APPENDICES

A INTRODUCTION TO ENGINEERING HANDOUTS . . . 235

B THE ENGINEERING BY DESIGN METHODOLOGY . . . 253






xii








C TRIBUTARY AREA LABORATORY . . . . . . 259

Tributary Area Brainstorming Session Output 260 Tributary Area Lab Activity Lesson Plans . . 261 Floor Load Distribution Exercise .... . . . 262
Instructions for Block Tower and Live Load Activities
. . . . . . . . . . . 263
Tributary Area Laboratory Student Evaluation 265 Tributary Area Post-Test . . . . . . 270
Tributary Area Post-Test Grading System . . 271

D HIGH SCHOOL PHYSICS STATISTICS LESSON . . . 273

LIST OF REFERENCES .............. ... 278

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH ................. 301


































xiii















LIST OF TABLES


Table pacre

1 Nine Categories of Thought-Starter Questions . .. 53 2 Erikson's Stages of Personal and Social Development 74 3 Kohlberg's Stages of Moral Reasoning ... .... 81 4 Myers-Briggs Type Indicator Attributes ..... 118 5 Felder and Silverman's Learning and Teaching Styles 124 6 Various Terms Used in Classifying Variables 160

7 Classification of Experience as a Continuous Variable . . . . . . . . . 198

8 Likert Scale Definition . . . . . . 200

9 Manipulation of Negatively Phrased Statement Scores 201 10 Tributary Area Evaluation Statements ...... 202 11 Tributary Area Survey Statements and Groupings 203 12 Concepts tested by the Statistics Post-Test . 228 13 Post-Test Concept Coverage ......... . . 229

14 Survey Responses by Individual ......... 266 15 Survey Responses by Individual: Concept Groupings 267 16 Survey Responses by Team: Raw Data Averages . 268 xiv








17 Survey Responses by Team: Concept .. .. . 269 18 Post-Test Responses and Scores by Individual . 272 19 Statistics Post-Test Partial Scores by Individual 276 20 Statistics Post-Test Score Summary ....... 277













































xv














Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy ENGINEERING BY DESIGN:
A METHODOLOGY FOR DESIGNING ENGINEERING DESIGN ACTIVITIES By

Matthew William Ohland

August 1996


Chairperson: Dr. Marc I. Hoit Major Department: Civil Engineering

There has been a great effort in recent years to effect a significant change in engineering education. This reform movement has had many objectives and proponents. Herein it has been postulated and shown that properly formulated design activities can fulfill a great many of the reform objectives. Furthermore, it was hypothesized that it was possible to design a methodology for creating such activities in order to facilitate their implementation. The crux of the Engineering By Design methodology is a framework for collaboration of engineers and educators which combine xvi








their various areas of expertise to create lessons which are both technically accurate and educationally sound.

This design methodology was first developed by

analyzing the process used to design an activity for use in the Civil Engineering component of University of Florida's Introduction to Engineering class. After the methodology was formally established, the methodology was used in collaboration with a University of Florida professor to design an activity to teach the concept of tributary area. To evaluate the methodology, a post-test was administered and feedback from the students was obtained. The post-test scores were very high (average 18 out of 21), which indicated excellent mastery but lacked sufficient range to conduct any correlational studies. Quantitative analysis of student feedback was conducted, indicating positive results.

A second application of the methodology was conducted to design a lesson to teach descriptive statistics to a high school physics class. Constraints on this design caused the lesson generated using Engineering By Design to be very similar to the lesson used to teach the control group. As a result, the post-test indicated only a slight increase in the performance of the experimental group.

xvii














CHAPTER 1
INTRODUCTION



The Reform of Engineering Education



Previous Reform Movements


There is currently a widely recognized need for reform of the engineering education system of the United States. The current reform movement is the most recent of a number of periodic evaluations of the state of engineering education. Previous evaluations included those by the Society for the Promotion of Engineering Education (SPEE)1 chaired by Wickenden (1930) and Hammond (1940 and 1944), by the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) chaired by Grintner (1955), and by the National Research Council (NRC)2 chaired by Haddad (1985).


'Founded in 1893, the Society for the Promotion of Engineering Education changed its name to the American Society for Engineering Education in 1946. 2The National Research Council is the operating agency of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS), the National Academy of Engineering (NAE), and the Institute of Medicine.








2

In a recent NRC publication, the following themes were identified as unchanging throughout the various reports listed above (NRC, 1993, p. 1):


1. the need for strong grounding in the fundamentals of
mathematics and the physical and engineering sciences;

2. the importance of design and lab experimentation;

3. a call for more attention to the development of
communication and social skills in young engineers;

4. the need for integration of social and economic studies
and liberal arts into the curriculum;

5. the vital importance of good teaching and attention to
curriculum development; and

6. the need to prepare students for career-long learning. Although these themes are common to the five reports, the priority assigned to each varies according to the economic, political, and social conditions of the time.



Proponents of the Current Reform Movement


The current reform has many proponents. The National Science Foundation (NSF) has given multi-million dollar grants to support the formation of engineering education coalitions (NSF, 1990), the NRC established project RISE








3

(Regional Initiatives in Science Education) ("Educational Reform for K-12," 1995)3 and issued the working paper mentioned above (NRC, 1993), and the ASEE issued the report "Engineering Education for a Changing World" (ASEE, 1994). Support for the current reform also comes from the private sector which, in addition to its representation in the above groups, has offered statements and programs of its own (Black, 1994 and McMasters, 1991).

Altogether, there are many more reports and initiatives in support of engineering education reform than can be mentioned here. Tobias (1992), noting the proliferation of reports just addressing American undergraduate mathematics and science [pre-engineering], estimates that 300 such reports have been issued since 1983. Tobias goes on to note the lack of impact of these reports despite the staggering cost in dollars and time. Though Tobias' focus is on introductory courses in undergraduate science, her observations shed insight on the reform of engineering education as a whole.





3Project RISE receives funding from NSF and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.








4

This forces us to question the possibility of reform. Is the current reform movement simply to be placed on a shelf as a testimony to the organizational inertia of academia? What distinguishes the current effort is the apparent paradigm shift of the National Science Foundation (Pister, 1993). Just as the NSF was the driving force in creating the research-driven university climate which Boyer (1990) referred to as the "scholarship of discovery," the NSF is also leading the engineering education community into a new era which also encourages and financially supports research in teaching and learning.

Another necessary proponent of any major change is the Accreditation Board of Engineering and Technology (ABET). Academic institutions have traditionally been concerned that proposed changes might threaten a school's accreditation. Recently, however, ABET has become more concerned with quality than specific content and "bean counting" (Harris et al., 1994, p. 71). This paradigm shift in ABET will permit universities and colleges to be more flexible in their approach to engineering education without the threat of losing accreditation.








5

Context of the Current Reform


Not surprisingly, many of the goals of the current

reform movement are echoes of earlier reports reverberating off today's political, economic, and social conditions. It is pertinent to analyze these driving forces in order to understand the movement's true objectives.

The driving forces behind this reform are many-the demands of industry [the employer of 70% of engineering graduates (Farrington et al., 1994)], concerns of a shortfall of engineers, and existing weaknesses in the preparation of students for study in engineering (the student pipeline) are among them.



The demands of industry

The engineering curriculum model in the United States after World War II was heavy on mathematics and science and lighter on design (Hubband, 1993). The United States and other countries using that model would discover that the lack of hands-on training would prevent new engineers from becoming effective designers without additional training (Farrington et al., 1994). In Japan, this problem was








6

solved through hands-on assignments in the first two years of employment. In Germany, institutions were established which require all faculty to have certain minimum levels of industry experience. In the United States, it is the current reform movement that seeks to address the problem.

Advances in computer and telecommunications technology continue to make the economy a global one. Trade agreements and tariff reductions also knock down international economic barriers. The political environment in the post-Cold War era is also a harbinger of new levels of international cooperation.

This globalization has introduced new economic constraints which have had a dramatic effect on the engineering profession. Downsizing has formed smaller core engineering groups, with other engineers forced into the roles of subcontractor and consultant. Future engineers will not only need to adapt from one project to another, but may need to face transitions from company to company or industry to industry (Otala, 1993 and Leake, 1993). Much of an engineer's education will become obsolete after a time. Some have described this process as a sort of educational decay, with a half-life of 5 to 10 years (Healy, 1994).








7

Such a profession requires that engineers have a lifelong commitment to learning, which will be at their expense. These conditions demand that engineers understand the process of engineering and possess diverse fundamental skills. These will be more vital than specialized skills, since engineers will frequently work outside of their field of specialty.

Traditionally, there has been a misalignment of the

direction industry suggests for academia and the direction academia charts for itself ("The More Things Change," 1993). Industry representatives generally prefer more practical knowledge so that new hires can "hit the ground running." Sources in academia generally criticize this approach, citing that the more broadly trained engineer will ultimately serve the company better. In this age when technology and particular practices is evolving so quickly, the needs of industry are approaching what has traditionally been the suggestion of academia.

If the formal education of engineers becomes more

general in nature, there will be a concomitant increase in the specialization of continuing education. This increase in demand for continuing education can be answered partly by








8

universities through distance learning and other methods. Commercial interests will assume the rest of this training responsibility.

A shift toward a curriculum focused on skills and the ability to learn new knowledge is inevitable. Especially with the onset of the information age, the amount of knowledge grows exponentially. A curriculum which attempts to expand to include new content cannot hope to keep up. We must, therefore, teach engineering students to learn, and focus on the skills to apply new knowledge rather than the knowledge itself (Monteith, 1994). Pister points out that there is a trade-off in higher education: excessive focus on increasing students' knowledge takes time away from teaching students how to use their knowledge in practice (1993).

This increasingly global market for engineering services and products also prefers engineers with an understanding of other cultures and languages. The need for cultural understanding and the diversity of career paths calls for a strengthening of the liberal arts training engineering students receive (Morrow, 1994), a suggestion which has always received considerable resistance (Florman, 1993 and Kranzberg, 1993). A growing number of American








9

engineering students are conducting a portion of their studies abroad, as well (Ercolano, 1995).

Altogether, industry representatives seem to agree on certain deficits in engineering graduates: the ability to work on a team, the ability to communicate effectively, and an awareness of workplace expectations (Katz, 1993).



Concern of a shortfall of engineers

There is considerable difference of opinion as to the level of this concern. Many sources indicate a serious shortfall of engineers will occur within a decade. Heckel (1996) indicates a 25% downturn in freshman enrollments since 1980 and a 9% decline from Fall 1992 to Fall 1994. Bakos and Hritz (1991) claim that the shortage is at all degree levels, and is caused by changes in demographics and student interest level. Lohmann (1991) anticipates a shortfall of engineering graduates not because of demographics or interest but because of inadequate preparation in the public school system. Other reports agree with the issue of quality raised by Lohmann ("New Report," 1990).








10

On the other hand, there are other reliable sources

which forecast no shortage of engineers at all. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (Kutscher, 1994) indicates an increase in engineering employment which will maintain a constant percentage of total employment base. LeBuffe and Ellis (1993) indicate that during the decade following the early 1980's engineering enrollment followed demographic trends. Van Valkenburg (1991) indicates that there is great exaggeration regarding any potential shortage, citing an American Council on Education study which indicated that more students anticipated study in engineering than in any other discipline. Van Valkenburg also seems to suggest that any oversupply of engineers will be absorbed by the workforce, because engineering graduates are excellent candidates for "crossover," finding employment in alternate fields.

Since there seems to be consensus that having an adequate supply of engineers is vital to the national economy and it has been suggested that generating an oversupply of engineers is an acceptable outcome, it seems appropriate to look more closely at the factors which impact student enrollment in engineering. Student enrollment is











controlled by two major factors: student interest and student preparation. Both of these are necessary. Preparation for study in engineering is discussed in the next section-only interest will be addressed here.

Many critical factors affecting student interest in

engineering are beyond the control of academia (though not outside its sphere of influence). Government policies, economic trends, and salary ranges can all influence student career and study choices. There is one significant factor which can be controlled by those in academia-an understanding of the profession itself. A Gallup poll sponsored by the American Consulting Engineers Council indicates that about a third of Americans have no idea what engineers do ("Thirty Percent," 1990).

Past President of the Accreditation Board for

Engineering and Technology (ABET) Jerrier Haddad notes (1996, p. 5) that "engineering is an enigma to the lay public." The lack of understanding of the engineering profession causes many problems. If prospective engineering students do not understand what engineering is, they may not pursue it. Worse yet, students who are not interested in engineering may pursue it in error. The latter causes the








12

student and the educational institution to waste valuable resources to uncover the error. If teachers and high school counselors do not understand the requirements for entrance into engineering study, students who are otherwise excellent candidates for such study will be hindered by poor preparation if they do matriculate. The problem is greater still-even those who are truly not interested in engineering should learn what engineers do, because these others may become lawmakers, voters, investors, etc. who will make decisions which affect the engineering profession. More importantly, many of those not interested in engineering may be relatives of students that someday consider engineering. The advice of relatives is one of the strongest influences on a student's choice of a career path (Van Valkenburg, 1991).

One of the primary stumbling blocks to the

understanding of engineering by the general populous is that although the basic sciences are taught in the K-12 curriculum, engineering is not traditionally present in the curriculum at all.

To establish a foothold for engineering in K-12 schools, engineering educators must play a role.








13

Engineering professors have traditionally separated themselves from the pre-engineering educational system (Oaxaca, 1991), but this must change if the engineering profession is to have high quality graduates in the future. Partnerships which put engineering educators and practicing engineering in direct contact with students have a significant impact. These provide prospective engineering students with role models and an improved understanding of the profession. Such local partnerships were recommended by the 1994 ASEE report "Engineering Education for a Changing World." Other efforts to improve the image of engineers by providing appropriate role models in the media are being pursued by some ("Engineers to the Rescue," 1992). While programs which reach students directly are important, such programs are not feasible on a large scale, but will be relegated to local engineering firms and educational institutions.

Our efforts will have a greater impact if we work directly with those in the K-12 system who are fewer in number and are less transient than the students-the teachers and the counselors, curriculum coordinators, and other administrators. Collette (1994) estimates 47 million








14

students in the K-12 system, but less than a tenth that many teachers and administrators.

The benefit of this kind of intervention in the K-12 educational system is two-fold. To be sure, those interested in engineering will learn what it is and what precollege study is appropriate to be prepared for it. There is another important benefit-engineers can help reform the system which threatens the quality of students entering college programs, as feared by Lohmann (1991) and others. This concern and its remediation are discussed more thoroughly in the section which follows.



Weaknesses in the student pipeline

Walter Massey, former Director of the National Science Foundation, has said of the public education system (1992, p. 52), "Somehow, over the past several decades, we have allowed science and mathematics education to erode to the extent that we are jeopardizing our ability to produce skilled scientists and engineers, technical workers, and a scientifically literate public." There seems to be consensus regarding Massey's portrayal of the condition of K-12 education in the United States. Some paint an even








15

worse picture, where 95% of the American population is scientifically illiterate (Lohmann, 1991). The K-12 system, and sometimes the K-14 system (adding junior colleges), is referred to as the student pipeline. Viewing engineering education as an industry, the pipeline is the supplier of the raw material which engineering schools turn into a finished product, the graduate engineer. As is usually the case, flaws in the raw material can have a significant effect on the both the process and the end product.

These deficiencies in the K-12 pipeline are a call to action for the engineering community. The problem must be approached at all levels. It is critical for the future of the engineering profession that elementary, middle, and high school students have the scientific literacy required in today's society. It is also essential that those students who develop an interest in engineering be well prepared to pursue it.

In response to the perceived drop in quality of

mathematics and science education in the student pipeline, new standards have been introduced. The National Research Council recently issued the National Science and Education Standards (NRC, 1995) and the National Council of Teachers








16

of Mathematics released Curriculum and Evaluation Standards for School Mathematics (NCTM, 1989). These standards indicate specific objectives for each grade level. For these standards to achieve their intended purpose of improving the education in the pipeline, teachers must be adequately prepared to meet the standards. Unfortunately, on the whole, precollege faculty are not up to the task. Numerous studies indicate that many precollege faculty are unlikely to teach mathematics and science well due to both insufficient education and perceived inadequacies (Lohmann, 1991 and Jones, 1992a). Engineers, especially those in academia, must therefore work with in-service and preservice teachers to help develop both competence and confidence. Partnerships as described earlier as well as appropriate courses at the college level will achieve this aim.

Another weakness in the pipeline is the lack of

diversity. Diversity is important in engineering to achieve the best divergent thinking as a profession, apart from any moral considerations. The engineering student population is predominantly comprised of white males with certain thinking/learning preferences. The underrepresentation of








17

women and minorities in engineering is well documented (Jones, 1992b and Felder et al., 1995).

Less acknowledged, but equally noteworthy in discussing diversity, is the fact that most successful engineering students have similar thinking and learning preferences (Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, 1995b, Frey, 1990, and Felder, 1993). The students who are successful are those who are likely to prepare for and study engineering the way that is has traditionally been taught. Changes in the educational system will allow a more diverse population of engineering students to be successful.

Fortunately, many of the changes which will benefit groups underrepresented in engineering will benefit all students. Sheila Tobias notes, "the best strategy for increasing the persistence and success in engineering (and all the sciences) of women and historically underrepresented minorities . is to improve the teaching-learning environment for all" (Hamlin, 1994, p. 28).

Just as improving the success of groups underrepresented in engineering will improve the environment for all students, approaches which address any of these objectives may address others as well. The objectives will









18

now be summarized, and the intended approach to address them will be introduced.



Summary of Reform Obiectives


There are a great many individual objectives in the reform movement. These are described in detail in the previous sections and are summarized in the list that follows.

1. Satisfy the changing needs of the profession
a. Emphasize team skills and communication b. Provide more hands-on design experience
c. Teach students to learn
d. Make students strongest in transferrable skills
e. Strengthen liberal education

2. Increase enrollment
a. Teach nature of engineering to students/teachers b. Help teachers to foster interest in engineering

3. Improve student quality
a. Remediate in-service teachers to meet standards
b. Prepare pre-service teachers to meet standards
c. Inform K-12 personnel of pre-engineering curriculum
d. Encourage all genders, races, and thinking types It is proposed here that design activities, when properly devised, can accomplish most of these objectives. In the section which follows, design activities will be discussed as to the success they have had and what changes might be made to them to further enhance their applicability.








19


Design Activities as a Method of Meeting Reform Objectives



Design is one of the defining elements of the

engineering profession. Since World War II, however, design has been primarily relegated to the later years of engineering education, the first two to three years of curriculum comprised mostly of basic mathematics and science. This has placed a burden on prospective engineers that they must endure what was seen as "necessary preparation" prior to engaging in design. Many would-be engineers have lost interest in such pursuits before reaching the part of the curriculum which included design (Ercolano, 1996).



Traditional Laboratory Exercises


It has long been recognized that experiments are an excellent method by which students can achieve hands-on experience; this is the foundation for laboratory activities included as part of a course or as an entire course in the high school and college curriculum. Unfortunately, such activities have traditionally had little to do with design.








20

Most laboratories are intended to be as near a reproduction of the "correct" answer as is possible.

While reality sometimes finds a foothold in the laboratory (e.g. error analysis), much of the work in laboratories has traditionally been closed-end, with one "correct" answer. Laboratories done in teams can provide the opportunity for the development of teamwork skills. However, the teamwork usually ends when students leave the laboratory-partners usually take turns in writing the laboratory report.

Therefore, while traditional laboratories fulfill the objective of providing hands-on experience and team skills for students, they do little to address the other objectives. If properly designed, a laboratory exercise can teach students investigative skills to learn on their own. Frequently, however, because lab time is limited, students are generally given a step-by-step process to follow.



Capstone Design Courses


Many schools, in order to satisfy the ABET requirement for design content, have "capstone" design projects. These








21

design projects, which culminate the curriculum for an engineering bachelor's degree, are common (Miller and Olds, 1994 and Harris and Jacobs, 1995). If used in absence of design practice in the earlier part of the curriculum, such design projects perpetuate the approach to design discussed earlier by Ercolano (1996), wherein students are not permitted to experience design until their formal education is finished. This results in students who are not experienced in design, and discourages some students who might make excellent designers, but lose interest in the curriculum in which design is not well integrated.



Design for Freshmen and Sophomores


In the late 1960's, some faculty realized the

shortcomings of traditional laboratories and introduced project-based courses into the curriculum (Durfee, 1994). More importantly, there has been a recent trend to insert design activities into the first two years of the engineering curriculum (Mahendran, 1995, Durfee, 1994, Dally and Zhang, 1993 and Dym, 1994). Such early design experiences have been found to be the most successful in








22

meeting a great many of the objectives of the reform movement (Peterson, 1993).



Design in the K-12 Pipeline


There has also been a great deal of interest in recent years to expand the use of design projects in the K-12 system. Such efforts generally fall into two categories: those that interact directly with students and those that seek to expand the talents and perspective of K-12 faculty. Both of these types of programs are important. There is no better way to support a student's interest than for the student to be encouraged by an engineer. As mentioned earlier, however, the number of students in the school system is an order of magnitude larger than the number of teachers. This fact points to the effectiveness of teacheroriented programs.



Student intervention

One approach to bringing projects to K-12 students is

through pre-prepared curriculum kits such as those developed by Snell in conjunction with the Southern Illinois








23

University at Edwardsville engineering school (Meade, 1992) and by Turner (1996) sponsored by the Florida Department of Education. Crawford et al. (1994) extended that approach to develop an engineering design curriculum for grades K-5. In the higher grades, more advanced projects are possible. Conrad and Mills (1994) introduced "Stiquito" to students in the middle grades. The design and programming of the robot insect allows students to learn and employ concepts from electrical, mechanical, chemical, computer, and industrial engineering.

Other programs bring engineers into the classroom as

mentors, focused on conducting hands-on exercises to teach a concept. Examples at the elementary level include the Emeritus Scientists, Mathematicians and Engineers and A World in Motion (Meade, 1992). In the middle grades, Pols et al. (1994) used aeronautics activities as a vehicle for exposing students to engineering. At the high school level, even more aggressive programs exist which include a short lecture followed by demonstration and laboratory time. Such a structure was used by Ayorinde and Gibson (1995) to present a primer in composites engineering to high school students in an engineering preparatory program. Such








24

programs are very successful because just as teachers are intimidated by mathematics and science, most engineers are intimidated by a classroom full of young people. Around the country, various companies (Chen, 1990), educational institutions (Meade, 1992), and even governmental organizations (Otts, 1991) sponsor such programs.

Design competitions have also been effective in

introducing students to engineering. Titcomb et al. (1994) used design problems appropriate for a high school physics course to establish a design competition which had the participation of nearly half the high schools in Vermont. The Junior Engineering Technical Society (JETS) offers a year-long comprehensive high school program, with design competitions playing a key role (JETS, 1994).

An excellent blend of these various methods is the summer institute. Special programs such as the Hands-On Institute of Science and Technology (HOIST), held at the University of Florida summer 1995,4 can provide a more


4HOIST was held at the University of Florida from July 9-15, 1995. It was coordinated by Marc Hoit and Matthew Ohland of the Civil Engineering department, and funded by a combination of student fees and a grant from the American Society of Civil Engineers. A report of the implementation of the institute is in progress.








25

intensive introduction to engineering and design. HOIST participants engaged in active design projects, saw demonstrations, met engineering mentors, and went on a field trip to a power plant, a prestressed concrete manufacturer, and engaged in social activities designed to further develop camaraderie and teamwork skills, such as a very challenging scavenger hunt.



Faculty intervention

As discussed before, it is more effective to work with teachers because each teacher will interact with a much greater number of students. One method of accomplishing this is to prepare K-12 teachers in institutes such as the Bell Atlantic/AAAS Institute for Middle School Science and Technology Teachers (Jones, 1992a) and the SouthEastern Consortium for Minorities in Engineering (SECME) summer institute (Ohland et al., 1996). Courses in such institutes can fulfill continuing education requirements for the teacher and even provide graduate credit for teachers pursuing master's degrees. The SECME summer institutes for teachers have trained more than 2,100 teachers since their inception in 1977. Intervention at the faculty level has








26

been very successful for SECME-those teachers have seen more than 40,000 SECME students graduate. Those SECME students have SAT composite scores more than 200 points higher than the African-American average (Leake, 1994).

Because of the effectiveness of such training programs for teachers, several such programs have been initiated in recent years. Washington State University (WSU) established the six week Teacher Institute for Science and Mathematics Education Through Engineering Experience, which gives 20-30 middle school, high school, and community college educators contact with approximately 15 WSU faculty members ("Engineering for K-12 Teachers," 1994). Conrad (1994) introduced engineering and technology to Arkansas teachers in a three-week workshop. The Stevens Institute of Technology Center for Improved Engineering and Science Education has broadcast teacher training teleconferences (Chao, 1992). VISION, a three-week institute for teachers in Howard County, Indiana, is a partnership of Indiana University, Purdue University at Kokomo, area schools, and six area businesses (Schwartz, 1996). These programs, and many others around the country, recognize the importance of intervention at the faculty level.








27

Integration into state curricula


The most aggressive approach is to integrate design

directly into the curriculum. Since curriculum is generally established by a state's board of education, this is still difficult to do on a nationwide basis. Since there are only 50 states, however, the number of entities to work with to institute this kind of change is significantly smaller than even the number of schools in the K-12 system. New York State is the leader in this sort of curriculum development. Since 1986, middle school teachers have been prepared through in-service training to offer a course called "Introduction to Technology," which all students are required to take (Hacker, 1993). This movement, which began in the middle grades, has led to a "Principles of Engineering" elective course which is taught at the high school level.



Typical Design Project Objectives


It is important to note that design projects are employed in all these approaches to improving the engineering educational system. It is the multidisciplinary








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nature of design that makes this possible. Properly posed design projects are capable of meeting many of the objectives of the reform movement. Encouraging creative behavior is a common theme in design projects (Ko and Hayes, 1994, Mahendran, 1995, and Durfee, 1994). Creative thinking is among the most transferrable of skills. Others also include documenting the design process and making a presentation of the results (Fentiman and Demel, 1994, and Starkey et al., 1994). This adds written and presentation skills to the interpersonal communication which already accompanies such design projects. Still others choose to include social context in their projects, showing young engineers how they can be a service to the community. Clearly, a great number of objectives are possible in properly planned design activities.

Essentially, because the design projects are themselves designed, it is possible to include a wide variety of objectives. This is testament to the interdisciplinary nature of the design process. Since such a wide variety of objectives is possible, it is appropriate to consider what set objectives has been most effective and what additional objectives might make design projects even more effective.








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Dissertation Structure


A comprehensive set of objectives was therefore

established. This set of objectives has been used to create Engineering By Design, a process for developing design projects. This process is of course a creative one, so such a methodology begins with a process similar to standard creative problem solving techniques. Various approaches to problem solving and their applicability to the task at hand will therefore be discussed in Chapter 2.

To create design activities which are educationally complete, a modern understanding of teaching and learning must be merged with standard problem solving approaches to create a more advanced process. Teaching methods and learning styles are discussed in Chapter 3.

The Engineering By Design methodology was developed through the creation of a prototype project for the Civil Engineering section of Introduction to Engineering, a onecredit graded course at the University of Florida. The prototype design activity and the development of the methodology are discussed in Chapter 4. The full set of objectives is introduced. These objectives can be applied








30

to the process of creating any design project. Many of these objectives directly address the objectives of the current reform movement. Other objectives are added which enhance the ability to implement, sustain, and disseminate the activities.

Assessment of the Engineering By Design methodology is accomplished in two ways. The first is by measuring the success activities made using it, qualitatively and quantitatively. The second is by reviewing the feedback of those who have used the methodology. The assessment of Engineering By Design is included in Chapter 5. Also included in Chapter 5 are the field observations by the author of the success of various design projects.

Lastly, conclusions and recommendations are included in Chapter 6. Conclusions are based on both the formal assessment and the observations discussed in Chapter 6.














CHAPTER 2
CREATIVE PROBLEM SOLVING



Introduction



"No single technological advance will be the key to a safe and comfortable long-term future for civilization. Rather, the key, if any exists, will lie in getting large numbers of human minds to operate creatively and from a broad, open-minded perspective, to cope with new challenges." This quote (Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, 1995a, xv) by Paul MacCready, inventor of the various "Gossamer" low-energy aircraft, highlights the importance most flexible skill we can impart to engineering students-the ability to think creatively.

The key to creative problem solving is recognizing that real problems have more than one solution. While we seek the optimum, we will never know that we have achieved it. A new approach or a new understanding of the fundamentals underlying the problem may lead to great improvements in the 31








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solution. Since assessing how people solve problems is itself an open-ended problem, there are a multitude of approaches to describe the process. This, of course, confounds the process of formulating a methodology for problem solving, forcing the methodology to remain broad and flexible (Greeno, 1980).



The Stages of Problem Solving


There are a number of stages in the process of creative problem solving. Different authors have different names and attributes for these stages, but the general pattern enjoys wide agreement in principle. The discussion will follow the stages delineated by Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a), but the terminology and perspective characteristic of other researchers will be introduced throughout. The four stages of Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine are enumerated below:

1. Problem Definition
2. Idea Generation
3. Idea Evaluation and Selection
4. Solution Implementation

These four stages alone are not sufficient to complete the Engineering by Design methodology, due to the unconventional nature of the problem the methodology seeks to solve-that of








33

the design of a creative activity itself. For now, only the conventional stages will be discussed. Each stage will be considered as it applies to the activity designer and to the activity participants. The additional stages which are included in Engineering by Design (which will only be completed by the activity designer) will be covered in chapter 4.





Problem Definition



"The uncreative mind can spot wrong answers, but it

takes a very creative mind to spot wrong questions." This quote by Anthony Jay cited by Fabian (1990) is directed at the importance of a well posed problem. Real problems rarely are clearly defined. In creating the methodology, this means that the activity designer must be sure to be aware of all goals of the activity on a conscious level, so that the design of the activity is a well-posed problem. In the designed activity, however, it is the activity participants who must define the problem-this is a skill which they must practice to develop.








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Problem definition is the most critical step in the

problem solving process. The less defined a problem is, the more solutions it will have. Definition, therefore, is the process which reduces the scope of a problem, and thus the time necessary to achieve an acceptable solution. Although most problem solvers recognize problem definition as the first step in the process, the actual approach those individuals use is frequently quite different (Kepner and Tregoe, 1965).

Kahney (1986) breaks down the data which go into the definition of a problem into four categories. There is information about

the initial state;
the goal state;
operators (specific actions permitted in the solution); and operator restrictions (constraints on the actions). Kahney goes on to clarify these groupings through comparison to the "Towers of Hanoi" problem, shown below in its initial state, with three differently sized rings stacked on peg "a" as shown. The largest ring is on the bottom, the smallest is on top, and the medium-sized ring is in the middle.

The goal state is to achieve the same configuration, but with the rings on peg "b" instead.








35



abc










Figure 1 The Towers of Hanoi Problem


In such a simple problem, there is only one operator, which might be called "move," which allows the rings to be moved. This operator has three restrictions: only one ring may be moved at a time, a larger ring may not be placed on top of a smaller ring, and rings may only be placed on one of the three pegs.

With clear information given in each of Kahney's

categories, this problem is well defined. Most problems assigned in engineering education and in the K-12 pipeline are similar in that regard. Problems in those arenas are typically closed-ended, having a single correct answer (Felder, 1988). If a problems is to yield a single correct answer, it must be well defined.








36

In the problem of creating a design activity, the

initial state will contain information regarding the current knowledge, skills, or attitudes of the participants. The goal state will indicate which of these the design activity is intended to change.

Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) anthropomorphize the problem solving process by assigning personae to various stages. The description of the initial state is left to the detective, including the process of distinction, which is characteristic of Kepner and Tregoe (1965). Distinction is used to set the problem apart from what is not the problem. This step not only reduces scope, but informs the direction the following stages should take.

If a problem is complex or unstructured enough,

Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine have the "explorer" take over the problem definition stage. The explorer looks at the context of the problem more than the problem itself. The explorer analogy is also used by von Oech (1986). In von Oech and Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, this mind-set clearly overlaps the boundaries of problem definition and idea generation. This overlap can be a wasteful one. If the "exploring" is not limited to the problem itself, but instead, as von Oech and








37

Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine seem to suggest, probes for a solution as well, there is the inherent risk of focusing on possible solutions before the problem has been adequately defined. Premature attempts at a solution have been shown to lead to wasted resources. Kepner and Tregoe give a number of examples of this wasting of resources through industrial case studies (1965).

Part of the explorer's role lies in problem definition, however. Van Gundy (1984) describes the stage of problem definition as the process of establishing limits or boundaries for a situation, constructing walls which allow us to view a problem as finite. VanGundy advocates the "redefinition" of a problem, a process by which a problem solver takes the time to look beyond the established boundaries of a problem. This redefinition is the only viable role of the explorer within the problem definition stage.

Earlier work by Parnes (1967), creator of what is

called the Creative Problem Solving approach, breaks this stage into two stages, one of Fact Finding, and a second of Problem Finding. Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine have wisely collapsed these two, which overlap significantly.








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Idea Generation



"What you see is what you get. Change your eyes." This quote by Sam Keen cited by Fabian (1990) reveals the core of the idea generation phase of problem solving. It is by looking at the same things in new ways that new ideas are achieved. Volumes of research have been written on just this stage of the problem solving process. The study of idea generation includes research on cognition itself, as Piaget's theories of child development focus substantially on how a child's develops new perspectives of a problem (Brown and Desforges, 1979).

This stage of the problem solving process is the most creative one, where it is ideas that are being created. Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) assign this stage the "artist" persona, seeking the image of a free spirited creator not afraid to be avant-garde. Defining a problem certainly uses thinking skills, but need not be creative, per se. The next stage of idea evaluation and selection certainly does not use creative thinking. The key in evaluation and selection is critical thinking, which will be








39

discussed in detail in the next section. Critical thinking is inappropriate in this stage, because it may prevent the generation of ideas, thus limiting the range of possible solutions. Critical thinking is just one of the barriers to creative thinking. The body of research into idea generation has outlined a great many barriers. Authors of methods to encourage creative thinking offer various ways of overcoming these barriers.



The Barriers to Creative Thinking


Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine refer to these as mental

barriers or mental blocks (Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, 1995a). Von Oech describes them as mental locks (von Oech, 1983). To Fabian (1990), they are mind-sets-those barriers which prevent us from producing new ideas. Such barriers will be introduced throughout this section. In the following section, a large number of approaches to generating ideas will be presented. Reference will be made to how those approaches attempt to break various barriers.

As earlier, the discussion follows Lumsdaine and

Lumsdaine. Von Oech's list (1983) contains a greater number








40

of listed barriers, some of them having been grouped together by Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine. Those which are unique to von Oech are shown in quotes.



False assumptions

"I'm not Creative." This attitude will be especially prevalent in those with low self-esteem with respect to their intelligence. However, because highly intelligent minds can think of solutions quickly, a better solution may be achieved by a person with a slower mind, who must wait and take in more data before proposing a solution. This additional information may lead to an improved solution (De Bono, 1986). In fact, there are a number ways that a highly intelligent can be trapped into poor thinking. De Bono lists nine of these, which Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) annotate to show that creativity is dependent on using the whole brain.

"Play is Frivolous." The best example of this is given by von Oech (1983) in the Moebius strip. The Moebius strip is a strip formed in a loop with a half-twist introduced before connecting the ends. This was merely a topological fascination for many years, because the resulting shape has








41

only one side. Fifty years ago, however, conveyor belt designers decided to use that to their advantage, achieving equal wear, since all the surface of the belt is used. The Moebius strip shows promise for application in other technologies as well. It is key to notice that while the Moebius strip was merely an amusement for many years, it sparked innovation years after its introduction.

Play is also a regular source of learning. In the

animal kingdom, play is the process by which animals learn the skills they need to survive. Children learn many things through play. Therefore, if adults are unwilling to play, they are cut off from certain opportunities for learning.

"That's not my Area." This barrier listed by von Oech (1983) belongs in this category. The assumption being made is "because this is outside of my field of expertise, I have nothing to offer." Because it is precisely the gathering of a variety of experience and expertise which promotes divergent thinking, this assumption is false.



There is only one right answer

French philosopher Emile Chartier once said, "Nothing is more dangerous than an idea when it is the only one you








42

have." The need for different perspectives in idea generation has already been discussed. Unfortunately, multiple choice testing, closed end problems, and other artifacts of our formal schooling teach us that there is only one correct answer to a problem. To knock down this barrier to creativity, we must introduce an entirely new approach than the one that is commonly used.



Looking at a problem in isolation

Avoiding this barrier is the remainder of the job of the "explorer" persona introduced earlier. Here the explorer can introduce new directions for ideas based on the context of the problem. The common analogy for this barrier is "not being able to see the forest for the trees." The key to encourage multidisciplinary approaches to problems. This is a substantial argument in support of partnerships of engineers and educators-as discussed earlier, each brings different contextual information to the partnership.



Following the rules

Innovative ideas come from the unconventional-if

participants in the idea generation stage remain bound to








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the conventional way of doing things, new ideas are constrained. We cannot, however, completely abandon order, or chaos will result. Some rules will remain, which will be discussed later. Exactly what rules are appropriate will depend on the method of idea generation and whether it is done individually or in groups. Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) seem to have covered von Oech's "That's not Logical" barrier (1983) in this category.



Negative thinking

This barrier is particularly serious, in that it

affects not only the negative thinker, but also influences all those around him or her. Counted here are attitudes which are negative in many (if not all) contexts-negativism, sarcasm, debasing remarks, and others. Criticism is also included here. As stated earlier, critical thinking and discrimination are important in the next stage, but are not conducive to idea generation.



Fear of failure

Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) also characterize this barrier as one of "risk-avoidance." In nature, genetic








44

mutation, or errors in the process of transmitting genetic information, can introduce adaptations and improvements to a species. The human race, however, has been conditioned to avoid failure. The grading system used throughout the educational process is itself a constant reminder that those who make the fewest errors are more rewarded (Von Oech, 1983).

At some level, error is recognized as a part of life

and a necessary process in learning, hence "to err is human" and "trial and error." If error were not anticipated, "trial and error" would instead be referred to as "trial and success." The role of failure in technological progress is well documented, from Edison's many attempts to find a suitable filament for the light bulb to the metallurgical revolution following the Ashtabula Bridge disaster caused by the brittle failure of cast iron.



Discomfort with ambiguity

While many would prefer that solutions always be "black and white," the problem definition itself and the best solutions are often in the gray areas. Students are notoriously uncomfortable with ambiguity, because they are








45

rarely exposed to it. Well-defined, closed-end problems leave no ambiguity.

The reason we are taught to avoid ambiguity is that it can lead to miscommunication. On an exam, this means losing points. In giving directions, it can result in the follower becoming lost. Ambiguity, because it introduces multiple meanings, is also able to lead to new perspectives and idea generation.

Paradoxes are a common form of ambiguity. Many of the greatest advances in physics have been characterized by paradox. The inventors of the jet engine believed that they had found a way to violate the second law of thermodynamics, but continued their work anyway. Zeno's paradox encourages us to develop a more complete understanding of geometry. Many researchers study the order of chaos. Entertaining ambiguity is useful in order to proceed to a higher level of understanding.



The Use of Groups in Idea Generation


It has been discussed that idea generation is dependent on finding new ways to look at the same information.








46

Because of individual differences in experience and thinking preferences," the best way to gain new perspectives is by conducting creative problem solving, especially the idea generation stage, in groups. Further, it is best if the members of a group have different perspectives and knowledge, i.e. the group is heterogeneous. This has the potential to yield greater results than those of an individual, who will find it more difficult to stray from his or her preferred perspectives. Heterogeneity will be discussed further in relation to learning styles in the later part of chapter 3.

This potential, however, is not always realized.

Osborn (1963) first published his landmark work Applied Imagination in 1953. Although Osborn details an entire approach to creative problem solving, the idea generation stage is where his greatest contribution lies. As the inventor of verbal brainstorming, which will be discussed in greater detail later, Osborn claimed that group brainstorming was an effective method of group problem solving.


5Various individual differences will be discussed in much greater detail in the next chapter.








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Osborn used many examples from industry to support his work, but made other assertions which were less well supported. Fortunately, Osborn's work was fascinating enough to spark research which verified claims (Parnes and Meadow, 1959). Other research, however, has rejected the claim that idea generation by groups outproduces the same individuals working alone (Taylor et al., 1958, Bouchard, 1969 and 1972, Bouchard and Hare, 1970, and Bouchard et al., 1974).

More recent research has attempted to pinpoint the

source of the discrepancy which causes the success of group idea generation to be inconsistent (Diehl and Stroebe, 1987, Harkins, 1987, Williams et al., 1981, Harkins and Jackson, 1985, and Kerr and Bruun, 1983). The conclusion is that additional barriers to creativity are introduced when idea generation is done in groups-these barriers follow.



Barriers Specific to Group Idea Generation


Diehl and Stroebe (1987) define three potential group effects. These are evaluation apprehension, social loafing, and production blocking.








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Evaluation apprehension

Evaluation apprehension is the fear of having one's

ideas judged either by others in the group or by an external observer. Von Oech includes this concern as "Don't be Foolish." The pressure to conform and avoid standing out are strong, and are often important, such as when driving in traffic or singing in a choir. In idea generation, however, conformity can lead to "groupthink," where participants are more concerned with approval than generating original ideas.

Research investigating evaluation apprehension has

shown some ambiguity. Colaros and Anderson (1969) found an inverse relationship between imposed evaluation apprehension and productivity, as would be expected. Maginn and Harris (1980), however, discovered that the presence of "judge" observers did not significantly affect productivity. The only thing which is clear from the results of these two studies is that "evaluation apprehension" is difficult to guarantee, and even more difficult to quantify.



Social loafina

In social work contexts, both social loafing (Harkins, 1987 and Williams et al., 1981) and social facilitation








49

(Schauer, 1985 and Harkins, 1987) effects have been identified. Which will occur seems dependent upon the relationship of the group members and the environment in which they are working (Harkins and Jackson, 1985 and Kerr and Bruun, 1983).

Social loafing was minimized when group members were co-workers, and competition was more of a factor. This seems surprising at first, since we would like to think that facilitation would occur simply because co-workers were all "playing on the same team," or cooperating, rather than competing. It is already becoming clear that the most important factor in overcoming the barriers to group idea generation will be the establishment of a supportive and cooperative environment.



Production blocking

Production blocking occurs when a group member gets an idea, but is unable to voice it immediately. While waiting for a chance to contribute the idea, the owner of the idea may simply forget it, or may use the intervening time to become critical of their unvoiced idea, violating the deferred judgement principle. Since group idea generation








50

techniques generally allot equal time for contributions by each member, this particular barrier is much greater in larger groups.



Overcoming the Barriers to Creative Thinking


There are two main ways to overcome the barriers to

creative thinking-by using a technique which eliminates the barrier by design, or by imposing rules on top of the technique which seek to specifically remove the barriers. There are many techniques throughout the literature. A discussion of these follows.



Techniques of Idea Generation


A great number of idea generation techniques have been suggested-many more than can be described here. Van Gundy (1984) is an excellent compendium of techniques, detailing some 30 individual techniques and 31 group techniques. The division of the techniques into two groups seems to imply that the individual techniques cannot be used by groups, whereas many of them can. This, however, does not diminish the usefulness of Van Gundy's work, which is an excellent








51

survey of methods which have been used at each stage of the creative problem solving process.

Here, the discussion will focus on group techniques,

which will be used by the partnerships developing activities through Engineering By Design, and should be incorporated into design activities, to teach team skills. Since today's students are not skilled in teamwork, as discussed earlier, means they will need to become comfortable with the concept. Short creative thinking warm-up exercises, as found in Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) and others, are good tools to get students in a cooperative frame of mind as well as stimulate creativity.



Verbal brainstorming

This is the classical method invented by Osborn (1963). The objective is for members of the group to verbalize their ideas, which are intended to then stimulate the ideas of others in the group. Osborn speculates that groups of five should work best, but research to establish an optimum number of members is inconclusive, as discussed earlier.

Osborn's two primary principles which define verbal brainstorming are "deferment of judgement" and "quantity








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breeds quality." Parnes and Meadow (1959) found that deferred judgement is a key factor in the generation of ideas, as Osborn contends. Groups brainstorming using a deferred judgement procedure produced 70% more "good" ideas (in the same time period) than individuals attempting to generate ideas without deferment. Removing the group effect, individuals producing ideas on their own were also found to have significant gains using deferred judgement.

Osborn's assertion that quantity inevitably produces quality is perhaps the more difficult tenet to accept. We are taught the "quality not quantity" approach at an early age. There is support for Osborn's claim with respect to idea generation (Chamberlain, 1944). Another argument for quantity leading to quantity is one of probability-the more ideas which are presented, the more ideas there should be of an acceptable caliber. Osborn reports a study which compared the number of good ideas generated in the first half of a brainstorming session to the output of the second half of the same session. The latter half had 78% greater production of good ideas than the first half.

In order to stimulate new directions during brainstorming, Osborn identified nine types of thought-starter









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questions shown below (tabular form of Osborn, 1963, p.

175-176, used by Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, 1995a, p. 211).

Table 1 Nine Categories of Thought-Starter Questions

Question Sub-questions

Put to New ways to use object as is? other uses? Other uses if modified?

Adapt? What else is like this?
What other ideas does this suggest?
Any idea in the past that could be
copied or adapted?

Modify? Change meaning, color, motion,
sound, odor, taste, form, shape?
Other changes? New twist?

Magnify? What to add? Greater frequency? Stronger?
Larger? Higher? Longer? Thicker?
Extra value? Plus ingredient? Multiply?
Exaggerate?

Minify? What to subtract? Eliminate? Smaller?
Lighter? Slower? Split up?
Less frequent? Condense? Miniaturize?
Streamline? Understate?

Substitute? Who else instead? What else instead?
Other place? Other time? Other ingredient?
Other material? Other process?
Other power source? Other approach?
Other tone of voice?

Rearrange? Other layout? Other sequence? Change pace?
Other pattern? Change schedule?
Transpose cause and effect?

Reverse? Opposites? Turn it backward?
Turn it upside down? Turn it inside out?
Mirror-reverse it?
Transpose positive and negative?








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Other guidelines for Osborn's verbal brainstorming also include encouraging wild ideas, which can spark divergent thinking, and building from the ideas of others. The latter, known as "hitchhiking," is given priority in sessions where group members generally take turns in presenting their ideas.

The classical verbal brainstorming, essentially as

Osborn introduced it, is the most common method used today. Fabian (1990) refers to it as the "bread-and-butter" process. Fabian also points out that, although the principles are basically simple, they are not always followed in practice, which has led to varying degrees of success.



Brainwriting

In order to overcome additional barriers such as

production blocking and evaluation apprehension, some have a adopted a written method for brainstorming, called brainwriting. In this approach, ideas are written down in cells on a piece of paper. Each row on the paper has three cells. When a group member fills a row, they give up their paper for another one. In this manner, ideas are








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transferred among group members via the paper. This technique has advantages-participants can write down their ideas at their own pace, and the effects of more vocal or dominating people are minimized. For these reasons, this method is gaining popularity in the United States (Fabian, 1990). Although this technique helps more introverted group members participate fully, it should only be used until a group has developed a rapport. The reason I suggest this is as follows: speaking and hearing stimulate greater cognitive activity than writing and reading.' This effect may be mitigated somewhat by achieving visual stimulation by encouraging brainwriting participants to draw pictures in the cells.



Electronic brainstorming

In further attempts to eliminate creative barriers, brainstorming has recently been computerized (Gallupe et al., 1991 and Gallupe et al., 1992). In this process, members each sit at their own computers, but their ideas are automatically sent to other group members. Gallupe et al.


'Research to support this claim is discussed in the following chapter.








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(1991), found this method significantly reduced all three barriers specific to group idea generation. While this is an intriguing approach in a corporate setting, there is little opportunity to exploit electronic brainstorming in the classroom.



Force-fitting

Force-fitting, relating to apparently unrelated

concepts, is a technique often incorporated into other techniques (Fabian, 1990). It necessarily introduces novelty, and can be spontaneously be used if an idea generation session becomes "stuck." Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) use this term very loosely, using it to refer to a variety of methods for stimulating a group when it is "stuck." De Bono (1970) refers to this method as "Random Stimulation."



Morpholocical analysis

As its name would suggest, this technique focuses on

the form of the problem. Once the problem is stated, two or three major dimensions are identified. Each dimension is subdivided into categories. Ideas are then generated for








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each combination of the subdivisions of the various dimensions. Felder (1988) gives the example of devising a mode of transportation. One dimension would be the medium in or on which transportation occurs. Another dimension would be the power source. This would lead to combinations such as a cable-powered device to travel through air (such as a ski lift) and an internal combustion powered device to travel through water (a diesel submarine, for example). Other combinations may spark new paths for development where there is no existing method.




Idea Evaluation and Selection



In this stage, the process focuses on critical

thinking. The wild and crazy, impractical nature of idea generation is absent here, and is replaced by the pragmatic, utilitarian, and practical. There will still be new ideas created in this stage, as practical concerns introduce constraints which call for the adaptation of previous ideas. Idea evaluation and selection as a part of the problem process are important, but are generally overemphasized in








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engineering education, as indicated by Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine's choice of "engineer" as the persona characterizing this stage. Von Oech (1986) uses the "judge" persona, to whom Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) ascribe the completion of this stage.

As was true in the case of idea generation, methods for selecting the best choice abound. Van Gundy (1984) details 16 methods from advantage/disadvantage counting to weighting systems. In the case of idea selection for creating engineering design activities, little effort is expected. In the event that more than one approach is viable and might be selected, there is great opportunity for the combination of multiple approaches within an educational context. In the corporate community, of course, elimination of all but a single path may be necessary, since each idea will have development costs associated with it. But common to the corporate objective and the educational objective is that further testing is usually possible to determine the feasibility of various ideas. A simple advantage/ disadvantage discussion, as would commonly be used, will suffice in this context.








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Solution Implementation



This is, of course, the most time consuming part of the process. Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) assign the role of "producer" to this stage. The image of a movie producer certainly does not fit, since financial backing is not enough to achieve successful implementation of an idea. If we consider the term "producer" from a more general perspective, as a person who creates the end product, it is then acceptable. More apt, it seems, is the von Oech (1986) persona, the warrior. Solution implementation requires a tenacity and a passion, even a relentlessness, to achieve the objective.

In the case of the students themselves, the solution

reached as a result of problem solving has traditionally not been implemented. This is at times cost prohibitive. However, it is vital that students complete the process at least some of the time, for a number of reasons. Without completing the process, students will not see "the big picture" of problem solving through to its conclusion. Students will usually have the most to learn during the








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implementation stage-they will discover which assumptions they made were not valid, run into unanticipated difficulties, and have to improvise and improve their design. The eliminating of implementation from the design process leaves students with the understanding that all designs which can be put on paper are viable designs, a dangerous fallacy. We must strive to disabuse students of this notion.

We must instead consider the cost of implementation as a significant factor in designing the creative design activity itself. Approaches to reducing implementation cost will be included in the discussion of the prototype design activity in chapter 4.

Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) and von Oech (1986)

include evaluation within this last stage. In Engineering By Design, evaluation of the implemented solution is treated separately. As crucial as program assessment is, it must receive adequate attention. It is integrated throughout the process of creative problem solving, not constrained to attention during the final stage.








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Summary of Approach Chosen for Methodology



Recognizing that objective definition may be much more nebulous than under traditional circumstances, the problem definition stage was broken down into multiple stages. For example, one potential objective is "to keep students occupied after school has formally ended, preferably with some educational pursuit." Seeking simplicity, especially in working with in-service teachers who are likely not as trained in problem solving techniques as engineers, classical brainstorming was chosen during the idea generation phase. Blocking and other barriers are not expected to be significant, since groups are expected to be small, comprised of 1-2 teachers/professors and 1-2 engineers.

Advantage/disadvantage listing are expected to be sufficient in the idea selection stage. Solution implementation is expected to be feasible by the nature of the design objectives. Evaluation and assessment receive special attention in an added stage.

There is one more stage which is added to Engineering By Design: a stage which is intended to ensure that the








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activity is educationally complete, tapping higher level thinking skills and reaching students with all learning styles. The foundation for this stage will be laid in chapter 3.














CHAPTER 3
LEARNING AND TEACHING


To achieve the desired end of creating educationally

sound activities for teaching engineering, appropriate

teaching methods must be understood and applied, and are

studied here. K-12 teachers who graduate from education

programs receive training in educational psychology, which

includes the study of how students learn and of how teachers

teach, called pedagogy. Few college professors receive this

sort of training. James Stice (1987a, p. 95-96) describes

how he became a professor and learned to teach:

I found that I enjoyed it hugely and decided to make
college teaching my career. ... If you gave [the
students] a problem that was a little different from
what they had seen before, they were stumped. How
could I [teach a deeper understanding] to a class of thirty students? I lacked the resources at the time.
So, I lectured and did what I could to help those who
came to see me after class.

Twenty-three years passed, and I learned some things
about the craft of teaching. Larry Grayson introduced
me to the idea of using instructional objectives,
Dwight Schott showed me the wisdom of teaching and
testing at higher levels of Bloom's Taxonomy (Bloom,
1956) ...


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As in Stice's case, most professors who are good at

teaching have become so by virtue of trial-and-error, having little or no training or study in what he calls "the craft of teaching." This situation is compounded by the current academic incentive and reward system, under which research interests must take priority over teaching, and faculty who are outstanding teachers but merely adequate researchers are never granted tenure or are relegated to an inferior position (Felder, 1994).

Application of the Engineering By Design methodology is intended to influence the current situation in two ways. The first is for engineering professors to become aware of the issues of educational psychology. The methodology clearly does not provide training in those areas, but can at least increase awareness and point the way for those interested in improving student learning.

A second is in establishing a framework to support the partnership of engineers with teachers. As stated earlier, each party brings different knowledge to this partnership. Teachers stand to gain insight into the engineering design process and the application of scientific knowledge. Engineering educators, on the other hand, stand to benefit








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from learning how the teacher approaches the educational process.

Here, educational psychology will be divided into four areas-development, learning, pedagogy, and individual differences. An overview of each area will be given and the impact on the Engineering By Design methodology will be discussed. The discussion primarily follows the structure of Slavin (1988).





Development



Prior to this century, continuous theories of

development purported that children think as adults do, but lack the observation and practice which will allow them to reach the same conclusions. In this century, Piaget introduced the concept of development through stages, or discontinuous development. Since that time, stage theories have been generally accepted, and such theories have been developed in three realms of development: cognitive, social (and personal), and moral.








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Cognitive Development


The best known theorist of cognitive development is

Jean Piaget, a biologist who applied biological principles to the psychological studies which he began by analyzing the behavior of his own children (Slavin, 1988). Piaget's four stages are sensorimotor, preoperational, concrete operational, and formal operational. Here, the sensorimotor stage will be taken for granted, as that stage lasts from birth to two years, and students in the K-12 system have moved into the preoperational stage.



The preoperational stage

This stage lasts from age 2 to 7, and is characterized by a child's development of the ability to use symbols to represent objects. This includes at the early part of the stage the ability to understand the difference between an image (in a photograph, mirror, etc.) and the actual object, and in the later stages includes the mastery of using the alphabet and numbers.

Thinking at this stage is strongly influenced by egocentrism, and a child will normally assume that all








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things exist to serve some purpose for them (Piaget and Inhelder, 1956). Egocentrism precludes the possibility of solving many problems, because it introduces such a large constraint (e.g. that any solution must involve the child) (Owen et al., 1981). In this stage, a child's thinking is generally centered, or focused on a single characteristic at a time. For example, when comparing two objects for size, a child may focus only on the height, and assume the taller one is larger, regardless of the width of the shorter object.

In this stage, certain problem solving concepts are

lacking. They do not understand conservation, demonstrated by pouring the same quantity of liquid from one container to one of a different shape. Children who do not grasp the principle of conservation are likely to think the amount of liquid has changed. The concept of reversibility is also absent. Reversibility is necessary to change the direction of a process to return to the original position. A child who does not understand reversibility will likely think that two halves of a sandwich are more sandwich than the whole. The logical processes with which we make conclusions based on such principles as reversibility and conservation are








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called operations, hence the definition of this stage as pre-operational. A pre-operational child does not relate the previous experience of seeing the sandwich as a whole to the new experience of seeing it cut in four pieces (Phillips, 1975).

The fact that children move from this stage into the

next, concrete operational, during the elementary years (at

-7 years of age) has significant implications. The SouthEastern Consortium for Minorities in Engineering (SECME) received a $260,000 grant in 1994 from the Carnegie Corporation to develop a K-5 model of their successful program which previously served only grades 6-12 (Leake, 1994). Since the younger students in that group are preoperational, they require a very different approach. Those students, given the same information as those in the next stage, are likely to draw conclusions which have severe logical flaws (Piaget, 1962).

These same developmental considerations have affected the implementation of the Emerging Engineers after school curriculum materials designed by Dorothy Turner of the Alachua County School District (Turner, 1996). Mrs. Turner and I have found in field-testing the curriculum that the








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younger elementary school children are overwhelmed by parts of the activities which children even a year or two older are able to grasp. As a result, the youngest are typically relegated to carrying out work (using only motor skills) as directed by their older peers. This does not imply that the activities are wasted on the younger children. Those children are still learning social skills, cooperation, teamwork, etc., while participating in a technical activity. They are not, as are the older children, engaged in the more advanced process of problem solving.



The concrete operational stage

This stage is characterized by a child's development of the concepts of conservation and reversibility. In this stage, children are able to decenter their thinking, focusing on multiple parameters. Children can separate themselves from their surroundings, overcoming the egocentrism characteristic of the preoperational stage (Slavin, 1988). Because of these advances, children develop an increased ability to think logically (Phillips, 1975). This stage of development lasts from approximately age 7 to age 11.








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One key to problem solving, the ability to infer, is developed during this stage as well. Pre-operational children will describe things only as they appear, whereas in this stage, children will use other information to draw their conclusions (Flavell, 1986). Other important skills which appear during this stage include inversion (negative/ positive concepts), reciprocity (if Tom is taller than Sally, then Sally is shorter than Tom), and inclusion (the ability to compare part to whole) (Slavin, 1988). Knowing that these concepts are developing in children in this age range (through the end of elementary school) alerts us to target their development in the younger children in the range and their advancement in older children in the range.

Flavell (1985) describes this stage as one in which children take a very practical-minded approach to solving problems. This follows Piaget's conclusion that abstract thinking skills are weak during this stage. This stage is therefore a crucial one for the use of hands-on activities. Children at this stage will have difficulty making any progress toward understanding any concept for which a physical model is not produced.








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The formal operational stage

This stage lasts from approximately 11 years of age to adulthood. Here is where abstract thinking is fully developed. Individuals in this stage can approach problem solving systematically, analyzing one factor at a time (Inhelder and Piaget, 1958). In this stage, form is distinct from content, and conclusions may be drawn by analogy. Slavin (1988) indicates that formal operational ability permits individuals to consider hypothetical or potential situations.

Slavin's wording identifies an important issue-if

children cannot discern potential situations, can they be taught such concepts as potential energy (and its conversion to other forms)? What about changes of states of matter? What it does tell us is this: if we are to teach such subjects to children before the formal operations stage, we must use concrete examples which demonstrate the process. Dry ice, for example is a solid, but there is visible evidence of the sublimation process. Such examples will be the hallmark of successful teaching prior to the formal operational stage.








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Comments on Piaget's theory

While Piaget's theory is clearly still at the forefront of the study of human development, other researchers have sought to clarify and question his theory. Gardner (1982) and Price (1982) demonstrated that it may be possible to teach some principles (such as conservation) to children prior to the concrete operational stage. Other researchers (Donaldson, 1978, Black, 1981, Gelman, 1979, and Nagy and Griffiths, 1982) showed that there are early signs of some Piagetian principles, even though the principles may not be fully developed.

Other parts of Piaget's theory have been challenged

(Miller, 1983 and Nagy and Griffiths, 1982), but there are still clear lessons to be learned. Most important are the significant differences of which we must be aware when working with children of different ages. Elementary school children, for example, cannot simply be taught with an oversimplified version of a middle or high school lesson. Instead, the entire educational approach must address their cognitive level. On the other hand, since by middle school most students will have entered the formal operational stage, we can expect quite a lot from them. A well posed








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design activity has the ability to stimulate a great deal of learning even at that age, because the tools needed for problem solution are fully developed. All the middle school student lacks is experience and knowledge, which vary greatly anyway. Therefore, if a design project begins by giving formal operational students the opportunity to observe phenomena themselves, they should be able to draw valid conclusions in order to proceed.



Personal and Social Development


Education, especially higher education, is primarily

thought of as the champion of cognitive development. Social development is also of tantamount importance throughout the education process. Such skills as teamwork and interpersonal communication depend heavily on social development. Issues of underrepresentation of women, minorities, and even people of certain thinking types all have roots which extend into the realm of social development.

As was the case in cognitive development, the prominent theory here is a stage theory. Personal and social development consists of the development of an individual's








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relationship to self, other people, and society. Sigmund Freud may be best known in this field, but Erikson, trained as a psychoanalyst by Freud, identified eight stages in this realm of development. Table 2 lists Erikson's eight stages and the psychological crisis which must be resolved at each stage (Slavin, 1988, p.38).


Table 2 Erikson's Stages of Personal and Social Development Stage Approximate Psychological Age range Crisis

I Birth-18 mo. Trust vs. Mistrust II 18 mo.-3 yr. Autonomy vs. Doubt III 3-6 yr. Initiative vs. Guilt IV 6-12 yr. Industry vs. Inferiority V 12-18 yr. Identity vs. Role confusion VI Young Adulthood Intimacy vs. Isolation VII Middle Adulthood Generativity vs. Self-absorption VIII Late Adulthood Integrity vs. Despair



When cognitive stages were discussed, the one occurring prior to elementary school was not discussed. Here, even the first two must be discussed, because the way in which each individual resolves each crisis affects their approach to problems later in the educational process. Stages VI on, however, will not be covered. It should be recognized that








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those later stages may have implications regarding continuing education, which is not the focus here.



Trust vs. mistrust

In this stage, the child should learn to trust

(Erikson, 1968). This trust is generally founded in a maternal figure. If a child's mother does not meet the child's needs of love, stability, and security, the child is likely to develop a mistrust in the world. In education, this will lead to a variety of attitudes, e.g.: skepticism, cynicism, and negativism.



Autonomy vs. doubt

During this stage, children seek independence and

autonomy. Supportive parents will help a child develop a sense of autonomy within bounds. If a child is not encouraged to do this, or worse, restricted so that he or she cannot do this, the self-confidence of the child suffers. Children who do not successfully resolve the crisis of this stage are hindered in the development of their self-esteem and leadership skills.








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Initiative vs. guilt

This stage brings with it relentless exploration of

relationships and the world. Not surprisingly, the end of this stage closely corresponds to the beginning of Piaget's concrete operational stage of cognitive development. It is likely that the exhaustive exploration of one's surroundings that permits the cognitive transition to take place. Erikson characterizes the child's attitude in this stage as "I am what I can imagine I will be" (Erikson, 1980). What Erikson indicates that failure to resolve this crisis properly causes children to feel guilty about natural impulses (Slavin, 1988).

The term "guilt" seems inadequate to describe this result. The more natural negative consequence is timidity-reluctance to explore, fear of the new, distaste for change. These outcomes lead directly to significant barriers to thinking, and can have wide ranging effects in the educational process. On Erikson's time scale, children will enter the K-12 educational system before this stage ends, and so the early years of elementary school are a venue for fostering the more positive outcomes. Discovery learning (Bruner, 1966), which aims at the development of








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Piagetian principles and concepts, is also well supported by Erikson's theory.

Considering the importance of nurturing the exploration phase of development, this clearly supports the implementation of such programs as Head Start (Department of Health and Human Services, 1996), founded in 1965 by the Federal government, which can provide a discovery environment for children who are otherwise at an economic disadvantage.



Industry vs. inferiority

A time of tremendous learning, this stage finds

children learning much by trial-and-error, since their logical processes are not yet developed. It is at this stage that the use of failure as a tool for learning must be emphasized. Otherwise, children may focus on the failure, which will stunt their continued learning. Since this stage is from 6 to 12 years of age, elementary school is the time to ensure this message is taught clearly to students.

Activities at this level should allow children to

explore false paths as rigorously as true ones, and provide only the most basic problem structure. It is important,








78

when evaluation is performed, that unsuccessful attempts are praised for their merit as learning tools. Since children in this stage generally enter this stage believing that they can and will succeed (Entwistle and Hayduk, 1981), the most critical challenge is to provide for multiple paths to success and multiple measures by which success is measured (Cohen, 1984).

Enhancing children's understanding that there are multiple paths to success will also strengthen their creative thinking skills, since they will be encouraged to seek alternative solutions.



Identity vs. role confusion

It is the nature of this stage of development which makes many afraid of working with middle school students. With the variety of physiological changes that occur from 12 years to 18 years comes a redefinition of the identity established through the earlier stages. At the beginning, the independence that an adolescent seeks causes them to experiment socially, at times adopting severe and antisocial behavior. There is also a characteristic heightening of the importance of the relationship to peers. Under such








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conditions, parental influence diminishes, and peer influence, both positive and negative, can have a significant impact on development.

This stage continues to the end of high school, when

the final part of identity is established as students choose career paths. If students do not establish a strong sense of identity through this stage, they will suffer from what Erikson terms "role confusion." The increased role of the peer group in this stage indicates that group activities are vital as well. Cooperative learning strategies, discussed later in this chapter, will help focus adolescents toward success as part of a team.



Moral Development


Although at first this seems irrelevant, especially in an educational system so shaped by secular humanism, there is much of moral development which affects the educational process. Moral development will not only find impact in ethics, which should be integral with the engineering process, but also in the nature of "rules" and how they are interpreted. Morals also have bearing on social








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interaction, and are thus an issue for developing cooperation, especially in a pluralistic society. In addition to his work in cognitive development, Piaget (1964) studied this facet of development. Piaget's theory of the moral reasoning was extended by Kohlberg (1963, 1969).

Piaget's theory accounts for only two stages of moral development, formed by watching children play marbles. The children's reasoning concerning the rules of the game yielded insight into their moral development. The first stage, called heteronomous morality, begins at approximately the point at which children make the transition from preoperational to concrete operational thinking. Prior to this stage, the children's concept of rules was not fully formed. The youngest children did not know what rules were, and those up to approximately age 6 did not grasp the purpose or nature of rules. Piaget therefore assumes that morality is not possible prior to that stage, since the concept of rules is not even understood. A brief discussion of the two stages follows.

The first stage, heteronomous morality, is dominated by moral reasoning which is imposed by consequence. Rules are seen as inflexible, and are enforced by an external









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authority. The second stage, autonomous morality, arises when the egocentrism of younger children gives way to the concern for others. Here, fairness is expected, and rules are can be flexible but should be agreed upon. In the second stage, intent becomes as important or more important than the action itself.

Further conclusions regarding the impact of moral

development on the educational process will be made on the basis of Kohlberg's theory, summarized in table 3.


Table 3 Kohlberg's Stages of Moral Reasoning Level/Stage Description Preconventional Rules are set down by others Level

Stage 1 Punishment and obedience orientation Stage 2 Instrumental relativist orientation Conventional Individual adopts rules and will Level sometimes subordinate own needs to those of the group

Stage 3 "Good Boy-Good Girl" orientation Stage 4 "Law and Order" orientation Postconventional People define own values in terms of Level ethical principles they have chosen to follow

Stage 5 Social contract orientation Stage 6 Universal ethical principle orientation








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Note that Piaget's two stages are encompassed by

Kohlberg's three levels of two stages each. Whereas Piaget studied the moral implications of children at play, Kohlberg analyzed their responses to moral dilemmas, hypothetical situations which force an individual to make moral decisions.



Preconventional level

Stage 1 of this level is similar to Piaget's

heteronomous stage, and is characterized by obedience to avoid punishment. In stage 2, however, children grow to include the consideration of the interests of others, although their own interests will normally still take precedence. According to Kohlberg (1969), this stage can last until age nine.

During the early years of elementary school, therefore, we must assume that students will not consider the benefit of their classmates in their decisions. The result of this is that activities which involve younger elementary school children should have clear consequences and rewards.

In the later elementary years, in stage 2, we can make more significant progress in the development of teamwork








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skills. One example of the application of this would be in the sharing of equipment during an activity. Clear rules as to how the equipment is to be shared should be established ahead of time.



Conventional level

Stage 3 is the first of the conventional level, which

is very similar to Piaget's autonomous state. Acceptance is important in this cooperative stage, and is gained by finding those things that please others. Hogan and Emler (1978) describe this stage as focusing on the "Golden Rule." Since students in this stage are able to assume the perspective of others, they can modify their behavior for the benefit of their team, their class, the teacher, and others. This stage is not surprisingly concomitant with the onset of the adolescent strengthening of peer relationships described by Erikson. The combination of this stage of moral development and the simultaneous stage of social development make this the most critical time to develop teamwork skills.

Stage 4 heralds the replacement of the "rules of the pack," which govern peer acceptance, by the rules of




Full Text
214
Post-test results
As is normally the case in grading tests in a design
class, the different approaches students take to problem
solution prove a challenge to the grader. The objective
system described above was helpful in meeting this
challenge. In the case of certain students, enough
information was written on the quiz to indicate the
student's line of thinking. This provided the ability to
diagnose certain errors. Even more useful is identifying
the errors which are common to most of the class.
Quiz score distribution. The distribution of quiz
scores indicated a high level of mastery of the class as a
whole. This corresponds with the improvement which was
noted anecdotally by the instructor, although no
quantitative comparison to previous classes of students
exists. The histogram which follows shows the distribution
of quiz scores. The full range of possible scores is shown
in the histogram to show the high level of mastery achieved
by the students. The mean, median, and mode of the score
distribution are all equal to 18.


242
Materials Used in Civil Engineering
Concrete
Concrete is a structural material which consists of cement, aggregate (sand, stones, gravel, etc ),
and water (to make a chemical reaction called hydration occur). Concrete can sometimes contain
other substances, such as fly ash from industrial smoke stacks. The strength and other properties
of concrete are dependent on how the various ingredients are proportioned and mixed.
Concrete is a very strong material when it is placed in compression. It is extremely weak in
tension, however. It is for this reason that we use reinforcement in concrete structures. The
reinforcement, usually steel, gives concrete support in tension.
There are many ways to test the strength of a batch of concrete The tests used can be categorized
as destructive and nondestructive tests We will perform only the first. Usually when a batch of
concrete is ordered on a job site it is specified to be of a specific compressive strength 4,000
psi, for instance. When the concrete comes to the job site in a ready-mix truck, the contractor
places some of the batch in cylinders which are 6 inches in diameter and 12 inches in height. These
cylinders are cured for 28 days and tested by compression until they are crushed. This will give
the contractor or the engineer the compressive strength for that batch of concrete. He or she can
then compare that value to the design value used to make sure that the structure meets the
designed specifications.
A concrete cylinder will be tested to crushing in a compression testing machine in the structures
lab. Generally, the cylinders we test will be of concrete designed to be 6000 psi. For a 6 inch
diameter cylinder, the cross-section in compression has an area of approximately 30 square inches.
We therefore expect the cylinder to carry at least 180,000 pounds. There is a digital read out of
the specimen load. This will read one tenth of the load, or the load in tens of pounds. The easiest
way to read the meter is to imagine an extra 0 digit at the end of the display
Concrete Strength
Concrete and steel are the most widely used materials in engineering design. Concrete is very
important material for the civil engineer designing in Florida because steel is not readily available
and can be very expensive to bring to the site. Some advantages of using concrete in design are as
follows: high fire and weather resistance, relatively low cost (most of the materials can be
obtained locally), can be poured to fit odd shapes (good for unusual architectural designs). As
you drive down 1-75,1-4, or on the turnpike you will notice that almost all the bridges are
constructed of concrete. As you walk around Weil Hall (the building you are in now) you will
notice that the beams and columns are made of concrete. The new South End zone for the
University of Florida's Football Stadium and the new addition to the commuter parking garage
were constructed using concrete. These are just a few examples.


60
implementation stagethey will discover which assumptions
they made were not valid, run into unanticipated
difficulties, and have to improvise and improve their
design. The eliminating of implementation from the design
process leaves students with the understanding that all
designs which can be put on paper are viable designs, a
dangerous fallacy. We must strive to disabuse students of
this notion.
We must instead consider the cost of implementation as
a significant factor in designing the creative design
activity itself. Approaches to reducing implementation cost
will be included in the discussion of the prototype design
activity in chapter 4.
Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) and von Oech (1986)
include evaluation within this last stage. In Engineering
By Design, evaluation of the implemented solution is treated
separately. As crucial as program assessment is, it must
receive adequate attention. It is integrated throughout the
process of creative problem solving, not constrained to
attention during the final stage.


135
Cooperative learning must not be confused with what is
known as "Cooperative Education" or "Co-op" programs,
referring to education gained through on the job experience.
Rather, cooperative learning refers to education which
relies on students working as a team to assure that all
members achieve academic goals. In these teams, approaches
may include such diverse objectives as problem solving,
experimentation, practice, or discussion.
Two key concepts are essential to the cooperative
approach. Individual accountability must be assured, in
order that the performance of the group not mask the lack of
learning of any of its members. This is of particular
concern in a profession, such as engineering, where
licensing, and possibly lives, are at stake. Also paramount
is the need for group goals and interdependence. If
interdependence is not maintained, the result is likely to
be the same as or inferior to that produced by individual
work.
In studies which have honored the two fundamental
tenets of cooperative learning, consistent positive
achievement effects have been observed in all grades,
subjects, ability levels, and demographics (Slavin, 1991).


260
Tributary Area Brainstorming Session Output
clothing
tire construction
aluminum siding
mobiles
traffic light
grain storage
sandwich
Christmas decorations
banners
counterweight
lasagna noodles
bridge construction
composites
weaving
jet engine lift
liquid storage
ferris wheel
pouring concrete
pavement design
centrifuge
house of cards
blocks
interlocking
toothpick models
popsicle sticks
pickup sticks
legos
erector set
lincoln logs
Jenga (a tower game)
roofing
hung ceiling
ceiling fans
chandelier
cantilever
hanging signs
foundation design
laminate
leaf spring
torsion bar
trees
mudslides
caves
snow avalanche
sinkholes
earthquake
subsidence
pile design
load shifting
catapult
pressure
suction
uplift
soil design
fill design
drainage design


299
"Thirty Percent of Americans Unsure of Engineering's Role,"
Ind. Engineering 22(5), May 1990, 8.
Thorndike, Edward Lee, Reward and Punishment in Animal
Learning, Johns Hopkins, Baltimore, MD, 1932.
Titcomb, Stephen L., Foote, Richard M., and Carpenter, Howard
J., "A Model for a Successful High School Engineering
Design Competition," Proc. ASEE/IEEE Frontiers in
Education, session 3D4, 1994, 138-141.
Tobias, Sheila, They're Not Dumb, They're Different: Stalking
the Second Tier, Research Corporation, Tucson, Arizona,
1990.
Tobias, Sheila, Revitalizing Undergraduate Science: Why Some
Things Work and Most Don't, Research Corporation, Tucson,
Arizona, 1992.
Turner, Dorothy, "Emerging Engineers," Afterschool Program
Curriculum, sponsored by the Florida Department of
Education, 1996.
Van Gundy, Arthur B., Managing Group Creativity: A Modular
Approach to Problem Solving, American Management
Associations, New York, 1984.
Van Patten, J., Chao, C.-I., and Reigeluth, C. M., "A Review
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Books, New York, 1983.
Von Oech, Roger, A Kick in the Seat of the Pants: Using Your
Explorer, Artist, Judge, and Warrior To Be More Creative,
Harper and Row, New York, 1986.


213
Grading system. A grading system was necessary which
would be as objective as possible. The approach taken to
address this need was to systematically evaluate all the
members in discrete steps. With a complete list of all
these steps, a review of student papers would show which
steps each student had completed satisfactorily. The list
followseach step was assigned a single point for its
correct completion.
1 Joist 1 shares load with the bearing wall
2 Joist 1 contributes to AB
3 Half of Joist 1 rests on the left bearing wall
4 Joist 2 contributes to AB
5 Half of Joist 2 rests on the left bearing wall
6 Beam DC contributes to AB
7 Half of Beam DC rests on the left bearing wall
8 Joist 3 contributes to AB
9 Half of Joist 3 rests on the north bearing wall
10 AB shares load with Joist 3
11 Half of Joist 4 rests on the north bearing wall
12 Joist 4 shares load with the bearing wall
13 Beam CE contributes to AB
14 Half of Beam CE rests on the right bearing wall
15 Joist 5 contributes to AB
16 Half of Joist 5 rests on the right bearing wall
17 Joist 6 contributes to AB
18 Half of Joist 6 rests on the right bearing wall
19 Joist 7 contributes to AB
20 Joist 7 shares load with the bearing wall
21 Half of Joist 7 rests on the right bearing wall
The numbers indicated above correspond exactly to the quiz
scoring numbers tl-t21.


230
any improvement over the educational method used with the
control group, all that is left is to analyze the effects
which could have made such an improvement impossible to
detect.
Effects Operating in this Experiment
Each group was aware of the experiment; it was
impossible to prevent this occurrencestudents were
constantly about working on projects while Dr. Holland and I
met, they witnessed the testing of the apparatus (which was
a good deal of fun for us and a few other interested
teachers), and they knew that the class was being divided
into two groups. This awareness opened up the possibility
of a number of the effects described earlier. The John
Henry effect was certainly operating, as noted by the
instructor from the first day forward. She reported that
the control group had developed a sense of competition,
since they had not been chosen for the "experimental" group.
Students in the control group viewed the success of the
experimental group as a threat to their peer status (a
critically important factor). This threat to status is


71
The formal operational stage
This stage lasts from approximately 11 years of age to
adulthood. Here is where abstract thinking is fully
developed. Individuals in this stage can approach problem
solving systematically, analyzing one factor at a time
(Inhelder and Piaget, 1958). In this stage, form is
distinct from content, and conclusions may be drawn by
analogy. Slavin (1988) indicates that formal operational
ability permits individuals to consider hypothetical or
potential situations.
Slavin's wording identifies an important issueif
children cannot discern potential situations, can they be
taught such concepts as potential energy (and its conversion
to other forms)? What about changes of states of matter?
What it does tell us is this: if we are to teach such
subjects to children before the formal operations stage, we
must use concrete examples which demonstrate the process.
Dry ice, for example is a solid, but there is visible
evidence of the sublimation process. Such examples will be
the hallmark of successful teaching prior to the formal
operational stage.


190
We were encouraged that, in all, six of eight teams
defined the areas according to the established method before
tributary area was formally introduced. It is also
important to note that both students who made negative
comments about this exercise were on teams which completed
the problems in such a manner (i.e., that their comments are
not due to a perceived attack on their self-image).
Problem set discussion
Immediately after one team turned in its solution, one
of the members approached me. He had proposed a different
solution to the last problem, and his teammates had rejected
his approach. Unfortunately, his teammates had not been
patient or persuasive enough to reconcile his approach with
theirs. The third problem is shown again below; the
student's proposed solution for column c is indicated by the
hatched area, and others are typical.
The student's logic is quite reasonableto view the
load carried by a column as a radius of effect.
Unfortunately, his teammates had not worked with him to
follow through on his logical approach.


246
If a plank bridge breaks, it is likely to splinter in the middle leaving the rest of the
plank undamaged. This is because the center of the plank experiences much more
moment than the ends, which experience none, because they are free to rotate
without resistance. So the moment, or bending force, varies continuously from zero
at the left end to its highest value in the middle and back to zero again at the right
end. The result is that, although it is simple to build, a plank bridge does not make
very efficient use of material.
One way of making more efficient use of wooden beams is to stand them on edge.
If you have ever been in an unfinished attic, you may have noticed that the floor
beams (and the rafters) are in this configuration. The beams don't bend as much in
the upright orientation. This is because of a property called moment of inertia. The
basic principle of moment of inertia follows. As we saw before, the highest
compression and tension occur in the very top and the very bottom of the beam,
respectively. We also found out that the middle of the beam (top to bottom) isn't
working very hard at all. So what we want is to have as much material at the outer
edges as possible and have as little material in the middle as possible. The pictures
below show some beams to illustrate moment of inertia.
Low moment of inertia,
Use this for a diving board
which you want to Bend a lot
High moment of inertia,
Use this for support beams
which you want to be stiff
The two beams above are called I-beams because of their shape (when looked at on
end). The left beam would be made of steel and the right of concrete. These show
how material is concentrated at the top and bottom of the beam.


40
of listed barriers, some of them having been grouped
together by Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine. Those which are unique
to von Oech are shown in quotes.
False assumptions
"I'm not Creative." This attitude will be especially
prevalent in those with low self-esteem with respect to
their intelligence. However, because highly intelligent
minds can think of solutions quickly, a better solution may
be achieved by a person with a slower mind, who must wait
and take in more data before proposing a solution. This
additional information may lead to an improved solution (De
Bono, 1986). In fact, there are a number ways that a highly
intelligent can be trapped into poor thinking. De Bono
lists nine of these, which Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a)
annotate to show that creativity is dependent on using the
whole brain.
"Play is Frivolous." The best example of this is given
by von Oech (1983) in the Moebius strip. The Moebius strip
is a strip formed in a loop with a half-twist introduced
before connecting the ends. This was merely a topological
fascination for many years, because the resulting shape has


82
Note that Piaget's two stages are encompassed by
Kohlberg's three levels of two stages each. Whereas Piaget
studied the moral implications of children at play, Kohlberg
analyzed their responses to moral dilemmas, hypothetical
situations which force an individual to make moral
decisions.
Preconventional level
Stage 1 of this level is similar to Piaget's
heteronomous stage, and is characterized by obedience to
avoid punishment. In stage 2, however, children grow to
include the consideration of the interests of others,
although their own interests will normally still take
precedence. According to Kohlberg (1969), this stage can
last until age nine.
During the early years of elementary school, therefore,
we must assume that students will not consider the benefit
of their classmates in their decisions. The result of this
is that activities which involve younger elementary school
children should have clear consequences and rewards.
In the later elementary years, in stage 2, we can make
more significant progress in the development of teamwork


279
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Ed. Psych. 51, 1960, 267-272.
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Grue and Straton, New York, 1963.
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Meaningful Parallel Learning," J. Ed. Psych. 54, 1963,
331-336 .
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Primer Course in Composites Engineering," J. Engineering
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Program for Young Scholars," J. Prof. Iss. Engineering
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Rinehart, and Winston, New York, 1969.
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taking on Learning from Lecture Instruction," doctoral
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Classification of Educational Goals. Handbook 1: The
Cognitive Domain, Longman, New York, 1956.


Improve the activity 184
Tributary Area Activity Implementation 184
Introduction to laboratory 186
Block tower activity 186
Load distribution brainstorming .... 188
Problem set discussion 190
Tributary area lab assignment 193
Lab assignment discussion 194
Live load reduction brainstorming exercise
194
Live load reduction brainstorming results
196
LRFD live load reduction 196
Live load reduction laboratory exercise 196
Live load reduction problem discussion 197
Evaluation of the Tributary Area Activity 197
Student evaluation 198
Tributary area evaluation results 207
Tributary area post-test 211
Post-test results 214
Student comments on the lab as a whole 218
Design of an llth-12th Grade Statistics Activity 218
The Design of the Activity 219
Designing Experimental and Control Groups 223
Introductory Brainstorming Activity 223
Central tendency 224
Decreasing observer dependence 225
Sources of error 226
Measuring variation 226
The Post-test and Results 227
Effects Operating in this Experiment .... 230
6 CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS 232
APPENDICES
A INTRODUCTION TO ENGINEERING HANDOUTS 235
B THE ENGINEERING BY DESIGN METHODOLOGY 253
xii


186
trends which may further contribute to the evaluation of the
activity, and therefore of the method used to develop it.
The evaluation of the tributary area laboratory will proceed
in the same order as the objectives were presented.
Introduction to laboratory
The students were generally quite receptive to the idea
of their involvement in an educational experiment. They
seemed enthusiastic to hear of the instructor's and my
concern for their learning. After a brief explanation of
the motivation for the block tower activity, we quickly
began.
Block tower activity
This activity certainly achieved some of the desired
objectives. Student teams quickly established an atmosphere
of friendly competition, as expected. In fact, the peer
interaction was very similar to that observed with middle
school groups, for whom peer interaction is most
importantthe winning group even pronounced itself "The
Tower Masters," writing that epithet on the group work they
turned in. The activity certainly reduced the level of


196
Live load reduction brainstorming results
Due to the modification of the lesson plans, this stage
was subsumed by the previous. All students were
instantaneously aware of the input of the entire class.
LRFD live load reduction
After the brainstorming session had yielded most of the
concepts important to live load reduction, the method
sanctioned by AISC/LRFD was introduced, including the
criteria and formulae. Students seemed to find this
presentation very clear, likely because the new information
was just an application of what was already understood
through the brainstorming session.
Live load reduction laboratory exercise
Students were then asked to compute live load
reductions using the tributary areas from the previous
laboratory exercise. Since students all had the same
starting point (they had the correct tributary areas after
the previous exercise was reviewed), this exercise was
essentially plug-and-chug (a good one for the sensors and
sequentials). The primary problems observed during this


261
Tributary Area Lab Activity Lesson Plan
Discuss laboratory and homework procedures
Introduction
Block tower activity
Group solution of simple load distribution set
Discussion of problem set solution
Group solution of complex load distribution set
Discussion of problem set solution
Brainstorm live load reduction
Discussion of results of live load brainstorming
Formal presentation of LRFD Live Load Reduction
Live load reduction problem set
Discussion of live load reduction problem set
Total laboratory time:
5 minutes
5 minutes
30 minutes
10 minutes
10 minutes
15 minutes
10 minutes
10 minutes
10 minutes
15 minutes
30 minutes
15 minutes
2.75 hours


62
activity is educationally complete, tapping higher level
thinking skills and reaching students with all learning
styles. The foundation for this stage will be laid in
chapter 3.


92
be overwhelmed. Shaping, therefore, requires knowledge of
the current level of the students.
Extinction
Of course, any learned behavior will diminish and
eventually become extinct if reinforcement for it is
completely withdrawn (Williams, 1959, Wolf et al., 1965,
and Zimmerman and Zimmerman, 1962). This is good news in
the case of negative behaviors which have previously
reinforced, such as behaviors learned with previous teachers
and habits formed in the K-12 system which are no longer
adequate in higher education. Ideally, for all positive
behaviors and learned skills, new reinforcers naturally
occur. The same, of course, occurs with skills, which dull
if not exercised.
Discrimination
To achieve a desired goal, the students must know what
it is. For grades to serve as an effective reinforcer,
students must know what is expected to receive a good grade.
This allows the student to discriminate between the actions
which will or will not contribute to their grade.


282
Committee on Scientific and Professional Ethics and Conduct,
"Ethical Principles of Psychologists," Amer. Psychologist
36, 1981, 633-638.
Conary, F. M., "Relation of College Freshmen's Psychological
Types to Their Academic Tasks," Amer. Personnel and Guid.
Assoc. Conf., Washington, DC, 1966.
Conrad, James M., "Introduction to Engineering Concepts for
Middle, Junior High, and High School Teachers," Proc.
ASEE/IEEE Frontiers in Education, Session 4C3, San Jose,
CA, November 1994, 250-252.
Conrad, James M. and Mills, Jonathan W., "Inexpensive
Technology Lab Exercises for Grades 6-9," Proc. ASEE/IEEE
Frontiers in Education, session 4B5, 1994, 218-221.
Crawford, Richard H., Wood, Kristin L., Fowler, Marilyn L.,
and Norrell, Jeffery L., "An Engineering Design
Curriculum for the Elementary Grades," J. Engineering Ed.
83(2), April 1994, 172-181.
Dale, Edgar, Audio-Visual Methods in Teaching, 3rd ed., Holt,
Rinehart, and Winston, 1969.
Dally, J. W. and Zhang, G. M., "A Freshman Engineering Design
Course," J. Engineering Ed. 82(2), April 1993, 83-91.
De Bono, Edward, Lateral Thinking, Harper and Row, New York,
1970.
De Bono, Edward, De Bono's Thinking Course, Facts on File, New
York, 1986.
Department of Health and Human Services, "Head Start,"
http://www.acf.dhhs.gov/ACFPrograms/Headstart/, Internet,
as modified on April 10, 1996.
Dewar, J., "Grouping for Arithmetic Instruction in the Sixth
Grade," Elen?. Sch. J. 63, 1964, 266-269.


99
to recall the meaning of truss they already know.7 By doing
this, I have given them a mental image which gives insight
to the function of a truss in the engineering sense of the
wordto support or gird up. This technique would not be
effective in teaching Introduction to Engineering, however,
as the majority of freshmen will not be familiar with the
former meaning.
Practice
Earlier it was discussed that allowing time for mental
rehearsal helped students transfer information from short
term to long-term memory. Not surprisingly, overt practice
has an even greater effect. The kind of intensive practice
involved in cramming for a test is known as massed practice.
This example immediately identifies the greatest failing of
the methodalthough initial mastery is facilitated by this
approach, long-term retention is best achieved through
distributed practice. In distributed practice, concepts are
practiced a little each day over a period of time. This,
7"A device consisting of a pad usually supported by a belt
for maintaining a hernia in a reduced state." Random House
Webster's Electronic Dictionary, College Edition, version
1.5, 1994.


199
Table 7 Classification of Experience as a Continuous Variable
Exp
Classification
0
Answered "N" to the question "Had you been introduced
to the concept of tributary area prior to the
activity?"
1
I had the concept described to me.
2
A sample problem was done on the board.
3
I did a problem informally by myself or with a group.
4
A problem was assigned for homework and graded.
5
I had a test on it.
Likert scale measurements. Also measured on the
evaluation form were student agreement with a variety of
statements. Student agreement was measured on the scale
shown in the table below, known as a Likert Scale (Likert,
1932). The most significant disadvantage of Likert
measurements is the fact that the scale is not consistent
for all individuals (Kubiszyn and Borich, 1993). In fact,
the most likely factor to cause an individual to distinguish
between "Strong Agreement" and simple "Agreement" seems to
be personality. Some individuals make a conscious attempt
to use the full range of the measurement scale, while others
are more likely to use the extremes in their opinions
because they wish to be decisive. This will be discussed


122
become internalized, beginning with the exploration of
context in quadrant 1, proceeding to the integration of
observation and existing knowledge in quadrant 2, on to
practice and testing quadrant 3, and to speculating
applications and improvements in quadrant 4.
Concrete Experience
(Feeling)
Figure 3 The Kolb Cycle
McCarthy (1990) developed the 4MAT system of learning
styles which seems primarily based on the Kolb learning
cycle, although McCarthy credits other educational theorists
as well. Through the 4MAT system, each quadrant is broken
down into two parts with clear objectives for the
educational process. The questions depicted in the


141
Throughout my research of those other strategies, I
discovered one element was missing from all of theman
integrated set of educational objectives. Chapter 3,
therefore, is focused on the learning and teaching process,
an understanding of which is necessary to approach the
problem comprehensively.
This led to the formation of a second research
hypothesis: that a methodology for designing engineering
activities could itself be designed and that such a
methodology will aid in the generation of engineering
activities which are educationally superior to those
generally used for K-12 students as well as students in
engineering institutions.
This methodology was formed through the development of
a prototype activity, the Truss Bridge Laboratory, which was
integrated into the Civil Engineering component of the EGN
1002: Introduction to Engineering class offered at the
University of Florida. The entire class handout (which
includes the Truss Bridge Laboratory) is included as
Appendix A.


CHAPTER 6
CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
The success of an individual activity can only be
measured against its objectives. The Truss Bridge
Laboratory, which served as a prototype activity in the
development of the Engineering By Design methodology, has
fulfilled its objectives within the Introduction to
Engineering class, as indicated in chapter 4. These
objectives included informing students about Civil
Engineering and improving recruitment and retention.
Similarly, the tributary area laboratory met its primary
objective: to teach students tributary area.
The objectives of Engineering By Design are different
from the objectives of the activities the methodology is
used to generate. The statistical results of the tributary
area post-test and student questionnaire indicate that the
methodology produced a lesson of educational value which was
favorable to the students. The present work cannot claim to
have produced an improved lesson delivery, since a control
232


172
full understanding of the concept, an activity designed to
teach it would not be necessary. In fact, it was students'
difficulty with the concept which prompted Ellifritt to test
the Engineering By Design methodology. The entire process
of creating the activity is detailed here as an example of
the use of the methodology.
Establish goals and select a focus
The focus is sufficiently narrowed through the goal-
setting process in this case. As a result, the second step
of the process has been subsumed by the first. The goals of
the activity are listed below.
To teach students the concept of tributary area
To justify and demonstrate load reduction
To enable students to specify member loading
With these goals established, we sought a model to make the
tributary area concept clearer, and moved into the idea
generation phase.
Brainstorm for ideas
The idea generation phase of the process was conducted
by three diverse individuals: Dr. Duane S. Ellifritt is a
structural engineering professor and artist; Don J.


133
reflective students the opportunity to mull over their
observations.
The needs of sequential learners are generally well
addressed in teaching. Global learners, however, are
generally neglected (Silverman, 1987) Global learners will
benefit most from an introduction to the "big picture" and
through speculative exercises. Group activities will
benefit both types of learners, but interdisciplinary
problems will benefit global students particularly (Felder
and Silverman, 1988).
The Non-Constant Nature of Preferences
An individual's preferences in interaction, thinking,
and learning may change over time. This is logical due to
the various developmental stages which occur. For example,
a student who, in elementary school prefers learning with
peers/is extroverted (and has other similar traits) may
become more withdrawn/introverted/etc. when in the midst of
the adolescent identity crisis.
Also of interest is that such preferences can be
modified somewhat by teaching methods and subject areas


240
A bachelors degree at the University of Florida is broken down into two phases: general
education/pre-professional and upper division. During the first two years in college, you will take
all the general college courses and the pre-professional courses. Once having completed
approximately 64 semester hours, you will need to apply to the Department of Civil Engineering
in the College of Engineering After admission to the Department, you will take those courses
which apply to the field of civil engineering.
First Two Years Last Three Years
General Education Preprofessional
Engineering Core Civil Engineering
English
Social Science
Humanities
Those courses marked
with an asterisk
Calculus
Chemistry
Physics with Calculus
Computer Aided Design
Fortran for Engineers
Biological Sciences
Statics
Dynamics
Strength of Materials
Electrical Engineering
Thermodynamics
Engineering Statistics
Construction
Hydraulics
Geotechnical
Structural
Transportation
Surveying
If, after graduation, you continue on for your Master's degree, you will take advanced
courses as well as perform some supervised research. A requirement for this degree is the
submission of a Thesis (or report) on your particular research topic. A Ph D. requires a
substantial amount of unsupervised research, and in addition, it must be original work.
During your senior year in college, you should take the EIT (Engineer Intern) exam This
is a test given by the State of Florida that will eventually allow you to become a Professional
Engineer. After passing the EIT and working under a PE for 4 years, you may take the PE exam.
Once you pass this, you are considered a licensed engineer and may offer services to the public.
SALARY ESTIMATES
From our recent graduates, a BSCE engineer can expect to start at approximately $27,000
- $31,000. A master's degree recipient can earn initially $32,000 $36,000. Ph.D.'s usually go to
work at a University or else with a large company that does a lot of research. They usually start
at $45,000 $50,000.
ADVANCEMENT IN THE PROFESSION
As in many professions, unless you own your own firm, you will probably go into
management in order to advance up the corporate ladder. This means that you will do less and
less real engineering and more and more paper pushing If this is of interest to you, it would help
to take some elective courses in management during your college career


208
statements, student responses to grouped statements
representing a larger concept, and the relation of those
responses to the quiz results. The last of these will be
discussed after the post-test itself is presented, and the
first two are presented here. There were quite a few
statements which achieved statistically and practically
significant opinions. These have been arranged in such a
manner as to paint a logical picture which draws connections
between the various significant responses. The pre-
established groupings will always appear in quotes (with
their abbreviations) to identify them as such.
Student responses to 13 of the 21 statements were
statistically different from the mean of 3 (neutral). In
considering these, I have additionally established the level
of practical significance at halfway between 3 and its
nearest neighbor values (2 or 4)-anything at or above 3.5
(for agreement) and anything at or below 2.5 (for
disagreement). The statements which earned agreement
according to these two criteria were statements 6, 9, 10,
13, 15, 16, and 18. Statements 5, 17, 19, and 21 earned
disagreement in the same manner.


44
mutation, or errors in the process of transmitting genetic
information, can introduce adaptations and improvements to a
species. The human race, however, has been conditioned to
avoid failure. The grading system used throughout the
educational process is itself a constant reminder that those
who make the fewest errors are more rewarded (Von Oech,
1983) .
At some level, error is recognized as a part of life
and a necessary process in learning, hence "to err is human"
and "trial and error." If error were not anticipated,
"trial and error" would instead be referred to as "trial and
success." The role of failure in technological progress is
well documented, from Edison's many attempts to find a
suitable filament for the light bulb to the metallurgical
revolution following the Ashtabula Bridge disaster caused by
the brittle failure of cast iron.
Discomfort with ambiguity
While many would prefer that solutions always be "black
and white," the problem definition itself and the best
solutions are often in the gray areas. Students are
notoriously uncomfortable with ambiguity, because they are


188
that the opportunity to build the tower from the ground up
would have provided additional freedom for the team to
design the structure, rather than be constrained by the
instability caused by moving blocks.
Load distribution brainstorming
Initial resistance is always expected when introducing
group methods and challenging students to formulate a
concept rather than teaching it. Students did not hesitate
to express their uneasiness with the approach: "...I think
it would benefit the students to know how to do something
(e.g. tributary area) before problems or quizzes be given."
This uneasiness is acceptable, because it can be like sand
to an oysteran irritant from which a pearl may grow. The
challenge and the higher order thinking can shake out
principles which students take for granted and encourage
thinking, like a "whack on the side of the head," as Von
Oech put it (1983). The format of this activity is
especially threatening if the students feel that they will
be penalized for errors. When we introduced the activity,
we explained that the objective was simply for the teams to
speculate as to how load was distributedwrong answers would


49
(Schauer, 1985 and Harkins, 1987) effects have been
identified. Which will occur seems dependent upon the
relationship of the group members and the environment in
which they are working (Harkins and Jackson, 1985 and Kerr
and Bruun, 1983).
Social loafing was minimized when group members were
co-workers, and competition was more of a factor. This
seems surprising at first, since we would like to think that
facilitation would occur simply because co-workers were all
"playing on the same team," or cooperating, rather than
competing. It is already becoming clear that the most
important factor in overcoming the barriers to group idea
generation will be the establishment of a supportive and
cooperative environment.
Production blocking
Production blocking occurs when a group member gets an
idea, but is unable to voice it immediately. While waiting
for a chance to contribute the idea, the owner of the idea
may simply forget it, or may use the intervening time to
become critical of their unvoiced idea, violating the
deferred judgement principle. Since group idea generation


249
l
The Long and Short of It
Another special feature of trusses is that the members don't bend. They get pulled
apart (in tension) and pushed together (compression), but they aren't loaded in the
middle like the plank is when you stand on it. The members stay straight from end
to end until they fail. This doesn't mean the bridge will stay straight, though. As
heavier loads are put on the bridge, it will still sag. This is because the individual
members of the truss are getting longer (if they are in tension) and shorter (if they
are in compression).
A Belt Isn't the Only Thing that Buckles
Many materials, in theory, have the same strength when being squeezed together (in
compression) as they do when pulled apart (in tension). The problem is that if you
press the two ends of a thin member (like a ruler) together, it doesn't simply stay
straight and get shorter, but instead it bends out to the side. This is called buckling,
which is the way that most tall, skinny things break when compressed end-to-end.
In general, when a member buckles, that member cannot sustain any more load.
How Could My Truss Fail?
There arc three ways (called modes) in which your truss can fail. If a member
buckles enough, it will bend and break in the direction in which the craft sticks have
a low moment of inertia. This may be prevented if the loading frame supports
partially buckled members. This may also be prevented because when buckling
occurs, the geometry of the truss changes, which can reduce the load on the buckled


35
Figure 1 The Towers of Hanoi Problem
In such a simple problem, there is only one operator, which
might be called "move," which allows the rings to be moved.
This operator has three restrictions: only one ring may be
moved at a time, a larger ring may not be placed on top of a
smaller ring, and rings may only be placed on one of the
three pegs.
With clear information given in each of Kahney's
categories, this problem is well defined. Most problems
assigned in engineering education and in the K-12 pipeline
are similar in that regard. Problems in those arenas are
typically closed-ended, having a single correct answer
(Felder, 1988). If a problems is to yield a single correct
answer, it must be well defined.


APPENDIX A
INTRODUCTION TO ENGINEERING HANDOUTS
The complete handout for the Civil Engineering
component of the University of Florida Introduction to
Engineering class are included here. The class as a whole
has components representing all the undergraduate
engineering programs at the University of Florida and two
sessions focusing on various computer skills.
Included in this Civil Engineering component is the
Truss Bridge Laboratory, the prototype activity used to
develop the Engineering By Design methodology.
235


180
work on this problem, after which the instructor would go
over the problem for 10 minutes.
At this point in the laboratory, we would want to
develop the concept of live load reduction. The
introduction to this, we decided could also be done through
brainstorming. This brainstorming exercise was defined as a
real-world application, which was intended to benefit the
sensors (the first such exercise was more abstract, since
little was defined, and was thus more suited intuitors).
The instructions are shown below (and included in Appendix
C), to demonstrate the concrete (as opposed to abstract)
framework in which the problem was cast:
Introduction: Since live loads are movable, they do
not occur simultaneously over all parts of a structure.
Building designers have argued that this causes load
calculations to be too conservative. Your team has
been enlisted by the American Institute of Steel
Construction to devise a method of reducing live loads
which assures safety but is not overly conservative.
Objectives: Brainstorm in your groups to list as many
different approaches to this reduction as possible.
Then select one or a combination of those ideas and
develop it further. Make sure that the reduction is
limited and has clear criteria which define under what
circumstances it may be used.
This exercise is also intended to give reflective students
the time to understand why live load reduction is possible


155
arch designs was that students did not understand the
principle of arch thrust, which causes the legs of the arch
to spread under loading. As a result, eventually one of the
arched designs experienced such a separation of its legs
that the truss fell off the outside edges of one of the
supports, which were only 1" long (i.e., the legs spread to
be more than 20" apart). To avoid the frustration
experienced by that team, the instructor now explains the
implications of arch thrust, but privately, to student teams
which have already begun creating an arched design.
Another way in which students have greatly exceeded our
expectations has been in overall strength. Student teams
sometimes fill their bucket to capacity (over 80 pounds).
As a result, we developed the habit of putting pieces of
steel angle in the bottom of the 5-gallon pail when testing
designs which have obviously placed an emphasis on overall
strength, with less regard to overall cost (this seems to be
a fairly common approach, especially among all male teams).
A record of the designs produced by student teams is
kept on a scoring sheet. Teams draw their design (providing
an excellent channel for the more artistic team members to
participate) and record the cost and failure load.


144
physical, demonstrating the concepts of compression,
tension, moment, moment of inertia, neutral axis, and
failure modes.
Brainstorm for Ideas
Ideally, a prolonged effort at generating an idea can
be circumvented by the inspiration which can occur during
idea incubation (Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, 1995a). This is
what occurred in the case of the Truss Bridge Laboratory.
Dr. Hoit entered the office with a bag containing popsicle
sticks and small nuts and bolts, suggesting they be used to
make trusses.
Evaluate Ideas
Regardless of the complexity of the problem being
solved, and regardless of the effort (or lack thereof)
invested in a brainstorming activity, whenever a solution is
presented which is recognized as truly elegant and inspired,
consensus in the selection of that idea will likely be
achieved. In effect, the process immediately proceeds to
the refining of the idea through the idea evaluation


74
relationship to self, other people, and society. Sigmund
Freud may be best known in this field, but Erikson, trained
as a psychoanalyst by Freud, identified eight stages in this
realm of development. Table 2 lists Erikson's eight stages
and the psychological crisis which must be resolved at each
stage (Slavin, 1988, p.38).
Table 2 Erikson's Stages of Personal and Social Development
Stage
Approximate
Psychological
Age range
Crisis
I
Birth-18 mo.
Trust vs. Mistrust
II
18 mo.-3 yr.
Autonomy vs. Doubt
III
3-6 yr.
Initiative vs. Guilt
IV
6-12 yr.
Industry vs. Inferiority
V
12-18 yr.
Identity vs. Role confusion
VI
Young Adulthood
Intimacy vs. Isolation
VII
Middle Adulthood
Generativity vs. Self-absorption
VIII
Late Adulthood
Integrity vs. Despair
When cognitive stages were discussed, the one occurring
prior to elementary school was not discussed. Here, even
the first two must be discussed, because the way in which
each individual resolves each crisis affects their approach
to problems later in the educational process. Stages VI on,
however, will not be covered. It should be recognized that


CHAPTER 3
LEARNING AND TEACHING
To achieve the desired end of creating educationally
sound activities for teaching engineering, appropriate
teaching methods must be understood and applied, and are
studied here. K-12 teachers who graduate from education
programs receive training in educational psychology, which
includes the study of how students learn and of how teachers
teach, called pedagogy. Few college professors receive this
sort of training. James Stice (1987a, p. 95-96) describes
how he became a professor and learned to teach:
I found that I enjoyed it hugely and decided to make
college teaching my career. ... If you gave [the
students] a problem that was a little different from
what they had seen before, they were stumped. How
could I [teach a deeper understanding] to a class of
thirty students? I lacked the resources at the time.
So, I lectured and did what I could to help those who
came to see me after class.
Twenty-three years passed, and I learned some things
about the craft of teaching. Larry Grayson introduced
me to the idea of using instructional objectives,
Dwight Schott showed me the wisdom of teaching and
testing at higher levels of Bloom's Taxonomy (Bloom,
1956)...
63


195
running late, and modified the lesson plans slightly, but
with my full agreement. This exercise was conducted with
the whole class participating in one large brainstorming
group. At first, students were concerned that the reduction
was a safety risk (as was expected). Eventually, after some
reflection, some students suggested that the statistical
nature of live loads warranted some kind of reduction.
Students were then asked to suggest how the reduction
might be computed, and a percentage approach was soon
proposed, which was rapidly approved by the class. Then the
instructor asked what limits should be placed on it.
Students eventually suggested two of the three limits used
by LRFD in live load reduction: a limit on the maximum
reduction percentage (the instructor did not ask the class
to choose the numerical value of the limit), and a minimum
area to consider live load reduction. Students did not
suggest the third criterion, that for very large loads (100
psf and larger), reductions are not permitted except under
special circumstances. The instructor and I were pleased
with the results in this casein a short time, students had
figured out much of the established process of live load
reduction.


281
Brown, A. L., Bransford, J. D., Ferrara, R. A., and Campione,
J. C., "Learning, Remembering, and Understanding," in
Handbook of Child Psychology, 4th ed., J. Flavell and E.
M. Markman, eds., 3, 1983, 515-629.
Brown, Geoffrey and Desforges, Charles, Piaget's Theory: A
Psychological Critique, Routledge and Kegan Paul, London,
1979 .
Bruner, J. S., Toward a Theory of Instruction, Norton, New
York, 1966.
Carroll, J. B., "A Model of School Learning," Teacher's Coll.
Rec. 64, 1963, 723-733.
Chamberlain, T. C., "The Method of Multiple Working
Hypotheses," Scientific Monthly, November 1944, 357-362.
Chao, Veronica, "Where Does Education Begin?" ASEE Prism,
January 1992, 28-29.
Chen, Katherine, "Reversing Sagging Precollege Skills in
Mathematics and Science," IEEE Spectrum 27(12), December
1990, 44-48.
Cohen, E. G. and Anthony, B., "Expectation States Theory and
Classroom Learning," Proc. Amer. Ed. Res. Assoc., March
1982 .
Cohen, E. G., "Talking and Working Together: Status,
Interaction, and Learning," in The Social Context of
Instruction: Group Organization and Group Processes, P.
Peterson, L. C. Wilkinson, and M. Hallinan, eds.,
Academic Press, New York, 1984.
Colaros, P. and Anderson, L., "Effect of Perceived Expertness
upon Creativity of Members of Brainstorming Groups," J.
Appl. Psych. 53, 1969, 1159-1163.
Collette, Jack, "K-12 Science and Mathematics Education
Reform: What Business Needs to Know and Do," National
Research Council, Academy-Industry Program, Washington
DC, December 14, 1994.


57
each combination of the subdivisions of the various
dimensions. Felder (1988) gives the example of devising a
mode of transportation. One dimension would be the medium
in or on which transportation occurs. Another dimension
would be the power source. This would lead to combinations
such as a cable-powered device to travel through air (such
as a ski lift) and an internal combustion powered device to
travel through water (a diesel submarine, for example).
Other combinations may spark new paths for development where
there is no existing method.
Idea Evaluation and Selection
In this stage, the process focuses on critical
thinking. The wild and crazy, impractical nature of idea
generation is absent here, and is replaced by the pragmatic,
utilitarian, and practical. There will still be new ideas
created in this stage, as practical concerns introduce
constraints which call for the adaptation of previous ideas.
Idea evaluation and selection as a part of the problem
process are important, but are generally overemphasized in


20
Most laboratories are intended to be as near a reproduction
of the "correct" answer as is possible.
While reality sometimes finds a foothold in the
laboratory (e.g. error analysis), much of the work in
laboratories has traditionally been closed-end, with one
"correct" answer. Laboratories done in teams can provide
the opportunity for the development of teamwork skills.
However, the teamwork usually ends when students leave the
laboratorypartners usually take turns in writing the
laboratory report.
Therefore, while traditional laboratories fulfill the
objective of providing hands-on experience and team skills
for students, they do little to address the other
objectives. If properly designed, a laboratory exercise can
teach students investigative skills to learn on their own.
Frequently, however, because lab time is limited, students
are generally given a step-by-step process to follow.
Capstone Design Courses
Many schools, in order to satisfy the ABET requirement
for design content, have "capstone" design projects. These


17 Survey Responses by Team: Concept 269
18 Post-Test Responses and Scores by Individual 272
19 Statistics Post-Test Partial Scores by Individual 276
20 Statistics Post-Test Score Summary 277
xv


84
society, or laws. During this stage, it is assumed that
breaking the law is always wrong. The effects of peer
pressure are strong until the social stage of young
adulthood and, as a result, this stage may not begin until
that time. As educators, we must encourage this stage to
develop, and strive for ushering the next level of moral
reasoning. According to Slavin (1988), fewer than 25% of
the population will advance beyond stage 4.
Postconventional level
This level, the most advanced, recognizes that laws can
be changed and are subject to a higher set of ethical
principles established by the individual. After his
original work (1969) Kohlberg later concluded that there is
little separation of stage 5 and stage 6 (Slavin, 1988) .
This stage is necessary for influencing and evaluating the
existing laws. This level of moral reasoning will be
necessary to evaluate some moral dilemmas presented in
engineering issues. To prepare students for such tasks, we
must ensure that they advance to the postconventional level.
This can be done be discussing laws and their purpose, as
well as through the examination of moral dilemmas.


271
Tributary Area Post-Test Grading System
Below is a list of each of the steps established in
completing the post-test. Each is assigned equal weight (one
point) in the grading system.
1 Joist 1 shares load with the bearing wall
2 Joist 1 contributes to AB
3 Half of Joist 1 rests on the left bearing wall
4 Joist 2 contributes to AB
5 Half of Joist 2 rests on the left bearing wall
6 Beam DC contributes to AB
7 Half of Beam DC rests on the left bearing wall
8 Joist 3 contributes to AB
9 Half of Joist 3 rests on the north bearing wall
10 AB shares load with Joist 3
11 Half of Joist 4 rests on the north bearing wall
12 Joist 4 shares load with the bearing wall
13 Beam CE contributes to AB
14 Half of Beam CE rests on the right bearing wall
15 Joist 5 contributes to AB
16 Half of Joist 5 rests on the right bearing wall
17 Joist 6 contributes to AB
18 Half of Joist 6 rests on the right bearing wall
19 Joist 7 contributes to AB
20 Joist 7 shares load with the bearing wall
21 Half of Joist 7 rests on the right bearing wall
The numbers indicated above correspond exactly to the quiz
scoring numbers tl-t21.


59
Solution Implementation
This is, of course, the most time consuming part of the
process. Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) assign the role of
"producer" to this stage. The image of a movie producer
certainly does not fit, since financial backing is not
enough to achieve successful implementation of an idea. If
we consider the term "producer" from a more general
perspective, as a person who creates the end product, it is
then acceptable. More apt, it seems, is the von Oech (1986)
persona, the warrior. Solution implementation requires a
tenacity and a passion, even a relentlessness, to achieve
the objective.
In the case of the students themselves, the solution
reached as a result of problem solving has traditionally not
been implemented. This is at times cost prohibitive.
However, it is vital that students complete the process at
least some of the time, for a number of reasons. Without
completing the process, students will not see "the big
picture" of problem solving through to its conclusion.
Students will usually have the most to learn during the


CHAPTER 4
THE ENGINEERING BY DESIGN METHODOLOGY
Application of The Scientific Method
Engineering researchers are well acquainted with the
process of the scientific method, which generally proceeds
through a number of steps essentially the same as those for
creative problem solving. These two processes are rarely
compared, however, because a tremendous amount of research
in today's climate is never implemented. As a result, the
scientific method is traditionally defined in three major
phases (Borg and Gall, 1989) : formulation of a hypothesis,
deduction of observable consequences, and testing of the
hypothesis by collecting data measuring those observable
consequences. In some cases, the order of these may be
modifiedfor example, when prior experience has not provided
enough data to formulate a hypothesis, data might be
collected atheoretically. Those data may suggest a
hypothesis to the researcher who collected it, or may simply
138


118
also has implications for the remaining students, who
especially need training in those areas.
Due to the strong influence of Myers-Briggs terminology
on other typology research, the four bipolar attribute pairs
identified by the MBTI are described in the table which
follows (McCaulley and Natter, 1974). Each row indicates a
bipolar attribute pair.
Table 4 Myers-Briggs Type Indicator Attributes
Extroversion person's
interest flows mainly to
the outer world of actions,
objects, and persons.
Introversion person's
interest flows mainly to the
inner world of concepts and
ideas.
Sensing the person
prefers to perceive the
immediate, real solid facts
of experience.
Intuition the person
prefers to perceive the
possibilities, meanings, and
relationships of experience.
Thinking the person
prefers to make decisions
objectively and
impersonally, analyzing
facts and ordering them in
terms of cause and effect.
Feeling the person prefers
to make decisions
subjectively and personally,
weighing values and the
importance of choices for
oneself and other people.
Judging the person
prefers to live in a
planned, orderly way,
aiming to regulate and
control events.
Perceiving the person
prefers to live in a
spontaneous way, aiming to
understand and adapt events.
The Myers-Briggs typology has also reached considerable
public notice in the Keirsey Temperament Sorter, a short


41
only one side. Fifty years ago, however, conveyor belt
designers decided to use that to their advantage, achieving
equal wear, since all the surface of the belt is used. The
Moebius strip shows promise for application in other
technologies as well. It is key to notice that while the
Moebius strip was merely an amusement for many years, it
sparked innovation years after its introduction.
Play is also a regular source of learning. In the
animal kingdom, play is the process by which animals learn
the skills they need to survive. Children learn many things
through play. Therefore, if adults are unwilling to play,
they are cut off from certain opportunities for learning.
"That's not my Area." This barrier listed by von Oech
(1983) belongs in this category. The assumption being made
is "because this is outside of my field of expertise, I have
nothing to offer." Because it is precisely the gathering of
a variety of experience and expertise which promotes
divergent thinking, this assumption is false.
There is only one right answer
French philosopher Emile Chartier once said, "Nothing
is more dangerous than an idea when it is the only one you


76
Initiative vs. guilt
This stage brings with it relentless exploration of
relationships and the world. Not surprisingly, the end of
this stage closely corresponds to the beginning of Piaget's
concrete operational stage of cognitive development. It is
likely that the exhaustive exploration of one's surroundings
that permits the cognitive transition to take place.
Erikson characterizes the child's attitude in this stage as
"I am what I can imagine I will be" (Erikson, 1980) What
Erikson indicates that failure to resolve this crisis
properly causes children to feel guilty about natural
impulses (Slavin, 1988).
The term "guilt" seems inadequate to describe this
result. The more natural negative consequence is
timidityreluctance to explore, fear of the new, distaste
for change. These outcomes lead directly to significant
barriers to thinking, and can have wide ranging effects in
the educational process. On Erikson's time scale, children
will enter the K-12 educational system before this stage
ends, and so the early years of elementary school are a
venue for fostering the more positive outcomes. Discovery
learning (Bruner, 1966), which aims at the development of


38
Idea Generation
"What you see is what you get. Change your eyes." This
quote by Sam Keen cited by Fabian (1990) reveals the core of
the idea generation phase of problem solving. It is by
looking at the same things in new ways that new ideas are
achieved. Volumes of research have been written on just
this stage of the problem solving process. The study of
idea generation includes research on cognition itself, as
Piaget's theories of child development focus substantially
on how a child's develops new perspectives of a problem
(Brown and Desforges, 1979).
This stage of the problem solving process is the most
creative one, where it is ideas that are being created.
Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) assign this stage the
"artist" persona, seeking the image of a free spirited
creator not afraid to be avant-garde. Defining a problem
certainly uses thinking skills, but need not be creative,
per se. The next stage of idea evaluation and selection
certainly does not use creative thinking. The key in
evaluation and selection is critical thinking, which will be


32
solution. Since assessing how people solve problems is
itself an open-ended problem, there are a multitude of
approaches to describe the process. This, of course,
confounds the process of formulating a methodology for
problem solving, forcing the methodology to remain broad and
flexible (Greeno, 1980).
The Stages of Problem Solving
There are a number of stages in the process of creative
problem solving. Different authors have different names and
attributes for these stages, but the general pattern enjoys
wide agreement in principle. The discussion will follow the
stages delineated by Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a), but
the terminology and perspective characteristic of other
researchers will be introduced throughout. The four stages
of Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine are enumerated below:
1. Problem Definition
2. Idea Generation
3. Idea Evaluation and Selection
4. Solution Implementation
These four stages alone are not sufficient to complete the
Engineering by Design methodology, due to the unconventional
nature of the problem the methodology seeks to solvethat of


68
called operations, hence the definition of this stage as
pre-operational. A pre-operational child does not relate
the previous experience of seeing the sandwich as a whole to
the new experience of seeing it cut in four pieces
(Phillips, 1975).
The fact that children move from this stage into the
next, concrete operational, during the elementary years (at
~7 years of age) has significant implications. The
SouthEastern Consortium for Minorities in Engineering
(SECME) received a $260,000 grant in 1994 from the Carnegie
Corporation to develop a K-5 model of their successful
program which previously served only grades 6-12 (Leake,
1994). Since the younger students in that group are pre-
operational, they require a very different approach. Those
students, given the same information as those in the next
stage, are likely to draw conclusions which have severe
logical flaws (Piaget, 1962).
These same developmental considerations have affected
the implementation of the Emerging Engineers after school
curriculum materials designed by Dorothy Turner of the
Alachua County School District (Turner, 1996). Mrs. Turner
and I have found in field-testing the curriculum that the


179
Students would be given approximately 10 minutes to complete
all three problems in this exercise. This would be followed
by a discussion of the problem set, in which the established
method of tributary area and its assumptions would be
defined, and misconceptions noted in the problem set would
be addressed (the simple nature of the problems was expected
to facilitate rapid interpretation of the answers turned in
by each group). This formal treatment of the concept of
tributary area and load distribution would include the
transfer of load from smaller members to larger members
(such as from joists to beams or from girders to columns),
and would last 15 minutes.
A more complex tributary area problem would then be
assigned to the groups. This problem had irregular
spacings, multiple modes of load transfer (joist to beam,
beam to girder, beam to column, girder to column, etc.), and
overlapping layers (joists and girders both reached floor
elevation, but beams, which received load from joists and
transferred it to either girders or columns, were below
floor level). The floor plan and the elevation are included
in the handout shown in Appendix C, titled "Tributary Area
Lab Assignment." Student groups would have 15 minutes to


160
independent and dependent to refer to variables which are
causal and affected, respectively. It is important to note
that while some variables can be either independent or
dependent (temperature is affected by the number of people
in a room, but the temperature in a room can also affect the
behavior of the people in it), other variables are strictly
independent variables (biological sex, for example, must be
independent except in genetics experiments). Such variables
which are determined a priori and cannot be manipulated by
the researcher are commonly called parameters.
Table 6 Various Terms Used in Classifying Variables
Variables which are causal
Variables which are affected
Independent
Dependent
Manipulated
Responding
Experimental
Post-test
Treatment
Criterion
In most scientific endeavors, researchers are
accustomed to having full range of manipulation of the
independent variables, up to the limits of the available
technology to them. In an experiment to examine thermal
expansion, the independent variable is temperature and the
dependent variable is the size of a piece of material. A


220
statistics. Descriptive statistics are statistics which
organize and describe a group of data. Those statistics we
decided to specifically address in the lesson were measures
of central tendency (mean, median, mode) and measures of
variation (range, standard deviation).
Once the goals had been set, we decided that the class
would be divided into two groups, a control group which
would be taught by a typical lesson, and an experimental
group which would be taught by the lesson developed by our
collaboration. In order to avoid having our collaboration
contaminate the process by which Dr. Holland normally
develops lesson plans, we postponed the further development
of the experimental lesson until she had already made her
own plans. Three problems arose at this pointthe first was
already mentioned briefly, that Dr. Holland is already
accustomed to using active and cooperative educational
techniques. It would be unethical to ask her to teach by
techniques which she knows to be less effectiveboth for
ethical reasons and because it would contaminate the
experiment by making her teach in an unfamiliar manner to
the control group. The second complication was that the
goal was sufficiently vague that although she had envisioned


91
One way in which this affects design activities was
discussed earlierwhen students design a solution to a
problem, it is very important for them to proceed to
implementing the solution, in order to experience the
consequences of their design. If implementation is not
possible, then some form of feedback should substitute for
it. This may take the form of having student teams give
presentations of their designs with evaluation by the
teacher.
Shaping
Shaping is the process of reinforcing the behaviors
which are intermediate steps toward an established goal.
This is common even in higher educationfirst students are
taught and tested in drawing free-body diagrams, then
internal forces can be analyzed. If an instructor moved
directly into analyzing internal forces without verifying
(through homework and/or testing) student understanding of
free-body diagrams, misconceptions would persist and hinder
student progress. The key in shaping desired behaviors is
that the final goal is broken down into steps which stretch
the skills of the students, but do not cause the students to


124
critical information from the cone of learning is
summarized. We tend to remember:
10% of what we read
20% of what we hear
30% of what we see
50% of what we hear and see
70% of what we say
90% of what we both say and do
This is an excellent supporting argument for active learning
methods discussed later in this chapter.
Felder's learning styles
Through the Effective Teaching Workshop, Felder and
Brent (1995) continue to spread the message of a set of
learning styles and parallel teaching styles first proposed
by Felder and Silverman (1988). Felder and Silverman
characterize five elements of learning style: perception,
input, organization, processing, and understanding. The
corresponding five elements of teaching style are content,
presentation, organization, student participation, and
perspective. The bipolar pairs of learning and teaching
style which bound the continua represented by those elements
are shown in the table (Felder and Silverman, 1988, p.675).


140
interdisciplinary and open-ended nature, could serve to
synthesize many of the objectives of the reform movement
into a unified approach. The observable consequences chosen
in this case are the results of design projects which have
been conducted by me and by many other researchers. As a
result, the testing of the hypothesis necessitated
additional research.
Design projects with wide ranging approaches,
objectives, and accomplishments were discovered in that
research process. The body of research described throughout
the remainder of chapter 1 led to the conclusion that design
projects could indeed be used to synthesis a great many of
the desired objectives. This conclusion pointed to the
continuation of this work in a second application of the
scientific method.
The second problem which was recognized was that
although design activities have been used effectively for a
limited number of the objectives listed in chapter 1, they
rarely systematically address the wider set of reform
objectives. Research of this second problem uncovered a
wide range of problem solving methodologies which are
discussed in chapter 2.


72
Comments on Piaget's theory
While Piaget's theory is clearly still at the forefront
of the study of human development, other researchers have
sought to clarify and question his theory. Gardner (1982)
and Price (1982) demonstrated that it may be possible to
teach some principles (such as conservation) to children
prior to the concrete operational stage. Other researchers
(Donaldson, 1978, Black, 1981, Gelman, 1979, and Nagy and
Griffiths, 1982) showed that there are early signs of some
Piagetian principles, even though the principles may not be
fully developed.
Other parts of Piaget's theory have been challenged
(Miller, 1983 and Nagy and Griffiths, 1982), but there are
still clear lessons to be learned. Most important are the
significant differences of which we must be aware when
working with children of different ages. Elementary school
children, for example, cannot simply be taught with an over
simplified version of a middle or high school lesson.
Instead, the entire educational approach must address their
cognitive level. On the other hand, since by middle school
most students will have entered the formal operational
stage, we can expect quite a lot from them. A well posed


166
participants' awareness can affect the outcome of the
experiment (Roethlisberger and Dickson, 1939). In that
case, the experiment demonstrated management's concern for
their workers, which yielded an increase in morale and
productivity. The Hawthorne Effect, in general, refers to
improvements that are witnessed due to participant awareness
or the special attention associated with the experimental
procedure.
Measures to curtail the Hawthorne Effect include
special structuring of multiple control groups, and reducing
the level of special attention, novelty, and participant
awareness.
The John Henry Effect
This effect is named after the legend of John Henry, a
railroad worker who pits himself against a steam hammer in a
competition to drill holes for blasting powder. In John
Henry's case, the confounding effect was the participant's
awareness of a threat to job security which drove him to
improve his performance. In the general case, the John
Henry Effect refers to any unusual effort put forth from the
control group (the comparison reference for the experimental


147
popsicle stick ends were 4" apart, so 5 sticks joined in a
line are 20", leaving 1" at each end to rest on the
supports. It was found that placing the load at any joints
but those nearest the supports would produce acceptable
forces to cause failure before the 5-gallon pail would
overflow (G).
The remainder of the questions (H-K) were evaluated in
more of a brainstorming exercise involving Dr. Hoit and
myself. We quickly concluded that simplicity required using
as few member sizes as possible (flj, and we decided to
restrict the number to two. We also decided that the most
useful size for the second member would be the length of the
legs of the isosceles right triangle of which the full-
length popsicle sticks (4") was the hypotenuse, making the
holes of the shorter member 2.83" apart, aligned by a new
jig (I) .
A number of designs were evaluated to determine how
many of each member type and the number of nut/bolt pairs it
would take to create them. We decided that imposing certain
constraints would ensure that students would have to think
creatively to optimize their designs {J, K)one constraint
was that we would not provide enough members to simply


teachers are duly recognized. Much of my field work has
been conducted with SECME teachers. Gold stars go to Dot
Turner for helping me develop my ability to teach elementary
students and for her very caring approach in all she does.
Dr. Hoit graciously assumed responsibility for our part of
the institute, to help me in my research. Fortunately,
Nneka Jackman, at the University for summer 1995, helped me
hold up my end of the bargain.
The HOIST summer institute mentioned herein was also
held summer 1995. Many of the arrangements were made by
Nneka, who jumped in with both feet. She was joined by
Angela Kahoe and Bennett Ruedas as counselors and event
coordinators.
Elizabeth Syfrett was essential in the processing and
analysis of data to study the Introduction to Engineering
course and the two summer institutes. She accomplished a
great deal of work to meet tough deadlines.
Clyde Holman has always done his best to meet my needs
each time I exceeded the abilities of the computer on my
desk. His concern for my success will always be
appreciated.
vi


251
Problem Statement
Objectives:
Build a truss bridge which will span at least 18".
Build it to support as much weight as possible.
Use as little material as possible.
Materials:
27 full-size craft sticks with holes drilled in the ends
29 shortened craft sticks with holes drilled in the ends
20 of #7 bolts and matching nuts
Equipment:
Ruler, Screwdriver, Wrench
Loading:
You must designate one or two bolts to which a wire will connect to attach
the load as shown in the figure. Each load point must be more than 4 inches
from the inside edge of the support (toward the center).
Procedure:
You will work in teams.
Count your sticks, bolts and nuts.
Verify that all your materials are of acceptable quantity and quality.
Craft sticks which are damaged or improperly drilled may be replaced.
Assemble a truss which meets the three objectives keeping in mind the
principles we have discussed today.
Keep a record of the following for your completed truss:
a diagram of your design
the number of long members used
the number of short members used
the number of nut-bolt pairs used
the weight at which your truss fails
Excerpts from the ACSD (American Craft Stick Design) Code:
Nuts must be fully seated (bolt threads show).
All structures must be stable or they cannot be loaded.


153
system, students begin the design exercise. The instructor
(and any assistants) will answer technical questions which
pertain to the concepts discussed, but do not answer any
questions which suggest or give an opinion of any particular
design. After designs are complete, the laboratory activity
resumes as described earlier.
Establish Specific Objectives
The following specific objectives apply to the Truss
Bridge Laboratory from start to finish:
1. The instructor will present the concepts of
compression, tension, moment, moment of inertia,
failure modes, and truss stability/instability with
extensive visual examples and concrete examples from
students' experience.
2. Students will construct a truss from the provided
materials in instructor-assigned teams of 3-4 persons.
3. Student teams will successfully bridge the 18" span
established by the loading frame.
4. Student teams will optimize their designs so as to
maximize load while minimizing cost.
5. Each student team will place its truss in the
loading frame and test it to failure.
6. Students will observe the deformation and failure
modes which occur in each team's truss when loaded.


52
breeds quality." Parns and Meadow (1959) found that
deferred judgement is a key factor in the generation of
ideas, as Osborn contends. Groups brainstorming using a
deferred judgement procedure produced 70% more "good" ideas
(in the same time period) than individuals attempting to
generate ideas without deferment. Removing the group
effect, individuals producing ideas on their own were also
found to have significant gains using deferred judgement.
Osborn's assertion that quantity inevitably produces
quality is perhaps the more difficult tenet to accept. We
are taught the "quality not quantity" approach at an early
age. There is support for Osborn's claim with respect to
idea generation (Chamberlain, 1944). Another argument for
quantity leading to quantity is one of probabilitythe more
ideas which are presented, the more ideas there should be of
an acceptable caliber. Osborn reports a study which compared
the number of good ideas generated in the first half of a
brainstorming session to the output of the second half of
the same session. The latter half had 78% greater
production of good ideas than the first half.
In order to stimulate new directions during brain
storming, Osborn identified nine types of thought-starter


109
demonstrate, develop, employ, modify, operate, organize,
prepare, produce, relate, solve, transfer, and use. Note
that at this level, the action can be, and frequently is,
non-verbal.9
Analysis
Analysis requires an understanding the underlying
structure of a system. This can be achieved through
organizing information or by breaking it down, to understand
how all the information is related. Comparing and
contrasting fit here if the comparison does not result in a
value judgement. Appropriate action verbs are: break down,
deduce, diagram, differentiate, distinguish, illustrate,
infer, outline, point out, relate, separate out, and
subdivide.
Synthesis
The synthesis level requires novelty of the student.
Design is at this level, which makes the use of design
9"Verbal," in this case, indicates written or spoken. This
definition is also used later when discussing learning
styles.


78
when evaluation is performed, that unsuccessful attempts are
praised for their merit as learning tools. Since children
in this stage generally enter this stage believing that they
can and will succeed (Entwistle and Hayduk, 1981), the most
critical challenge is to provide for multiple paths to
success and multiple measures by which success is measured
(Cohen, 1984).
Enhancing children's understanding that there are
multiple paths to success will also strengthen their
creative thinking skills, since they will be encouraged to
seek alternative solutions.
Identity vs. role confusion
It is the nature of this stage of development which
makes many afraid of working with middle school students.
With the variety of physiological changes that occur from 12
years to 18 years comes a redefinition of the identity
established through the earlier stages. At the beginning,
the independence that an adolescent seeks causes them to
experiment socially, at times adopting severe and anti
social behavior. There is also a characteristic heightening
of the importance of the relationship to peers. Under such


131
Felder and Silverman (1988) note the benefits that
students with various learning styles can offer the
engineering profession. However, it has been shown that
certain of the styles are favored by traditional teaching
methods, and simple but critical changes in teaching style
can provide students with all learning styles an improved
education. Outside of laboratory work, the engineering
curriculum is most commonly lecture and reading oriented.
Such a format favors intuitive learners, since they are more
comfortable with symbols, bearing in mind that words
themselves are comprised of symbols, as are equations,
obviously.
Engineering students are more commonly of the sensing
preference (McCaulley, 1976), and yet other research
(Godleski, 1984) demonstrates the inevitable outcome of the
curriculum biasthat intuitors consistently received higher
grades. Characteristics of sensing individuals which are
essential to the engineering function include (Felder and
Silverman, 1988): "an awareness of surroundings,
attentiveness to details, experimental thoroughness, and
practicality." To address the needs of both sensors and
intuitors, both concrete examples and abstract concepts must


25
intensive introduction to engineering and design. HOIST
participants engaged in active design projects, saw
demonstrations, met engineering mentors, and went on a field
trip to a power plant, a prestressed concrete manufacturer,
and engaged in social activities designed to further develop
camaraderie and teamwork skills, such as a very challenging
scavenger hunt.
Faculty intervention
As discussed before, it is more effective to work with
teachers because each teacher will interact with a much
greater number of students. One method of accomplishing
this is to prepare K-12 teachers in institutes such as the
Bell Atlantic/AAAS Institute for Middle School Science and
Technology Teachers (Jones, 1992a) and the SouthEastern
Consortium for Minorities in Engineering (SECME) summer
institute (Ohland et al., 1996). Courses in such institutes
can fulfill continuing education requirements for the
teacher and even provide graduate credit for teachers
pursuing master's degrees. The SECME summer institutes for
teachers have trained more than 2,100 teachers since their
inception in 1977. Intervention at the faculty level has


36
In the problem of creating a design activity, the
initial state will contain information regarding the current
knowledge, skills, or attitudes of the participants. The
goal state will indicate which of these the design activity
is intended to change.
Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) anthropomorphize the
problem solving process by assigning personae to various
stages. The description of the initial state is left to the
detective, including the process of distinction, which is
characteristic of Kepner and Tregoe (1965). Distinction is
used to set the problem apart from what is not the problem.
This step not only reduces scope, but informs the direction
the following stages should take.
If a problem is complex or unstructured enough,
Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine have the "explorer" take over the
problem definition stage. The explorer looks at the context
of the problem more than the problem itself. The explorer
analogy is also used by von Oech (1986) In von Oech and
Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, this mind-set clearly overlaps the
boundaries of problem definition and idea generation. This
overlap can be a wasteful one. If the "exploring" is not
limited to the problem itself, but instead, as von Oech and


157
lecture version of Introduction to Engineering which
preceded the laboratory.
The Truss Bridge Laboratory has also been featured in
engineering outreach activities. The fact that it was
designed to be used by other institutions with a minimum of
effort has made it an excellent candidate for use with high
school groups such as in the Hands-On Institute for Science
and Technology, held at the University of Florida July 9-15,
1995, and in teaching in-service teachers in the
SouthEastern Consortium for Minorities in Engineering
(SECME) 19th annual summer institute, held June 16th-29th,
1995 at the University of Florida. These two residential
summer institutes aimed to introduce K-12 students and
teachers respectively about engineering and its disciplines.
Survey instruments administered at both events indicated
that the institute objectives were well met (Ohland et al.,
1996) .
The Engineering By Design Methodology
The process described in each of the sections above led
to the identification of the step of the methodology that is


175
block tower game were modified to achieve this. The
students would work in teams, even though only one team
member could touch the tower at any one time. This would
allow the team to develop the desired camaraderie during an
activity which was clearly not being graded. It was hoped
that an activity seemingly separate from the educational
pursuit could establish an atmosphere of friendly
competition among teams and raise the students' excitement
level. The team's objective was to build the tallest tower
possible in five minutes. With two sets of blocks
available, the eight teams could be completed in
approximately 20 minutes. The instructions were placed on
an overhead, and are shown in Appendix C titled "Block Tower
Activity."
With a fairly clear view of the structure of the block
tower activity, we set out to design the remainder of the
laboratory. In the three hour laboratory, the professor
would first need to explain laboratory and homework
procedures (since this unit is the first laboratory of the
semester).
Then we decided the lesson would open with a five
minute discussion of how structures are layered and an


262
Floor Load Distribution Exercise
Discuss in your group how the total load on a floor surface is distributed to the various
load carrying members which comprise the floor. Discuss what assumptions you make
along the way and write those assumptions down here.
For each of the layouts below, shade the area surrounding members a, b, and c which
represents the portion of the total surface area carried by that member. Dotted lines
represent the edge of the floor surface. To the right, write down the total floor area
which each member carries.
a be
[e *|t H* + + *1
10' 10' 10' 10' 10' 10'
a be
>
)
b + H
20' 10' 10' 20'
a b
25' 25'
I
Figure 11 Load Distribution Problem Set


174
Evaluation of ideas
Once the list of ideas in Appendix C had been
generated, we moved into a critical thinking mode to
evaluate those ideas and develop the activity. The Jenga
game, with which I was not familiar, was very intriguing to
me, and I asked the others to describe the game and its
rules. It quickly became clear that the game would provide
a quick, cheap, and exportable solution.
Jenga is a game played with a tower of blocks, with
three uniformly sized blocks in each square layer, with each
layer's blocks perpendicular to the layers above and below.
The standard rules specify that players in turn will remove
a block from any but the top layer and move it to the top.
The game lends itself well to seeing loads in layers. The
growing instability of the tower forces students to look
carefully at load path to the ground. With the groundwork
laid for this opening activity, we set out to establish
specific objectives for the lesson as a whole.
Figure out the details
The block tower activity was intended to initiate team
behavior and enhance student excitement. The rules of the


176
overview of the format of the laboratory, which was somewhat
different from the usual fare for engineering students. We
moved directly into the block tower activity for twenty
minutes. Students remained in their tower construction
teams for the remainder of the laboratory.
Student teams then began a brainstorming session in
which they speculated as to the distribution of floor
loading to the floor's load carrying members. The handout
used for this exercise is included in Appendix C, and is
titled "Floor Load Distribution Exercise." This exercise,
in addition to fostering higher level creative thinking, was
also intended to identify different perspectives and ferret
out misconceptions prior to continuing.
The three separate examples in the exercise explore
different concepts. The first, shown below, indicates a
floor with regularly spaced floor joists.
a be
|i + + + + +H
10' 10' 10 10 10' 10'
Figure 5 Load Distribution 1


73
design activity has the ability to stimulate a great deal of
learning even at that age, because the tools needed for
problem solution are fully developed. All the middle school
student lacks is experience and knowledge, which vary
greatly anyway. Therefore, if a design project begins by
giving formal operational students the opportunity to
observe phenomena themselves, they should be able to draw
valid conclusions in order to proceed.
Personal and Social Development
Education, especially higher education, is primarily
thought of as the champion of cognitive development. Social
development is also of tantamount importance throughout the
education process. Such skills as teamwork and inter
personal communication depend heavily on social development.
Issues of underrepresentation of women, minorities, and even
people of certain thinking types all have roots which extend
into the realm of social development.
As was the case in cognitive development, the prominent
theory here is a stage theory. Personal and social
development consists of the development of an individual's


88
cannot anticipate any pleasant consequence from pressing the
bar, the rat does it anyway, as a child will explore his or
her surroundings. Upon pressing the bar, the rat receives a
food pellet. This consequence reinforces the rats behavior,
making the rat more likely to press the bar. Experiments
involving what is now known as the "Skinner box" and those
which followed have led to the development of the
classification of various learning principles which follow.
Consequences
Consequences are the results of behavior. Positive and
negative consequences are referred to as reinforcers and
punishers respectively.
Reinforcers. It is the effect of a consequence that
defines that consequence as a reinforcerit must encourage
the original behavior to recur. As a result, a particular
consequence which is observed to function as a reinforcer
may not continue to function as a reinforcer indefinitely.
For example, while a hug from a teacher may be an excellent
reinforcer in elementary school, it is not generally
effective in the adolescent years. It is also the case that


142
The Development of EngineerinQ Bv Design
The remainder of this chapter will discuss the
prototype activity and the Engineering By Design methodology
which it was used to develop. The testing of the stated
hypothesis is the focus of chapter 5, and conclusions are
drawn in the final chapter. The finished methodology is
included as Appendix B; the section headings that follow in
this chapter are named to match each of the steps of the
methodology.
Establish Goals
In modifying the Civil Engineering component of
Introduction to Engineering, the goals of the class as a
whole had to be considered. This process began with the
structuring of the first of the educational aims described
in chapter 3, the goals of the course. This gave way to the
first stage of the Engineering By Design methodology:
Establish Goals. The primary goals of the Introduction to
Engineering course and of the Civil Engineering component
are for students to:


263
Instructions for Block Tower and Live Load Activities
Block Tower Activity
for the illustration of tributary area
Objective:
Each team will begin with the same configuration of starting blocks and,
following the rules of play, attempt to construct the tallest tower before it topples.
Rules of play:
Blocks must be removed from any but the top layer and placed back on the top
of the stack one at a time.
Only one hand may be used at a time during the removal or placement of blocks.
Hints:
Discuss your strategy as a team before you begin.
You may wish to elect one of your team members (one with a steady hand)
to be the block manipulator.
Dont be afraid to change your strategy after you begin.
Watch what happens to other towers to improve your own ideas!
Live Load Reduction Brainstorming Activity
Introduction:
Since live loads are movable, they do not occur simultaneously over all parts of a
structure. Building designers have argued that this causes load calculations
to be too conservative. Your team has been enlisted by the American Institute
of Steel Constructionto devise a method of reducing live loads which assures
safety but is not overly conservative.
Objectives:
Brainstorm in your groups to list as many different approaches to this reduction as
possible. Then select one or a combination of those ideas and develop it further.
Make sure that the reduction is limited and has clear criteria which define under what
circumstances itmay be used.


LIST OF REFERENCES
Adams, Dennis M. and Hamm, Mary E., Cooperative Learning:
Critical Thinking and Collaboration Across the
Curriculum, Thomas, Springfield, IL, 1990.
American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC), Load and
Resistance Factor Design (LRFD), 1st ed., 1986.
Anderson, R. C. and Hidde, J. L., "Imagery and Sentence
Learning," J. Ed. Psych. 62, 1971, 81-94.
Anderson, T. H. and Armbruster, B. B., Studying, Handbook of
Reading Research, P. D. Pearson, ed., Longman, New York,
1984.
Andre, T., "Retroactive Inhibition of Prose and Change in
Physical or Organizational Context," Psych. Rep. 32,
1973, 781-782.
Andre, T., Anderson, R. C., and Watts, G. H., "Item-Specific
Interference and List Discrimination in Free Recall," J.
Gen. Psych. 72, 1976, 533-543.
Andre, T. and Sola, J., "Imagery, Verbatim, and Paraphrased
Questions and Learning from Prose," J. Ed. Psych. 68,
1976, 661-669.
Andre, T. and Womak, S., "Verbatim and Paraphrased Questions
and Learning from Prose," J. Ed. Psych. 70, 1978, 796-
802 .
American Society of Engineering Education (ASEE), "Engineering
Education for a Changing World," a joint project by the
Engineering Deans Council and Corporate Roundtable of the
American Society for Engineering Education, October 1994.
278


287
Hall, R. V., Axelrod, S. Foundopoulos, M., Shellman, J.,
Campbell, R. A., and Cranston, S., "The Effective Use of
Punishment to Modify Behavior in the Classroom," Ed.
Tech. 11, 1971, 24-26.
Hamaker, C., "The Effects of Adjunct Questions on Prose
Learning," Rev. Ed. Res. 56, 1986, 212-242.
Hamilton, R. J., "A Framework for the Evaluation of the
Effectivenesss of Adjunct Questions and Objectives," Rev.
Ed. Res. 55, 1985, 47-85.
Hamlin, Denise F., "Breaking the Engineering Barrier," ASEE
Prism, September 1994, 26-28.
Hammond, H. P., "Report of the Committee on Aims and Scope of
Engineering Curricula," J. Engineering Ed. 30, 1940, 555-
566.
Hammond, H. P., "Report of the Committee on Engineering
Education After the War," J. Engineering Ed. 34, 1944,
589-614.
Harb, John H., Durrant, S. Olani, and Terry, Ronald E., "Use
of the Kolb Learning Cycle and the 4 MAT System in
Engineering Education," J. Engineering Ed. 82(2), April
1993, 70-77.
Harkins, S. G. and Jackson, J. M., "The Role of Evaluation in
Eliminating Social Loafing," Personality Soc. Psych.
Bull. 11(4), 1985, 457-465.
Harkins, S. G., "Social Loafing and Social Facilitation," J.
Exp. Soc. Psych. 23, 1987, 1-18.
Harris, J. G., moderator, with participants DeLoatch, E. M.,
Grogan, W. R., Peden, I. C., and Whinnery, J. R.,
"Journal of Engineering Education Round Table:
Reflections on the Grintner Report," J. Engineering Ed.
83(1), January 1994, 69-94.


56
(1991), found this method significantly reduced all three
barriers specific to group idea generation. While this is
an intriguing approach in a corporate setting, there is
little opportunity to exploit electronic brainstorming in
the classroom.
Force-fitting
Force-fitting, relating to apparently unrelated
concepts, is a technique often incorporated into other
techniques (Fabian, 1990). It necessarily introduces
novelty, and can be spontaneously be used if an idea
generation session becomes "stuck." Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine
(1995a) use this term very loosely, using it to refer to a
variety of methods for stimulating a group when it is
"stuck." De Bono (1970) refers to this method as "Random
Stimulation."
Morphological analysis
As its name would suggest, this technique focuses on
the form of the problem. Once the problem is stated, two or
three major dimensions are identified. Each dimension is
subdivided into categories. Ideas are then generated for


APPENDIX D
HIGH SCHOOL PHYSICS STATISTICS LESSON
Included in this appendix are the post-test and collected
data from a statistics lesson taught High School Physics class
as part of the evaluation of Engineering By Design.
273


143
A. discover differences/commonalities among
engineering disciplines
B. be informed/excited about an engineering career
C. experience engineering through visual and
hands-on demonstrations and activities
D. be introduced to the team concept and basic
communication skills
E. establish basic engineering skills and concepts
F. be recruited and retained in engineering
The Civil Engineering component achieved the first, second,
and fifth of these quite well without modification, so the
focus of the change would be to more clearly address the
third and fourth of these goals. This pointed to the
development of a design activity.
Select a Focus
The task had hardly been narrowed at all by the goals;
in this situation, as in many others where design activities
might be employed, there is a seemingly endless range of
options. In this case, any design activity involving Civil
Engineering principles would be acceptable. Truss
structures were selected as the focus of what would come to
be called the Truss Bridge Laboratory. Truss structures
would enable us to focus on principles which are distinctly
taken from Civil Engineering, and which is also very


151
The principle of moment of inertia is then demonstrated
by bending a common yardstick in the flat and the upright
orientations. Although the same material is used, the
upright orientation is much stiffer, and can resist much
more moment before breaking. Students are asked to suggest
examples of why beams might be used in the flat orientation
(greater surface area, diving board, etc.) and in the
upright orientation (structural strength, stiffness, balance
beam, etc.). The principle of moment of inertia is then
discussed in terms of moving material away from the neutral
axis, where the material is used inefficiently for moment
resistancedrawings of wide-flange steel and concrete
girders help students recognize the new concept to objects
which are familiar, to anchor the concept in their own
experience.
The discussion of using material efficiently quickly
leads to the introduction of the truss, which allows force
to be distributed over a great number of members. The truss
is initially drawn emphasizing the top and bottom chords,
where the compressive and tensile forces will be the
highest. Simple trusses made from the actual design
materials are then shown (for an illustration, see Appendix


154
7. The instructor will describe the deformation and
failure of each truss and discuss (in a non-threatening
manner) elements of the design which have produced the
result.
These seven objectives are very well met during most
presentations of the laboratory. Some student teams do not
perform well in the process of optimizing (4), but seem
curious to understand their failure during the later
discussion (7).
Improve the Activity
Not surprisingly, a great number of student teams have
proved more than adequate to the task of designing creative
structures, ensuring that eventually our system of
supporting and loading the trusses would be challenged. In
the most extreme cases when a student team's truss designing
capabilities exceeded our expectations, the activity itself
had to be modified.
One circumstance which required an improvement of the
laboratory was that a number of student teams defied the
rectilinear nature of the provided parts, and produced
arched structureswe have seen a great many approaches which
produced this result. One effect of the introduction of


2
In a recent NRC publication, the following themes were
identified as unchanging throughout the various reports
listed above (NRC, 1993, p. 1):
1. the need for strong grounding in the fundamentals of
mathematics and the physical and engineering sciences,-
2. the importance of design and lab experimentation;
3. a call for more attention to the development of
communication and social skills in young engineers;
4. the need for integration of social and economic studies
and liberal arts into the curriculum,-
5. the vital importance of good teaching and attention to
curriculum development; and
6. the need to prepare students for career-long learning.
Although these themes are common to the five reports, the
priority assigned to each varies according to the economic,
political, and social conditions of the time.
Proponents of the Current Reform Movement
The current reform has many proponents. The National
Science Foundation (NSF) has given multi-million dollar
grants to support the formation of engineering education
coalitions (NSF, 1990), the NRC established project RISE


51
survey of methods which have been used at each stage of the
creative problem solving process.
Here, the discussion will focus on group techniques,
which will be used by the partnerships developing activities
through Engineering By Design, and should be incorporated
into design activities, to teach team skills. Since today's
students are not skilled in teamwork, as discussed earlier,
means they will need to become comfortable with the concept.
Short creative thinking warm-up exercises, as found in
Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) and others, are good tools
to get students in a cooperative frame of mind as well as
stimulate creativity.
Verbal brainstorming
This is the classical method invented by Osborn (1963).
The objective is for members of the group to verbalize their
ideas, which are intended to then stimulate the ideas of
others in the group. Osborn speculates that groups of five
should work best, but research to establish an optimum
number of members is inconclusive, as discussed earlier.
Osborn's two primary principles which define verbal
brainstorming are "deferment of judgement" and "quantity


233
group was not present. No claim can be made based on the
high school statistics lesson generated.
Dissemination of the methodology by publication in
educational journals alone is not likely to reach the
greater population of K-12 teachers. Instead, an
engineering activity curriculum design aid might more
effectively reach a wide audience. I will also continue my
work by developing K-12 curriculum materials, in
collaboration with K-12 teachers.
This research can be infused into engineering academia
through the development of an educational psychology primer
for engineering professors. Relation of the principles of
education included in chapter 3 to traditional engineering
teaching methods makes this practical. The learning and
teaching principles of chapter 3 and the design
methodologies discussed in chapter 2 have direct application
in creating engineering activities, as shown in chapters 4-
5. The discussion of human development included in chapter
3 is more pertinent to in-class assessment of students. A
primer would be able to provide those in engineering
academia with the framework to understand the educational
process as developed through educational research.


119
form of the MBTI. This 70-question test is included in a
national best seller which has sold over 1.5 million copies
as of 1984 (Keirsey and Bates, 1984). Keirsey has adapted
the Jung-Myers typology to his clinical practice since 1955.
As a result, Keirsey supports conclusions regarding the
resulting 16 personality types with 40 years of clinical
study of differences in temperament and character in mating,
parenting, teaching, and leading. Since the test is self-
scoring, it has even been adapted for use on the Internet
("Keirsey," 1996).
The Herrmann Brain Dominance Instrument (HBDI)
Whereas the MBTI is a measure of personality types, it
is clear that the preferences measured by the MBTI influence
students' approach to learning. Herrmann's work expands on
the split-brain research which earned Dr. Roger W. Sperry a
Nobel prize in 1981. While the work of Sperry and
associates focused on left-brain/right-brain differences,
Herrmann added the concept of brain dominance, discovering
that individuals can have preferences in either mode.
Herrmann continued his work to develop a four-quadrant
model of dominance, driven by the physiological structure of


LD
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SCIENCE
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UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
3 1262 08554 9201


2 CREATIVE PROBLEM SOLVING
31
Introduction 31
The Stages of Problem Solving 32
Problem Definition 33
Idea Generation 3 8
The Barriers to Creative Thinking 39
False assumptions 40
There is only one right answer 41
Looking at a problem in isolation .... 42
Following the rules 42
Negative thinking 43
Fear of failure 43
Discomfort with ambiguity 44
The Use of Groups in Idea Generation 45
Barriers Specific to Group Idea Generation 47
Evaluation apprehension 48
Social loafing 48
Production blocking 49
Overcoming the Barriers to Creative Thinking 50
Techniques of Idea Generation 50
Verbal brainstorming 51
Brainwriting 54
Electronic brainstorming 55
Force-fitting 56
Morphological analysis 56
Idea Evaluation and Selection 57
Solution Implementation 59
Summary of Approach Chosen for Methodology 61
3 LEARNING AND TEACHING 63
Development 65
Cognitive Development 66
The preoperational stage 66
The concrete operational 69
The formal operational stage 71
Comments on Piaget's theory 72
Personal and Social Development 73
Trust vs. mistrust 75
Autonomy vs. doubt 75
Initiative vs. guilt 76
ix


173
Herrington (my brother-in-law) has worked as a mechanic
(including race cars), a farmhand, and a carpenter; I
received masters degrees in both mechanical and materials
engineering prior to my current work in civil engineering.
In addition to my minor in education, I also have a
humanities bachelors degree.
Our goal was to explore ideas for a physical model
which would help students visualize the layered nature of
structural systems and picture the manner in which all loads
have a path to the ground. The location chosen for the
brainstorming exercise was Dr. Ellifritt's office, which
aside from a providing a central location, has a variety of
interesting wall hangings to foster creative stimulus. The
rules of brainstorming were explained, I assumed the role of
recorder/facilitator. The session was kicked off with the
question, "What things are layered?" Other prompting
questions were added when idea generation slowed, including,
"What things in nature are layered?" which introduced a
number of divergent concepts. The list of ideas generated
during the session are included Appendix C. I have
attempted to order the list as it was generated, but some
rearrangement has probably occurred.


255
Step 3: Brainstorm for Ideas.
Quantity is more important than quality in this step.
Brainstorming should be done in small groups which are as diverse as possible.
It may help to do a practice exercise, such as solving an amusing problem.
During brainstorming no ideas should be rejected because seemingly odd
suggestions can lead to outstanding ideas. There should be no
discussion or comment on ideas. During this step, it is helpful to have
someone serve as a recorder to write down ideas as they are suggested.
The recorder may also encourage participation and ensure that criticism
of ideas does not occur during this step.
This step lasts approximately 15-20 minutes, followed immediately by step 4.
Divergent thinking can be encouraged by the introduction of odd constraints.
Many techniques have been suggested to achieve successful brainstorming if it
does not occur on its own. These suggestions include:
Making outlandish departures from the problem foundation
Asking what if questions to encourage divergent thinking
A handy set of such questions was developed by Alex Osborn:
Put to other uses?
New ways to use object as is? Other uses if modified?
Adapt?
What else is like this? What other ideas does this suggest?
Any idea in the past that could be copied or adapted?
Modify?
Change meaning, color, motion, sound, odor, taste, form, shape?
Other changes? New twist?
Magnify?
What to add? Greater frequency? Stronger? Larger? Higher? Longer?
Thicker? Extra value? Plus ingredient? Multiply? Exaggerate?
Minify?
What to subtract? Eliminate? Smaller? Lighter? Slower? Split up?
Less frequent? Condense? Miniaturize? Streamline? Understate?
Substitute?
Who else instead? What else instead? Other place? Other time? Other
ingredient? Other material? Other process? Other power source? Other
approach? Other tone of voice?
Rearrange?
Other layout? Other sequence? Change pace? Other pattern?
Change schedule? Transpose cause and effect?
Reverse?
Opposites? Turn it backward? Turn it upside down? Turn it inside out?
Mirror-reverse it? Transpose positive and negative?
Combine?
How about a blend, an assortment, an alloy, an ensemble?
Combine purposes? Combine units? Combine ideas? Combine appeals?


283
Diehl, M. and Stroebe, W., "Productivity Loss in Brainstorming
Groups: Toward the Solution of a Riddle," J. Personality
and Soc. Psych. 53, 1987, 497-509.
Doctorow, M. Marks, C. And Wittrock, M., "Generative Processes
in Reading Comprehension," J. Ed. Psych. 70, 1978, 109-
118.
Donaldson, M., Children's Minds, Norton, New York, 1978.
Drabman, R., Spitalnik, R. And O'Leary, K., "Teaching Self-
Control to Disruptive Children," J. Ah. Psych. 82, 1973,
10-16.
Dunn, Rita, Beaudry, Jeffrey S., and Klavas, Angela, "Survey
of Research on Learning Styles," Ed. Leadership 46(6),
May 1989, 50-58.
Dunn, R., Dunn, K., and Price, G. E., Learning Style
Inventory, Price Systems, Lawrence, KS, 1985.
Durfee, William K., "Engineering Education Gets Real,"
Technology Review 97(2), Feb-Mar 1994, 42-51.
Dytn, C. L., "Teaching Design to Freshmen: Style and Content,"
J. Engineering Ed. 83(4), October, 1994, 303-310.
"Educational Reform for K-12," The Bent, Tau Beta Pi, Summer
1995, 16.
"Engineering for K-12 Teachers," On Campus, ASEE Prism,
February 1994, 14.
"Engineers to the Rescue," Briefings, ASEE Prism, April 1992,
29.
Entwistle, D. and Hayduk, L., "Academic Expectations and the
School Achievement of Young Children," Soc. of Ed. 54,
1981, 34-50.
Ercolano, Vincent, "Globalizing Engineering Education," ASEE
Prism, April 1995, 21-25.


ENGINEERING BY DESIGN:
A METHODOLOGY FOR DESIGNING
CREATIVE ENGINEERING ACTIVITIES
By
MATTHEW WILLIAM OHLAND
A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL
OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT
OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF
DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
1996
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA LIBRARIES

Copyright 1996
by
Matthew William Ohland

This dissertation, all that I have, and all that I am
are dedicated to my wife, Emily.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
I am forever in debt to Dr. Hoit for sticking his neck
out for me; this dissertation is far from conventional.
This Civil Engineering department and its chair, Dr. Paul
Thompson, are also recognized for being receptive to the
inroads of educational reform. My research was also helped
significantly by the SUCCEED coalition and the National
Science Foundation and their efforts to change the culture
of engineering education. Of those in SUCCEED, Dr. Rich
Felder of NCSU and Dr. Tim Anderson have had a special role
for me as mentors, as did Dr. Jonathan Earle of the
University of Florida, Dr. Don Steiner of Rensselaer
Polytechnic Institute, and Dr. Fred Orthlieb of Swarthmore
College.
The members of my committee themselves were selected
because they have in common my admiration for their
expertise as educators. Each of my committee members
deserve special mention for their most prominent
contributions to this work; Dr. Hoit for learning right
IV

along with me how to conduct educational research, Dr.
Kantowski for offering assistance in that journey, but
letting us learn for ourselves, Dr. Ellifritt for his
collaboration in designing the tributary area laboratory,
Dr. Glagola for treating me as a peer and serving as a
sounding board, and Dr. Hays for making sure I came to the
University of Florida in the first place.
In developing and conducting the Truss Bridge
Laboratory, I have had a great deal of assistance from many
sources. Dr. Hoit shared in its design. I am grateful to
Renee Alter, Lincoln Smith and Bennett Ruedas for their
assistance in preparing truss kits; Ken Simon deserves
special mention for his regular assistance in recovering
undamaged popsicle sticks. Dr. Hoit, Renee, Line, and Todd
Sessions have all played a part in conducting the
laboratory, but preparation of the laboratory space itself
has been trusted to Danny Richardson, Hubert Martin, and
Bill Studstill. Of those, Danny assists every time the
Introduction to Engineering class is held, and earns special
recognition as proof that doers can also be teachers.
The SECME institute afforded a number of benefits to
this research, and the SECME adminstration and master
v

teachers are duly recognized. Much of my field work has
been conducted with SECME teachers. Gold stars go to Dot
Turner for helping me develop my ability to teach elementary
students and for her very caring approach in all she does.
Dr. Hoit graciously assumed responsibility for our part of
the institute, to help me in my research. Fortunately,
Nneka Jackman, at the University for summer 1995, helped me
hold up my end of the bargain.
The HOIST summer institute mentioned herein was also
held summer 1995. Many of the arrangements were made by
Nneka, who jumped in with both feet. She was joined by
Angela Kahoe and Bennett Ruedas as counselors and event
coordinators.
Elizabeth Syfrett was essential in the processing and
analysis of data to study the Introduction to Engineering
course and the two summer institutes. She accomplished a
great deal of work to meet tough deadlines.
Clyde Holman has always done his best to meet my needs
each time I exceeded the abilities of the computer on my
desk. His concern for my success will always be
appreciated.
vi

The time that Dr. Cynthia Holland of Newberry High
School, Newberry, Florida, took out of her busy schedule to
assist with the preparation of a high school statistics
lesson is greatly appreciated. Working with her was not
only educational, but a great deal of fun.
I cannot fail to recognize my family and friends, not
only for their moral support throughout my education, but
also for their special understanding of the level of
commitment necessary to complete this dissertation. While
out-of-state friends and relatives have scarcely heard from
me in the last few months, my wife and mother-in-law have
assumed the bulk of my household responsibilities (including
caring for my two-year-old daughter, Charlotte) during that
same period. This dissertation was primarily completed on a
hand-me-down computer from my generous friend Charles
Powell. While I could scarce have afforded that computer, I
likely would not have finished in a timely fashion without
it. My sister, Karen Ohland, also receives special
recognition for her assistance in processing the data from
the tributary area laboratory.

TABLE OF CONTENTS
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS iv
LIST OF TABLES xiv
ABSTRACT xvi
CHAPTERS
1 INTRODUCTION 1
The Reform of Engineering Education 1
Previous Reform Movements 1
Proponents of the Current Reform Movement ... 2
Context of the Current Reform 5
The demands of industry 5
Concern of a shortfall of engineers ... 9
Weaknesses in the student pipeline .... 14
Summary of Reform Objectives 18
Design Activities as a Method of Meeting Reform
Objectives 19
Traditional Laboratory Exercises 19
Capstone Design Courses 20
Design for Freshmen and Sophomores 21
Design in the K-12 Pipeline 22
Student intervention 22
Faculty intervention 25
Integration into state curricula 27
Typical Design Project Objectives 27
Dissertation Structure 29
viii

2 CREATIVE PROBLEM SOLVING
31
Introduction 31
The Stages of Problem Solving 32
Problem Definition 33
Idea Generation 3 8
The Barriers to Creative Thinking 39
False assumptions 40
There is only one right answer 41
Looking at a problem in isolation .... 42
Following the rules 42
Negative thinking 43
Fear of failure 43
Discomfort with ambiguity 44
The Use of Groups in Idea Generation 45
Barriers Specific to Group Idea Generation 47
Evaluation apprehension 48
Social loafing 48
Production blocking 49
Overcoming the Barriers to Creative Thinking 50
Techniques of Idea Generation 50
Verbal brainstorming 51
Brainwriting 54
Electronic brainstorming 55
Force-fitting 56
Morphological analysis 56
Idea Evaluation and Selection 57
Solution Implementation 59
Summary of Approach Chosen for Methodology 61
3 LEARNING AND TEACHING 63
Development 65
Cognitive Development 66
The preoperational stage 66
The concrete operational 69
The formal operational stage 71
Comments on Piaget's theory 72
Personal and Social Development 73
Trust vs. mistrust 75
Autonomy vs. doubt 75
Initiative vs. guilt 76
ix

Industry vs. inferiority 77
Identity vs. role confusion 78
Moral Development 79
Preconventional level 82
Conventional level 83
Postconventional level 84
Overall Effect of Developmental Stages .... 85
Learning 85
Behavioral Learning Theory 86
Conditioning 87
Consequences 88
Extinction 92
Discrimination 92
Generalization 93
Modeling 93
Self-regulation 94
Other applications of behavioral learning
theory 94
Cognitive Learning Theory 95
Interference 96
Primacy and recency 98
Mnemonics 98
Practice 99
Organization 100
Common elements of cognitive principles 101
Pedagogy 102
Educational Aims 103
Goals 103
General educational program objectives 104
Instructional objectives 104
An example using all three levels of
educational aims 105
Bloom's Taxonomy of Educational Objectives 106
Knowledge 107
Comprehension 108
Application 108
Analysis 109
Synthesis 109
Evaluation 110
Taxonomy of Affective Objectives Ill
Effective Instruction 112
Aptitude 113
Between-Class Grouping 114
x

Within-Class Grouping 115
Learning Styles 116
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) 117
The Herrmann Brain Dominance Instrument
(HBDI) 119
The Kolb Cycle and the 4MAT System 121
Felder's learning styles 124
Comprehensive models of learning style 128
Why and How to Teach to All Learning Types 130
The Non-Constant Nature of Preferences 133
Cooperative Learning 134
4 THE ENGINEERING BY DESIGN METHODOLOGY 138
Application of The Scientific Method 138
The Development of Engineering By Design 142
Establish Goals 142
Select a Focus 143
Brainstorm for Ideas 144
Evaluate Ideas 144
Figure Out the Details 148
Establish Specific 153
Improve the Activity 154
5 EVALUATION AND ASSESSMENT 159
Evaluation of Educational Systems 159
Constraints on Educational Research 159
Ethical principles 161
Legal constraints 163
Human relations 164
Effects in Research Involving People .... 165
The Hawthorne Effect 165
The John Henry Effect 166
The Pygmalion Effect 167
Demand characteristics 167
Evaluation of Engineering By Design 168
Design of a Tributary Area Activity 171
Establish goals and select a focus 172
Brainstorm for ideas 172
Evaluation of ideas 174
Figure out the details 174
Establish Specific Objectives 182
xi

Improve the activity 184
Tributary Area Activity Implementation 184
Introduction to laboratory 186
Block tower activity 186
Load distribution brainstorming .... 188
Problem set discussion 190
Tributary area lab assignment 193
Lab assignment discussion 194
Live load reduction brainstorming exercise
194
Live load reduction brainstorming results
196
LRFD live load reduction 196
Live load reduction laboratory exercise 196
Live load reduction problem discussion 197
Evaluation of the Tributary Area Activity 197
Student evaluation 198
Tributary area evaluation results 207
Tributary area post-test 211
Post-test results 214
Student comments on the lab as a whole 218
Design of an llth-12th Grade Statistics Activity 218
The Design of the Activity 219
Designing Experimental and Control Groups 223
Introductory Brainstorming Activity 223
Central tendency 224
Decreasing observer dependence 225
Sources of error 226
Measuring variation 226
The Post-test and Results 227
Effects Operating in this Experiment .... 230
6 CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS 232
APPENDICES
A INTRODUCTION TO ENGINEERING HANDOUTS 235
B THE ENGINEERING BY DESIGN METHODOLOGY 253
xii

C TRIBUTARY AREA LABORATORY 259
Tributary Area Brainstorming Session Output 260
Tributary Area Lab Activity Lesson Plans 261
Floor Load Distribution Exercise 262
Instructions for Block Tower and Live Load Activities
263
Tributary Area Laboratory Student Evaluation 265
Tributary Area Post-Test 270
Tributary Area Post-Test Grading System 271
D HIGH SCHOOL PHYSICS STATISTICS LESSON 273
LIST OF REFERENCES 278
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH 301
xiii

LIST OF TABLES
Table page
1 Nine Categories of Thought-Starter Questions .... 53
2 Erikson's Stages of Personal and Social Development 74
3 Kohlberg's Stages of Moral Reasoning 81
4 Myers-Briggs Type Indicator Attributes 118
5 Felder and Silverman's Learning and Teaching Styles 124
6 Various Terms Used in Classifying Variables 160
7 Classification of Experience as a Continuous
Variable 198
8 Likert Scale Definition 200
9 Manipulation of Negatively Phrased Statement Scores 201
10 Tributary Area Evaluation Statements 202
11 Tributary Area Survey Statements and Groupings 203
12 Concepts tested by the Statistics Post-Test 228
13 Post-Test Concept Coverage 229
14 Survey Responses by Individual 266
15 Survey Responses by Individual: Concept Groupings 267
16 Survey Responses by Team: Raw Data Averages 268
xiv

17 Survey Responses by Team: Concept 269
18 Post-Test Responses and Scores by Individual 272
19 Statistics Post-Test Partial Scores by Individual 276
20 Statistics Post-Test Score Summary 277
xv

Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate School
of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy
ENGINEERING BY DESIGN:
A METHODOLOGY FOR DESIGNING
ENGINEERING DESIGN ACTIVITIES
By
Matthew William Ohland
August 1996
Chairperson: Dr. Marc I. Hoit
Major Department: Civil Engineering
There has been a great effort in recent years to effect
a significant change in engineering education. This reform
movement has had many objectives and proponents. Herein it
has been postulated and shown that properly formulated
design activities can fulfill a great many of the reform
objectives. Furthermore, it was hypothesized that it was
possible to design a methodology for creating such
activities in order to facilitate their implementation. The
crux of the Engineering By Design methodology is a framework
for collaboration of engineers and educators which combine
xvi

their various areas of expertise to create lessons which are
both technically accurate and educationally sound.
This design methodology was first developed by
analyzing the process used to design an activity for use in
the Civil Engineering component of University of Florida's
Introduction to Engineering class. After the methodology
was formally established, the methodology was used in
collaboration with a University of Florida professor to
design an activity to teach the concept of tributary area.
To evaluate the methodology, a post-test was administered
and feedback from the students was obtained. The post-test
scores were very high (average 18 out of 21), which
indicated excellent mastery but lacked sufficient range to
conduct any correlational studies. Quantitative analysis of
student feedback was conducted, indicating positive results.
A second application of the methodology was conducted
to design a lesson to teach descriptive statistics to a high
school physics class. Constraints on this design caused the
lesson generated using Engineering By Design to be very
similar to the lesson used to teach the control group. As a
result, the post-test indicated only a slight increase in
the performance of the experimental group.
xvi i

CHAPTER 1
INTRODUCTION
The Reform of Engineering Education
Previous Reform Movements
There is currently a widely recognized need for reform
of the engineering education system of the United States.
The current reform movement is the most recent of a number
of periodic evaluations of the state of engineering
education. Previous evaluations included those by the
Society for the Promotion of Engineering Education (SPEE)1
chaired by Wickenden (1930) and Hammond (1940 and 1944), by
the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE)
chaired by Grintner (1955), and by the National Research
Council (NRC)2 chaired by Haddad (1985).
1Founded in 1893, the Society for the Promotion of
Engineering Education changed its name to the American
Society for Engineering Education in 1946.
2The National Research Council is the operating agency of
the National Academy of Sciences (NAS), the National Academy
of Engineering (NAE), and the Institute of Medicine.

2
In a recent NRC publication, the following themes were
identified as unchanging throughout the various reports
listed above (NRC, 1993, p. 1):
1. the need for strong grounding in the fundamentals of
mathematics and the physical and engineering sciences,-
2. the importance of design and lab experimentation;
3. a call for more attention to the development of
communication and social skills in young engineers;
4. the need for integration of social and economic studies
and liberal arts into the curriculum,-
5. the vital importance of good teaching and attention to
curriculum development; and
6. the need to prepare students for career-long learning.
Although these themes are common to the five reports, the
priority assigned to each varies according to the economic,
political, and social conditions of the time.
Proponents of the Current Reform Movement
The current reform has many proponents. The National
Science Foundation (NSF) has given multi-million dollar
grants to support the formation of engineering education
coalitions (NSF, 1990), the NRC established project RISE

3
(Regional Initiatives in Science Education) ("Educational
Reform for K-12," 1995)3 and issued the working paper
mentioned above (NRC, 1993), and the ASEE issued the report
"Engineering Education for a Changing World" (ASEE, 1994) .
Support for the current reform also comes from the private
sector which, in addition to its representation in the above
groups, has offered statements and programs of its own
(Black, 1994 and McMasters, 1991).
Altogether, there are many more reports and initiatives
in support of engineering education reform than can be
mentioned here. Tobias (1992), noting the proliferation of
reports just addressing American undergraduate mathematics
and science [pre-engineering], estimates that 300 such
reports have been issued since 1983. Tobias goes on to note
the lack of impact of these reports despite the staggering
cost in dollars and time. Though Tobias' focus is on
introductory courses in undergraduate science, her
observations shed insight on the reform of engineering
education as a whole.
3Project RISE receives funding from NSF and the Howard
Hughes Medical Institute.

4
This forces us to question the possibility of reform.
Is the current reform movement simply to be placed on a
shelf as a testimony to the organizational inertia of
academia? What distinguishes the current effort is the
apparent paradigm shift of the National Science Foundation
(Pister, 1993). Just as the NSF was the driving force in
creating the research-driven university climate which Boyer
(1990) referred to as the "scholarship of discovery," the
NSF is also leading the engineering education community into
a new era which also encourages and financially supports
research in teaching and learning.
Another necessary proponent of any major change is the
Accreditation Board of Engineering and Technology (ABET).
Academic institutions have traditionally been concerned that
proposed changes might threaten a school's accreditation.
Recently, however, ABET has become more concerned with
quality than specific content and "bean counting" (Harris et
al., 1994, p. 71). This paradigm shift in ABET will permit
universities and colleges to be more flexible in their
approach to engineering education without the threat of
losing accreditation.

5
Context of the Current Reform
Not surprisingly, many of the goals of the current
reform movement are echoes of earlier reports reverberating
off today's political, economic, and social conditions. It
is pertinent to analyze these driving forces in order to
understand the movement's true objectives.
The driving forces behind this reform are manythe
demands of industry [the employer of 70% of engineering
graduates (Farrington et al., 1994)], concerns of a
shortfall of engineers, and existing weaknesses in the
preparation of students for study in engineering (the
student pipeline) are among them.
The demands of industry
The engineering curriculum model in the United States
after World War II was heavy on mathematics and science and
lighter on design (Hubband, 1993). The United States and
other countries using that model would discover that the
lack of hands-on training would prevent new engineers from
becoming effective designers without additional training
(Farrington et al., 1994). In Japan, this problem was

6
solved through hands-on assignments in the first two years
of employment. In Germany, institutions were established
which require all faculty to have certain minimum levels of
industry experience. In the United States, it is the
current reform movement that seeks to address the problem.
Advances in computer and telecommunications technology
continue to make the economy a global one. Trade agreements
and tariff reductions also knock down international economic
barriers. The political environment in the post-Cold War
era is also a harbinger of new levels of international
cooperation.
This globalization has introduced new economic
constraints which have had a dramatic effect on the
engineering profession. Downsizing has formed smaller core
engineering groups, with other engineers forced into the
roles of subcontractor and consultant. Future engineers
will not only need to adapt from one project to another, but
may need to face transitions from company to company or
industry to industry (Otala, 1993 and Leake, 1993). Much of
an engineer's education will become obsolete after a time.
Some have described this process as a sort of educational
decay, with a half-life of 5 to 10 years (Healy, 1994).

7
Such a profession requires that engineers have a lifelong
commitment to learning, which will be at their expense.
These conditions demand that engineers understand the
process of engineering and possess diverse fundamental
skills. These will be more vital than specialized skills,
since engineers will frequently work outside of their field
of specialty.
Traditionally, there has been a misalignment of the
direction industry suggests for academia and the direction
academia charts for itself ("The More Things Change," 1993).
Industry representatives generally prefer more practical
knowledge so that new hires can "hit the ground running."
Sources in academia generally criticize this approach,
citing that the more broadly trained engineer will
ultimately serve the company better. In this age when
technology and particular practices is evolving so quickly,
the needs of industry are approaching what has traditionally
been the suggestion of academia.
If the formal education of engineers becomes more
general in nature, there will be a concomitant increase in
the specialization of continuing education. This increase
in demand for continuing education can be answered partly by

8
universities through distance learning and other methods.
Commercial interests will assume the rest of this training
responsibility.
A shift toward a curriculum focused on skills and the
ability to learn new knowledge is inevitable. Especially
with the onset of the information age, the amount of
knowledge grows exponentially. A curriculum which attempts
to expand to include new content cannot hope to keep up. We
must, therefore, teach engineering students to learn, and
focus on the skills to apply new knowledge rather than the
knowledge itself (Monteith, 1994). Pister points out that
there is a trade-off in higher education: excessive focus on
increasing students' knowledge takes time away from teaching
students how to use their knowledge in practice (1993).
This increasingly global market for engineering
services and products also prefers engineers with an
understanding of other cultures and languages. The need for
cultural understanding and the diversity of career paths
calls for a strengthening of the liberal arts training
engineering students receive (Morrow, 1994), a suggestion
which has always received considerable resistance (Florman,
1993 and Kranzberg, 1993). A growing number of American

9
engineering students are conducting a portion of their
studies abroad, as well (Ercolano, 1995).
Altogether, industry representatives seem to agree on
certain deficits in engineering graduates: the ability to
work on a team, the ability to communicate effectively, and
an awareness of workplace expectations (Katz, 1993).
Concern of a shortfall of engineers
There is considerable difference of opinion as to the
level of this concern. Many sources indicate a serious
shortfall of engineers will occur within a decade. Heckel
(1996) indicates a 25% downturn in freshman enrollments
since 1980 and a 9% decline from Fall 1992 to Fall 1994.
Bakos and Hritz (1991) claim that the shortage is at all
degree levels, and is caused by changes in demographics and
student interest level. Lohmann (1991) anticipates a
shortfall of engineering graduates not because of
demographics or interest but because of inadequate
preparation in the public school system. Other reports
agree with the issue of quality raised by Lohmann ("New
Report," 1990).

10
On the other hand, there are other reliable sources
which forecast no shortage of engineers at all. The Bureau
of Labor Statistics (Kutscher, 1994) indicates an increase
in engineering employment which will maintain a constant
percentage of total employment base. LeBuffe and Ellis
(1993) indicate that during the decade following the early
1980's engineering enrollment followed demographic trends.
Van Valkenburg (1991) indicates that there is great
exaggeration regarding any potential shortage, citing an
American Council on Education study which indicated that
more students anticipated study in engineering than in any
other discipline. Van Valkenburg also seems to suggest that
any oversupply of engineers will be absorbed by the
workforce, because engineering graduates are excellent
candidates for "crossover," finding employment in alternate
fields.
Since there seems to be consensus that having an
adequate supply of engineers is vital to the national
economy and it has been suggested that generating an
oversupply of engineers is an acceptable outcome, it seems
appropriate to look more closely at the factors which impact
student enrollment in engineering. Student enrollment is

11
controlled by two major factors: student interest and
student preparation. Both of these are necessary.
Preparation for study in engineering is discussed in the
next sectiononly interest will be addressed here.
Many critical factors affecting student interest in
engineering are beyond the control of academia (though not
outside its sphere of influence). Government policies,
economic trends, and salary ranges can all influence student
career and study choices. There is one significant factor
which can be controlled by those in academiaan
understanding of the profession itself. A Gallup poll
sponsored by the American Consulting Engineers Council
indicates that about a third of Americans have no idea what
engineers do ("Thirty Percent," 1990).
Past President of the Accreditation Board for
Engineering and Technology (ABET) Jerrier Haddad notes
(1996, p. 5) that "engineering is an enigma to the lay
public." The lack of understanding of the engineering
profession causes many problems. If prospective engineering
students do not understand what engineering is, they may not
pursue it. Worse yet, students who are not interested in
engineering may pursue it in error. The latter causes the

12
student and the educational institution to waste valuable
resources to uncover the error. If teachers and high school
counselors do not understand the requirements for entrance
into engineering study, students who are otherwise excellent
candidates for such study will be hindered by poor
preparation if they do matriculate. The problem is greater
stilleven those who are truly not interested in engineering
should learn what engineers do, because these others may
become lawmakers, voters, investors, etc. who will make
decisions which affect the engineering profession. More
importantly, many of those not interested in engineering may
be relatives of students that someday consider engineering.
The advice of relatives is one of the strongest influences
on a student's choice of a career path (Van Valkenburg,
1991) .
One of the primary stumbling blocks to the
understanding of engineering by the general populous is that
although the basic sciences are taught in the K-12
curriculum, engineering is not traditionally present in the
curriculum at all.
To establish a foothold for engineering in K-12
schools, engineering educators must play a role.

13
Engineering professors have traditionally separated
themselves from the pre-engineering educational system
(Oaxaca, 1991) but this must change if the engineering
profession is to have high quality graduates in the future.
Partnerships which put engineering educators and practicing
engineering in direct contact with students have a
significant impact. These provide prospective engineering
students with role models and an improved understanding of
the profession. Such local partnerships were recommended by
the 1994 ASEE report "Engineering Education for a Changing
World." Other efforts to improve the image of engineers by
providing appropriate role models in the media are being
pursued by some ("Engineers to the Rescue," 1992). While
programs which reach students directly are important, such
programs are not feasible on a large scale, but will be
relegated to local engineering firms and educational
institutions.
Our efforts will have a greater impact if we work
directly with those in the K-12 system who are fewer in
number and are less transient than the studentsthe teachers
and the counselors, curriculum coordinators, and other
administrators. Collette (1994) estimates 47 million

14
students in the K-12 system, but less than a tenth that many
teachers and administrators.
The benefit of this kind of intervention in the K-12
educational system is two-fold. To be sure, those
interested in engineering will learn what it is and what
precollege study is appropriate to be prepared for it.
There is another important benefitengineers can help reform
the system which threatens the quality of students entering
college programs, as feared by Lohmann (1991) and others.
This concern and its remediation are discussed more
thoroughly in the section which follows.
Weaknesses in the student pipeline
Walter Massey, former Director of the National Science
Foundation, has said of the public education system (1992,
p. 52), "Somehow, over the past several decades, we have
allowed science and mathematics education to erode to the
extent that we are jeopardizing our ability to produce
skilled scientists and engineers, technical workers, and a
scientifically literate public." There seems to be
consensus regarding Massey's portrayal of the condition of
K-12 education in the United States. Some paint an even

15
worse picture, where 95% of the American population is
scientifically illiterate (Lohmann, 1991). The K-12 system,
and sometimes the K-14 system (adding junior colleges), is
referred to as the student pipeline. Viewing engineering
education as an industry, the pipeline is the supplier of
the raw material which engineering schools turn into a
finished product, the graduate engineer. As is usually the
case, flaws in the raw material can have a significant
effect on the both the process and the end product.
These deficiencies in the K-12 pipeline are a call to
action for the engineering community. The problem must be
approached at all levels. It is critical for the future of
the engineering profession that elementary, middle, and high
school students have the scientific literacy required in
today's society. It is also essential that those students
who develop an interest in engineering be well prepared to
pursue it.
In response to the perceived drop in quality of
mathematics and science education in the student pipeline,
new standards have been introduced. The National Research
Council recently issued the National Science and Education
Standards (NRC, 1995) and the National Council of Teachers

16
of Mathematics released Curriculum and Evaluation Standards
for School Mathematics (NCTM, 1989). These standards
indicate specific objectives for each grade level. For
these standards to achieve their intended purpose of
improving the education in the pipeline, teachers must be
adequately prepared to meet the standards. Unfortunately, on
the whole, precollege faculty are not up to the task.
Numerous studies indicate that many precollege faculty are
unlikely to teach mathematics and science well due to both
insufficient education and perceived inadequacies (Lohmann,
1991 and Jones, 1992a). Engineers, especially those in
academia, must therefore work with in-service and pre
service teachers to help develop both competence and
confidence. Partnerships as described earlier as well as
appropriate courses at the college level will achieve this
aim.
Another weakness in the pipeline is the lack of
diversity. Diversity is important in engineering to achieve
the best divergent thinking as a profession, apart from any
moral considerations. The engineering student population is
predominantly comprised of white males with certain
thinking/learning preferences. The underrepresentation of

17
women and minorities in engineering is well documented
(Jones, 1992b and Felder et al., 1995).
Less acknowledged, but equally noteworthy in discussing
diversity, is the fact that most successful engineering
students have similar thinking and learning preferences
(Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, 1995b, Frey, 1990, and Felder,
1993). The students who are successful are those who are
likely to prepare for and study engineering the way that is
has traditionally been taught. Changes in the educational
system will allow a more diverse population of engineering
students to be successful.
Fortunately, many of the changes which will benefit
groups underrepresented in engineering will benefit all
students. Sheila Tobias notes, "the best strategy for
increasing the persistence and success in engineering (and
all the sciences) of women and historically underrepresented
minorities is to improve the teaching-learning
environment for all" (Hamlin, 1994, p. 28).
Just as improving the success of groups under
represented in engineering will improve the environment for
all students, approaches which address any of these
objectives may address others as well. The objectives will

18
now be summarized, and the intended approach to address them
will be introduced.
Summary of Reform Objectives
There are a great many individual objectives in the
reform movement. These are described in detail in the
previous sections and are summarized in the list that
follows.
1. Satisfy the changing needs of the profession
a. Emphasize team skills and communication
b. Provide more hands-on design experience
c. Teach students to learn
d. Make students strongest in transferrable skills
e. Strengthen liberal education
2. Increase enrollment
a. Teach nature of engineering to students/teachers
b. Help teachers to foster interest in engineering
3. Improve student quality
a. Remediate in-service teachers to meet standards
b. Prepare pre-service teachers to meet standards
c. Inform K-12 personnel of pre-engineering curriculum
d. Encourage all genders, races, and thinking types
It is proposed here that design activities, when properly
devised, can accomplish most of these objectives. In the
section which follows, design activities will be discussed
as to the success they have had and what changes might be
made to them to further enhance their applicability.

19
Design Activities as a Method of Meeting Reform Objectives
Design is one of the defining elements of the
engineering profession. Since World War II, however, design
has been primarily relegated to the later years of
engineering education, the first two to three years of
curriculum comprised mostly of basic mathematics and
science. This has placed a burden on prospective engineers
that they must endure what was seen as "necessary
preparation" prior to engaging in design. Many would-be
engineers have lost interest in such pursuits before
reaching the part of the curriculum which included design
(Ercolano, 1996).
Traditional Laboratory Exercises
It has long been recognized that experiments are an
excellent method by which students can achieve hands-on
experience; this is the foundation for laboratory activities
included as part of a course or as an entire course in the
high school and college curriculum. Unfortunately, such
activities have traditionally had little to do with design.

20
Most laboratories are intended to be as near a reproduction
of the "correct" answer as is possible.
While reality sometimes finds a foothold in the
laboratory (e.g. error analysis), much of the work in
laboratories has traditionally been closed-end, with one
"correct" answer. Laboratories done in teams can provide
the opportunity for the development of teamwork skills.
However, the teamwork usually ends when students leave the
laboratorypartners usually take turns in writing the
laboratory report.
Therefore, while traditional laboratories fulfill the
objective of providing hands-on experience and team skills
for students, they do little to address the other
objectives. If properly designed, a laboratory exercise can
teach students investigative skills to learn on their own.
Frequently, however, because lab time is limited, students
are generally given a step-by-step process to follow.
Capstone Design Courses
Many schools, in order to satisfy the ABET requirement
for design content, have "capstone" design projects. These

21
design projects, which culminate the curriculum for an
engineering bachelor's degree, are common (Miller and Olds,
1994 and Harris and Jacobs, 1995). If used in absence of
design practice in the earlier part of the curriculum, such
design projects perpetuate the approach to design discussed
earlier by Ercolano (1996), wherein students are not
permitted to experience design until their formal education
is finished. This results in students who are not
experienced in design, and discourages some students who
might make excellent designers, but lose interest in the
curriculum in which design is not well integrated.
Design far Fr.eshmen and .Sophomores
In the late 1960's, some faculty realized the
shortcomings of traditional laboratories and introduced
project-based courses into the curriculum (Durfee, 1994) .
More importantly, there has been a recent trend to insert
design activities into the first two years of the
engineering curriculum (Mahendran, 1995, Durfee, 1994, Dally
and Zhang, 1993 and Dym, 1994). Such early design
experiences have been found to be the most successful in

22
meeting a great many of the objectives of the reform
movement (Peterson, 1993).
Pesian in the K-12 Pipeline
There has also been a great deal of interest in recent
years to expand the use of design projects in the K-12
system. Such efforts generally fall into two categories:
those that interact directly with students and those that
seek to expand the talents and perspective of K-12 faculty.
Both of these types of programs are important. There is no
better way to support a student's interest than for the
student to be encouraged by an engineer. As mentioned
earlier, however, the number of students in the school
system is an order of magnitude larger than the number of
teachers. This fact points to the effectiveness of teacher-
oriented programs.
Student intervention
One approach to bringing projects to K-12 students is
through pre-prepared curriculum kits such as those developed
by Snell in conjunction with the Southern Illinois

23
University at Edwardsville engineering school (Meade, 1992)
and by Turner (1996) sponsored by the Florida Department of
Education. Crawford et al. (1994) extended that approach to
develop an engineering design curriculum for grades K-5. In
the higher grades, more advanced projects are possible.
Conrad and Mills (1994) introduced "Stiquito" to students in
the middle grades. The design and programming of the robot
insect allows students to learn and employ concepts from
electrical, mechanical, chemical, computer, and industrial
engineering.
Other programs bring engineers into the classroom as
mentors, focused on conducting hands-on exercises to teach a
concept. Examples at the elementary level include the
Emeritus Scientists, Mathematicians and Engineers and A
World in Motion (Meade, 1992). In the middle grades, Pols
et al. (1994) used aeronautics activities as a vehicle for
exposing students to engineering. At the high school level,
even more aggressive programs exist which include a short
lecture followed by demonstration and laboratory time. Such
a structure was used by Ayorinde and Gibson (1995) to
present a primer in composites engineering to high school
students in an engineering preparatory program. Such

24
programs are very successful because just as teachers are
intimidated by mathematics and science, most engineers are
intimidated by a classroom full of young people. Around the
country, various companies (Chen, 1990), educational
institutions (Meade, 1992), and even governmental
organizations (Otts, 1991) sponsor such programs.
Design competitions have also been effective in
introducing students to engineering. Titcomb et al. (1994)
used design problems appropriate for a high school physics
course to establish a design competition which had the
participation of nearly half the high schools in Vermont.
The Junior Engineering Technical Society (JETS) offers a
year-long comprehensive high school program, with design
competitions playing a key role (JETS, 1994) .
An excellent blend of these various methods is the
summer institute. Special programs such as the Hands-On
Institute of Science and Technology (HOIST), held at the
University of Florida summer 1995,4 can provide a more
4H0IST was held at the University of Florida from July
9-15, 1995. It was coordinated by Marc Hoit and Matthew
Ohland of the Civil Engineering department, and funded by a
combination of student fees and a grant from the American
Society of Civil Engineers. A report of the implementation
of the institute is in progress.

25
intensive introduction to engineering and design. HOIST
participants engaged in active design projects, saw
demonstrations, met engineering mentors, and went on a field
trip to a power plant, a prestressed concrete manufacturer,
and engaged in social activities designed to further develop
camaraderie and teamwork skills, such as a very challenging
scavenger hunt.
Faculty intervention
As discussed before, it is more effective to work with
teachers because each teacher will interact with a much
greater number of students. One method of accomplishing
this is to prepare K-12 teachers in institutes such as the
Bell Atlantic/AAAS Institute for Middle School Science and
Technology Teachers (Jones, 1992a) and the SouthEastern
Consortium for Minorities in Engineering (SECME) summer
institute (Ohland et al., 1996). Courses in such institutes
can fulfill continuing education requirements for the
teacher and even provide graduate credit for teachers
pursuing master's degrees. The SECME summer institutes for
teachers have trained more than 2,100 teachers since their
inception in 1977. Intervention at the faculty level has

26
been very successful for SECMEthose teachers have seen more
than 40,000 SECME students graduate. Those SECME students
have SAT composite scores more than 200 points higher than
the African-American average (Leake, 1994).
Because of the effectiveness of such training programs
for teachers, several such programs have been initiated in
recent years. Washington State University (WSU) established
the six week Teacher Institute for Science and Mathematics
Education Through Engineering Experience, which gives 20-30
middle school, high school, and community college educators
contact with approximately 15 WSU faculty members
("Engineering for K-12 Teachers," 1994). Conrad (1994)
introduced engineering and technology to Arkansas teachers
in a three-week workshop. The Stevens Institute of
Technology Center for Improved Engineering and Science
Education has broadcast teacher training teleconferences
(Chao, 1992). VISION, a three-week institute for teachers
in Howard County, Indiana, is a partnership of Indiana
University, Purdue University at Kokomo, area schools, and
six area businesses (Schwartz, 1996). These programs, and
many others around the country, recognize the importance of
intervention at the faculty level.

27
Integration into state curricula
The most aggressive approach is to integrate design
directly into the curriculum. Since curriculum is generally
established by a state's board of education, this is still
difficult to do on a nationwide basis. Since there are only
50 states, however, the number of entities to work with to
institute this kind of change is significantly smaller than
even the number of schools in the K-12 system. New York
State is the leader in this sort of curriculum development.
Since 1986, middle school teachers have been prepared
through in-service training to offer a course called
"Introduction to Technology," which all students are
required to take (Hacker, 1993). This movement, which began
in the middle grades, has led to a "Principles of
Engineering" elective course which is taught at the high
school level.
Typical Design Project Objectives
It is important to note that design projects are
employed in all these approaches to improving the
engineering educational system. It is the multidisciplinary

28
nature of design that makes this possible. Properly posed
design projects are capable of meeting many of the
objectives of the reform movement. Encouraging creative
behavior is a common theme in design projects (Ko and Hayes,
1994, Mahendran, 1995, and Durfee, 1994). Creative thinking
is among the most transferrable of skills. Others also
include documenting the design process and making a
presentation of the results (Fentiman and Demel, 1994, and
Starkey et al., 1994). This adds written and presentation
skills to the interpersonal communication which already
accompanies such design projects. Still others choose to
include social context in their projects, showing young
engineers how they can be a service to the community.
Clearly, a great number of objectives are possible in
properly planned design activities.
Essentially, because the design projects are themselves
designed, it is possible to include a wide variety of
objectives. This is testament to the interdisciplinary
nature of the design process. Since such a wide variety of
objectives is possible, it is appropriate to consider what
set objectives has been most effective and what additional
objectives might make design projects even more effective.

29
Dissertation Structure
A comprehensive set of objectives was therefore
established. This set of objectives has been used to create
Engineering By Design, a process for developing design
projects. This process is of course a creative one, so such
a methodology begins with a process similar to standard
creative problem solving techniques. Various approaches to
problem solving and their applicability to the task at hand
will therefore be discussed in Chapter 2.
To create design activities which are educationally
complete, a modern understanding of teaching and learning
must be merged with standard problem solving approaches to
create a more advanced process. Teaching methods and
learning styles are discussed in Chapter 3.
The Engineering By Design methodology was developed
through the creation of a prototype project for the Civil
Engineering section of Introduction to Engineering, a one-
credit graded course at the University of Florida. The
prototype design activity and the development of the
methodology are discussed in Chapter 4. The full set of
objectives is introduced. These objectives can be applied

30
to the process of creating any design project. Many of
these objectives directly address the objectives of the
current reform movement. Other objectives are added which
enhance the ability to implement, sustain, and disseminate
the activities.
Assessment of the Engineering By Design methodology is
accomplished in two ways. The first is by measuring the
success activities made using it, qualitatively and
quantitatively. The second is by reviewing the feedback of
those who have used the methodology. The assessment of
Engineering By Design is included in Chapter 5. Also
included in Chapter 5 are the field observations by the
author of the success of various design projects.
Lastly, conclusions and recommendations are included in
Chapter 6. Conclusions are based on both the formal
assessment and the observations discussed in Chapter 6.

CHAPTER 2
CREATIVE PROBLEM SOLVING
Introduction
"No single technological advance will be the key to a
safe and comfortable long-term future for civilization.
Rather, the key, if any exists, will lie in getting large
numbers of human minds to operate creatively and from a
broad, open-minded perspective, to cope with new
challenges." This quote (Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, 1995a,
xv) by Paul MacCready, inventor of the various "Gossamer"
low-energy aircraft, highlights the importance most flexible
skill we can impart to engineering studentsthe ability to
think creatively.
The key to creative problem solving is recognizing that
real problems have more than one solution. While we seek
the optimum, we will never know that we have achieved it. A
new approach or a new understanding of the fundamentals
underlying the problem may lead to great improvements in the
31

32
solution. Since assessing how people solve problems is
itself an open-ended problem, there are a multitude of
approaches to describe the process. This, of course,
confounds the process of formulating a methodology for
problem solving, forcing the methodology to remain broad and
flexible (Greeno, 1980).
The Stages of Problem Solving
There are a number of stages in the process of creative
problem solving. Different authors have different names and
attributes for these stages, but the general pattern enjoys
wide agreement in principle. The discussion will follow the
stages delineated by Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a), but
the terminology and perspective characteristic of other
researchers will be introduced throughout. The four stages
of Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine are enumerated below:
1. Problem Definition
2. Idea Generation
3. Idea Evaluation and Selection
4. Solution Implementation
These four stages alone are not sufficient to complete the
Engineering by Design methodology, due to the unconventional
nature of the problem the methodology seeks to solvethat of

33
the design of a creative activity itself. For now, only the
conventional stages will be discussed. Each stage will be
considered as it applies to the activity designer and to the
activity participants. The additional stages which are
included in Engineering by Design (which will only be
completed by the activity designer) will be covered in
chapter 4.
Problem Definition
"The uncreative mind can spot wrong answers, but it
takes a very creative mind to spot wrong questions." This
quote by Anthony Jay cited by Fabian (1990) is directed at
the importance of a well posed problem. Real problems
rarely are clearly defined. In creating the methodology,
this means that the activity designer must be sure to be
aware of all goals of the activity on a conscious level, so
that the design of the activity is a well-posed problem. In
the designed activity, however, it is the activity
participants who must define the problemthis is a skill
which they must practice to develop.

34
Problem definition is the most critical step in the
problem solving process. The less defined a problem is, the
more solutions it will have. Definition, therefore, is the
process which reduces the scope of a problem, and thus the
time necessary to achieve an acceptable solution. Although
most problem solvers recognize problem definition as the
first step in the process, the actual approach those
individuals use is frequently quite different (Kepner and
Tregoe, 1965).
Kahney (1986) breaks down the data which go into the
definition of a problem into four categories. There is
information about
the initial state;
the goal state;
operators (specific actions permitted in the solution);
and operator restrictions (constraints on the actions).
Kahney goes on to clarify these groupings through comparison
to the "Towers of Hanoi" problem, shown below in its initial
state, with three differently sized rings stacked on peg "a"
as shown. The largest ring is on the bottom, the smallest
is on top, and the medium-sized ring is in the middle.
The goal state is to achieve the same configuration,
but with the rings on peg "b" instead.

35
Figure 1 The Towers of Hanoi Problem
In such a simple problem, there is only one operator, which
might be called "move," which allows the rings to be moved.
This operator has three restrictions: only one ring may be
moved at a time, a larger ring may not be placed on top of a
smaller ring, and rings may only be placed on one of the
three pegs.
With clear information given in each of Kahney's
categories, this problem is well defined. Most problems
assigned in engineering education and in the K-12 pipeline
are similar in that regard. Problems in those arenas are
typically closed-ended, having a single correct answer
(Felder, 1988). If a problems is to yield a single correct
answer, it must be well defined.

36
In the problem of creating a design activity, the
initial state will contain information regarding the current
knowledge, skills, or attitudes of the participants. The
goal state will indicate which of these the design activity
is intended to change.
Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) anthropomorphize the
problem solving process by assigning personae to various
stages. The description of the initial state is left to the
detective, including the process of distinction, which is
characteristic of Kepner and Tregoe (1965). Distinction is
used to set the problem apart from what is not the problem.
This step not only reduces scope, but informs the direction
the following stages should take.
If a problem is complex or unstructured enough,
Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine have the "explorer" take over the
problem definition stage. The explorer looks at the context
of the problem more than the problem itself. The explorer
analogy is also used by von Oech (1986) In von Oech and
Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, this mind-set clearly overlaps the
boundaries of problem definition and idea generation. This
overlap can be a wasteful one. If the "exploring" is not
limited to the problem itself, but instead, as von Oech and

37
Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine seem to suggest, probes for a
solution as well, there is the inherent risk of focusing on
possible solutions before the problem has been adequately
defined. Premature attempts at a solution have been shown
to lead to wasted resources. Kepner and Tregoe give a
number of examples of this wasting of resources through
industrial case studies (1965) .
Part of the explorer's role lies in problem definition,
however. Van Gundy (1984) describes the stage of problem
definition as the process of establishing limits or
boundaries for a situation, constructing walls which allow
us to view a problem as finite. VanGundy advocates the
"redefinition" of a problem, a process by which a problem
solver takes the time to look beyond the established
boundaries of a problem. This redefinition is the only
viable role of the explorer within the problem definition
stage.
Earlier work by Parns (1967), creator of what is
called the Creative Problem Solving approach, breaks this
stage into two stages, one of Fact Finding, and a second of
Problem Finding. Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine have wisely
collapsed these two, which overlap significantly.

38
Idea Generation
"What you see is what you get. Change your eyes." This
quote by Sam Keen cited by Fabian (1990) reveals the core of
the idea generation phase of problem solving. It is by
looking at the same things in new ways that new ideas are
achieved. Volumes of research have been written on just
this stage of the problem solving process. The study of
idea generation includes research on cognition itself, as
Piaget's theories of child development focus substantially
on how a child's develops new perspectives of a problem
(Brown and Desforges, 1979).
This stage of the problem solving process is the most
creative one, where it is ideas that are being created.
Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) assign this stage the
"artist" persona, seeking the image of a free spirited
creator not afraid to be avant-garde. Defining a problem
certainly uses thinking skills, but need not be creative,
per se. The next stage of idea evaluation and selection
certainly does not use creative thinking. The key in
evaluation and selection is critical thinking, which will be

39
discussed in detail in the next section. Critical thinking
is inappropriate in this stage, because it may prevent the
generation of ideas, thus limiting the range of possible
solutions. Critical thinking is just one of the barriers to
creative thinking. The body of research into idea
generation has outlined a great many barriers. Authors of
methods to encourage creative thinking offer various ways of
overcoming these barriers.
The Barriers to Creative Thinking
Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine refer to these as mental
barriers or mental blocks (Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, 1995a).
Von Oech describes them as mental locks (von Oech, 1983) .
To Fabian (1990), they are mind-setsthose barriers which
prevent us from producing new ideas. Such barriers will be
introduced throughout this section. In the following
section, a large number of approaches to generating ideas
will be presented. Reference will be made to how those
approaches attempt to break various barriers.
As earlier, the discussion follows Lumsdaine and
Lumsdaine. Von Oech's list (1983) contains a greater number

40
of listed barriers, some of them having been grouped
together by Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine. Those which are unique
to von Oech are shown in quotes.
False assumptions
"I'm not Creative." This attitude will be especially
prevalent in those with low self-esteem with respect to
their intelligence. However, because highly intelligent
minds can think of solutions quickly, a better solution may
be achieved by a person with a slower mind, who must wait
and take in more data before proposing a solution. This
additional information may lead to an improved solution (De
Bono, 1986). In fact, there are a number ways that a highly
intelligent can be trapped into poor thinking. De Bono
lists nine of these, which Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a)
annotate to show that creativity is dependent on using the
whole brain.
"Play is Frivolous." The best example of this is given
by von Oech (1983) in the Moebius strip. The Moebius strip
is a strip formed in a loop with a half-twist introduced
before connecting the ends. This was merely a topological
fascination for many years, because the resulting shape has

41
only one side. Fifty years ago, however, conveyor belt
designers decided to use that to their advantage, achieving
equal wear, since all the surface of the belt is used. The
Moebius strip shows promise for application in other
technologies as well. It is key to notice that while the
Moebius strip was merely an amusement for many years, it
sparked innovation years after its introduction.
Play is also a regular source of learning. In the
animal kingdom, play is the process by which animals learn
the skills they need to survive. Children learn many things
through play. Therefore, if adults are unwilling to play,
they are cut off from certain opportunities for learning.
"That's not my Area." This barrier listed by von Oech
(1983) belongs in this category. The assumption being made
is "because this is outside of my field of expertise, I have
nothing to offer." Because it is precisely the gathering of
a variety of experience and expertise which promotes
divergent thinking, this assumption is false.
There is only one right answer
French philosopher Emile Chartier once said, "Nothing
is more dangerous than an idea when it is the only one you

42
have." The need for different perspectives in idea
generation has already been discussed. Unfortunately,
multiple choice testing, closed end problems, and other
artifacts of our formal schooling teach us that there is
only one correct answer to a problem. To knock down this
barrier to creativity, we must introduce an entirely new
approach than the one that is commonly used.
Looking at a problem in isolation
Avoiding this barrier is the remainder of the job of
the "explorer" persona introduced earlier. Here the
explorer can introduce new directions for ideas based on the
context of the problem. The common analogy for this barrier
is "not being able to see the forest for the trees." The
key to encourage multidisciplinary approaches to problems.
This is a substantial argument in support of partnerships of
engineers and educatorsas discussed earlier, each brings
different contextual information to the partnership.
Following the rules
Innovative ideas come from the unconventionalif
participants in the idea generation stage remain bound to

43
the conventional way of doing things, new ideas are
constrained. We cannot, however, completely abandon order,
or chaos will result. Some rules will remain, which will be
discussed later. Exactly what rules are appropriate will
depend on the method of idea generation and whether it is
done individually or in groups. Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine
(1995a) seem to have covered von Oech's "That's not Logical"
barrier (1983) in this category.
Negative thinking
This barrier is particularly serious, in that it
affects not only the negative thinker, but also influences
all those around him or her. Counted here are attitudes
which are negative in many (if not all) contextsnegativism,
sarcasm, debasing remarks, and others. Criticism is also
included here. As stated earlier, critical thinking and
discrimination are important in the next stage, but are not
conducive to idea generation.
Fgar_o£ failure
Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) also characterize this
barrier as one of "risk-avoidance." In nature, genetic

44
mutation, or errors in the process of transmitting genetic
information, can introduce adaptations and improvements to a
species. The human race, however, has been conditioned to
avoid failure. The grading system used throughout the
educational process is itself a constant reminder that those
who make the fewest errors are more rewarded (Von Oech,
1983) .
At some level, error is recognized as a part of life
and a necessary process in learning, hence "to err is human"
and "trial and error." If error were not anticipated,
"trial and error" would instead be referred to as "trial and
success." The role of failure in technological progress is
well documented, from Edison's many attempts to find a
suitable filament for the light bulb to the metallurgical
revolution following the Ashtabula Bridge disaster caused by
the brittle failure of cast iron.
Discomfort with ambiguity
While many would prefer that solutions always be "black
and white," the problem definition itself and the best
solutions are often in the gray areas. Students are
notoriously uncomfortable with ambiguity, because they are

45
rarely exposed to it. Well-defined, closed-end problems
leave no ambiguity.
The reason we are taught to avoid ambiguity is that it
can lead to miscommunication. On an exam, this means losing
points. In giving directions, it can result in the follower
becoming lost. Ambiguity, because it introduces multiple
meanings, is also able to lead to new perspectives and idea
generation.
Paradoxes are a common form of ambiguity. Many of the
greatest advances in physics have been characterized by
paradox. The inventors of the jet engine believed that they
had found a way to violate the second law of thermodynamics,
but continued their work anyway. Zeno's paradox encourages
us to develop a more complete understanding of geometry.
Many researchers study the order of chaos. Entertaining
ambiguity is useful in order to proceed to a higher level of
understanding.
The Use of Groups in Idea Generation
It has been discussed that idea generation is dependent
on finding new ways to look at the same information.

46
Because of individual differences in experience and thinking
preferences,5 the best way to gain new perspectives is by
conducting creative problem solving, especially the idea
generation stage, in groups. Further, it is best if the
members of a group have different perspectives and
knowledge, i.e. the group is heterogeneous. This has the
potential to yield greater results than those of an
individual, who will find it more difficult to stray from
his or her preferred perspectives. Heterogeneity will be
discussed further in relation to learning styles in the
later part of chapter 3.
This potential, however, is not always realized.
Osborn (1963) first published his landmark work Applied
Imagination in 1953. Although Osborn details an entire
approach to creative problem solving, the idea generation
stage is where his greatest contribution lies. As the
inventor of verbal brainstorming, which will be discussed in
greater detail later, Osborn claimed that group
brainstorming was an effective method of group problem
solving.
5Various individual differences will be discussed in much
greater detail in the next chapter.

47
Osborn used many examples from industry to support his
work, but made other assertions which were less well
supported. Fortunately, Osborn's work was fascinating
enough to spark research which verified claims (Parns and
Meadow, 1959). Other research, however, has rejected the
claim that idea generation by groups outproduces the same
individuals working alone (Taylor et al., 1958, Bouchard,
1969 and 1972, Bouchard and Hare, 1970, and Bouchard et al.,
1974) .
More recent research has attempted to pinpoint the
source of the discrepancy which causes the success of group
idea generation to be inconsistent (Diehl and Stroebe, 1987,
Harkins, 1987, Williams et al., 1981, Harkins and Jackson,
1985, and Kerr and Bruun, 1983). The conclusion is that
additional barriers to creativity are introduced when idea
generation is done in groupsthese barriers follow.
Barriers Specific to Group Idea Generation
Diehl and Stroebe (1987) define three potential group
effects. These are evaluation apprehension, social loafing,
and production blocking.

48
Evaluation apprehension
Evaluation apprehension is the fear of having one's
ideas judged either by others in the group or by an external
observer. Von Oech includes this concern as "Don't be
Foolish." The pressure to conform and avoid standing out
are strong, and are often important, such as when driving in
traffic or singing in a choir. In idea generation, however,
conformity can lead to "groupthink," where participants are
more concerned with approval than generating original ideas.
Research investigating evaluation apprehension has
shown some ambiguity. Colaros and Anderson (1969) found an
inverse relationship between imposed evaluation apprehension
and productivity, as would be expected. Maginn and Harris
(1980), however, discovered that the presence of "judge"
observers did not significantly affect productivity. The
only thing which is clear from the results of these two
studies is that "evaluation apprehension" is difficult to
guarantee, and even more difficult to quantify.
Social loafing
In social work contexts, both social loafing (Harkins,
1987 and Williams et al., 1981) and social facilitation

49
(Schauer, 1985 and Harkins, 1987) effects have been
identified. Which will occur seems dependent upon the
relationship of the group members and the environment in
which they are working (Harkins and Jackson, 1985 and Kerr
and Bruun, 1983).
Social loafing was minimized when group members were
co-workers, and competition was more of a factor. This
seems surprising at first, since we would like to think that
facilitation would occur simply because co-workers were all
"playing on the same team," or cooperating, rather than
competing. It is already becoming clear that the most
important factor in overcoming the barriers to group idea
generation will be the establishment of a supportive and
cooperative environment.
Production blocking
Production blocking occurs when a group member gets an
idea, but is unable to voice it immediately. While waiting
for a chance to contribute the idea, the owner of the idea
may simply forget it, or may use the intervening time to
become critical of their unvoiced idea, violating the
deferred judgement principle. Since group idea generation

50
techniques generally allot equal time for contributions by
each member, this particular barrier is much greater in
larger groups.
Overcoming the Barriers to Creative Thinking
There are two main ways to overcome the barriers to
creative thinkingby using a technique which eliminates the
barrier by design, or by imposing rules on top of the
technique which seek to specifically remove the barriers.
There are many techniques throughout the literature. A
discussion of these follows.
Techniques of Idea Generation
A great number of idea generation techniques have been
suggestedmany more than can be described here. Van Gundy
(1984) is an excellent compendium of techniques, detailing
some 30 individual techniques and 31 group techniques. The
division of the techniques into two groups seems to imply
that the individual techniques cannot be used by groups,
whereas many of them can. This, however, does not diminish
the usefulness of Van Gundy's work, which is an excellent

51
survey of methods which have been used at each stage of the
creative problem solving process.
Here, the discussion will focus on group techniques,
which will be used by the partnerships developing activities
through Engineering By Design, and should be incorporated
into design activities, to teach team skills. Since today's
students are not skilled in teamwork, as discussed earlier,
means they will need to become comfortable with the concept.
Short creative thinking warm-up exercises, as found in
Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) and others, are good tools
to get students in a cooperative frame of mind as well as
stimulate creativity.
Verbal brainstorming
This is the classical method invented by Osborn (1963).
The objective is for members of the group to verbalize their
ideas, which are intended to then stimulate the ideas of
others in the group. Osborn speculates that groups of five
should work best, but research to establish an optimum
number of members is inconclusive, as discussed earlier.
Osborn's two primary principles which define verbal
brainstorming are "deferment of judgement" and "quantity

52
breeds quality." Parns and Meadow (1959) found that
deferred judgement is a key factor in the generation of
ideas, as Osborn contends. Groups brainstorming using a
deferred judgement procedure produced 70% more "good" ideas
(in the same time period) than individuals attempting to
generate ideas without deferment. Removing the group
effect, individuals producing ideas on their own were also
found to have significant gains using deferred judgement.
Osborn's assertion that quantity inevitably produces
quality is perhaps the more difficult tenet to accept. We
are taught the "quality not quantity" approach at an early
age. There is support for Osborn's claim with respect to
idea generation (Chamberlain, 1944). Another argument for
quantity leading to quantity is one of probabilitythe more
ideas which are presented, the more ideas there should be of
an acceptable caliber. Osborn reports a study which compared
the number of good ideas generated in the first half of a
brainstorming session to the output of the second half of
the same session. The latter half had 78% greater
production of good ideas than the first half.
In order to stimulate new directions during brain
storming, Osborn identified nine types of thought-starter

53
questions shown below (tabular form of Osborn, 1963, p.
175-176, used by Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, 1995a, p. 211) .
Table 1 Nine Categories of Thought-Starter Questions
Question
Sub-questions
Put to
other uses?
New ways to use object as is?
Other uses if modified?
Adapt?
What else is like this?
What other ideas does this suggest?
Any idea in the past that could be
copied or adapted?
Modify?
Change meaning, color, motion,
sound, odor, taste, form, shape?
Other changes? New twist?
Magnify?
What to add? Greater frequency? Stronger?
Larger? Higher? Longer? Thicker?
Extra value? Plus ingredient? Multiply?
Exaggerate?
Minify?
What to subtract? Eliminate? Smaller?
Lighter? Slower? Split up?
Less frequent? Condense? Miniaturize?
Streamline? Understate?
Substitute?
Who else instead? What else instead?
Other place? Other time? Other ingredient?
Other material? Other process?
Other power source? Other approach?
Other tone of voice?
Rearrange?
Other layout? Other sequence? Change pace?
Other pattern? Change schedule?
Transpose cause and effect?
Reverse?
Opposites? Turn it backward?
Turn it upside down? Turn it inside out?
Mirror-reverse it?
Transpose positive and negative?

54
Other guidelines for Osborn's verbal brainstorming also
include encouraging wild ideas, which can spark divergent
thinking, and building from the ideas of others. The
latter, known as "hitchhiking," is given priority in
sessions where group members generally take turns in
presenting their ideas.
The classical verbal brainstorming, essentially as
Osborn introduced it, is the most common method used today.
Fabian (1990) refers to it as the "bread-and-butter"
process. Fabian also points out that, although the
principles are basically simple, they are not always
followed in practice, which has led to varying degrees of
success.
Brainwriting
In order to overcome additional barriers such as
production blocking and evaluation apprehension, some have a
adopted a written method for brainstorming, called
brainwriting. In this approach, ideas are written down in
cells on a piece of paper. Each row on the paper has three
cells. When a group member fills a row, they give up their
paper for another one. In this manner, ideas are

55
transferred among group members via the paper. This
technique has advantagesparticipants can write down their
ideas at their own pace, and the effects of more vocal or
dominating people are minimized. For these reasons, this
method is gaining popularity in the United States (Fabian,
1990). Although this technique helps more introverted group
members participate fully, it should only be used until a
group has developed a rapport. The reason I suggest this is
as follows: speaking and hearing stimulate greater cognitive
activity than writing and reading.6 This effect may be
mitigated somewhat by achieving visual stimulation by
encouraging brainwriting participants to draw pictures in
the cells.
Electronic brainstorming
In further attempts to eliminate creative barriers,
brainstorming has recently been computerized (Gallupe et
al., 1991 and Gallupe et al., 1992). In this process,
members each sit at their own computers, but their ideas are
automatically sent to other group members. Gallupe et al.
6Research to support this claim is discussed in the
following chapter.

56
(1991), found this method significantly reduced all three
barriers specific to group idea generation. While this is
an intriguing approach in a corporate setting, there is
little opportunity to exploit electronic brainstorming in
the classroom.
Force-fitting
Force-fitting, relating to apparently unrelated
concepts, is a technique often incorporated into other
techniques (Fabian, 1990). It necessarily introduces
novelty, and can be spontaneously be used if an idea
generation session becomes "stuck." Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine
(1995a) use this term very loosely, using it to refer to a
variety of methods for stimulating a group when it is
"stuck." De Bono (1970) refers to this method as "Random
Stimulation."
Morphological analysis
As its name would suggest, this technique focuses on
the form of the problem. Once the problem is stated, two or
three major dimensions are identified. Each dimension is
subdivided into categories. Ideas are then generated for

57
each combination of the subdivisions of the various
dimensions. Felder (1988) gives the example of devising a
mode of transportation. One dimension would be the medium
in or on which transportation occurs. Another dimension
would be the power source. This would lead to combinations
such as a cable-powered device to travel through air (such
as a ski lift) and an internal combustion powered device to
travel through water (a diesel submarine, for example).
Other combinations may spark new paths for development where
there is no existing method.
Idea Evaluation and Selection
In this stage, the process focuses on critical
thinking. The wild and crazy, impractical nature of idea
generation is absent here, and is replaced by the pragmatic,
utilitarian, and practical. There will still be new ideas
created in this stage, as practical concerns introduce
constraints which call for the adaptation of previous ideas.
Idea evaluation and selection as a part of the problem
process are important, but are generally overemphasized in

58
engineering education, as indicated by Lumsdaine and
Lumsdaine's choice of "engineer" as the persona
characterizing this stage. Von Oech (1986) uses the "judge"
persona, to whom Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) ascribe the
completion of this stage.
As was true in the case of idea generation, methods for
selecting the best choice abound. Van Gundy (1984) details
16 methods from advantage/disadvantage counting to weighting
systems. In the case of idea selection for creating
engineering design activities, little effort is expected.
In the event that more than one approach is viable and might
be selected, there is great opportunity for the combination
of multiple approaches within an educational context. In
the corporate community, of course, elimination of all but a
single path may be necessary, since each idea will have
development costs associated with it. But common to the
corporate objective and the educational objective is that
further testing is usually possible to determine the
feasibility of various ideas. A simple advantage/
disadvantage discussion, as would commonly be used, will
suffice in this context.

59
Solution Implementation
This is, of course, the most time consuming part of the
process. Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) assign the role of
"producer" to this stage. The image of a movie producer
certainly does not fit, since financial backing is not
enough to achieve successful implementation of an idea. If
we consider the term "producer" from a more general
perspective, as a person who creates the end product, it is
then acceptable. More apt, it seems, is the von Oech (1986)
persona, the warrior. Solution implementation requires a
tenacity and a passion, even a relentlessness, to achieve
the objective.
In the case of the students themselves, the solution
reached as a result of problem solving has traditionally not
been implemented. This is at times cost prohibitive.
However, it is vital that students complete the process at
least some of the time, for a number of reasons. Without
completing the process, students will not see "the big
picture" of problem solving through to its conclusion.
Students will usually have the most to learn during the

60
implementation stagethey will discover which assumptions
they made were not valid, run into unanticipated
difficulties, and have to improvise and improve their
design. The eliminating of implementation from the design
process leaves students with the understanding that all
designs which can be put on paper are viable designs, a
dangerous fallacy. We must strive to disabuse students of
this notion.
We must instead consider the cost of implementation as
a significant factor in designing the creative design
activity itself. Approaches to reducing implementation cost
will be included in the discussion of the prototype design
activity in chapter 4.
Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) and von Oech (1986)
include evaluation within this last stage. In Engineering
By Design, evaluation of the implemented solution is treated
separately. As crucial as program assessment is, it must
receive adequate attention. It is integrated throughout the
process of creative problem solving, not constrained to
attention during the final stage.

61
Summary of Approach Chosen for Methodology
Recognizing that objective definition may be much more
nebulous than under traditional circumstances, the problem
definition stage was broken down into multiple stages. For
example, one potential objective is "to keep students
occupied after school has formally ended, preferably with
some educational pursuit." Seeking simplicity, especially
in working with in-service teachers who are likely not as
trained in problem solving techniques as engineers,
classical brainstorming was chosen during the idea
generation phase. Blocking and other barriers are not
expected to be significant, since groups are expected to be
small, comprised of 1-2 teachers/professors and 1-2
engineers.
Advantage/disadvantage listing are expected to be
sufficient in the idea selection stage. Solution
implementation is expected to be feasible by the nature of
the design objectives. Evaluation and assessment receive
special attention in an added stage.
There is one more stage which is added to Engineering
By Design: a stage which is intended to ensure that the

62
activity is educationally complete, tapping higher level
thinking skills and reaching students with all learning
styles. The foundation for this stage will be laid in
chapter 3.

CHAPTER 3
LEARNING AND TEACHING
To achieve the desired end of creating educationally
sound activities for teaching engineering, appropriate
teaching methods must be understood and applied, and are
studied here. K-12 teachers who graduate from education
programs receive training in educational psychology, which
includes the study of how students learn and of how teachers
teach, called pedagogy. Few college professors receive this
sort of training. James Stice (1987a, p. 95-96) describes
how he became a professor and learned to teach:
I found that I enjoyed it hugely and decided to make
college teaching my career. ... If you gave [the
students] a problem that was a little different from
what they had seen before, they were stumped. How
could I [teach a deeper understanding] to a class of
thirty students? I lacked the resources at the time.
So, I lectured and did what I could to help those who
came to see me after class.
Twenty-three years passed, and I learned some things
about the craft of teaching. Larry Grayson introduced
me to the idea of using instructional objectives,
Dwight Schott showed me the wisdom of teaching and
testing at higher levels of Bloom's Taxonomy (Bloom,
1956)...
63

64
As in Stice's case, most professors who are good at
teaching have become so by virtue of trial-and-error, having
little or no training or study in what he calls "the craft
of teaching." This situation is compounded by the current
academic incentive and reward system, under which research
interests must take priority over teaching, and faculty who
are outstanding teachers but merely adequate researchers are
never granted tenure or are relegated to an inferior
position (Felder, 1994).
Application of the Engineering By Design methodology is
intended to influence the current situation in two ways.
The first is for engineering professors to become aware of
the issues of educational psychology. The methodology
clearly does not provide training in those areas, but can at
least increase awareness and point the way for those
interested in improving student learning.
A second is in establishing a framework to support the
partnership of engineers with teachers. As stated earlier,
each party brings different knowledge to this partnership.
Teachers stand to gain insight into the engineering design
process and the application of scientific knowledge.
Engineering educators, on the other hand, stand to benefit

65
from learning how the teacher approaches the educational
process.
Here, educational psychology will be divided into four
areasdevelopment, learning, pedagogy, and individual
differences. An overview of each area will be given and the
impact on the Engineering By Design methodology will be
discussed. The discussion primarily follows the structure
of Slavin (1988).
Development
Prior to this century, continuous theories of
development purported that children think as adults do, but
lack the observation and practice which will allow them to
reach the same conclusions. In this century, Piaget
introduced the concept of development through stages, or
discontinuous development. Since that time, stage theories
have been generally accepted, and such theories have been
developed in three realms of development: cognitive, social
(and personal), and moral.

66
Cognitive Development
The best known theorist of cognitive development is
Jean Piaget, a biologist who applied biological principles
to the psychological studies which he began by analyzing the
behavior of his own children (Slavin, 1988). Piaget's four
stages are sensorimotor, preoperational, concrete
operational, and formal operational. Here, the sensorimotor
stage will be taken for granted, as that stage lasts from
birth to two years, and students in the K-12 system have
moved into the preoperational stage.
The preoperational stage
This stage lasts from age 2 to 7, and is characterized
by a child's development of the ability to use symbols to
represent objects. This includes at the early part of the
stage the ability to understand the difference between an
image (in a photograph, mirror, etc.) and the actual object,
and in the later stages includes the mastery of using the
alphabet and numbers.
Thinking at this stage is strongly influenced by
egocentrism, and a child will normally assume that all

67
things exist to serve some purpose for them (Piaget and
Inhelder, 1956). Egocentrism precludes the possibility of
solving many problems, because it introduces such a large
constraint (e.g. that any solution must involve the child)
(Owen et al., 1981). In this stage, a child's thinking is
generally centered, or focused on a single characteristic at
a time. For example, when comparing two objects for size, a
child may focus only on the height, and assume the taller
one is larger, regardless of the width of the shorter
object.
In this stage, certain problem solving concepts are
lacking. They do not understand conservation, demonstrated
by pouring the same quantity of liquid from one container to
one of a different shape. Children who do not grasp the
principle of conservation are likely to think the amount of
liquid has changed. The concept of reversibility is also
absent. Reversibility is necessary to change the direction
of a process to return to the original position. A child
who does not understand reversibility will likely think that
two halves of a sandwich are more sandwich than the whole.
The logical processes with which we make conclusions based
on such principles as reversibility and conservation are

68
called operations, hence the definition of this stage as
pre-operational. A pre-operational child does not relate
the previous experience of seeing the sandwich as a whole to
the new experience of seeing it cut in four pieces
(Phillips, 1975).
The fact that children move from this stage into the
next, concrete operational, during the elementary years (at
~7 years of age) has significant implications. The
SouthEastern Consortium for Minorities in Engineering
(SECME) received a $260,000 grant in 1994 from the Carnegie
Corporation to develop a K-5 model of their successful
program which previously served only grades 6-12 (Leake,
1994). Since the younger students in that group are pre-
operational, they require a very different approach. Those
students, given the same information as those in the next
stage, are likely to draw conclusions which have severe
logical flaws (Piaget, 1962).
These same developmental considerations have affected
the implementation of the Emerging Engineers after school
curriculum materials designed by Dorothy Turner of the
Alachua County School District (Turner, 1996). Mrs. Turner
and I have found in field-testing the curriculum that the

69
younger elementary school children are overwhelmed by parts
of the activities which children even a year or two older
are able to grasp. As a result, the youngest are typically
relegated to carrying out work (using only motor skills) as
directed by their older peers. This does not imply that the
activities are wasted on the younger children. Those
children are still learning social skills, cooperation,
teamwork, etc., while participating in a technical activity.
They are not, as are the older children, engaged in the more
advanced process of problem solving.
The concrete operational stage
This stage is characterized by a child's development of
the concepts of conservation and reversibility. In this
stage, children are able to decenter their thinking,
focusing on multiple parameters. Children can separate
themselves from their surroundings, overcoming the
egocentrism characteristic of the preoperational stage
(Slavin, 1988). Because of these advances, children develop
an increased ability to think logically (Phillips, 1975) .
This stage of development lasts from approximately age 7 to
age 11.

70
One key to problem solving, the ability to infer, is
developed during this stage as well. Pre-operational
children will describe things only as they appear, whereas
in this stage, children will use other information to draw
their conclusions (Flavell, 1986). Other important skills
which appear during this stage include inversion (negative/
positive concepts), reciprocity (if Tom is taller than
Sally, then Sally is shorter than Tom), and inclusion (the
ability to compare part to whole) (Slavin, 1988) Knowing
that these concepts are developing in children in this age
range (through the end of elementary school) alerts us to
target their development in the younger children in the
range and their advancement in older children in the range.
Flavell (1985) describes this stage as one in which
children take a very practical-minded approach to solving
problems. This follows Piaget's conclusion that abstract
thinking skills are weak during this stage. This stage is
therefore a crucial one for the use of hands-on activities.
Children at this stage will have difficulty making any
progress toward understanding any concept for which a
physical model is not produced.

71
The formal operational stage
This stage lasts from approximately 11 years of age to
adulthood. Here is where abstract thinking is fully
developed. Individuals in this stage can approach problem
solving systematically, analyzing one factor at a time
(Inhelder and Piaget, 1958). In this stage, form is
distinct from content, and conclusions may be drawn by
analogy. Slavin (1988) indicates that formal operational
ability permits individuals to consider hypothetical or
potential situations.
Slavin's wording identifies an important issueif
children cannot discern potential situations, can they be
taught such concepts as potential energy (and its conversion
to other forms)? What about changes of states of matter?
What it does tell us is this: if we are to teach such
subjects to children before the formal operations stage, we
must use concrete examples which demonstrate the process.
Dry ice, for example is a solid, but there is visible
evidence of the sublimation process. Such examples will be
the hallmark of successful teaching prior to the formal
operational stage.

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Comments on Piaget's theory
While Piaget's theory is clearly still at the forefront
of the study of human development, other researchers have
sought to clarify and question his theory. Gardner (1982)
and Price (1982) demonstrated that it may be possible to
teach some principles (such as conservation) to children
prior to the concrete operational stage. Other researchers
(Donaldson, 1978, Black, 1981, Gelman, 1979, and Nagy and
Griffiths, 1982) showed that there are early signs of some
Piagetian principles, even though the principles may not be
fully developed.
Other parts of Piaget's theory have been challenged
(Miller, 1983 and Nagy and Griffiths, 1982), but there are
still clear lessons to be learned. Most important are the
significant differences of which we must be aware when
working with children of different ages. Elementary school
children, for example, cannot simply be taught with an over
simplified version of a middle or high school lesson.
Instead, the entire educational approach must address their
cognitive level. On the other hand, since by middle school
most students will have entered the formal operational
stage, we can expect quite a lot from them. A well posed

73
design activity has the ability to stimulate a great deal of
learning even at that age, because the tools needed for
problem solution are fully developed. All the middle school
student lacks is experience and knowledge, which vary
greatly anyway. Therefore, if a design project begins by
giving formal operational students the opportunity to
observe phenomena themselves, they should be able to draw
valid conclusions in order to proceed.
Personal and Social Development
Education, especially higher education, is primarily
thought of as the champion of cognitive development. Social
development is also of tantamount importance throughout the
education process. Such skills as teamwork and inter
personal communication depend heavily on social development.
Issues of underrepresentation of women, minorities, and even
people of certain thinking types all have roots which extend
into the realm of social development.
As was the case in cognitive development, the prominent
theory here is a stage theory. Personal and social
development consists of the development of an individual's

74
relationship to self, other people, and society. Sigmund
Freud may be best known in this field, but Erikson, trained
as a psychoanalyst by Freud, identified eight stages in this
realm of development. Table 2 lists Erikson's eight stages
and the psychological crisis which must be resolved at each
stage (Slavin, 1988, p.38).
Table 2 Erikson's Stages of Personal and Social Development
Stage
Approximate
Psychological
Age range
Crisis
I
Birth-18 mo.
Trust vs. Mistrust
II
18 mo.-3 yr.
Autonomy vs. Doubt
III
3-6 yr.
Initiative vs. Guilt
IV
6-12 yr.
Industry vs. Inferiority
V
12-18 yr.
Identity vs. Role confusion
VI
Young Adulthood
Intimacy vs. Isolation
VII
Middle Adulthood
Generativity vs. Self-absorption
VIII
Late Adulthood
Integrity vs. Despair
When cognitive stages were discussed, the one occurring
prior to elementary school was not discussed. Here, even
the first two must be discussed, because the way in which
each individual resolves each crisis affects their approach
to problems later in the educational process. Stages VI on,
however, will not be covered. It should be recognized that

75
those later stages may have implications regarding
continuing education, which is not the focus here.
Trust vs. mistrust
In this stage, the child should learn to trust
(Erikson, 1968). This trust is generally founded in a
maternal figure. If a child's mother does not meet the
child's needs of love, stability, and security, the child is
likely to develop a mistrust in the world. In education,
this will lead to a variety of attitudes, e.g.: skepticism,
cynicism, and negativism.
Autonomy vs. doubt
During this stage, children seek independence and
autonomy. Supportive parents will help a child develop a
sense of autonomy within bounds. If a child is not
encouraged to do this, or worse, restricted so that he or
she cannot do this, the self-confidence of the child
suffers. Children who do not successfully resolve the
crisis of this stage are hindered in the development of
their self-esteem and leadership skills.

76
Initiative vs. guilt
This stage brings with it relentless exploration of
relationships and the world. Not surprisingly, the end of
this stage closely corresponds to the beginning of Piaget's
concrete operational stage of cognitive development. It is
likely that the exhaustive exploration of one's surroundings
that permits the cognitive transition to take place.
Erikson characterizes the child's attitude in this stage as
"I am what I can imagine I will be" (Erikson, 1980) What
Erikson indicates that failure to resolve this crisis
properly causes children to feel guilty about natural
impulses (Slavin, 1988).
The term "guilt" seems inadequate to describe this
result. The more natural negative consequence is
timidityreluctance to explore, fear of the new, distaste
for change. These outcomes lead directly to significant
barriers to thinking, and can have wide ranging effects in
the educational process. On Erikson's time scale, children
will enter the K-12 educational system before this stage
ends, and so the early years of elementary school are a
venue for fostering the more positive outcomes. Discovery
learning (Bruner, 1966), which aims at the development of

77
Piagetian principles and concepts, is also well supported by
Erikson's theory.
Considering the importance of nurturing the exploration
phase of development, this clearly supports the
implementation of such programs as Head Start (Department of
Health and Human Services, 1996), founded in 1965 by the
Federal government, which can provide a discovery
environment for children who are otherwise at an economic
disadvantage.
Industry vs. inferiority
A time of tremendous learning, this stage finds
children learning much by trial-and-error, since their
logical processes are not yet developed. It is at this
stage that the use of failure as a tool for learning must be
emphasized. Otherwise, children may focus on the failure,
which will stunt their continued learning. Since this stage
is from 6 to 12 years of age, elementary school is the time
to ensure this message is taught clearly to students.
Activities at this level should allow children to
explore false paths as rigorously as true ones, and provide
only the most basic problem structure. It is important,

78
when evaluation is performed, that unsuccessful attempts are
praised for their merit as learning tools. Since children
in this stage generally enter this stage believing that they
can and will succeed (Entwistle and Hayduk, 1981), the most
critical challenge is to provide for multiple paths to
success and multiple measures by which success is measured
(Cohen, 1984).
Enhancing children's understanding that there are
multiple paths to success will also strengthen their
creative thinking skills, since they will be encouraged to
seek alternative solutions.
Identity vs. role confusion
It is the nature of this stage of development which
makes many afraid of working with middle school students.
With the variety of physiological changes that occur from 12
years to 18 years comes a redefinition of the identity
established through the earlier stages. At the beginning,
the independence that an adolescent seeks causes them to
experiment socially, at times adopting severe and anti
social behavior. There is also a characteristic heightening
of the importance of the relationship to peers. Under such

79
conditions, parental influence diminishes, and peer
influence, both positive and negative, can have a
significant impact on development.
This stage continues to the end of high school, when
the final part of identity is established as students choose
career paths. If students do not establish a strong sense
of identity through this stage, they will suffer from what
Erikson terms "role confusion." The increased role of the
peer group in this stage indicates that group activities are
vital as well. Cooperative learning strategies, discussed
later in this chapter, will help focus adolescents toward
success as part of a team.
Moral Development
Although at first this seems irrelevant, especially in
an educational system so shaped by secular humanism, there
is much of moral development which affects the educational
process. Moral development will not only find impact in
ethics, which should be integral with the engineering
process, but also in the nature of "rules" and how they are
interpreted. Morals also have bearing on social

80
interaction, and are thus an issue for developing
cooperation, especially in a pluralistic society. In
addition to his work in cognitive development, Piaget (1964)
studied this facet of development. Piaget's theory of the
moral reasoning was extended by Kohlberg (1963, 1969).
Piaget's theory accounts for only two stages of moral
development, formed by watching children play marbles. The
children's reasoning concerning the rules of the game
yielded insight into their moral development. The first
stage, called heteronomous morality, begins at approximately
the point at which children make the transition from
preoperational to concrete operational thinking. Prior to
this stage, the children's concept of rules was not fully
formed. The youngest children did not know what rules were,
and those up to approximately age 6 did not grasp the
purpose or nature of rules. Piaget therefore assumes that
morality is not possible prior to that stage, since the
concept of rules is not even understood. A brief discussion
of the two stages follows.
The first stage, heteronomous morality, is dominated by
moral reasoning which is imposed by consequence. Rules are
seen as inflexible, and are enforced by an external

81
authority. The second stage, autonomous morality, arises
when the egocentrism of younger children gives way to the
concern for others. Here, fairness is expected, and rules
are can be flexible but should be agreed upon. In the
second stage, intent becomes as important or more important
than the action itself.
Further conclusions regarding the impact of moral
development on the educational process will be made on the
basis of Kohlberg's theory, summarized in table 3.
Table 3 Kohlberg's Stages of Moral Reasoning
Level/Stage
Description
Preconventional
Level
Rules are set down by others
Stage 1
Punishment and obedience orientation
Stage 2
Instrumental relativist orientation
Conventional
Level
Individual adopts rules and will
sometimes subordinate own needs
to those of the group
Stage 3
"Good Boy-Good Girl" orientation
Stage 4
"Law and Order" orientation
Postconventional
Level
People define own values in terms of
ethical principles they have chosen to
follow
Stage 5
Social contract orientation
Stage 6
Universal ethical principle orientation

82
Note that Piaget's two stages are encompassed by
Kohlberg's three levels of two stages each. Whereas Piaget
studied the moral implications of children at play, Kohlberg
analyzed their responses to moral dilemmas, hypothetical
situations which force an individual to make moral
decisions.
Preconventional level
Stage 1 of this level is similar to Piaget's
heteronomous stage, and is characterized by obedience to
avoid punishment. In stage 2, however, children grow to
include the consideration of the interests of others,
although their own interests will normally still take
precedence. According to Kohlberg (1969), this stage can
last until age nine.
During the early years of elementary school, therefore,
we must assume that students will not consider the benefit
of their classmates in their decisions. The result of this
is that activities which involve younger elementary school
children should have clear consequences and rewards.
In the later elementary years, in stage 2, we can make
more significant progress in the development of teamwork

83
skills. One example of the application of this would be in
the sharing of equipment during an activity. Clear rules as
to how the equipment is to be shared should be established
ahead of time.
Conventional level
Stage 3 is the first of the conventional level, which
is very similar to Piaget's autonomous state. Acceptance is
important in this cooperative stage, and is gained by
finding those things that please others. Hogan and Emler
(1978) describe this stage as focusing on the "Golden Rule."
Since students in this stage are able to assume the
perspective of others, they can modify their behavior for
the benefit of their team, their class, the teacher, and
others. This stage is not surprisingly concomitant with the
onset of the adolescent strengthening of peer relationships
described by Erikson. The combination of this stage of
moral development and the simultaneous stage of social
development make this the most critical time to develop
teamwork skills.
Stage 4 heralds the replacement of the "rules of the
pack," which govern peer acceptance, by the rules of

84
society, or laws. During this stage, it is assumed that
breaking the law is always wrong. The effects of peer
pressure are strong until the social stage of young
adulthood and, as a result, this stage may not begin until
that time. As educators, we must encourage this stage to
develop, and strive for ushering the next level of moral
reasoning. According to Slavin (1988), fewer than 25% of
the population will advance beyond stage 4.
Postconventional level
This level, the most advanced, recognizes that laws can
be changed and are subject to a higher set of ethical
principles established by the individual. After his
original work (1969) Kohlberg later concluded that there is
little separation of stage 5 and stage 6 (Slavin, 1988) .
This stage is necessary for influencing and evaluating the
existing laws. This level of moral reasoning will be
necessary to evaluate some moral dilemmas presented in
engineering issues. To prepare students for such tasks, we
must ensure that they advance to the postconventional level.
This can be done be discussing laws and their purpose, as
well as through the examination of moral dilemmas.

85
Overall Effect of Developmental Stages
The presence of some stages will limit the nature of
the activities which are appropriate for students. In other
cases, we must keep in mind the developmental level of the
students to make sure we expect them to strive, but not to
make objectives so far ahead as to cause frustration. With
respect to Erikson's stages of social development,
understanding the crises that can be anticipated throughout
a student's development not only helps us as educators to
direct that development, but also to understand certain
behaviors exhibited by students.
Learning
Learning, as opposed to development, depends on
experience. Learning and development are clearly
intertwined, but the distinction is intended to separate
those parts of a child's growth which we can affect
(learning) from those which we cannot (development), which
result from the physiological maturation of the human brain.
A child is constantly experiencing many things: the

86
temperature in the room, the clothing choice of the student
next to them, the noise made when they tap their feet on the
tile floor, and even the voice of the teacher. These pieces
of experience going on all around a student are known as
stimuli. Of the many stimuli we are bombarded with at any
one time, we only consciously notice a small portion. For
example, predictable, repetitive noises, such as an air
conditioner or a clock, which can easily be heard, become
relegated to the subconscious.
How stimuli are internalized is the subject of various
learning theories. Learning has been viewed from two
primary perspectives, behavior and cognition, leading to two
branches of learning theory.
Behavioral Learning Theory
The focus of behavioral learning theories is the way in
which positive or negative consequences can be used
respectively to encourage and discourage certain behaviors.
Because such behaviors are readily observed, such as the
completion of homework, research in this field frequently
focuses on the behavior of animals.

87
Conditioning
Pavlov's classical conditioning theory is well known
(Pavlov, 1960). An unrelated stimulus (such as the ringing
of a bell) can be associated with a positive consequence
(the presentation of food) for a dog. As a result, the dog
can be conditioned to salivate when the bell is rung,
regardless of the presentation of food. While Pavlov's work
stimulated new directions in learning research, it has
little application here, because if the researcher continues
to ring the bell without the presentation of food, the
conditioning will be lost.
Thorndike (1932) similarly proposed the Law of Effect,
stating that actions rewarded by positive consequences are
reinforced and actions resulting in negative consequences
are discouraged.
Whereas Pavlov and Thorndike examined situations where
there was a clearly desirable stimulus involved, Skinner
established an environment where there was no clear positive
consequence, much like a child growing up in its
environment. Skinner placed rats in a box with all stimuli
controlled by the experimenter. A bar which could be
pressed by the rat was present in the box. Although the rat

88
cannot anticipate any pleasant consequence from pressing the
bar, the rat does it anyway, as a child will explore his or
her surroundings. Upon pressing the bar, the rat receives a
food pellet. This consequence reinforces the rats behavior,
making the rat more likely to press the bar. Experiments
involving what is now known as the "Skinner box" and those
which followed have led to the development of the
classification of various learning principles which follow.
Consequences
Consequences are the results of behavior. Positive and
negative consequences are referred to as reinforcers and
punishers respectively.
Reinforcers. It is the effect of a consequence that
defines that consequence as a reinforcerit must encourage
the original behavior to recur. As a result, a particular
consequence which is observed to function as a reinforcer
may not continue to function as a reinforcer indefinitely.
For example, while a hug from a teacher may be an excellent
reinforcer in elementary school, it is not generally
effective in the adolescent years. It is also the case that

89
reinforcers which work for one individual will not
necessarily work for another individual. While playing in
the tub may be a reinforcer for some children, but not
particularly useful in reinforcing the behavior of a cat.
Reinforcers can be either primary or secondary.
Primary reinforcers are those which satisfy basic needs,
such as food, water, love, and security. Secondary
reinforcers are consequences which are assessed an
importance because of a relationship which has been
established to a primary reinforcer. For example, praise is
a secondary reinforcer, because it can enhance a child's
security.
Reinforcers can also be categorized as positive or
negative. Positive reinforcers are most commonpleasant
consequences to encourage good behavior. Negative
reinforcers are, on the other hand, exemptions from unwanted
responsibilities.
Punishers. Consequences intended to discourage a
specified behavior are considered punishers. These are not
the same as negative reinforcers, which reinforce good
behavior by allowing children to avoid something seen as

90
negative. Just as with reinforcers, it is success in
stopping the unwanted behavior which proves a consequence to
qualify as a punisher. If a selected consequence gives an
adolescent perceived status among his or her peers, the
consequence will serve as a positive reinforcer of the
unwanted behavior, rather than as a punisher.
Although punishers have been shown to be effective
(Hall et al., 1971), it is generally agreed that punishers
should only be used when attempts at reinforcing the
corresponding appropriate behavior have failed (Slavin,
1988) .
Immediacy of consequences
The time relationship of behavior and consequences is
obviously very critical. If the food pellet were delivered
to the rat in Skinner's experiment even a single minute
after pressing the bar, the rat might be doing something
else (like walking around) at the time, and the latter
behavior would be reinforced instead. It is clear that to
be most effective, consequences should follow behavior
immediately or as quickly as possible (Leach and Graves,
1973) .

91
One way in which this affects design activities was
discussed earlierwhen students design a solution to a
problem, it is very important for them to proceed to
implementing the solution, in order to experience the
consequences of their design. If implementation is not
possible, then some form of feedback should substitute for
it. This may take the form of having student teams give
presentations of their designs with evaluation by the
teacher.
Shaping
Shaping is the process of reinforcing the behaviors
which are intermediate steps toward an established goal.
This is common even in higher educationfirst students are
taught and tested in drawing free-body diagrams, then
internal forces can be analyzed. If an instructor moved
directly into analyzing internal forces without verifying
(through homework and/or testing) student understanding of
free-body diagrams, misconceptions would persist and hinder
student progress. The key in shaping desired behaviors is
that the final goal is broken down into steps which stretch
the skills of the students, but do not cause the students to

92
be overwhelmed. Shaping, therefore, requires knowledge of
the current level of the students.
Extinction
Of course, any learned behavior will diminish and
eventually become extinct if reinforcement for it is
completely withdrawn (Williams, 1959, Wolf et al., 1965,
and Zimmerman and Zimmerman, 1962). This is good news in
the case of negative behaviors which have previously
reinforced, such as behaviors learned with previous teachers
and habits formed in the K-12 system which are no longer
adequate in higher education. Ideally, for all positive
behaviors and learned skills, new reinforcers naturally
occur. The same, of course, occurs with skills, which dull
if not exercised.
Discrimination
To achieve a desired goal, the students must know what
it is. For grades to serve as an effective reinforcer,
students must know what is expected to receive a good grade.
This allows the student to discriminate between the actions
which will or will not contribute to their grade.

93
Generalization
A shortcut to learning new concepts is generalization
from previous learning. Generalizations might not occur
naturally, however, and should be identified wherever
possible. In creating an activity, the designer should seek
something from the students' own experience in which to
ground the activity. This will permit the generalization of
the knowledge the students already possess.
Modeling
Modeling is the process by which students learn by
watching others. Bandura (1969, 1977) proposes that humans
learn much by example rather than by consequences. There
are many applications of this principle. If a teacher is
enthusiastic about introducing a design project, students
will be more enthusiastic about doing it.
This principle is effective to the point that students
will imitate other students whose behaviors are reinforced.
Thus reinforcing any student in a group is beneficial to the
group as a whole. This principle is known as vicarious
learning (Broden et al., 1970). A critical application of
this principle is when students ask questions. If the

94
behavior of asking questions is reinforced, all the students
will be more likely to ask questions.
Self-regulation
Students are also able to reinforce their own behavior
(Meichenbaum and Goodman, 1971, Meichenbaum, 1977, Wilson,
1984, Kendall, 1981, Bornstein, 1985, Drabman et al., 1973,
Rosenbaum and Drabman, 1982, and Broden et al., 1971) This
is best done by providing the students with a list of
intermediary objectives (or by having them develop their own
list) to use as a checklist to monitor progress.
Other applications of behavioral learning theory
The lessons of how to reinforce good behavior are of
obvious importance when we work with younger children, but
it has generally been assumed in higher education that our
students are self-motivated. Increasingly, this is not the
case. As a higher percentage of the population seeks
college instruction, many students drift into higher
education simply because it is expected. The most common
reinforcer in higher education is the use of grades. Grades
are a secondary reinforcer, because they have no intrinsic

95
valuetheir value must be taught. Grades can also be a
punisher, because a student who does not achieve certain
grades may have to take courses again or not be able to
pursue desired courses or even a major. Grades also
generally do not satisfy the immediacy of consequences
principle, either. Periodic (but not necessarily
predictable) quizzes or other assessment can help.
Returning assignments quickly is also important.
The other principles find similar application in higher
education, especially in today's climate, in which such a
large percentage of the population matriculate in college.
Self-regulation is the best objective for higher education,
but students must be taught that process if they have not
learned it in the K-12 system.
Cognitive Learning Theory
There has been a great revolution in the study of
cognitive learning since World War I (Slavin, 1988) .
Concepts such as short term and long term memory are
commonly understood to the extent that they are important
here. Therefore, this section will only discuss those

96
principles which can be affected through activity design.
This will include barriers and facilitators to learning
which have been studied by cognitive researchers, especially
those which encourage long-term retention of learned
information.
Interference
This is a common barrier to establishing information in
long-term memory (Postman and Underwood, 1973) Peterson
and Peterson (1959) showed that people permitted to absorb
information without being disturbed were more likely to
retain it than people who were given more information during
an equivalent amount of time. This indicates that simply
pausing while information is mentally rehearsed and passed
from short-term to long-term memory is of educational
benefit. Other ways to encourage the transfer of
information from short-term to long-term memory is through
repetition, including applying new information to a novel
situation.
Retroactive inhibition is the process of confusing new
information with information previously learned. For
example, many students in high school physics have no

97
problem learning and applying the right hand rule until the
left hand rule of other phenomena is introduced later. When
the right hand rule is the only choice, students are able to
apply it. After the new information is introduced (the left
hand rule) and the students must choose which rule to apply,
retroactive inhibition causes them to lose the ability to
apply the original rule (until they master both concepts
together). The key characteristic here is the loss of
previous information or skills.
Proactive inhibition is characterized by the
interference of learning new information because of
previously learned information. If the response in the
above case was that students continued to use the right hand
rule in all cases, the case would be one of proactive
inhibition, because the previous information was retained,
but prevented the learning of new information (the left hand
rule). Inhibition can be minimized by varying the
presentation technique when presenting different material
(Andre, 1973 and Andre et al., 1976).
Retroactive and proactive facilitation can also occur.
Slavin (1988) uses the example of learning foreign
languages. An American student who studies Latin might

98
better understand English through the process. This would
be an example of retroactive facilitation. If, on the other
hand, a student found that the study of one romance language
(Italian, say) facilitated the study of a second romance
language (e.g. Spanish), this would be an example of
proactive facilitation.
Primacy and recency
Another useful piece of information is that if a number
of concepts are learned, those at the beginning and the end
are retained best (Stigler, 1978, Rundus and Atkinson, 1970,
and Greene, 1986). This has profound implications for the
structure of a planned activity or lesson.
Mnemonics
There are many techniques to improve the process of
transferring information from short-term to long-term
memory. Such techniques are called mnemonics (Higbee,
1979). Among the best are those that rely on imagery
(Anderson and Hidde, 1971). For example, when I present the
Truss Bridge Laboratory (the prototype design activity
discussed in the next chapter) to adult groups, I ask them

99
to recall the meaning of truss they already know.7 By doing
this, I have given them a mental image which gives insight
to the function of a truss in the engineering sense of the
wordto support or gird up. This technique would not be
effective in teaching Introduction to Engineering, however,
as the majority of freshmen will not be familiar with the
former meaning.
Practice
Earlier it was discussed that allowing time for mental
rehearsal helped students transfer information from short
term to long-term memory. Not surprisingly, overt practice
has an even greater effect. The kind of intensive practice
involved in cramming for a test is known as massed practice.
This example immediately identifies the greatest failing of
the methodalthough initial mastery is facilitated by this
approach, long-term retention is best achieved through
distributed practice. In distributed practice, concepts are
practiced a little each day over a period of time. This,
7"A device consisting of a pad usually supported by a belt
for maintaining a hernia in a reduced state." Random House
Webster's Electronic Dictionary, College Edition, version
1.5, 1994.

100
obviously, is the intent of homework. Another interesting
point is that students benefit from continued practice after
mastery has already been achieved. This is known as
overlearning (Krueger, 1929), a principle which has led to
approaches such as drilling of basic facts.
Organization
Classification of information is important for its
successful transfer to long-term memory. Various ways to
help students organize information have been effective
(Ausubel, 1960 and 1963, Ausubel and Youssef, 1963, Hartley
and Davies, 1976, Lawton and Wanska, 1977, Mayer, 1979, Van
Patten et al., 1986, Bower et al., 1969, and Shimmerlick,
1978).
Instructors at all levels generally recognize the
benefit of organizing their lessons. Less understood,
however, is that students benefit immensely from having that
organizational layout shown to them. Hierarchical outlines
are very effective in this regard. When hierarchy is not
well suited to the material being covered, even an agenda is
helpful. This coordinates well with the principle of self-
regulation discussed within behavioral learning theoryif

101
students are informed at the outset of the objectives of a
lesson, the path they should take to succeed is clearer.8
Common elements of cognitive principles
There are many other approaches to improve learning.
Questions can encourage students to fill in gaps or
anticipate what might happen (Felder, 1988, Rickards, 1979,
Berliner, 1968, and Rothkopf, 1965). Questions presented
prior to instruction can narrow students' thinking, however
(Hamilton, 1985 and Hamaker, 1986). Also important is that
questions not imitate the instructional material, but
manipulate it so as to force students to think about it
(Andre and Sola, 1976 and Andre and Womak, 1978). Having
students assess important issues through outlining (Anderson
and Armbruster, 1984 and Van Patten et al., 1986) or
summarization (Doctorow et al., 1978 and Brown et al., 1983)
are also effective.
The key to the principles mentioned here and others
(Slavin, 1988) is that a higher level of processing of
8The same principle applies to research subjects, as will be
addressed in chapter 5; knowing the expected outcome of the
research can influence their behavior.

102
information seems to root that information in the long-term
memory. Specific identification of higher levels of
processing will follow in the next section. Different
students will respond to different approaches. This makes
it important to understand and to be able to use the many
approaches detailed above. A deeper understanding of the
differences among children will also be helpful. These
differences will be discussed in greater detail in the next
section as well.
Pedagogy
Pedagogy is the study of teaching. There are two main
issues heredeciding what to teach and how to teach it. The
process of selecting what to teach begins with society's
needs and ends in the classroom. How to teach begins with
educational research and can include formal training in
educational methods. The discussion here will begin with
how educational aims, statements of what to teach, are
developed.

103
Educational Aims
In formulating what we are to teach, we must eventually
develop specific instructional objectives and standards by
which mastery is to be measured. Because they are so
important, instructional objectives are the first order of
instruction discussed by Slavin (1988) and others. The
process does not simply begin with instructional objectives,
however. Formulating more general goals is an important
step, and is included by Kubiszyn and Borich (1993) .
Especially since the goal stage is incorporated into the
Engineering By Design methodology in chapter 4, the early
stages of the "what to teach" process will be discussed
further here.
Goals
Goals are the most general specifications of desired
educational outcome. "To learn archery" is a goal, but in
no way describes the teaching method or the mastery level
students are expected to achieve. This is what sets goals
apart from instructional objectives. Because they are not
specific, goals have a number of interesting propertiesthey

104
do not change rapidly; they are usually established at a
high level, such as by society, by the school board, by the
American Society of Engineering Education (ASEE), by the
Accreditation Board of Engineering and Technology (ABET),
etc.; and they provide a great deal of flexibility. More
examples of goals are given in the design of the methodology
in chapter 4.
General educational program objectives
These objectives are more specific than goals, but not
as specific as instructional objectives. They have more
focus than goals, and are measurable, but are still broad
with respect to outcomes and time scale. In the public
school system, these are generally established by the school
administration in response to school board goals. In higher
education, these are set at the college or departmental
level.
Instructional objectives
Paramount in teaching is the establishment of
instructional objectives. Objectives identify what is to be
taught. The may specify factual information, skills,

105
concepts, behavior, and anything else that might be taught.
Implicit in the design of instructional objectives is that
their outcomes be measurable. Because they are so specific,
they may be directed toward individuals or groups within a
class. Instructional objectives are therefore developed by
the teacher, but must still be in line with the educational
program objectives and the goals which have already been
established.
An example using all three levels of educational aims
The Hands-On Institute of Science and Technology
(HOIST) was a one-week residential summer institute attended
by 33 high school students. Examples of all three levels of
educational aims are included below as appropriate to that
summer institute.
Goals;
1. To broaden awareness of engineering.
2. To foster problem solving skills.
Educational program objectives:
1. By the end of the institute, students will be able to
name and describe at least 7 engineering disciplines.
2. Students will work cooperatively in teams of three or
four to design and build at least 5 projects.
3. Students will be permitted at least two hours of social
time each day to develop relationships with their
peers.

106
Instructional objectives
1. Given a list of constraints, student teams will design
and construct a container to protect an egg from
breaking when dropped.
2. Student teams will have one day to select and procure
their own materials for their design.
3. Student teams will analyze unsuccessful container
designs to determine at least one reason for the
container's failure.
Note how the ability to measure the objectives increases in
the later stages. A clear understanding of the
instructional objectives is essential to appropriate
assessment.
Bloom's Taxonomy of Educational Objectives
It was discussed earlier that the more students process
information, the more likely they are to retain it. One way
of increasing a student's level of processing is through
repetition. Another is through the use of higher level
thinking skills. Bloom et al. (1956), divided educational
objectives into six categories of thinking skills, in
ascending order of complexity. The six categories are shown
below. Many authors simply list these in order (e.g.
Slavin, 1988 and Howard et al., 1996), which tends to
trivialize the importance and abundance of the lower levels.

107
Evaluation
Synthesis
^4 a? ^4 /7/? / / c- tf tz o
C om /7re/2^>szc/i
Figure 2 Bloom's Taxonomy
The figure above is a more accurate representation of the
overall nature of educational objectives. Although those at
the top indicate higher level thinking skills, those at the
bottom are needed in great quantity to provide support those
at the top. Kubiszyn and Borich (1993) provide action verbs
at each level to help clarify objectives. Their lists are
included in each section.
Knowledge
At the knowledge level, memorization is required. This
can include remembering a process as well as facts.
Although this is the most basic skill in the hierarchy, it
is also the most fundamental. Language itself is rooted in
knowledge, because the letters of the alphabet and even the
words assigned to objects are arbitrary. Kubiszyn and

108
Borich (1993) list the following action verbs: define,
describe, identify, label, list, match, name, outline,
recall, recite, select, and state.
Comprehension
Comprehension is distinguished by the ability to
understand what has been committed to memory. For example,
at the knowledge level, a student could identify one picture
as a cat and another picture as a dog. At the comprehension
level, however, the same student could explain the
differencesthereby supporting his or her decision. Action
verbs describing comprehension are: convert, defend,
discriminate, distinguish, explain, extend, estimate,
generalize, infer, interpret, paraphrase, predict, summarize
and translate.
Application
Application requires using previously acquired
knowledge to solve a problem. The essence of application is
novelty, which forces the student to select which principles
from their existing knowledge are related to the task at
hand. Sample action verbs include: change, compute,

109
demonstrate, develop, employ, modify, operate, organize,
prepare, produce, relate, solve, transfer, and use. Note
that at this level, the action can be, and frequently is,
non-verbal.9
Analysis
Analysis requires an understanding the underlying
structure of a system. This can be achieved through
organizing information or by breaking it down, to understand
how all the information is related. Comparing and
contrasting fit here if the comparison does not result in a
value judgement. Appropriate action verbs are: break down,
deduce, diagram, differentiate, distinguish, illustrate,
infer, outline, point out, relate, separate out, and
subdivide.
Synthesis
The synthesis level requires novelty of the student.
Design is at this level, which makes the use of design
9"Verbal," in this case, indicates written or spoken. This
definition is also used later when discussing learning
styles.

110
activities educationally attractive. Synthesis will
obviously rely heavily on the previous levels of thinking
skills, since the new product will be a synthesis of what
the student has already learned. Sample synthesis verbs
are: categorize, compile, compose, create, design, devise,
formulate, rewrite, and summarize.
Evaluation
Evaluation is the highest level of educational
objective identified by Bloom and his colleagues. Some have
disagreed to the ordering of these objectives, especially
with respect to the last two, but the success associated
with the application of Bloom's principles reduces the
concerns of ordering to more an issue of semantics.
Inherent in evaluation is the need for a standard or
criterion to serve as a basis for judgement. The criteria
themselves may be defined by the student. Evaluation
objectives are described by: appraise, compare, contrast,
conclude, criticize, defend, justify, interpret, support,
and validate.

Ill
Taxonomy of Affective Objectives
Krathwohl et al. (1964), also designed a taxonomy of
objectives related to attitudes and values, or affective
objectives. These are also relevant, because we frequently
want to impart attitudes (toward learning, toward
engineering, toward teamwork, etc.) through education. The
five objectives are arranged in a hierarchy, as with the
previous cognitive objectives.
Receiving (or Attending) simply indicates awareness at
the lowest level, and willingness to listen at a higher
level. Once a student is actively participating, either by
request or by choice, that level is termed responding. At
the highest level of responding, the student will clearly be
engaged by and pleased with the activity. The next level is
valuing, which proceeds through acceptance, preference, and
commitment stages (Kubiszyn and Borich, 1993) Organization
requires students to balance different values which
conflict, such as wanting to encourage development, but
prevent forestland destruction. The last level,
characterization by value, requires a consistent set of
values which is internalized such that all the student's

112
acts are directed by that value complex. Presumably, this
level is similar to the highest level of moral reasoning
postulated by Kohlberg (1969), in that not all individuals
reach this level.
Effective Instruction
Slavin (1988) developed the QAIT model of effective
instruction based on earlier work by Carroll (1963) .
Whereas Carroll's model focused on all factors which account
for the effectiveness of instruction, Slavin constrains the
discussion to those which are in the purview of the
instructor. The QAIT model recognizes four spheres of
effective instruction where the instructor may have
influence: Quality of instruction, Appropriate level of
instruction, Incentive, and Time.
Quality of instruction is a measure of curriculum
design as well as presentation. Appropriateness requires
considering the developmental levels of students discussed
earlier, but also depends on whether or not students possess
the skills prerequisite to the lesson. Incentive is an
affective concept, and so is regulated through the

113
principles of behavioral theory and measured against the
affective objectives. Time is both a measure of time
scheduled to teach and of time spent actually spent
teaching. The next section will discuss how individual
differences among students affect instruction.
Individual Differences
The impact of individual differences on instructional
effectiveness is extreme. None of the four elements in the
QAIT model is unaffected by the diverse aptitudes,
attitudes, knowledge, skills, and learning styles of the
students. Some of these can be influenced by an instructor.
Aptitudes and learning styles cannot be modified in the
short term, and so are parameters rather than variables in
the learning process.
Aptitude
In higher education, differences in aptitude are
somewhat constrained, since the United States does not yet
have government-mandated higher education, as is the case

114
with the K-12 system. Although there is benefit to a
heterogeneous ability level, which will be discussed more
extensively when cooperative learning techniques are
described, if ability differences are too great, it becomes
too difficult to serve the needs of the students throughout
the range.
Between-Class Grouping
A solution to differences in aptitude is to group
classes on the basis of ability. In the K-12 system, this
has led to groupings with varying terminology; "low-track,"
"middle-track," "high-track," "advanced," "honors,"
"remedial," "special education," and "gifted" are all such
groupings, though the last two are beyond the normal
variation of ability and are called exceptionalities. The
other methods are all forms of what is known as tracking.
Tracking methods are widely used and supported (Wilson and
Schmits, 1978), although research shows that mild gains in
achievement for "high-track" classes are offset by much
larger losses in achievement by those assigned to "low-
track" groups (Slavin, 1988).

115
In higher education, heterogeneity of ability is
reduced through the choices students make during
registration. Students can skip over certain prerequisite
courses on the basis of prior experience, or take
accelerated courses if they wish. College advising also
plays a role in placing students in the classes appropriate
to their abilities.
Within-Class Grouping
Ability grouping within a class to reduce heterogeneity
(when desired) is also possible (Slavin and Karweit 1982 and
1985 and Goodlad, 1983). Research findings to support this
approach are strong, because such groups can be changed as
necessary (Weinstein, 1976), are focused on particular
skills rather than gross ability measures, and do not have
the same stigmatic effect, because students still identify
with the class as a whole (Cohen and Anthony, 1982) When
such grouping is used, research shows that defining two
ability groups (and no more) is most effective (Slavin and
Karweit, 1984, Spence, 1958, Dewar, 1964 and Walden and
Vowles, 1960) .

116
Learning Styles
There has been a great quantity of research on learning
styles, thinking preferences, and personality types in the
last century. As a result of trying to characterize such a
complex system as human individuality, there is much overlap
of these various characterizations. Redundancy even seems
to be present to a degree within some of these typologies.
The most common of these will be discussed here, with final
and particular attention to those of Felder and Silverman
(1988), which have achieved common usage in recent research
in engineering education because of Felder's engineering
focus. All of these methods follow two basic
principlessome number of bipolar descriptor pairs can be
identified and all individuals will lie somewhere in the
continuum between each bipolar pair.
These are included here rather than with the discussion
on learning, because teaching styles closely parallel
learning styles. Another factor which influenced the
placement of this discussion is that the focus here is on
the teaching methods needed to address the various learning
types.

117
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI)
The MBTI was designed to assess and apply the
psychological types identified by Jung (1923) First
designed in 1942 (Myers and Myers, 1980), the MBTI was
introduced formally in 1962 (Myers, 1962), and was well
received as a valuable instrument for educational purposes.
Extensive research on the MBTI (Conary, 1966, Myers and
Davis, 1965, Ross, 1963 and 1966, Strieker and Ross, 1963,
and Strieker et al., 1965) encouraged its use over the Gray-
Wheelwright measure, developed concomitantly and also based
on Jung's types (Gray and Wheelwright, 1944, Grant, 1965).
The MBTI became further institutionalized through the
efforts of McCaulley (1976, 1977, 1978), and gained
recognition in engineering education in 1980, when a
consortium of engineering schools sponsored by the ASEE
Educational Research and Methods (ERM) division collected
baseline MBTI data on entering students and tracked them
(McCaulley et al., 1983). The ASEE-ERM study found that
certain typesthose more skilled in communication and
teamworkwere not retained as well as other types. This
finding indicates not only that the curriculum might be made
more receptive to students preferring communication, but

118
also has implications for the remaining students, who
especially need training in those areas.
Due to the strong influence of Myers-Briggs terminology
on other typology research, the four bipolar attribute pairs
identified by the MBTI are described in the table which
follows (McCaulley and Natter, 1974). Each row indicates a
bipolar attribute pair.
Table 4 Myers-Briggs Type Indicator Attributes
Extroversion person's
interest flows mainly to
the outer world of actions,
objects, and persons.
Introversion person's
interest flows mainly to the
inner world of concepts and
ideas.
Sensing the person
prefers to perceive the
immediate, real solid facts
of experience.
Intuition the person
prefers to perceive the
possibilities, meanings, and
relationships of experience.
Thinking the person
prefers to make decisions
objectively and
impersonally, analyzing
facts and ordering them in
terms of cause and effect.
Feeling the person prefers
to make decisions
subjectively and personally,
weighing values and the
importance of choices for
oneself and other people.
Judging the person
prefers to live in a
planned, orderly way,
aiming to regulate and
control events.
Perceiving the person
prefers to live in a
spontaneous way, aiming to
understand and adapt events.
The Myers-Briggs typology has also reached considerable
public notice in the Keirsey Temperament Sorter, a short

119
form of the MBTI. This 70-question test is included in a
national best seller which has sold over 1.5 million copies
as of 1984 (Keirsey and Bates, 1984). Keirsey has adapted
the Jung-Myers typology to his clinical practice since 1955.
As a result, Keirsey supports conclusions regarding the
resulting 16 personality types with 40 years of clinical
study of differences in temperament and character in mating,
parenting, teaching, and leading. Since the test is self-
scoring, it has even been adapted for use on the Internet
("Keirsey," 1996).
The Herrmann Brain Dominance Instrument (HBDI)
Whereas the MBTI is a measure of personality types, it
is clear that the preferences measured by the MBTI influence
students' approach to learning. Herrmann's work expands on
the split-brain research which earned Dr. Roger W. Sperry a
Nobel prize in 1981. While the work of Sperry and
associates focused on left-brain/right-brain differences,
Herrmann added the concept of brain dominance, discovering
that individuals can have preferences in either mode.
Herrmann continued his work to develop a four-quadrant
model of dominance, driven by the physiological structure of

120
the brain itself (Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, 1995a). The
hemispherical division of the brain into "left" and "right"
accounts for the cerebrum, about 80% of the brain. The
cerebrum controls vision, hearing, body sensation,
intentional motor control, reasoning, conscious thinking and
decision making, language and nonverbal visualization,
imagination, and idea synthesis.
Each cerebral hemisphere surrounds one half of the
limbic system, which controls hunger, thirst, sleeping,
waking, body temperature, chemical balances, heart rate,
blood pressure, hormones, and emotions. The limbic system
is vital to the process of moving information into short-
and long-term memory. By recognizing the contribution of
the limbic system, which is also laterally divided, the four
quadrant model was introduced.
The four quadrants were labeled alphabetically, and the
preferences associated with the quadrants are as follows
(Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, 1995a, p. 80): A logical,
factual, critical, technical, analytical, and quantitative;
B conservative, structured, sequential, organized,
detailed, and planned; C interpersonal, kinesthetic,
emotional, spiritual, sensory, and feeling; D visual,

121
holistic, intuitive, innovative, conceptual, and
imaginative.
The HBDI is useful for a number of purposesby-
analyzing the brain dominance characteristics of successful
individuals in different time periods, trends in national
policy can be studied. Also, recognizing that the most
effective teams will be those which have preferences in all
areas present, the HBDI can assess to what extent a team
achieves that end. Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) detail a
number of activities which are appropriate for practicing
thinking skills in each of the four quadrants.
The Kolb Cycle and the 4MAT System
The Kolb cycle (Kolb, 1984) begins with a bipolar model
of learning style, with two bipolar attributes. With only
four possible combinations, a quadrant system is formed.
The quadrants are not arbitrarily ordered, as is the case
with Herrmann'sinstead, the Kolb quadrants are ordered as a
cycle. The Kolb cycle is shown in the following figure.
The two bipolar attribute pairs are as
shownactive/reflective and concrete/abstract. Kolb
proposed that all learning passes through this cycle to

122
become internalized, beginning with the exploration of
context in quadrant 1, proceeding to the integration of
observation and existing knowledge in quadrant 2, on to
practice and testing quadrant 3, and to speculating
applications and improvements in quadrant 4.
Concrete Experience
(Feeling)
Figure 3 The Kolb Cycle
McCarthy (1990) developed the 4MAT system of learning
styles which seems primarily based on the Kolb learning
cycle, although McCarthy credits other educational theorists
as well. Through the 4MAT system, each quadrant is broken
down into two parts with clear objectives for the
educational process. The questions depicted in the

123
quadrants of the Kolb cycle are taken from 4MAT (McCarthy,
1990, p. 35). Whereas Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) use
the Herrmann model as the focus of whole brain teaching
through creative problem solving, the Kolb model and the
4MAT system are also used in such a manner. Using
McCarthy's objectives, Harb and colleagues (1993) provide
lists of appropriate activities characterizing each of the
quadrants.
Stice, in reviewing the effectiveness of teaching
through the Kolb cycle (1987b), indicates that retention
increases as more of the quadrants are used, in apparent
correspondence with Dale's cone of learning (Dale, 1969, p.
107). This cone of learning, as developed and revised by
Hyland, is used by Felder and Brent (1995, p. E4) in the
Effective Teaching Workshop (Felder et al., 1992). Just as
using higher level thinking skills will help commit
information to long-term memory (Bloom et al., 1956), the
higher a student's level of active engagement while
learning, the more the student will retain.
The essence of the cone of learning concept is that
retention has been assessed for different levels of activity
in a hierarchy from passive to active. Below, the most

124
critical information from the cone of learning is
summarized. We tend to remember:
10% of what we read
20% of what we hear
30% of what we see
50% of what we hear and see
70% of what we say
90% of what we both say and do
This is an excellent supporting argument for active learning
methods discussed later in this chapter.
Felder's learning styles
Through the Effective Teaching Workshop, Felder and
Brent (1995) continue to spread the message of a set of
learning styles and parallel teaching styles first proposed
by Felder and Silverman (1988). Felder and Silverman
characterize five elements of learning style: perception,
input, organization, processing, and understanding. The
corresponding five elements of teaching style are content,
presentation, organization, student participation, and
perspective. The bipolar pairs of learning and teaching
style which bound the continua represented by those elements
are shown in the table (Felder and Silverman, 1988, p.675).

125
Table 5 Felder and Silverman's Learning and Teaching Styles
Preferred Learning Style
bipolar pair/element
Corresponding Teaching Style
bipolar pair/element
sensory
perception
intuitive
concrete
content
abstract
visual
input
auditory
visual
presentation
verbal
inductive
organization
deductive
inductive
organization
deductive
active
processing
reflective
active student
participation
passive
sequential
understanding
global
sequential
perspective
global
Felder and Silverman's model is largely a synthesis of
a number of other researchers' approaches, with special
attention to applications within engineering education. The
sensory/intuitive pair corresponds to the same pair within
the Jung/Myers-Briggs. To reach students with each of those
learning styles, the corresponding teaching styles are
concrete and abstract. These teaching style terms match one
of the bipolar pairs in the Kolb model, and Felder and
Silverman (1988, p. 676) acknowledge that the Kolb concrete/

126
abstract dimension is closely related to sensing and
intuition.
They go on to define visual/auditory learners (1988)
which was later redefined as visual/verbal (Felder and
Brent, 1995), matching the corresponding teaching styles.
The issue here is one of processingthat some students
prefer to process picture-based input and others prefer
verbal (spoken or written words) input. Information can
also be organized inductively or deductively. The
difference here is whether observation precedes general
principle (induction) or phenomena are deduced from a
general principle. Material which is already understood is
organized most efficiently in a deductive manner.
Unfortunately, this approach does not support learning as
well as inductive methods (Felder and Silverman, 1988).
The active/reflective dimension is quite similar to the
extravert/introvert defined by Jung and modeled by the MBTI.
This dimension is concerned with how students process the
information which they perceive, and therefore is
independent of the sensing/intuition characteristic. Active
learners process new information by doing something with it,
through experimentation or relating to others. Reflective

127
processing is characterized by reconciling and reviewing the
material internally.
At first, it appears that if "active" is a learning
style, then the active methods suggested by Dale (1969) are
likely only effective with those individuals. This
highlights the difference between the learning style and the
teaching style. The learning style pair, as stated earlier,
refers to a preferred processing method, not to appropriate
teaching methods. Even students who are inclined to reflect
more on what they are doing will learn better through active
teaching methods, so the engineering classroom must be a
blend of the time-efficient passive and the more learning-
effective active teaching approaches.
The final dimension of the Felder and Silverman model
represents understanding and perspective. Sequential
learners essentially learn information in order, mastering
complex material in stages. Global learners, on the other
hand, may appear to be lagging behind the sequentials and
then make leaps of understanding, possibly unable to display
any understanding at all prior to making the leap
(Silverman, 1987) .

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Comprehensive models of learning style
Dunn et al. (1989) denounce the bipolar models in favor
of what they refers to as a "comprehensive model," which
serves as the basis of the Learning Style Inventory (Dunn et
al., 1985) and similar models (Hill, 1971, Keefe et al.,
1986). Dunn and her colleagues begin by approaching the
problem from a holistic perspective, identifying four broad
categories of effects on learning, each with subcategories.
These are: "a. Immediate environment (sound, heat, light,
and design); b. Own emotionality (motivation,
responsibility, persistence, and structure); c. Sociological
needs (self, pairs, teams, peers, adults and/or varied); and
d. Physical needs (perceptual preferences, time of day, food
intake, and mobility)" (Price et al., 1977).
However, when measures are defined based on the
attributes encompassed by the Learning Style Inventory
model, they generally take on the same form as the bipolar
attributes of the other models, e.g. soundquiet/sound
preferred; lightbright/low; temperaturecool/warm;
design-informal/formal. In effect, therefore, what Dunn
refers to as a comprehensive model is primarily a bipolar
model which considers a much large number of attributes.

129
Even those attributes which are measured more continuously,
such as time of day preferencemorning/late morning/
afternoon/evening, are essentially shining light on the gray
areas of the bipolar "morning person" and "night owlAs a
result, the Learning Style Inventory model can be reduced to
an 18 attribute bipolar model.
Clearly, the Learning Style Inventory model is
significantly more complex than those of Felder and others.
As stated earlier, Felder's learning styles yield 32 (25)
individual combinations. In contrast, the model of Dunn et
al. yields 262,144 (218) such combinations. Since in the
educational system of the United States there are 47 million
students, presumably all unique, the Learning Style
Inventory gains almost four orders of magnitude on the
target value. The purpose of such a model, of course, is to
reduce the complexity of the original problem enough to make
it manageable, while still retaining enough of its core to
make the solution meaningful, and the model of Dunn et al.,
seems excessive.
The research of Dunn et al., serves a better purpose,
however, in that it identifies trends of certain attributes
over time and also identified certain gender differences in

130
the measured attributes. In addition, it identifies certain
important parameters for classroom design. It seems
appropriate that the Learning Style Inventory (and similar
models) be used only in such studies. The educational
process is overly complicated by attempts to vary the room
temperature or lighting conditions to optimize student
learning.
Why and HQM...to_Teac]i..tfl-All Learniag_Typ.es
As discussed in chapter 2, different approaches are
necessary to identify the best solutions in problem solving.
In fact, some problems may require a variety of perspectives
to find any solution at all. Westcott and Ranzoni (1963)
studied groups of college students and correlated many
factors with their approaches to problem solving. While
aptitude and academic achievement were not adequate
predictors of problem solving style, personality differences
had a significant effect. This is confirmation that
students with different learning styles are the harbingers
of new approaches to the problems that "traditional"
engineers seek to solve.

131
Felder and Silverman (1988) note the benefits that
students with various learning styles can offer the
engineering profession. However, it has been shown that
certain of the styles are favored by traditional teaching
methods, and simple but critical changes in teaching style
can provide students with all learning styles an improved
education. Outside of laboratory work, the engineering
curriculum is most commonly lecture and reading oriented.
Such a format favors intuitive learners, since they are more
comfortable with symbols, bearing in mind that words
themselves are comprised of symbols, as are equations,
obviously.
Engineering students are more commonly of the sensing
preference (McCaulley, 1976), and yet other research
(Godleski, 1984) demonstrates the inevitable outcome of the
curriculum biasthat intuitors consistently received higher
grades. Characteristics of sensing individuals which are
essential to the engineering function include (Felder and
Silverman, 1988): "an awareness of surroundings,
attentiveness to details, experimental thoroughness, and
practicality." To address the needs of both sensors and
intuitors, both concrete examples and abstract concepts must

132
be included in the engineering curriculum and in the design
activities which are the focus here.
Visual learners remember pictorial representations of
all kindsgraphs and diagrams as well as demonstrations and
pictures. Visual learners are in the vast majority from
college age on (Felder and Brent, 1995), yet teaching is
generally dominated by the written and spoken word. Here,
as per Dale (1969), it is clear that the use of both modes
of presentation together improves learning. As discussed
before, it is natural to want to present information
deductively since we have learned it and have organized in
our minds in such a manner. The best pattern for teaching,
however, is to present material first inductively, from the
observation of phenomena, then to formulate the overarching
principle, and finally proceed to deduce other results from
that principle.
The primary way to satisfy the needs of reflective
processors is to allow time for thoughtespecially when
asking questions, as discussed earlier. Active teaching
methods will benefit both groups, as was introduced earlier.
Experimentation and group work will benefit the active
learners particularly, while demonstrations will offer

133
reflective students the opportunity to mull over their
observations.
The needs of sequential learners are generally well
addressed in teaching. Global learners, however, are
generally neglected (Silverman, 1987) Global learners will
benefit most from an introduction to the "big picture" and
through speculative exercises. Group activities will
benefit both types of learners, but interdisciplinary
problems will benefit global students particularly (Felder
and Silverman, 1988).
The Non-Constant Nature of Preferences
An individual's preferences in interaction, thinking,
and learning may change over time. This is logical due to
the various developmental stages which occur. For example,
a student who, in elementary school prefers learning with
peers/is extroverted (and has other similar traits) may
become more withdrawn/introverted/etc. when in the midst of
the adolescent identity crisis.
Also of interest is that such preferences can be
modified somewhat by teaching methods and subject areas

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studied. Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) found that
students in computer science drifted away from Herrmann's
quadrant "C" thinking. Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine also noted,
but were not surprised, that the department was devoid of
female students.
It is therefore assumed that learning and thinking
preferences can be conditioned. As a result, teaching
methods which encourage a variety of styles should increase
students ability to function in all modes of learning and
thinking, thereby producing whole-brain thinkers and
facilitating the process of life-long learning.
Cooperative Learning
One teaching method is at the heart of the creative
design process, especially in keeping with the teamwork-
oriented objectives of engineering educational reform. That
method is cooperative learning. There is a plethora of
research on the subject of cooperative learning, and
although there is some dissent, the bulk of that research
indicates a significant positive impact of the method
(Slavin, 1991).

135
Cooperative learning must not be confused with what is
known as "Cooperative Education" or "Co-op" programs,
referring to education gained through on the job experience.
Rather, cooperative learning refers to education which
relies on students working as a team to assure that all
members achieve academic goals. In these teams, approaches
may include such diverse objectives as problem solving,
experimentation, practice, or discussion.
Two key concepts are essential to the cooperative
approach. Individual accountability must be assured, in
order that the performance of the group not mask the lack of
learning of any of its members. This is of particular
concern in a profession, such as engineering, where
licensing, and possibly lives, are at stake. Also paramount
is the need for group goals and interdependence. If
interdependence is not maintained, the result is likely to
be the same as or inferior to that produced by individual
work.
In studies which have honored the two fundamental
tenets of cooperative learning, consistent positive
achievement effects have been observed in all grades,
subjects, ability levels, and demographics (Slavin, 1991).

136
Cooperative learning methods also have significant positive
effects on the affective (attitude) domain (Johnson et al.,
1991).
There are other hallmarks of proper cooperative
learning which distinguish it from what might simply be
referred to as "group work"heterogeneity and social skills
development have also been defined (Johnson et al., 1984).
Women and minority students will be most effective if they
are not outnumbered in their team (Heller and Hollabaugh,
1992). Instructor assigned teams have much more of a
positive effect than student chosen teams on student
attitudes toward group experience (Feichtner and Davis,
1991).
Cooperative learning techniques for technical subjects
have been studied specifically in more recent years (Adams
and Hamm, 1990). A longitudinal study was recently
completed by Felder and Brent (1994) which studied the
process of cooperative education in technical courses in
higher education. Felder and Brent cite a body of research
in recent years showing the success of cooperative learning
in higher education. Rotating various functions within a
team is suggested to maintain interdependence, along with

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requiring a group product. The Felder and Brent study,
which used cooperative learning techniques in five
successive semesters of a chemical engineering curriculum,
found overwhelming evidence of the success of such methods.
Their report highlights their application of methods
suggested in Slavin (1991) and others.
In addition to cooperative learning, there are many
teaching methods which offer promise for meeting the needs
of various types of learners. McKeachie (1986) is an
excellent reference for teaching methods in higher
education, and his appendix B lists the goals potentially
achieved through each method. The various methods used in
developing the Engineering By Design methodology will be
pointed out as they are implemented.

CHAPTER 4
THE ENGINEERING BY DESIGN METHODOLOGY
Application of The Scientific Method
Engineering researchers are well acquainted with the
process of the scientific method, which generally proceeds
through a number of steps essentially the same as those for
creative problem solving. These two processes are rarely
compared, however, because a tremendous amount of research
in today's climate is never implemented. As a result, the
scientific method is traditionally defined in three major
phases (Borg and Gall, 1989) : formulation of a hypothesis,
deduction of observable consequences, and testing of the
hypothesis by collecting data measuring those observable
consequences. In some cases, the order of these may be
modifiedfor example, when prior experience has not provided
enough data to formulate a hypothesis, data might be
collected atheoretically. Those data may suggest a
hypothesis to the researcher who collected it, or may simply
138

139
be published to suggest paths that other researchers might
take.
In this case, I will identify six stages of the
scientific method which I will use to describe the two
applications of the scientific method in the present work.
The six stages are as follows:
1. Statement of Problem
2. Research of Problem
3. Formulate a Hypothesis
4. Deduction of Observable Consequences
5. Testing Observable Consequences
6. Infer Conclusions
The first application of the scientific method in this
research is presented here as an example.
The first problem addressed is not the underlying
condition of the engineering education system, but it is the
wide-ranging set of goals proposed for the reform of that
system. Such a wide set of objectives tends to overwhelm
administrators and professors and foster studies without
yielding improvements. This problem is presented in the
early part of chapter 1.
This was followed by research, shown later in the same
chapter, to understand the problem and its context. It was
then hypothesized that design activities, because of their

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interdisciplinary and open-ended nature, could serve to
synthesize many of the objectives of the reform movement
into a unified approach. The observable consequences chosen
in this case are the results of design projects which have
been conducted by me and by many other researchers. As a
result, the testing of the hypothesis necessitated
additional research.
Design projects with wide ranging approaches,
objectives, and accomplishments were discovered in that
research process. The body of research described throughout
the remainder of chapter 1 led to the conclusion that design
projects could indeed be used to synthesis a great many of
the desired objectives. This conclusion pointed to the
continuation of this work in a second application of the
scientific method.
The second problem which was recognized was that
although design activities have been used effectively for a
limited number of the objectives listed in chapter 1, they
rarely systematically address the wider set of reform
objectives. Research of this second problem uncovered a
wide range of problem solving methodologies which are
discussed in chapter 2.

141
Throughout my research of those other strategies, I
discovered one element was missing from all of theman
integrated set of educational objectives. Chapter 3,
therefore, is focused on the learning and teaching process,
an understanding of which is necessary to approach the
problem comprehensively.
This led to the formation of a second research
hypothesis: that a methodology for designing engineering
activities could itself be designed and that such a
methodology will aid in the generation of engineering
activities which are educationally superior to those
generally used for K-12 students as well as students in
engineering institutions.
This methodology was formed through the development of
a prototype activity, the Truss Bridge Laboratory, which was
integrated into the Civil Engineering component of the EGN
1002: Introduction to Engineering class offered at the
University of Florida. The entire class handout (which
includes the Truss Bridge Laboratory) is included as
Appendix A.

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The Development of EngineerinQ Bv Design
The remainder of this chapter will discuss the
prototype activity and the Engineering By Design methodology
which it was used to develop. The testing of the stated
hypothesis is the focus of chapter 5, and conclusions are
drawn in the final chapter. The finished methodology is
included as Appendix B; the section headings that follow in
this chapter are named to match each of the steps of the
methodology.
Establish Goals
In modifying the Civil Engineering component of
Introduction to Engineering, the goals of the class as a
whole had to be considered. This process began with the
structuring of the first of the educational aims described
in chapter 3, the goals of the course. This gave way to the
first stage of the Engineering By Design methodology:
Establish Goals. The primary goals of the Introduction to
Engineering course and of the Civil Engineering component
are for students to:

143
A. discover differences/commonalities among
engineering disciplines
B. be informed/excited about an engineering career
C. experience engineering through visual and
hands-on demonstrations and activities
D. be introduced to the team concept and basic
communication skills
E. establish basic engineering skills and concepts
F. be recruited and retained in engineering
The Civil Engineering component achieved the first, second,
and fifth of these quite well without modification, so the
focus of the change would be to more clearly address the
third and fourth of these goals. This pointed to the
development of a design activity.
Select a Focus
The task had hardly been narrowed at all by the goals;
in this situation, as in many others where design activities
might be employed, there is a seemingly endless range of
options. In this case, any design activity involving Civil
Engineering principles would be acceptable. Truss
structures were selected as the focus of what would come to
be called the Truss Bridge Laboratory. Truss structures
would enable us to focus on principles which are distinctly
taken from Civil Engineering, and which is also very

144
physical, demonstrating the concepts of compression,
tension, moment, moment of inertia, neutral axis, and
failure modes.
Brainstorm for Ideas
Ideally, a prolonged effort at generating an idea can
be circumvented by the inspiration which can occur during
idea incubation (Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, 1995a). This is
what occurred in the case of the Truss Bridge Laboratory.
Dr. Hoit entered the office with a bag containing popsicle
sticks and small nuts and bolts, suggesting they be used to
make trusses.
Evaluate Ideas
Regardless of the complexity of the problem being
solved, and regardless of the effort (or lack thereof)
invested in a brainstorming activity, whenever a solution is
presented which is recognized as truly elegant and inspired,
consensus in the selection of that idea will likely be
achieved. In effect, the process immediately proceeds to
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145
process. It is recognized that this step is normally a much
more significant one, involving compromise and merging of
good ideas to make better ideas. Still, a great many
concerns were evaluated during this step,- in evaluating the
idea of making trusses out of popsicle sticks, nuts, and
bolts, we discussed such practical issues as:
A. Can clearance holes be drilled without splitting?
B. How strong are popsicle sticks in tension?
C. How much variation is there in popsicle strength?
D. In creating a truss bridge, what span will be
necessary to avoid excessive load?
E. Since popsicle sticks are two dimensional,
what will hold up the trusses during testing?
F. How will the load be applied?
G. How far should the load be placed from the supports?
H. Should different sizes of members be provided?
I. If so, what sizes, and how will they be cut?
J. How many of each member size should teams receive?
K. How many nut/bolt pairs should each team receive?
L. How can we mass produce the parts kits?
This order is not necessarily representative of the order in
which we either conceived of these concerns, but closely
represents the order in which they were addressed.
Simple research and calculations were necessary to find
the answers to questions A-D. A drill press and a simple
jig was used to discover two important facts: a stack of
approximately 7 popsicle sticks could be drilled
simultaneously with little scrapif taller stacks were

146
drilled, even the slightest wobble in the drill bit would
consistently cause the bottom popsicle sticks to split
longitudinally (this not only answered A, but inadvertently
L, since a similar jig is still in use). Rather than
attempt to answer B by placing a popsicle in special grips
in a low-load tensile tester, it was recognized that the
sticks should never fail in tension, since failure at the
connections (where the sticks have been drilled) will occur
first. Keeping this in mind, D-G were all addressed
simultaneously. Simple Warren trusses (a chain of
equilateral triangles, illustrated in the laboratory in
Appendix A) were tested across various spans (D). The two-
dimensional truss was held up by two small heavy boxes,
later developed into a special loading frame with plexiglass
panels allowing monitoring of deformation (E) The load was
applied by wrapping a light gauge wire around two of the
joints toward the middle, and hanging from it a 5-gallon
pail which was gradually filled with gravel (F).
It quickly became clear that a 12-inch span resulted in
loads which were too high (especially if the truss were
reinforced in any way), so an 18-inch span was selected.
This was also a convenient length; the drilled holes at the

147
popsicle stick ends were 4" apart, so 5 sticks joined in a
line are 20", leaving 1" at each end to rest on the
supports. It was found that placing the load at any joints
but those nearest the supports would produce acceptable
forces to cause failure before the 5-gallon pail would
overflow (G).
The remainder of the questions (H-K) were evaluated in
more of a brainstorming exercise involving Dr. Hoit and
myself. We quickly concluded that simplicity required using
as few member sizes as possible (flj, and we decided to
restrict the number to two. We also decided that the most
useful size for the second member would be the length of the
legs of the isosceles right triangle of which the full-
length popsicle sticks (4") was the hypotenuse, making the
holes of the shorter member 2.83" apart, aligned by a new
jig (I) .
A number of designs were evaluated to determine how
many of each member type and the number of nut/bolt pairs it
would take to create them. We decided that imposing certain
constraints would ensure that students would have to think
creatively to optimize their designs {J, K)one constraint
was that we would not provide enough members to simply

148
reinforce every member in any of the designs we had
analyzed. Students would therefore have to selectively
reinforce (if at all) and therefore judge which members most
needed reinforcement. We also chose the number of bolts to
be too few to build a trapezoidal truss three panels high.
This would prevent students from simply building large
trusses by brute force, but force them to devise more
complicated geometries to achieve greater separation of the
top and bottom chord (and greater moment capacity, in
general).
We also devised a scoring system based on the ultimate
load divided by a cost parameter, to challenge students to
consider the benefits of designing a small, but sturdy
structure rather than building a behemoth which only seeks
to carry the maximum load.
Figure Out the Details
In order to foster a team effort in producing a group
product (as recommended by Felder and Brent), it was decided
that the actual design process should dominate the time
spent on the activity. As a result, a lesson (described

149
below) of approximately 20 minutes introduces students to
the concepts of moment, moment of inertia, neutral axis,
failure modes, and truss design. This lesson is followed by
a 45 minute period for design. This is done in instructor-
assigned teams of 3-4 people, keeping in mind the grouping
rules discussed earlier with cooperative learning (although,
unfortunately, we have little information on ability level
or the time to assess it). For 10-15 minutes bridges are
then tested to failure (with various phenomena pointed out
by the instructor), and scored on the strength-to-cost
measure mentioned earlier. Prizes have been given out, but
"bragging rights" seem to have as much or more value among
our students.
The lesson is also key to the exercise, since it must
give students enough understanding of the problem so that
they do not feel overwhelmed. The presented lesson follows
closely the handout material, except that the presentation
includes the use of additional visual aids and thoughtful
questions. The lesson begins with the big picture (to build
a bridge to cross an 18" gorge) to get the globals pointed
in the right directionthe big picture includes the
application, which helps the sensors.

150
Quickly, the discussion moves into a demonstration of
what goes on inside a beam when it bends, using a foam beam
with vertical lines painted on its front face (see Appendix
A for an illustration). Students easily note that the lines
at the top have been pushed together, and the lines at the
bottom have been pulled apart. Students also simply relate
these two states respectively to compression and tension,
demonstrated during the part of the Introduction to
Engineering class which precedes the Truss Bridge
Laboratory. The force couple is then drawn on the board,
and defined as moment, and the instructor illustrates moment
again, this time by applying a couple to the foam beam.
Then the question is posed, "If the top is in
compression, and the bottom is in tension, what is happening
in the middle?" (illustrating the middle of the beam in the
vertical direction). If I am not hurried, I will ask
students to all have an answer in their minds (or written
down) before I ask for a verbal response. I have never
taught this lesson when students did not suggest the answer
"nothing." I then define the neutral axis as the line where
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151
The principle of moment of inertia is then demonstrated
by bending a common yardstick in the flat and the upright
orientations. Although the same material is used, the
upright orientation is much stiffer, and can resist much
more moment before breaking. Students are asked to suggest
examples of why beams might be used in the flat orientation
(greater surface area, diving board, etc.) and in the
upright orientation (structural strength, stiffness, balance
beam, etc.). The principle of moment of inertia is then
discussed in terms of moving material away from the neutral
axis, where the material is used inefficiently for moment
resistancedrawings of wide-flange steel and concrete
girders help students recognize the new concept to objects
which are familiar, to anchor the concept in their own
experience.
The discussion of using material efficiently quickly
leads to the introduction of the truss, which allows force
to be distributed over a great number of members. The truss
is initially drawn emphasizing the top and bottom chords,
where the compressive and tensile forces will be the
highest. Simple trusses made from the actual design
materials are then shown (for an illustration, see Appendix

152
A). Examples illustrate the concepts of stability and
instability.
Failure modes are then discussedthe yardstick is used
to demonstrate buckling, but students easily predict what
will happen when the stick is compressed. The geometry
change caused by buckling members is illustrated with the
help of the foam beam. Students also easily predict that
tensile failure will not occur in the middle of a popsicle
stick, but at the joints, as is quickly demonstrated with a
constructed truss (which has been prepared with a pre-broken
joint). Students then relate these two failure modes to the
concepts of ductile and brittle failures witnessed earlier
in the class (steel and concrete, respectively). Students
generally observe quickly that the broken joint causes an
immediate failure, but are less able to see that buckling
allows the structure to redistribute load (which they
readily witness later, as at least one bridge will
invariably experience such a buckling failure and
redistribution, enduring considerable total deformation
prior to failure).
After a brief demonstration of how the trusses will be
loaded and a discussion of the objectives and the scoring

153
system, students begin the design exercise. The instructor
(and any assistants) will answer technical questions which
pertain to the concepts discussed, but do not answer any
questions which suggest or give an opinion of any particular
design. After designs are complete, the laboratory activity
resumes as described earlier.
Establish Specific Objectives
The following specific objectives apply to the Truss
Bridge Laboratory from start to finish:
1. The instructor will present the concepts of
compression, tension, moment, moment of inertia,
failure modes, and truss stability/instability with
extensive visual examples and concrete examples from
students' experience.
2. Students will construct a truss from the provided
materials in instructor-assigned teams of 3-4 persons.
3. Student teams will successfully bridge the 18" span
established by the loading frame.
4. Student teams will optimize their designs so as to
maximize load while minimizing cost.
5. Each student team will place its truss in the
loading frame and test it to failure.
6. Students will observe the deformation and failure
modes which occur in each team's truss when loaded.

154
7. The instructor will describe the deformation and
failure of each truss and discuss (in a non-threatening
manner) elements of the design which have produced the
result.
These seven objectives are very well met during most
presentations of the laboratory. Some student teams do not
perform well in the process of optimizing (4), but seem
curious to understand their failure during the later
discussion (7).
Improve the Activity
Not surprisingly, a great number of student teams have
proved more than adequate to the task of designing creative
structures, ensuring that eventually our system of
supporting and loading the trusses would be challenged. In
the most extreme cases when a student team's truss designing
capabilities exceeded our expectations, the activity itself
had to be modified.
One circumstance which required an improvement of the
laboratory was that a number of student teams defied the
rectilinear nature of the provided parts, and produced
arched structureswe have seen a great many approaches which
produced this result. One effect of the introduction of

155
arch designs was that students did not understand the
principle of arch thrust, which causes the legs of the arch
to spread under loading. As a result, eventually one of the
arched designs experienced such a separation of its legs
that the truss fell off the outside edges of one of the
supports, which were only 1" long (i.e., the legs spread to
be more than 20" apart). To avoid the frustration
experienced by that team, the instructor now explains the
implications of arch thrust, but privately, to student teams
which have already begun creating an arched design.
Another way in which students have greatly exceeded our
expectations has been in overall strength. Student teams
sometimes fill their bucket to capacity (over 80 pounds).
As a result, we developed the habit of putting pieces of
steel angle in the bottom of the 5-gallon pail when testing
designs which have obviously placed an emphasis on overall
strength, with less regard to overall cost (this seems to be
a fairly common approach, especially among all male teams).
A record of the designs produced by student teams is
kept on a scoring sheet. Teams draw their design (providing
an excellent channel for the more artistic team members to
participate) and record the cost and failure load.

156
The Truss Bridge Laboratory has had excellent success
in meeting the objective of the recruitment and retention of
students. The Civil Engineering department at the
University of Florida has indicated increases in recruitment
since the implementation of the new laboratory. The college
of engineering enrollment figures for spring 1995 indicate
100 civil engineering students of out of 819 total
engineering students of 3rd year status. This class would
have been freshmen before the new laboratory was introduced.
The same figures for spring 1996 (after the implementation
of the new laboratory) show 128 of 758 engineering students
were in civil engineering. This shows not only an overall
increase in enrollment (from 100 to 128), but also an
increase in percentage of the engineering enrollment (from
12.2 % to 16.9 %). Although it is difficult to prove that
the revised laboratory was solely responsible for the
change, the department chairman agrees with Dr. Hoit and me
that the laboratory was the primary cause.
Retention of all students who enrolled in the revised
laboratory course was approximately 50% (Hoit and Ohland,
1995). This was true even for the subgroups of women and
minorities. This showed a significant improvement over the

157
lecture version of Introduction to Engineering which
preceded the laboratory.
The Truss Bridge Laboratory has also been featured in
engineering outreach activities. The fact that it was
designed to be used by other institutions with a minimum of
effort has made it an excellent candidate for use with high
school groups such as in the Hands-On Institute for Science
and Technology, held at the University of Florida July 9-15,
1995, and in teaching in-service teachers in the
SouthEastern Consortium for Minorities in Engineering
(SECME) 19th annual summer institute, held June 16th-29th,
1995 at the University of Florida. These two residential
summer institutes aimed to introduce K-12 students and
teachers respectively about engineering and its disciplines.
Survey instruments administered at both events indicated
that the institute objectives were well met (Ohland et al.,
1996) .
The Engineering By Design Methodology
The process described in each of the sections above led
to the identification of the step of the methodology that is

158
identified by the section titles. The methodology does not
simply list these steps, but describes the process of each
and gives examples, as appropriate, to help clarify each
step's purpose and application. The methodology itself is
included as appendix B.

CHAPTER 5
EVALUATION AND ASSESSMENT
Evaluation of Educational Systems
There are particular constraints placed on the process
of designing and evaluating educational systems. There are
also effects which are inherent in research involving
people. These constraints and effects are described in the
following sections, and many of these apply to the research
conducted here. The discussion here primarily follows that
of Borg and Gall (1989).
Constraints on Educational Research
We are accustomed in research to the presence of two
types of variablesthose which the experimenter controls,
and those which the experimenter cannot or chooses not to
control. Differences in terminology abound, and are
summarized in the table below. I will use the terms
159

160
independent and dependent to refer to variables which are
causal and affected, respectively. It is important to note
that while some variables can be either independent or
dependent (temperature is affected by the number of people
in a room, but the temperature in a room can also affect the
behavior of the people in it), other variables are strictly
independent variables (biological sex, for example, must be
independent except in genetics experiments). Such variables
which are determined a priori and cannot be manipulated by
the researcher are commonly called parameters.
Table 6 Various Terms Used in Classifying Variables
Variables which are causal
Variables which are affected
Independent
Dependent
Manipulated
Responding
Experimental
Post-test
Treatment
Criterion
In most scientific endeavors, researchers are
accustomed to having full range of manipulation of the
independent variables, up to the limits of the available
technology to them. In an experiment to examine thermal
expansion, the independent variable is temperature and the
dependent variable is the size of a piece of material. A

161
researcher can vary the temperature greatly, dependent only
upon the complexity of the equipment. In educational
research, as in any research involving people, there are
limits to how different variables can be manipulated, due to
the ethical, legal, and practical considerations discussed
in the remainder of this section.
Ethical principles
In 1981, the American Psychological Association (APA)
published a list of 10 ethical principles for the conduct of
research involving human participants (Committee on
Scientific and Professional Ethics and Conduct, 1981).
Those most commonly violated by graduate students are
reviewed here (Borg and Gall, 1989):
If the participants are at more than "minimal risk,"
the investigator must clarify the obligations and
responsibilities of the researcher and of the
participants in a clear and fair prior agreement. The
investigator must receive "informed consent" from each
participant.
If deception or concealment is necessary to the
research, the investigator must determine if the
potential outcome merits the use of such techniques,
must evaluate alternate approaches, and must give
participants a true explanation as soon as possible.
After the completion of the study, participants should
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162
If participants incur unwanted consequences as a result
of the research, the investigator is responsible for
corrective action if possible.
Information regarding any research participant is
considered confidential unless consent is given by the
participant. The participant must be informed if their
confidentiality is threatened by the nature of the
study.
Informed consent is obviously criticalparticipants must be
aware of any risks and breaches of confidentiality and
consent to them. In the case of the present work, any
carefully considered lesson plan should have an acceptable
outcome, so there will never be more than "minimal risk" to
the students. The other participants, the instructors
testing the methodology, are also at minimal risk.
Debriefing is significantly simpler if the consequences to
the participant are minimized. In the case of this
research, all subjects were aware of the research objectives
ahead of time. Especially in the case of the tributary area
described later in this chapter, the lesson was so different
from what students typically experience that the lesson
would appear to lack validity (known as face validity)
without prior explanation of the research being conducted.
Confidentiality is assured in this experiment through
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163
In published data tables, subjects are referred to by a
"subject number." As the researchers, the participating
instructors and I can associate the subject number with the
participant at any time to retrieve further information, but
it would be impossible for anyone else to discern the
participant from the number.
Legal constraints
In general, most of the legal constraints do not impact
research designs which follow the APA ethical guidelines,
but intend to provide legal recourse against researchers who
do not follow such principles. The two laws which most
affect research involving people are described in the
following sections.
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974.
This act protects the confidentiality of educational
records, requiring written consent (from the student or
parents) to obtain any educational records from which the
student can be identified. Fortunately, school personnel
with "legitimate educational interest" are exempted from
this process, which significantly relieves professors and

164
graduate students from violating this law when working with
students in their university. We must still be concerned to
ensure that informed consent is obtained when appropriate,
however. The influence that professors have over students
can subtly coerce students into participating in experiments
against their desires.
The National Research Act of 1974. This act
established an Institutional Review Board which reviews
research proposals when human subjects are involved. This
review board is concerned with ensuring the rights of
participants and the procuring of informed consent. Again,
this act names specific categories of research which are
exempt from regulation, among which is most common
educational research, including research on instructional
strategies, techniques, curricula, and classroom management.
Engineering By Design methodology meets this proviso, and so
is unaffected by the legislation discussed.
Human relations
Of a more practical nature is the fact that with human
participants, educational research must consider human

165
relations in the structure of the research. Public
relations and interpersonal relations will both be important
in gaining access to information and obtaining permission to
conduct research.
Effects in Research Involving People
It is commonly understood by researchers in all fields
that the observation of a system necessarily has an affect
on the system itself. This is the fundamental cause of
these effects listed here, but in research involving people,
we must not only worry about direct effects (e.g., a
researcher investigating employee dynamics has changed the
dynamic because another individual has been added to the
office), but also about indirect psychological effects
(e.g., the employees are likely to behave differently if
they know they are being studied). Four commonly observed
effects are described in the following sections.
The Hawthorne Effect
This effect takes its name from the Hawthorne Plant of
the Western Electric Company which first discovered how

166
participants' awareness can affect the outcome of the
experiment (Roethlisberger and Dickson, 1939). In that
case, the experiment demonstrated management's concern for
their workers, which yielded an increase in morale and
productivity. The Hawthorne Effect, in general, refers to
improvements that are witnessed due to participant awareness
or the special attention associated with the experimental
procedure.
Measures to curtail the Hawthorne Effect include
special structuring of multiple control groups, and reducing
the level of special attention, novelty, and participant
awareness.
The John Henry Effect
This effect is named after the legend of John Henry, a
railroad worker who pits himself against a steam hammer in a
competition to drill holes for blasting powder. In John
Henry's case, the confounding effect was the participant's
awareness of a threat to job security which drove him to
improve his performance. In the general case, the John
Henry Effect refers to any unusual effort put forth from the
control group (the comparison reference for the experimental

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group) due to a threat to job, status, salary, and other
measures of worth (Saretsky, 1975) .
The Pygmalion Effect
This effect, its name drawn from Pygmalion in the
Classroom (Rosenthal and Jacobson, 1968), characterizes the
phenomenon witnessed in George Bernard Shaw's Pygmalion
(also known as My Fair Lady). In the Rosenthal and Jacobson
study, teachers' expectations influenced the achievement of
their students. Here it is the expectations of the observer
which influence the participant's behavior. The best
approach to avoiding this effect is for the researcher to
refrain from communicating any expectations to the research
participants. This effect can be positive or negative,
following the experimenter's expectations.
Demand characteristics
The effect due to demand characteristics are
essentially the converse of the Pygmalion Effect. Demand
characteristics are the collective evidence which the
participant perceives in an attempt to discern the research
objective. This is caused by a person's curiosity as to

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what the experimenter is trying to find out about them as a
subject. This effect can also influence the research
outcome in either directionthe subject might or might not
discern the actual research objective, and if discerning it
correctly, the subject might or might not wish to fulfill
the objective (some subjects will always attempt to stymie
the researcher).
Evaluation of Engineering By Design
The purpose here is to evaluate the methodology itself.
One approach to this problem was to ask those who had used
the methodology in creating an activity to evaluate the
effectiveness of the methodology in aiding that process. It
rapidly became clear that this method of evaluation would be
ineffective. The primary difficulty was one of evaluator
bias, which has two contributing factors, which follow.
The first cause of bias is that I am too closely
associated with the methodology, because of my extensive
involvement with those testing it. This confuses the
evaluator's opinion of me and my efforts with their opinion

169
of the methodology. The second difficulty is caused by the
interdisciplinary nature of the methodology. One of the
evaluators, Dr. Duane S. Ellifritt, Professor of Structural
Engineering at the University of Florida, has much practical
teaching experience but is less aware of the fundamentals of
learning and teaching which are applied in the methodology.
The second evaluator, Dr. Cynthia Holland, a secondary
teacher of Physics and Chemistry, has a strong understanding
of educational principles, but is less well-versed in design
and creative problem solving. The result is that each is
biased by their respect for the elements of the process
which are less familiar.
Fortunately, there is another approach to evaluating
the methodologythrough the activities it produces. If the
methodology is beneficial, the activities produced using it
should be educationally superior to those traditionally
used. The ideal model of this type of experiment would
include two randomly selected populations of students who
are well-matched with respect to any attributes which may
effect the outcome of a learning experiment, such as
aptitude, learning style, demographics, and attitudes.
These populations should be representative of the population

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as a whole (e.g.: that of all students who take high school
Physics) for the results to be generalized.
One of the populations (called the control group) would
be taught with the traditional approach, while a matching
population (called the experimental group) would be taught
with a product of the Engineering By Design methodology.
Unfortunately, the constraints discussed earlier applythe
students within a class have already been established, and
students cannot be moved between classes for the purposes of
the experiment.
As a result of various constraints, each of the two
experimental activities will fall short of the ideal case in
a number of ways. The first, conducted with the aid of Dr.
Duane S. Ellifritt, was intended to teach the concept of
"tributary area" to students in CES 4605Analysis and Design
in Steel at the University of Florida, Fall 1995. In the
second, I worked with Dr. Cynthia Holland to develop an
activity to teach statistics to a group of high school
Physics students. These two activities and the results of
their implementation will be discussed in the following
sections.

171
Design of a Tributary Area Activity
Tributary area is a concept which is used to determine
the surface loads carried by a particular member. Tributary
area is used to determine reductions of movable, or live
loads. Since such loads are determined statistically, based
on how close together desks can reasonably be placed and
other such parameters, it is reasonable to assume that a
column which carries load from a number of sources will not
be loaded at the maximum load from each simultaneously.
Therefore, reduction of live loads is permitted under
certain circumstances, as will be discussed later.
Simply stated, the tributary area of a member is that
area directly above that member plus half the area between
it and its neighboring members on all sides. The figure
below illustrates the tributary area of the center beam.
Of course, if the one sentence description of tributary
area given in the last paragraph were adequate to impart a

172
full understanding of the concept, an activity designed to
teach it would not be necessary. In fact, it was students'
difficulty with the concept which prompted Ellifritt to test
the Engineering By Design methodology. The entire process
of creating the activity is detailed here as an example of
the use of the methodology.
Establish goals and select a focus
The focus is sufficiently narrowed through the goal-
setting process in this case. As a result, the second step
of the process has been subsumed by the first. The goals of
the activity are listed below.
To teach students the concept of tributary area
To justify and demonstrate load reduction
To enable students to specify member loading
With these goals established, we sought a model to make the
tributary area concept clearer, and moved into the idea
generation phase.
Brainstorm for ideas
The idea generation phase of the process was conducted
by three diverse individuals: Dr. Duane S. Ellifritt is a
structural engineering professor and artist; Don J.

173
Herrington (my brother-in-law) has worked as a mechanic
(including race cars), a farmhand, and a carpenter; I
received masters degrees in both mechanical and materials
engineering prior to my current work in civil engineering.
In addition to my minor in education, I also have a
humanities bachelors degree.
Our goal was to explore ideas for a physical model
which would help students visualize the layered nature of
structural systems and picture the manner in which all loads
have a path to the ground. The location chosen for the
brainstorming exercise was Dr. Ellifritt's office, which
aside from a providing a central location, has a variety of
interesting wall hangings to foster creative stimulus. The
rules of brainstorming were explained, I assumed the role of
recorder/facilitator. The session was kicked off with the
question, "What things are layered?" Other prompting
questions were added when idea generation slowed, including,
"What things in nature are layered?" which introduced a
number of divergent concepts. The list of ideas generated
during the session are included Appendix C. I have
attempted to order the list as it was generated, but some
rearrangement has probably occurred.

174
Evaluation of ideas
Once the list of ideas in Appendix C had been
generated, we moved into a critical thinking mode to
evaluate those ideas and develop the activity. The Jenga
game, with which I was not familiar, was very intriguing to
me, and I asked the others to describe the game and its
rules. It quickly became clear that the game would provide
a quick, cheap, and exportable solution.
Jenga is a game played with a tower of blocks, with
three uniformly sized blocks in each square layer, with each
layer's blocks perpendicular to the layers above and below.
The standard rules specify that players in turn will remove
a block from any but the top layer and move it to the top.
The game lends itself well to seeing loads in layers. The
growing instability of the tower forces students to look
carefully at load path to the ground. With the groundwork
laid for this opening activity, we set out to establish
specific objectives for the lesson as a whole.
Figure out the details
The block tower activity was intended to initiate team
behavior and enhance student excitement. The rules of the

175
block tower game were modified to achieve this. The
students would work in teams, even though only one team
member could touch the tower at any one time. This would
allow the team to develop the desired camaraderie during an
activity which was clearly not being graded. It was hoped
that an activity seemingly separate from the educational
pursuit could establish an atmosphere of friendly
competition among teams and raise the students' excitement
level. The team's objective was to build the tallest tower
possible in five minutes. With two sets of blocks
available, the eight teams could be completed in
approximately 20 minutes. The instructions were placed on
an overhead, and are shown in Appendix C titled "Block Tower
Activity."
With a fairly clear view of the structure of the block
tower activity, we set out to design the remainder of the
laboratory. In the three hour laboratory, the professor
would first need to explain laboratory and homework
procedures (since this unit is the first laboratory of the
semester).
Then we decided the lesson would open with a five
minute discussion of how structures are layered and an

176
overview of the format of the laboratory, which was somewhat
different from the usual fare for engineering students. We
moved directly into the block tower activity for twenty
minutes. Students remained in their tower construction
teams for the remainder of the laboratory.
Student teams then began a brainstorming session in
which they speculated as to the distribution of floor
loading to the floor's load carrying members. The handout
used for this exercise is included in Appendix C, and is
titled "Floor Load Distribution Exercise." This exercise,
in addition to fostering higher level creative thinking, was
also intended to identify different perspectives and ferret
out misconceptions prior to continuing.
The three separate examples in the exercise explore
different concepts. The first, shown below, indicates a
floor with regularly spaced floor joists.
a be
|i + + + + +H
10' 10' 10 10 10' 10'
Figure 5 Load Distribution 1

177
The student teams are asked to indicate the floor areas
carried by joists a, b, and c. Joist b is a typical
interior member, for which students are expected to easily
agree that half of the area between b and its neighbors is
carried by b. Joist a is on an edge, forcing students to
decide what sort of effect applies there. What is actually
appropriate is dependent upon student assumptions, which
they are asked to declare. Joist c shares load with an
interior and an exterior joist. If students are consistent
in the application of their method (regardless of their
agreement with the established method of calculating
tributary area), c should carry half of what b carries plus
the portion of an exterior bay not carried by the edge
joists, indicated by the area assigned to a.
Although jumping right into defining tributary area
prior to formally defining it is great for global learners,
these problems are ordered so that sequential learners will
be able to piece together smaller concepts into a larger
picture. In this manner, the second problem of the set
introduces a new level of complexity: non-uniform joist
spacings.

178
a
b c
h +++ H
20' 10' 10 20'
Figure 6 Load Distribution 2
In this exercise, the regularity is removed; exterior joists
no longer carry half of exterior joists, and the area
carried by c is not symmetrical.
In the third problem of this exercise, the floor
becomes a true two-dimensional system. Students are now
asked to distinguish between the area carried by a corner
column (a), an edge column (b), and an interior column (c).
For simplicity, uniform spacing has been reintroduced.
a b
Figure 7 Load Distribution 3

179
Students would be given approximately 10 minutes to complete
all three problems in this exercise. This would be followed
by a discussion of the problem set, in which the established
method of tributary area and its assumptions would be
defined, and misconceptions noted in the problem set would
be addressed (the simple nature of the problems was expected
to facilitate rapid interpretation of the answers turned in
by each group). This formal treatment of the concept of
tributary area and load distribution would include the
transfer of load from smaller members to larger members
(such as from joists to beams or from girders to columns),
and would last 15 minutes.
A more complex tributary area problem would then be
assigned to the groups. This problem had irregular
spacings, multiple modes of load transfer (joist to beam,
beam to girder, beam to column, girder to column, etc.), and
overlapping layers (joists and girders both reached floor
elevation, but beams, which received load from joists and
transferred it to either girders or columns, were below
floor level). The floor plan and the elevation are included
in the handout shown in Appendix C, titled "Tributary Area
Lab Assignment." Student groups would have 15 minutes to

180
work on this problem, after which the instructor would go
over the problem for 10 minutes.
At this point in the laboratory, we would want to
develop the concept of live load reduction. The
introduction to this, we decided could also be done through
brainstorming. This brainstorming exercise was defined as a
real-world application, which was intended to benefit the
sensors (the first such exercise was more abstract, since
little was defined, and was thus more suited intuitors).
The instructions are shown below (and included in Appendix
C), to demonstrate the concrete (as opposed to abstract)
framework in which the problem was cast:
Introduction: Since live loads are movable, they do
not occur simultaneously over all parts of a structure.
Building designers have argued that this causes load
calculations to be too conservative. Your team has
been enlisted by the American Institute of Steel
Construction to devise a method of reducing live loads
which assures safety but is not overly conservative.
Objectives: Brainstorm in your groups to list as many
different approaches to this reduction as possible.
Then select one or a combination of those ideas and
develop it further. Make sure that the reduction is
limited and has clear criteria which define under what
circumstances it may be used.
This exercise is also intended to give reflective students
the time to understand why live load reduction is possible

181
without excessive risk. This has traditionally been a
difficult point for students, who think a quantity of actual
load is simply being neglected. This exercise also contains
more critical thinking than the first. Students must not
only evaluate their ideas, but then establish criteria for
their use. This should encourage students to understand why
limits and criteria are necessary (e.g., if the reduction as
a percentage is allowed to grow unbounded, it may eliminate
the load entirelyobviously well after the limits of safety
have been exceeded). We allowed 10 minutes for this
exercise.
Next on the agenda we decided to give a formal
presentation of the live load reduction method recognized by
the LRFD design code (AISC, 1986). We estimated that 15
minutes would be sufficient for this. Following the formal
presentation, student teams returned to the complex
tributary area problem and calculated service loads
(comprised of dead load plus reduced live load, not
factored) for a typical joist, beam and girder. Student
teams were allotted 30 minutes to show their results in the
form of free body diagrams of each member type. Students
were not required to consider the columns.

182
The laboratory would conclude with 15 minutes of
discussion regarding the solution to the last problem. An
outline of the lesson plan for the entire laboratory is
included in Appendix C. A 15 minute post-test would be
administered on a later date, to evaluate students' mastery
of the subjectthis quiz and the results from its
administration will be discussed later.
Establish Specific Objectives
Some of the objectives are specified directly on the
handout sheets in Appendix C, discussed in the next section.
The instructional objectives consistent with the activities
listed in the previous section are included here.
Introduction:
The instructor will describe the laboratory and
homework procedures as well as the format of this
laboratory.
The instructor will describe and illustrate the
layered nature of structural systems.
Block Tower Activity:
Student teams will begin with the same
configuration of starting blocks and, following the
rules of play, attempt to construct the tallest tower
possible before it topples.
Load Distribution Brainstorming:
Student teams will indicate on the provided
diagram how the surface area of a floor is distributed
to various supporting structural members.

183
Student teams will list on the assignment sheet
all the assumptions they make during the brainstorming
process.
Student teams will calculate the total area
carried by each delineated structural member.
Problem Set Discussion:
The instructor will then describe the assumptions
and procedure pertaining to the established method of
calculation of tributary area.
The instructor will make special note of those
assumptions which do not apply to the calculation of
tributary area.
Tributary Area Lab Assignment:
Student teams will compute tributary areas of
various members in a more complex problem involving
irregular member spacing and members at mixed
elevations.
The instructor and teaching assistant will
circulate throughout the room to answer questions.
Lab Assignment Discussion:
The instructor will discuss various approaches to
the previous assignment.
The instructor will respond to any student
concerns regarding the computation of tributary area.
Live Load Reduction Brainstorming:
Student teams will generate ideas as to how live
load reduction might be accomplished.
Student teams will evaluate their ideas to choose
the most practical approach.
Student teams will establish guidelines for the
use of their live load reduction method including
criteria and limits.
Live Load Reduction Brainstorming Results:
The instructor will write on the board a set of
unique approaches to live load reduction contributed by
the class.
The instructor will write on the board the limits
and criteria suggested by the various student teams.

184
LRFD Live Load Reduction:
The instructor will make a formal presentation of
the approved LRFD live load reduction method.
The instructor will compare and contrast the
methods suggested by students to the LRFD method.
Live Load Reduction Lab Exercise:
Student teams will compute service loads using
live load reduction for the joists, beams, and girders
of the Tributary Area Lab Assignment.
Students will draw free-body diagrams of all three
member types, showing all service loads.
The instructor and teaching assistant will
circulate throughout the room to answer questions.
Live Load Reduction Problem Discussion:
The instructor will discuss the solution of the
problem described previously.
The instructor will address any student concerns
regarding live load reduction.
Improve the activity
Improvements to the activity are best discussed after
analyzing the activity's performance when conducted. In the
following sections, a case study of the activity as it was
conducted will highlight areas for improvement as well as
closely study the learning which occurred.
Tributary Area Activity Implementation
One constraint on the implementation of this activity
was one of human relationsthe instructor (Dr. Ellifritt)

185
was unable to separate the class into two groups to provide
a control group. This eliminates the possibility of
conducting a comparative study, because all available
students would be taught by the same method, the one created
through the Engineering By Design methodology. It will not
be possible to objectively conclude that the new approach to
teaching tributary area is better than the method previously
used. In lieu of this more preferable method of evaluation,
other more subjective methods of evaluation are used. A
post-test was administered to all students which, rather
than measuring their performance against a control group,
can be used to measure their performance against a standard
of mastery.
The case study approach to studying the method is also
beneficialevidences of the learning fostered by the new
lesson are insightful as to its effectiveness. A number of
such incidences are reported. Another evaluation instrument
is a survey which was administered to the students and the
student comments which supplemented it. This survey
measured student opinions of the lab, of group work, and
other relevant information. By relating the survey results
to the quiz scores, it is hoped to discover interesting

186
trends which may further contribute to the evaluation of the
activity, and therefore of the method used to develop it.
The evaluation of the tributary area laboratory will proceed
in the same order as the objectives were presented.
Introduction to laboratory
The students were generally quite receptive to the idea
of their involvement in an educational experiment. They
seemed enthusiastic to hear of the instructor's and my
concern for their learning. After a brief explanation of
the motivation for the block tower activity, we quickly
began.
Block tower activity
This activity certainly achieved some of the desired
objectives. Student teams quickly established an atmosphere
of friendly competition, as expected. In fact, the peer
interaction was very similar to that observed with middle
school groups, for whom peer interaction is most
importantthe winning group even pronounced itself "The
Tower Masters," writing that epithet on the group work they
turned in. The activity certainly reduced the level of

187
lethargy commonly present in an afternoon laboratory. For
the remainder of the afternoon, the classroom somewhat
resembled a beehive.
Student comments indicated a mixed reaction as to the
success of the block tower activity in helping visualize the
natural of structural loading. One student commented, "I
thought the blocks gave us a good conceptual understanding
of [structural] weaknesses," which is very encouraging,
since that explicit goal of the activity was not clearly
communicated to the students prior to the activity.
However, another student indicated, "The block tower
activity was fun, but I failed to note a significant or
helpful connection between it and tributary areas." This
would seem to indicate that the activity only achieved its
intended purpose for students with certain learning
preferences.
Not surprisingly, the most significant weakness of the
block tower activity was the fact that we only had two sets
of blocks. This caused some groups to watch and wait while
other built towerstwo students made special note of the
delay in their comments. One student made a specific
recommendation for improvement of the activity, indicating

188
that the opportunity to build the tower from the ground up
would have provided additional freedom for the team to
design the structure, rather than be constrained by the
instability caused by moving blocks.
Load distribution brainstorming
Initial resistance is always expected when introducing
group methods and challenging students to formulate a
concept rather than teaching it. Students did not hesitate
to express their uneasiness with the approach: "...I think
it would benefit the students to know how to do something
(e.g. tributary area) before problems or quizzes be given."
This uneasiness is acceptable, because it can be like sand
to an oysteran irritant from which a pearl may grow. The
challenge and the higher order thinking can shake out
principles which students take for granted and encourage
thinking, like a "whack on the side of the head," as Von
Oech put it (1983). The format of this activity is
especially threatening if the students feel that they will
be penalized for errors. When we introduced the activity,
we explained that the objective was simply for the teams to
speculate as to how load was distributedwrong answers would

189
not penalize the team. One student's comment made it clear
that we had not clearly conveyed that approach: "I like to
have some knowledge of a method before trying to complete a
graded homework on that method."
In their solution to the exercise itself, teams 1, 2,
4, 5, 6, and 7 defined all of the tributary areas consistent
with the standard definition of the concept. Team 3
identified all but one area correctly; in the second
problem, they forced the area surrounding joist c (and its
reflection) to be symmetric, leaving no floor surface to be
carried by joist b. Essentially, the team removed joist b
to create uniform spacing. Team 8 postulated an edge
effect, which would be consistent with that which occurs
with uniformly loaded continuous beams, where interior
supports carry considerably more than twice the load of
exterior supports (AISC, 1986, p. 3-142). This error is
simply caused by a different set of assumptions, where the
assumptions made in the established definition of tributary
area make the area simpler to compute, forgoing the
increased accuracy of the more complicated set of
assumptions.

190
We were encouraged that, in all, six of eight teams
defined the areas according to the established method before
tributary area was formally introduced. It is also
important to note that both students who made negative
comments about this exercise were on teams which completed
the problems in such a manner (i.e., that their comments are
not due to a perceived attack on their self-image).
Problem set discussion
Immediately after one team turned in its solution, one
of the members approached me. He had proposed a different
solution to the last problem, and his teammates had rejected
his approach. Unfortunately, his teammates had not been
patient or persuasive enough to reconcile his approach with
theirs. The third problem is shown again below; the
student's proposed solution for column c is indicated by the
hatched area, and others are typical.
The student's logic is quite reasonableto view the
load carried by a column as a radius of effect.
Unfortunately, his teammates had not worked with him to
follow through on his logical approach.

191
a b
25 25 '
Figure 8 Reconciliation of a
Radial Tributary Area Method
with the Traditional Method
I asked the student, "So how shall we divide the areas
of the floor which are not yet accounted for?" (pointing to
the curved-diamond-shaped gaps between the circles). He
indicated dividing those areas into quarters with the dotted
lines shown. At that point, I encouraged him to complete
the logical process he had begun: "and where does each of
those quarters go?" He had already seen the resultwhen the
quarter indicated by the thick line is added to column c's
circle, and the other quarters that adjoin the circle are
also added, the area assigned to column c has increased to
form a square. He was clearly satisfied that his logic was
not faulty; more importantly, he clearly had a deeper

192
understanding of the material by presenting it in this
manner.
The next occurrence came as a big surprise to me and to
Dr. Ellifrittwe had not yet formally introduced the concept
of tributary area, and had therefore not yet referred to it
by name, when one of the students asked, "Is what we've been
doing something like tributary area?" The question of prior
experience had arisen in the planning the laboratorywe were
both confident that the concept was not covered in any other
classes that these students would have taken, and we were
both wrong, apparently. At that point, I asked for a show
of hands as to how many students in the class had heard of
tributary area before the lab9 of 33 students, more than a
quarter of the class, raised their hands. This caused two
problems: the experience was not evenly distributed among
the groups, and it raised questions as to what effects
experience might have on the results. However, by measuring
experience as a continuous variable (assigning numerical
values to different levels of experience), it made it
possible to test if experience was a factor. This will be
discussed in detail later in this chapter.

193
We then moved on to discuss the problem set; the
assumptions associated with the established method of
computing tributary area were introduced and justified. It
was explained that, while the edge effect assumption is
often valid, it further complicates the computation of
tributary area. Team 3's misconception that a particular
floor joist carried no load was discussed privately with the
group immediately after they handed in their solution, in
order to avoid the intimidation of correcting such a mistake
in front of their peers.
Tributary area lab assignment
When students seemed confident in the concept of
tributary (when there were no more questions), the
laboratory assignment was handed out, and the professor, the
teaching assistant, and I were available to assist student
teams and answer questions. As these assignments were
turned in, it was clear that the most common error was
ignoring elevations, i.e. strictly dividing up the area
between both girders, half to each. In doing this, the
girders carry an extra load: that load which some of the
joists deliver to beams which, in turn, frame into the

194
columns directly. Some students did the same with the area
between the beams, i.e., they failed to realize that a
portion of the uniform load was applied directly to the
girder (at a higher elevation) and was not seen by the
beams. Both of these errors are conservative, because they
apply more load to the intermediary members. Both will,
however, correctly yield the resultant column loading. Two
of the teams (4 and 5) completed the assignment without
error.
Lab assignment discussion
Having quickly reviewed the assignments as they were
turned in, the instructor reviewed the implications of
elevation, and how load is transferred from one layer to
another, sometimes bypassing an intermediary layer. When we
had finished going over the laboratory assignment, we
proceeded to introduce live load reduction through the next
brainstorming exercise.
Live load reduction brainstorming exercise
By the time we had reached this point in the
laboratory, the instructor was concerned that we were

195
running late, and modified the lesson plans slightly, but
with my full agreement. This exercise was conducted with
the whole class participating in one large brainstorming
group. At first, students were concerned that the reduction
was a safety risk (as was expected). Eventually, after some
reflection, some students suggested that the statistical
nature of live loads warranted some kind of reduction.
Students were then asked to suggest how the reduction
might be computed, and a percentage approach was soon
proposed, which was rapidly approved by the class. Then the
instructor asked what limits should be placed on it.
Students eventually suggested two of the three limits used
by LRFD in live load reduction: a limit on the maximum
reduction percentage (the instructor did not ask the class
to choose the numerical value of the limit), and a minimum
area to consider live load reduction. Students did not
suggest the third criterion, that for very large loads (100
psf and larger), reductions are not permitted except under
special circumstances. The instructor and I were pleased
with the results in this casein a short time, students had
figured out much of the established process of live load
reduction.

196
Live load reduction brainstorming results
Due to the modification of the lesson plans, this stage
was subsumed by the previous. All students were
instantaneously aware of the input of the entire class.
LRFD live load reduction
After the brainstorming session had yielded most of the
concepts important to live load reduction, the method
sanctioned by AISC/LRFD was introduced, including the
criteria and formulae. Students seemed to find this
presentation very clear, likely because the new information
was just an application of what was already understood
through the brainstorming session.
Live load reduction laboratory exercise
Students were then asked to compute live load
reductions using the tributary areas from the previous
laboratory exercise. Since students all had the same
starting point (they had the correct tributary areas after
the previous exercise was reviewed), this exercise was
essentially plug-and-chug (a good one for the sensors and
sequentials). The primary problems observed during this

197
part of the laboratory were students failing to consider all
the criteria in evaluating the reduction. Practice, of
course, is the only way to hope to reduce the likelihood of
such errors.
Live load reduction problem discussion
This part of the laboratory was done informally, as the
instructor, the teaching assistant, and I were available to
review the results of teams individually.
Evaluation of the Tributary Area Activity
As discussed before, the two most objective methods of
evaluating the laboratory were through a survey filled out
by the students ("Tributary Area Laboratory Student
Evaluation" in Appendix C) and a quiz to measure the mastery-
level of all students ("Tributary Area Post-test" in
Appendix C). As indicated before, there is some opportunity
to examine the interrelation of the survey responses and the
quiz scores, especially with the added factor of experience
level to consider. The survey, the quiz, and their
interrelation will be discussed in the following sections.

198
Student evaluation
The student evaluation measured a number of things.
Initially, it was intended to assess student attitudes
toward various aspects of the laboratory. When experience
was noted as a factor in the course of the laboratory, a
means of measuring it was added to the evaluation. The
results of the student evaluation are also discussed in this
section. Agreement level for individual statements as well
as statement groupings were tested for statistical
significance.
Measurement of experience. Experience was measured as
a continuous variable by classifying the experience level
into six categories. The first category was no experience,
assigned the value of zero. This level and the others were
classified as indicated below with the associated experience
score (Exp). Experience here must be an independent
variable, because we cannot affect itit is a measurable
characteristic of each student. It can, however, affect
various dependent variables such as quiz score and survey
responses.

199
Table 7 Classification of Experience as a Continuous Variable
Exp
Classification
0
Answered "N" to the question "Had you been introduced
to the concept of tributary area prior to the
activity?"
1
I had the concept described to me.
2
A sample problem was done on the board.
3
I did a problem informally by myself or with a group.
4
A problem was assigned for homework and graded.
5
I had a test on it.
Likert scale measurements. Also measured on the
evaluation form were student agreement with a variety of
statements. Student agreement was measured on the scale
shown in the table below, known as a Likert Scale (Likert,
1932). The most significant disadvantage of Likert
measurements is the fact that the scale is not consistent
for all individuals (Kubiszyn and Borich, 1993). In fact,
the most likely factor to cause an individual to distinguish
between "Strong Agreement" and simple "Agreement" seems to
be personality. Some individuals make a conscious attempt
to use the full range of the measurement scale, while others
are more likely to use the extremes in their opinions
because they wish to be decisive. This will be discussed

200
further (and demonstrated) when the results of the
evaluation are presented.
Table 8 Likert Scale Definition
Subject
Opinion
Strongly
Disagree
Disagree
Neutral
Agree
Strongly
Agree
Value if
positively
phrased
1
2
3
4
5
Value if
negatively
phrased
5
4
3
2
1
Both positive and negative phrasing of questions is used in
order to ensure that students do not anticipate the meaning
of the statement, but rather read it and respond to it.
Using both positive and negative statements increases the
number of ways available to gather the same information
without seeming repetitious. By assigning the values to the
negative statements in the reverse order, the scores from
multiple statements intended to measure the same attitude
can be averaged.
The scoring of the Likert scale is a bit inconvenient
for modern methods,- when students fill in circles on sheets
which are scanned, the value assigned will be independent of
the phrasing of the question, and thus negative numbers will

201
have incorrect values. This discrepancy requires additional
manipulation of the data in order to obtain an average.
In previous work with Likert scales, I analyzed their
behavior and discovered a simplifying scoring principle.
The table below shows that for a negative phrase, the sum of
the assigned value and the desired value always equals 6.
Table 9 Manipulation of Negatively Phrased Statement Scores
Assigned
Value
1
2
3
4
5
Desired
Value
5
4
3
2
1
Sum
6
6
6
6
6
Thus we find that desired value = (6 assigned value). By
making this substitution in formulae which sum negatively
phrased statement values, averages can be correctly
computed.
Student Evaluation Statements. The table below gives
the statements included in the Tributary Area Student
Evaluation and their corresponding numbers.
Concept groupings. The groupings are abbreviated as
follows: LF=lab format, GW=group work, TT=this team,

202
Table 10 Tributary Area Evaluation Statements
1
I prefer working/studying alone.
2
We spent too much time waiting for other teams
to finish their towers.
3
I still don't understand tributary area.
4
The block tower activity helped make me alert for the rest of lab
time.
5
I would have done just as well or better individually.
6
I would prefer a formal presentation of the concept of tributary
area before attempting problems.
7
It was educational to try to figure out tributary area without being
told the method right away.
8
The block tower activity helped me start thinking about how load is
distributed.
9
Working in a group is better than working by myself.
10
My team formed a strategy before doing the block tower activity.
11
My team formed a strategy based on the results of other teams.
12
My team's strategy was ineffective because of the limitations of the
block tower.
13
Other members in my group helped me see things from a different
perspective.
14
Someone else in my group helped me understand something.
15
The block tower activity was a good use of my lab time.
16
The lab was too long.
17
Stretching exercises would have been just as good as the block tower
activity.
18
Being asked to suggest methods for load reduction made me look more
closely at the problem.
19
Trying to guess how live load reduction is accomplished was a waste
of my time.
20
We spent more time than usual in the lab, but it was worth it.
21
In the past, I have not enjoyed assigned groups.

203
TG=total group, C=confidence, TW=time/worth. An "x"
indicates that a statement measures that concept.
Table 11 Tributary Area Survey Statements and Groupings
Statement
Sense
(+/-)
LF
GW
TT
TG
c
TW
(I)
TW
(II)
1
-
X
X
2
-
X
X
X
3
-
X
4
+
X
5
-
X
X
6
-
X
7
+
X
8
+
X
9
+
X
X
10
+
X
X
X
11
+
X
X
X
12
-
X
13
+
X
X
14
+
X
X
15
+
X
X
X
16
-
X
X
X
17
-
X
18
+
X
19
-
X
X
X
20
+
X
X
X
21
-
X
X

204
The "lab format" grouping measures students attitude
toward the format of the laboratory overall; "group work"
measures their general attitude toward group work; "this
team" represents a measure of the group experience they had
in the tributary area laboratory; "total group" includes all
the components of the previous two groupings; "confidence"
assesses students' perceived understanding of tributary
after the laboratory; "time/worth" is a measure of whether
or not students valued the laboratory as a whole, i.e., if
it was worth their educational time.
Case I research and the t statistic. If the population
of students as a whole truly has no opinion regarding a
particular statement, the response should be normally
distributed with a mean of 3, the neutral response. This
provides us with a hypothetical mean to conduct a t-test for
"Case I" research, which answers the question (Shavelson,
1988, p. 317), "Does a particular sample belong to a
hypothesized population?" The t statistic is the difference
between the measured average, x, and the hypothesized
population mean, fj. (in this case, 3), normalized by the
standard error (the sample standard deviation divided by the

205
square root of sample size; used as a measure of the
standard deviation of various measures of the mean). Where
N is sample size and the standard deviation is given by s,
the observed t statistic is given by equation 1:
t observed =
(S / yfij)
Equation 1 The t Statistic
Once an observed value of t has been obtained, the
probability that the measured mean is truly different can be
calculated from the t distribution. If this probability is
lower than the criterion established, a (normally 0.05),
then it can be stated with 95% (1-a) confidence that the
observed difference between the average and the hypothesized
mean is a true difference. The t-test was used in the
manner described above on both the raw data for each
question and on the question groupings described above. The
former is shown in Table 1 and the latter in Table 2, both
in Appendix C.
Statistical and Practical Significance. It is always
important to note the difference between statistical

206
significance and practical significance. Three factors can
contribute to statistical significance: a tight distribution
(a small value of s), a high number of samples (N) and a
large gap between the measured x and the hypothetical \i
will all yield a high value of the observed fc statistic.
Only one of these, the difference between x and p,
contributes to practical significance. For example, a study
measuring the I.Q. (in the general population, p=100) of
students may conduct a special thinking skills training
program, might measure I.Q. in a post-test to discover
x =105. Appropriate values of s or N can make the resulting
x statistically significant, but it is difficult to justify
the expense and effort of such a special program to gain
only 5 points in I.Q.the result does not have practical
significance. Unfortunately, while statistical significance
is an objective and calculated quantity, practical
significance can be the subject of disagreement.
Special notes regarding the survey data. Before
discussing the results of the evaluation, it is important to
draw attention to a number of notes regarding the table of
raw data (these notes are also included in Appendix C with

207
the data). Student #8 did not complete a survey or take the
quiz; as a result, that student was eliminated from
consideration in any calculations.
Answers to statement 11 indicated in bold in Appendix C
were irrelevant, since that statement did not apply to the
two teams that went first. As a result, those numbers were
not included in the computation of the average or standard
deviation, and two computations of the Time/Worth grouping
were made -- Time/Worth I includes Qll, but does not include
the teams which went first; Time/Worth II does not include
Qll, but includes the results from all teams.
Unfortunately, we must also expect that some survey
respondents will neglect to respond to all statements.
Answers in bold italics (St28/Q5 and St25/Q18) were blank,
and neutral responses were substituted to avoid sample size
differences. Given the limited number of them, and the
availability of a neutral response, this approach should not
compromise the integrity of the reported data.
Tributary area evaluation results
As discussed earlier, three aspects of the survey
results can be studied: student responses to individual

208
statements, student responses to grouped statements
representing a larger concept, and the relation of those
responses to the quiz results. The last of these will be
discussed after the post-test itself is presented, and the
first two are presented here. There were quite a few
statements which achieved statistically and practically
significant opinions. These have been arranged in such a
manner as to paint a logical picture which draws connections
between the various significant responses. The pre-
established groupings will always appear in quotes (with
their abbreviations) to identify them as such.
Student responses to 13 of the 21 statements were
statistically different from the mean of 3 (neutral). In
considering these, I have additionally established the level
of practical significance at halfway between 3 and its
nearest neighbor values (2 or 4)-anything at or above 3.5
(for agreement) and anything at or below 2.5 (for
disagreement). The statements which earned agreement
according to these two criteria were statements 6, 9, 10,
13, 15, 16, and 18. Statements 5, 17, 19, and 21 earned
disagreement in the same manner.

209
Students resist, then accept discovery method.
Students agreed with "I would prefer a formal presentation
of the concept of tributary area before attempting
problems," indicating their uneasiness with what was likely
their first exposure to this teaching method. As was
discussed earlier, however, the student teams all did
remarkably well at predicting the most basic tenets of the
established method of calculating tributary area. Later in
the same laboratory, after students had such success with
the first application of the method, students attitudes
toward its second application, speculating a live load
reduction technique, was positive as measured by responses
to two statements: students agreed with "Being asked to
suggest methods for load reduction made me look more closely
at the problem" and disagreed with the statement "Trying to
guess how live load reduction is accomplished was a waste of
my time."
Students saw educational benefit in the tower activity.
Responses to two statements point to the fact that students
took the block tower activity seriously (agreement with "My
team formed a strategy before doing the block tower

210
activity") and saw educational benefit in it (agreement with
"The block tower activity was a good use of my lab time").
The time delay incurred due to it was seen as a drawback to
the benefit, however (agreement with "The lab was too
long").
Students are positive about cooperative learning. The
remaining significant statements all indicated positive
attitudes toward cooperative learning in general or toward
this specific experience working in a team. Agreement with
"Working in a group is better than working by myself" and
"Other members in my group helped me see things from a
different perspective" as well as disagreement with "I would
have done just as well or better individually" are a good
indicator that the cooperative learning goals were met by
this laboratory design.
By the same criteria of significance used for studying
the responses of the population to individual statements,
the groupings can be analyzed. Among the groupings, only
three measures met both standards of significanceall three
which measured group interaction: "Group Work (GW)" (3.54),
"This Team (TT)" (3.63), and "Total Group (TG)" (3.54).

211
This was no surprise, given the previously discussed
responses to statements 5, 9, 13, and 21 all indicated a
positive opinion of cooperative education in general and of
the teamwork experience in the tributary area laboratory
specifically. Of these groupings, the opinion in support of
"This Team" was the strongest (3.63).
Strength of opinion is personality driven. As noted
earlier, the likelihood of indicating a "Strong" opinion is
heavily influenced by individual differences (Kubiszyn and
Borich, 1993). Students 9, 22, 23, 25, 26, 31, and 32 had
no responses of strong agreement or disagreement, and even
more surprising, student 12 indicated simple agreement or
disagreement for only two of the 21 statements. Agreement
and disagreement, when indicated, were consistently
"Strong."
Tributary area post-test
A post-test designed to measure the mastery level of
the students was designed by the instructor. The post-test,
which required application of all the principles of
tributary area students had been taught, is shown below.

212
This is also shown in Appendix C as "Tributary Area
Post-test." Here, however, the joists have been numbered in
order to describe the grading system devised. The
instructions given to the students are given following the
diagram for reference.
<
24' i

30'

A
'
1 '
1 '
1
3
4
1
ZO 0
O 0
D
VZ7A
Bearing wall
nzD
Beam
C £
' I
^
7 f
A
30'
y
A
32'
V
Figure 9 Tributary Area Post-test
Calculate the tributary area to the beam AB. Sketch it
on the plan view. Assume all joists are equally spaced
and in contact with the slab. The beams AB, DC, and CE
are all at the same elevation but are not in contact
with the slab. There is no column at C.
Students were given approximately 15 minutes to complete
this exercise.

213
Grading system. A grading system was necessary which
would be as objective as possible. The approach taken to
address this need was to systematically evaluate all the
members in discrete steps. With a complete list of all
these steps, a review of student papers would show which
steps each student had completed satisfactorily. The list
followseach step was assigned a single point for its
correct completion.
1 Joist 1 shares load with the bearing wall
2 Joist 1 contributes to AB
3 Half of Joist 1 rests on the left bearing wall
4 Joist 2 contributes to AB
5 Half of Joist 2 rests on the left bearing wall
6 Beam DC contributes to AB
7 Half of Beam DC rests on the left bearing wall
8 Joist 3 contributes to AB
9 Half of Joist 3 rests on the north bearing wall
10 AB shares load with Joist 3
11 Half of Joist 4 rests on the north bearing wall
12 Joist 4 shares load with the bearing wall
13 Beam CE contributes to AB
14 Half of Beam CE rests on the right bearing wall
15 Joist 5 contributes to AB
16 Half of Joist 5 rests on the right bearing wall
17 Joist 6 contributes to AB
18 Half of Joist 6 rests on the right bearing wall
19 Joist 7 contributes to AB
20 Joist 7 shares load with the bearing wall
21 Half of Joist 7 rests on the right bearing wall
The numbers indicated above correspond exactly to the quiz
scoring numbers tl-t21.

214
Post-test results
As is normally the case in grading tests in a design
class, the different approaches students take to problem
solution prove a challenge to the grader. The objective
system described above was helpful in meeting this
challenge. In the case of certain students, enough
information was written on the quiz to indicate the
student's line of thinking. This provided the ability to
diagnose certain errors. Even more useful is identifying
the errors which are common to most of the class.
Quiz score distribution. The distribution of quiz
scores indicated a high level of mastery of the class as a
whole. This corresponds with the improvement which was
noted anecdotally by the instructor, although no
quantitative comparison to previous classes of students
exists. The histogram which follows shows the distribution
of quiz scores. The full range of possible scores is shown
in the histogram to show the high level of mastery achieved
by the students. The mean, median, and mode of the score
distribution are all equal to 18.

215
Figure 10 Post-test Score Distribution
Range restriction. While this high level of mastery is
good evidence of the teaching benefit of the laboratory, the
very narrow range precludes the use of the quiz grades to
compare various groups of students (among teams, experienced
students vs. inexperienced students, etc.) due to a
principle known as range restriction. This is especially
true in measuring correlation coefficients, as noted by
Shavelson (1988).
Because range restriction has occurred, it is therefore
impossible to use the quiz score as a predictor of anything
other than the mastery level of the class as a whole. It is
possible, however, to study which steps were missed most
frequently. This study may yield additional information
which is useful to the educational process.

216
Using quiz results to diagnose educational shortfalls.
The raw data from the quiz (see Appendix C) also included a
calculation of the percentage of the students who completed
each step correctly. It is hardly necessary to review the
percentages, since the marks for incorrect responses in
three of the columns define a clear line because there are
so many of them. Steps 1, 10, and 20 were completed
correctly by only 55%, 52%, and 48% respectively. The next
lowest is 73%, indicating that these three were not clearly
demonstrated.10
Completion of Step 10 requires some engineering
judgement. The instructor and I concur, with the following
reasoning: although Beam AB is not in contact with the slab,
it must carry half the load between it and Joist 3, because
the Joists 1 and 2, which rest on Beam AB, are in contact
with the slab. The fact that Beam AB is not in contact with
the slab could easily cause a large number of students to
10A statistical test could be performed to compare measured
frequency to expected frequency of step completion. This
would employ a Chi Square design. This analysis was skipped
for brevity's sake since Steps 1, 10, and 20 had such
clearly poor completion percentages.

217
miss Step 10. This is not a shortfall of the educational
process, but is inherent in the process of engineering,
wherever judgement is involved.
Steps 1 and 20, however, are essentially the same
error: failing to see that, when a joist is parallel to a
bearing wall, the wall will carry half of the load between
them. Since students have a firm grasp on load sharing
between two joists (based on their completion of other steps
with a much higher success rate), but do not see as well
that walls share in the same manner, I hypothesize that the
root of the error lies in students' inability to relate the
picture in plan to a physical structure.
In a physical structure, for a bearing wall to carry a
vertical load, it must somehow be attached to it. In some
cases (such as in the basement garage at my house), this is
done by anchoring a ledger beam to the bearing wall with
carriage bolts. In the plan view provided to students (such
as in the post-test), however, this ledger beam is not
shown. In fact, there is no indication in the picture
provided as to how load transfer to the bearing wall might
occur. As a result, I have hypothesized that students fail
to assign any load to the bearing wall simply because they

218
cannot see the path by which the floor load is able to
transfer to it.
This hypothesis can easily be tested. The instructor
plans to address this specifically upon teaching the class
again, in order to clarify the misconception. If the same
test is administered again, the students' success rate in
completing Steps 1 and 20 should be much more in line with
the other frequencies.
Student comments on the lab as a whole
Two students contributed made comments on the lab as a
whole. These two comments are included here. One student
said simply, "Great idea." The other comment was more
specific (and longer): "Good lab ... different approach was
good ..."
Pesian of an llth-12th Grade Statistics Activity
The greatest barrier to evaluation of the methodology
in an experiment with a teacher in the public school system
is a human relations phenomenon. The teachers who are most

219
interested in assisting in this educational research are the
teachers who are already good teachers. There is little
which could be done to avoid this, since the collaborating
teacher would undergo additional effort in order to conduct
the educational experiment in addition to teaching the
students. Further, teachers in the public school system are
more bound to established curriculum materials than are
university professors. Using university contacts within the
local teaching community, a high school physics teacher, Dr.
Cynthia Holland (of Newberry High School, Newberry,
Florida), was located who would assist in testing the
Engineering By Design methodology.
The Design of the Activity
The design of the lesson was initiated when Dr. Holland
met with me at her school to develop goals. She indicated
that statistics was not included in the curriculum, but that
she wanted to introduce it along with a spreadsheet/
graphing/statistical analysis software product she wanted to
test out. We agreed that the goal would be to develop a
lesson to teach certain principles of descriptive

220
statistics. Descriptive statistics are statistics which
organize and describe a group of data. Those statistics we
decided to specifically address in the lesson were measures
of central tendency (mean, median, mode) and measures of
variation (range, standard deviation).
Once the goals had been set, we decided that the class
would be divided into two groups, a control group which
would be taught by a typical lesson, and an experimental
group which would be taught by the lesson developed by our
collaboration. In order to avoid having our collaboration
contaminate the process by which Dr. Holland normally
develops lesson plans, we postponed the further development
of the experimental lesson until she had already made her
own plans. Three problems arose at this pointthe first was
already mentioned briefly, that Dr. Holland is already
accustomed to using active and cooperative educational
techniques. It would be unethical to ask her to teach by
techniques which she knows to be less effectiveboth for
ethical reasons and because it would contaminate the
experiment by making her teach in an unfamiliar manner to
the control group. The second complication was that the
goal was sufficiently vague that although she had envisioned

221
the educational process surrounding the data, she had not
established exactly what data was to be collected. The
third difficulty compounded the secondbecause I began to
discuss the lesson with Dr. Holland and then postponed
completing it with her, I entered into what is referred to
as an incubation period, where idea generation begins
(Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, 1995a). During this time, I
recalled an account related to me by a former classmate of
mine, now Dr. Robert Smith of Sandia National Laboratory,
who was demonstrating projectile motion for some public
school students in an "Ask Mr. Science" educational format.
During his demonstration, students had noticed that the
projectile did not always appear to land in the same place,
even though conditions appeared identical for each trial.
As a result, a broad discussion of variation and error
ensued.
Seeking to create the same climate of inquiry that my
former classmate had achieved, I was very interested in
capturing the excitement of a projectile experiment to spark
the thinking of the high school students. When Dr. Holland
and I met again, she was very interested in the approach I
suggested. Unfortunately, simplicity (and generating a

222
larger total set of data) required that all students work
with similar equipment collecting the same type of data. As
a result, an element of my creative process was integrated
into the lesson plans for both the experimental and control
groups. This flaw in the research design would cause
problems later on in distinguishing between the experimental
and control groups.
The remainder of the lesson was developed as follows:
the experimental group would begin with brainstorming and
discovery activities which are discussed later in this
sectionthe control group would receive a brief introduction
and collect data during that time; data collection for each
group would last three class periods. Since the control
group would start collecting data one day earlier, the
instructor would formally introduce the concepts of
descriptive statistics in her usual manner on day 4, while
the experimental group was still collecting data. The two
groups would then receive instruction as a single group on
how to use the software being introduced. Individual
laboratory pairs would remain together to complete a
laboratory reportreferred to as a "Final Exam Project" by
Dr. Holland. After the laboratory reports were completed, a

223
post-test (described later) would be administered to all
students.
Designing Experimental and Control Groups
The physics class used for the experiment had sixteen
students. Dr. Holland divided the students into two groups,
an experimental group and a control group. The two groups
were designed to be similar with respect to the ability
level of the students. The groups were also gender-
balanced. By balancing ability and gender between the
experimental and control groups, these would not have to be
considered as factors contributing significantly to any
measured effect.
Introductory Brainstorming Activity
The brainstorming activity occupied one class period.
Students were shown the experimental apparatus, a NERF
device which launches foam darts, attached to a hinged
platform which can be adjusted to fix the launcher
continuously over a great range of launch angle. Students
were allowed to test it out for a while.

224
Central tendency
Since students quickly notice (or assume a priori) that
darts launched from the same trajectory do not always land
in the same spot, it was soon natural to move into the
brainstorming exercise. Students were then asked, "How
should we determine the "ideal" landing spotthe one we
would predict?" The various ideas recorded by the teams in
the experimental group were as follows (in no particular
order):
A. Shoot from the floor (presumably to avoid ceiling)
B. Use the same dart for each test
C. Measure how far to left or right the dart goes
D. Graph the results
E. Calculate time in the air by measuring maximum
height and doubling the free fall time
F. Weigh the dart
G. Take average of where the darts land
H. Find the center of the smallest circle which
encompasses all the data points
I. Determine the landing zone hit the most
J. Draw a circle with the average as the center
K. Find out how far each darts lands from the average
The ideas above range in scope, including experimental
procedure, prediction of sources of error, data analysis,
and descriptive statistics. The last two are particularly
interestingeven before any discussion of variation, these
two ideas, especially K, essentially describe the procedure

225
by which standard deviation is calculated (standard
deviation is essentially the average distance from the
mean). Idea I is precisely the definition of mode. It is
no great surprise that students did not suggest anything
corresponding well to the median as a measure of central
tendencythe median has no meaning in a two-dimensional
problem. If the problem had been restricted to a one
dimensional problem (say strictly to distance from the
launcher) rather than a two-dimensional estimate of the
actual landing spot, students may have been more likely to
describe the median as a measure.
Decreasing observer dependence
The instructor then illustrated the effect of the
observer on measurementif the dart doesn't stick when it
lands, different observers will think the dart landed in
different places. Students asked to speculate, "How can we
more accurately determine the landing spot?" Student ideas
are listed belowin this list as in the others, redundant
ideas are not repeated, but all ideas are included.
A. Put chalk/paint on the end of the dart
B. Have one person watch very closely
C. Use a video camera to record trajectory

226
D. Shoot the dart into sand/whipped cream
E. Coat the floor with carbon paper
F. Coat the dart with a sticky substance
G. Use radar/laser tracking system
Sources of error
The teams in the experimental group then brainstormed
the question, "Why is there variation in the landing spot?"
to generate the following list of possible sources of error:
A. Shooter technique
B. Aerodynamics are different for each dart
C. The dart is different each time you shoot it
D. Air currents
E. Chaos
F. Dart weight differences
G. Recoil of apparatus
H. Movement of apparatus by pulling launch string
I. Apparatus has instability in base
J. The apparatus is just a toy
K. The darts are different sizes
L. The way that the dart is loaded
Students have covered three major categories of sources of
error: the effects of experimenter inconsistency (A, H, L),
equipment accuracy (C, F, G, I, J, K), and uncontrolled
environmental conditions (B, D, E).
Measuring variation
Having identified sources of variation, students were
asked to speculate, "How should we measure how much

227
variation there is?" This question yielded the following
responses:
A. Calculate the total area over which it lands
B. Find out how far each dart is from the mean
C. Draw a line at the average distance and measure
the perpendicular distance to the landing points
D. Let the computer do it for us
E. Graph data, see how it looks visually
F. See how far each value is from the mean/median/mode
G. Graph mean/median/mode along with rest of data.
The ideas generated here are also excellentA describes the
range (again, in two dimensions); methods similar to
standard deviation are suggested by B, C, and F; C
additionally constrains the problem to one dimension by
measuring only perpendicular distance. While suggestions
like D are an anathema in education, it is certainly a
possible approach to the problem, and is appropriately
included in a list of ideas.11
The Post-test and Results
The post-test is included in Appendix D, with the
scoring system indicated with each question. The test
An all too common one, apparentlythe first post-test
question was "Why are deviations from the mean squared in
computing standard deviation?" Of the 16 students tested,
four students responded "the computer did it" or similar.

228
administered was intentionally difficult to avoid range
restriction. Some questions allowed students to speculate
far beyond the descriptive statistics taught through the
lessoneven to the point of defining principles of
inferential statistics. The various concepts addressed by
the questions on the post-test are listed below. Each
concept is designated by a letter for reference in the table
of questions which follows.
Table 12 Concepts tested by the Statistics Post-Test
Key
Concept
A
Measures of central tendency
B
Limitations of measures of central tendency
C
Measures of variability
D
The magnitude of standard deviation
E
Statistical inference (predicting population
behavior from a sample of the population)
F
The effects of sample size
G
Accuracy and precision
H
Factors which affect distribution shape / skew
I
The effect of "curving" by adding a constant
J
The principle of range restriction
Note the advanced nature of some of these concepts,
which require the students not only to prove their
understanding of what was covered in the lesson, but to
extend their understanding well beyond that coverage. The

229
concepts addressed in each post-test question are listed in
the following table.
Table 13 Post-Test Concept Coverage
Question
Concepts covered
1
C
2
A, B
3
A, B, H
4
A, C, J
5
A, C, D, I
6
A, B, H
7
C, D, H, J
8
C, E, H
9
A, B, H
10
A, B, H
11
E, G
Although the test was very difficult (the class average
score was 24.25 out of a possible 56), there was not a
single scoring category (some questions were asked in two
parts) in which no students received credit.
Unfortunately, there was no statistical or practical
significance in the difference between the experimental
group average (25.0) and the control group average (23.5).
Since it cannot be inferred as to whether the activity
created using the Engineering By Design methodology yielded

230
any improvement over the educational method used with the
control group, all that is left is to analyze the effects
which could have made such an improvement impossible to
detect.
Effects Operating in this Experiment
Each group was aware of the experiment; it was
impossible to prevent this occurrencestudents were
constantly about working on projects while Dr. Holland and I
met, they witnessed the testing of the apparatus (which was
a good deal of fun for us and a few other interested
teachers), and they knew that the class was being divided
into two groups. This awareness opened up the possibility
of a number of the effects described earlier. The John
Henry effect was certainly operating, as noted by the
instructor from the first day forward. She reported that
the control group had developed a sense of competition,
since they had not been chosen for the "experimental" group.
Students in the control group viewed the success of the
experimental group as a threat to their peer status (a
critically important factor). This threat to status is

231
clearly a hallmark of the John Henry effect. This same
objective may be commingled with the demand characteristic
motivation to thwart the research in order to achieve
superiority over the researcher and the experiment itself.
Anecdotally, the instructor indicated that a lot of learning
went on in the entire class, and that she was very pleased
with the results of the "Final Exam Projects" submitted to
her.12
12These projects, however, are not appropriate as an
evaluation of the experimental lesson, since they tested a
great many objectives not addressed specifically by the
lesson, such as laboratory procedure and writing syntax.

CHAPTER 6
CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
The success of an individual activity can only be
measured against its objectives. The Truss Bridge
Laboratory, which served as a prototype activity in the
development of the Engineering By Design methodology, has
fulfilled its objectives within the Introduction to
Engineering class, as indicated in chapter 4. These
objectives included informing students about Civil
Engineering and improving recruitment and retention.
Similarly, the tributary area laboratory met its primary
objective: to teach students tributary area.
The objectives of Engineering By Design are different
from the objectives of the activities the methodology is
used to generate. The statistical results of the tributary
area post-test and student questionnaire indicate that the
methodology produced a lesson of educational value which was
favorable to the students. The present work cannot claim to
have produced an improved lesson delivery, since a control
232

233
group was not present. No claim can be made based on the
high school statistics lesson generated.
Dissemination of the methodology by publication in
educational journals alone is not likely to reach the
greater population of K-12 teachers. Instead, an
engineering activity curriculum design aid might more
effectively reach a wide audience. I will also continue my
work by developing K-12 curriculum materials, in
collaboration with K-12 teachers.
This research can be infused into engineering academia
through the development of an educational psychology primer
for engineering professors. Relation of the principles of
education included in chapter 3 to traditional engineering
teaching methods makes this practical. The learning and
teaching principles of chapter 3 and the design
methodologies discussed in chapter 2 have direct application
in creating engineering activities, as shown in chapters 4-
5. The discussion of human development included in chapter
3 is more pertinent to in-class assessment of students. A
primer would be able to provide those in engineering
academia with the framework to understand the educational
process as developed through educational research.

234
The results of the tributary area post-test indicated a
path for future research. It would be of great benefit to
remediate frequent errors dealing with a particular concept.
The new lesson can be tested more definitively in the coming
year, made possible by a larger number of enrolled students
which has been divided into two classes. Using the same
post-test to evaluate a group taught with the new laboratory
and a control group taught with the more traditional problem
set approach would more adequately test the real benefit of
the Engineering By Design methodology.

APPENDIX A
INTRODUCTION TO ENGINEERING HANDOUTS
The complete handout for the Civil Engineering
component of the University of Florida Introduction to
Engineering class are included here. The class as a whole
has components representing all the undergraduate
engineering programs at the University of Florida and two
sessions focusing on various computer skills.
Included in this Civil Engineering component is the
Truss Bridge Laboratory, the prototype activity used to
develop the Engineering By Design methodology.
235

236
Introduction to Engineering
University of Florida
Civil Engineering Laboratory Agenda
1. Roll Call Brief Introduction
2. Summary: the Various Specialties of Civil Engineering
3. Explanation of Tests to Be Performed
4 Concrete Compression Test Discussion of Quality Control
5. Steel Tension Test
6. Introduction to the Truss Bridge Laboratory
7. Truss Bridge Design and Construction
8. Truss Testing and Scoring
9. Discussion of Results
10.
Dismissal Students may stay after with questions

237
WHAT IS A CIVIL ENGINEER?
Civil Engineering is a broad engineering discipline that incorporates many different aspects of
engineering As a CE, you generally would work in one of the following areas:
1. In Private Practice
Plans, designs, constructs and operates physical works and facilities used by the public.
2. In Academia
Teaches students the fundamentals of civil engineering. Also involved in research in order
to advance the state-of-the-art
3. In Public Practice
Plans cities and/or regions, oversees layout and construction of highways and pipelines.
4 In Combination with other Disciplines
A civil engineering degree combined with another degree such as:
Engineering Geologist, Engineering Economist, or Engineer/Attorney
Civil Engineering itself is composed of various different areas of engineering.
The general types of civil engineers include:
Structural Engineer, Water Resources Engineer, Geotechnical Engineer, Transportation
Engineer, and Construction Management Engineer
Below is a short description of each of the above types of Civil Engineers.
A. Structural Engineer Plans and design of buildings of all types, bridges and specialized
structures (power plants, nuclear reactors, television towers and radar facilities).
Wherever concrete, steel, aluminum or wood are required to carry loads, Structural
Engineers do the planning and design. Usually works closely with the Architect
B Water Resources Engineer Works with water, its control and the development of water
supplies. There are several areas that one can work in:
1. Hydraulic Engineer/Hydrologist Analyzes rain fall data, characteristics of flow in
open channels and pipes, designs, reservoirs, studies pollution migration and
coastal and shore line protection.
2. Sanitary Engineer Plans and designs municipal water facilities such as water
treatment plants and sewage treatment plants. Also may operate and maintain
these facilities
3. Water Related Structural Engineer Design such project as hydroelectric plants,
canals, docks and piers

238
C. Geotechnical Engineer Works in the field of soil and rock mechanics. Analyzes
subsurface conditions and determines and designs the type of foundation to be used for the
particular structure. Also designs dams, tunnels, and mining facilities.
D. Transportation Engineer Designs highway systems (layout, routing), pavement
material, airport runways, and rapid transit projects. Also involved in computer control of
traffic signals.
E. City Planner- Urban planner, zoning requirements, member of advisory board.
F. Construction Management Major responsibility for insuring that a project is being built
properly and according to schedule. In charge of actual construction.
G. Research Engineer Works for a University or large firm (R&D). Might study stronger
concrete, better wearing asphalt, new construction materials and methods.
CIVIL ENGINEERING JOB CHARACTERISTICS
Below is an outline of typical jobs a civil engineer might do. If the company is large, you
might be involved in one of the items. If, on the other hand, you go to work for a small company,
you may be involved in all aspects of a project.
1. Accumulation and Analysis of Basic Data
a. Runoff information of a river and/or rainfall data
b Subsurface information for the foundation design of a structure
c. Population growth statistics
d Earthquake data
e. Laboratory analysis of soil, cement and water
2. Preliminary Design
a Foundation type and design
b. Structural frame and material
c. Earth or rock filled dam
d. Highway
e. Sewage treatment plant
3. Cost Estimate
a. Determine quantity of material needed for the project
b Figure out total cost of the structure

239
c From this you may have to reduce the scope of work to fall within the budget
4. Design Drawings and Specifications
a Prepare contract plans and specifications for bidding contractors
b. Answer any questions they may have regarding the project.
5. Supervision of Construction
a. Responsible for inspection during construction
b. Certifies that the facility was built according to the plans/specs
6. Operations and Maintenance
a. Monitor the operation of the facility
b. Suggest improvements to enhance the operation
Of course, as a recent graduate, you would not be expected to perform the above tasks on
your own. You would be assigned to an engineer who would teach you "the ropes As you
gained experience, you would be given more and more responsibility.
Generally speaking, you will work a standard 40 hour week, or 8 hour/day. Civil
engineering jobs usually start early in the morning 7:30 to 8:00 a m., since that is when
construction begins. The days ends around 4:30 to 5:00 p m. One usually does not work on
weekends, unless there is a disaster. Civil engineers will almost certainly conduct field work
regularly. A lot of civil engineering involves work outside of the office Another attribute is that
since you have taken a lot of different types of engineering courses, you can work on a variety of
different types of jobs say a shopping center one month, an earth dam another and a highway
project the next. Finally, civil engineers travel a lot. Since you are involved in the construction of
a project, you must go where the work is being done. Many of our graduates travel to Saudi
Arabia, the Orient and South America.
EDUCATIONAL REQUIREMENTS
All civil engineers have attended a 4-5 year curriculum at an accredited college and
received their Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering (BSCE) degree. Many then continue on
to obtain their Master of Engineering degree. This usually takes an additional 1 to 1.5 years. If
you are really into research, you may continue on with your education and attempt to earn your
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD). This degree can take anywhere from 2 to 6 years beyond the
Master's degree. While most students finish college with their BSCE degree, remember that a
long time ago it was a big deal to have your high school diploma. Today, more and more
companies are hiring Master's degree recipients and the trend is continuing.

240
A bachelors degree at the University of Florida is broken down into two phases: general
education/pre-professional and upper division. During the first two years in college, you will take
all the general college courses and the pre-professional courses. Once having completed
approximately 64 semester hours, you will need to apply to the Department of Civil Engineering
in the College of Engineering After admission to the Department, you will take those courses
which apply to the field of civil engineering.
First Two Years Last Three Years
General Education Preprofessional
Engineering Core Civil Engineering
English
Social Science
Humanities
Those courses marked
with an asterisk
Calculus
Chemistry
Physics with Calculus
Computer Aided Design
Fortran for Engineers
Biological Sciences
Statics
Dynamics
Strength of Materials
Electrical Engineering
Thermodynamics
Engineering Statistics
Construction
Hydraulics
Geotechnical
Structural
Transportation
Surveying
If, after graduation, you continue on for your Master's degree, you will take advanced
courses as well as perform some supervised research. A requirement for this degree is the
submission of a Thesis (or report) on your particular research topic. A Ph D. requires a
substantial amount of unsupervised research, and in addition, it must be original work.
During your senior year in college, you should take the EIT (Engineer Intern) exam This
is a test given by the State of Florida that will eventually allow you to become a Professional
Engineer. After passing the EIT and working under a PE for 4 years, you may take the PE exam.
Once you pass this, you are considered a licensed engineer and may offer services to the public.
SALARY ESTIMATES
From our recent graduates, a BSCE engineer can expect to start at approximately $27,000
- $31,000. A master's degree recipient can earn initially $32,000 $36,000. Ph.D.'s usually go to
work at a University or else with a large company that does a lot of research. They usually start
at $45,000 $50,000.
ADVANCEMENT IN THE PROFESSION
As in many professions, unless you own your own firm, you will probably go into
management in order to advance up the corporate ladder. This means that you will do less and
less real engineering and more and more paper pushing If this is of interest to you, it would help
to take some elective courses in management during your college career

241
DEFINITIONS OF TERMS
During the course of this lab, you will be introduced to and use the following terms. You will
need to know the meaning of these terms in order to understand the tests. These terms are used
by many types of engineers all the time.
Compression This, as you would expect, describes a "squeezing" action or force on an object.
Tension The opposite of compression, or a "stretching" action or force on an object.
Stress A measure of force per unit of area, lb/in2 (psi), kN/m2 [the same units as pressure]
Strain A measure of deformation or elongation of a material, its units are inch per inch; it is the
ratio of a change in length to the original length of a specimen
Strength The stress value at which a sample of material fails.
Modulus of Elasticity Relates stress to strain and visa versa. It is the ratio of the stress on a
sample to the amount of stain that level of stress causes. It is also the slope of the straight line
portion of the stress-strain curve for a specific material.
Elastic Range The portion of the stress-strain relationship for a material where if the specimen
loaded and then unloaded, it will return to its original undeformed shape. The straight line portion
of the stress strain curve.
Moment Bending forces in a beam characterized by compression at the top and tension at the
bottom of the beam, or vice versa.
Neutral Axis A line which runs along the length of a beam where stress and strain are equal to
zero.
Moment of Inertia This is one measure of the stiffness of a beam. It relates cross sectional area
and the distance from the neutral axis at which the majority of the area is located to the ease in
which the beam is bent. Example: An "I" beam has a greater moment of inertia than a flat plate of
the exact same cross sectional area

242
Materials Used in Civil Engineering
Concrete
Concrete is a structural material which consists of cement, aggregate (sand, stones, gravel, etc ),
and water (to make a chemical reaction called hydration occur). Concrete can sometimes contain
other substances, such as fly ash from industrial smoke stacks. The strength and other properties
of concrete are dependent on how the various ingredients are proportioned and mixed.
Concrete is a very strong material when it is placed in compression. It is extremely weak in
tension, however. It is for this reason that we use reinforcement in concrete structures. The
reinforcement, usually steel, gives concrete support in tension.
There are many ways to test the strength of a batch of concrete The tests used can be categorized
as destructive and nondestructive tests We will perform only the first. Usually when a batch of
concrete is ordered on a job site it is specified to be of a specific compressive strength 4,000
psi, for instance. When the concrete comes to the job site in a ready-mix truck, the contractor
places some of the batch in cylinders which are 6 inches in diameter and 12 inches in height. These
cylinders are cured for 28 days and tested by compression until they are crushed. This will give
the contractor or the engineer the compressive strength for that batch of concrete. He or she can
then compare that value to the design value used to make sure that the structure meets the
designed specifications.
A concrete cylinder will be tested to crushing in a compression testing machine in the structures
lab. Generally, the cylinders we test will be of concrete designed to be 6000 psi. For a 6 inch
diameter cylinder, the cross-section in compression has an area of approximately 30 square inches.
We therefore expect the cylinder to carry at least 180,000 pounds. There is a digital read out of
the specimen load. This will read one tenth of the load, or the load in tens of pounds. The easiest
way to read the meter is to imagine an extra 0 digit at the end of the display
Concrete Strength
Concrete and steel are the most widely used materials in engineering design. Concrete is very
important material for the civil engineer designing in Florida because steel is not readily available
and can be very expensive to bring to the site. Some advantages of using concrete in design are as
follows: high fire and weather resistance, relatively low cost (most of the materials can be
obtained locally), can be poured to fit odd shapes (good for unusual architectural designs). As
you drive down 1-75,1-4, or on the turnpike you will notice that almost all the bridges are
constructed of concrete. As you walk around Weil Hall (the building you are in now) you will
notice that the beams and columns are made of concrete. The new South End zone for the
University of Florida's Football Stadium and the new addition to the commuter parking garage
were constructed using concrete. These are just a few examples.

243
Unlike steel, concrete is adequate in strength in only one direction Concrete is very good in
compression but useless in tensioq. Engineering design is based on concrete's compressive
strength. Compressive strength, f c, refers to what concrete is capable of resisting from loads
when they are pushing on the concrete (compression). Compressive strengths for concrete are
usually in the range of 3,000 to 6,000 psi (pounds per square inch). To correct for the lack of
tension strength in concrete, high tensile strength steel is placed in the tension side of concrete.
The steel used for reinforcement usually consists of round steel bars often called rebars When this
combination occurs it is called reinforced concrete.
When civil engineers design, they obviously need to know the strength of the material that they
are using. By knowing the strength of the material that is being used and the loads (forces i.e
people, cars, furniture, wind) that will be acting on the particular member (beam, column, arch,
etc.) the engineer can pick the correct dimensions for the design.
In today's lab, two tests will be introduced to check the structural quality of concrete (find its
strength). The first test involves loading the concrete cylinder shown in the drawing until failure
This test is useful for checking the strength of the concrete that is presently being used for a
construction site. The American Concrete Institute's Code specifies that a pair of cylinders shall be
tested for each 150 yd3 of concrete or for each 5000 ft2 of surface area actually placed. This is a
quality control measure
Measurement of Compressive Strength of Concrete, f c.
6" x 12" concrete cylinder used for testing.
Possible sources of error:

244
Steel
Steel is a structural material which consists mostly of iron and carbon. It can, however, contain
other additives which might change the steel's properties. Steel can be hot rolled or cold formed
into structural shapes, such as the familiar "I" beam-known today as a wide-flange. Unlike
concrete, steel has the same strength in tension as it has in compression.
We will perform a tension test, which can be used to measure the material properties of a steel
specimen (or a specimen of any material, for that matter).
We will perform the tensile test first. A cylindrical coupon made of steel will be placed in the
tensile testing apparatus The coupon will then be pulled until it breaks. A displacement indicator
will be attached to the coupon to take measure the elongation of the specimen.
From the information gathered from this test, we can calculate the modulus of elasticity (a
measure of the steels stiffness), the stress experienced by the coupon, and the strength of the
steel which made up the coupon.
Some of what you have done is very similar to what actual engineers do in "real life".
Congratulations if you like doing this type of work, you are on your way to an exciting career in
engineering.

245
Civil Engineering Truss Bridge Laboratory
Bridges are essential to our nation's infrastructure. A simple bridge can be made by
spanning a gap with planks. As the gap becomes wider, however, the planks will
begin to sag excessively even under the weight of a person. If the bridge is longer
still, the planks may break. When one of the planks, called a beam, is loaded, it
bends as shown below. Lines are drawn on the beam for illustration.
A close-up view of a short segment of the beam is shown below. The top part of the
beam is being squeezed (in compression) and the bottom part of the beam is being
stretched (in tension). The force in the beam actually changes continuously from the
top of the beam to the bottom. That means that in the middle (top to bottom), it is
neither in compression nor tension. These forces act so as to bend the beam. This
bending force is referred to as moment, as shown in the diagram.
Compression
Moment
Tension

246
If a plank bridge breaks, it is likely to splinter in the middle leaving the rest of the
plank undamaged. This is because the center of the plank experiences much more
moment than the ends, which experience none, because they are free to rotate
without resistance. So the moment, or bending force, varies continuously from zero
at the left end to its highest value in the middle and back to zero again at the right
end. The result is that, although it is simple to build, a plank bridge does not make
very efficient use of material.
One way of making more efficient use of wooden beams is to stand them on edge.
If you have ever been in an unfinished attic, you may have noticed that the floor
beams (and the rafters) are in this configuration. The beams don't bend as much in
the upright orientation. This is because of a property called moment of inertia. The
basic principle of moment of inertia follows. As we saw before, the highest
compression and tension occur in the very top and the very bottom of the beam,
respectively. We also found out that the middle of the beam (top to bottom) isn't
working very hard at all. So what we want is to have as much material at the outer
edges as possible and have as little material in the middle as possible. The pictures
below show some beams to illustrate moment of inertia.
Low moment of inertia,
Use this for a diving board
which you want to Bend a lot
High moment of inertia,
Use this for support beams
which you want to be stiff
The two beams above are called I-beams because of their shape (when looked at on
end). The left beam would be made of steel and the right of concrete. These show
how material is concentrated at the top and bottom of the beam.

247
The more material and the farther away from the center it is, the higher the moment
of inertia, and hence the stronger the beam. As nature would have it, achieving
greater distance from the center is more beneficial than adding more material,
because the moment of inertia increases as the square of that distance.
Obviously, we cannot remove all the material from the middle of the beam, because
the top and bottom must be connected. The material in the middle also keeps the
top and bottom from sliding with respect to each other in what is called shear. Yet
there is a more efficient way to focus material at the top and bottom and provide
resistance to shear. The middle part of the beam does not need to be solid and
continuous, but can instead be made up of thin rods. This is shown in the figure
below.
This configuration establishes the basis for what is known as a truss. A truss is the
oldest and most often used method of making more efficient bridges, and you will
be building one today. A truss is a structure made from straight links connected at
joints. The joints are always at the ends of the links, never in the middle. The links
are called members, and in your case, they are craft sticks with drilled holes. The
joints are assembled with small bolts in your case. If the term members makes you
think of a team, you are on the right track. When a load is applied to any joint, the
members will share the load, although not equally.
Stability and Simple Trusses
There is an important characteristic of a useful truss: it must be stable, which is to
say that it should not move freely in any direction. Below are some configurations
of members joined at the ends. The first shown is the most basic triangular truss.
The left support only allows connected members to rotate. The right support
additionally allows horizontal movement. This configuration is stable, because there
is no motion which can freely occur.

248
Two members connected at a joint form a hinged arch, as shown below. A hinged
arch may be added to any stable truss to form another stable truss, as long as the
angle of the arch is other than 180. A truss which can be assembled in this manner
is called a simple truss.
Shown next is a square configuration. This is unstable, because the side pieces will
lean over freely as the top is pushed horizontally. How would this be stabilized?
A pentagonal configuration is also unstable, because as points A and B move apart,
point C is free to move. How many members are required to make this stable? In a
similar fashion, all but the triangle (or more precisely, a hinged arch attached to a
stable structure) will be unstable, so this is the basis of any truss structure.

249
l
The Long and Short of It
Another special feature of trusses is that the members don't bend. They get pulled
apart (in tension) and pushed together (compression), but they aren't loaded in the
middle like the plank is when you stand on it. The members stay straight from end
to end until they fail. This doesn't mean the bridge will stay straight, though. As
heavier loads are put on the bridge, it will still sag. This is because the individual
members of the truss are getting longer (if they are in tension) and shorter (if they
are in compression).
A Belt Isn't the Only Thing that Buckles
Many materials, in theory, have the same strength when being squeezed together (in
compression) as they do when pulled apart (in tension). The problem is that if you
press the two ends of a thin member (like a ruler) together, it doesn't simply stay
straight and get shorter, but instead it bends out to the side. This is called buckling,
which is the way that most tall, skinny things break when compressed end-to-end.
In general, when a member buckles, that member cannot sustain any more load.
How Could My Truss Fail?
There arc three ways (called modes) in which your truss can fail. If a member
buckles enough, it will bend and break in the direction in which the craft sticks have
a low moment of inertia. This may be prevented if the loading frame supports
partially buckled members. This may also be prevented because when buckling
occurs, the geometry of the truss changes, which can reduce the load on the buckled

250
member, preventing it from breaking. Another type of failure is that a craft stick
pulls apart in the middle in tension. This mode of failure will be uncommon. The
third type of failure possible is joint break-out. This is when the craft stick breaks
right where the bolt is connected. Because buckling strength and joint strength are
the least predictable, these will be the most common modes of failure.
Sample trusses
Below are some samples of common trusses used in bridge construction. These are
generally built by paid professionals from steel rather than a limited number of craft
sticks and bolts. These are provided to give you an idea of how other designers
approached this problem historically, and these are not the only designs possible.
Warren Truss
Howe Truss
Pratt Truss

251
Problem Statement
Objectives:
Build a truss bridge which will span at least 18".
Build it to support as much weight as possible.
Use as little material as possible.
Materials:
27 full-size craft sticks with holes drilled in the ends
29 shortened craft sticks with holes drilled in the ends
20 of #7 bolts and matching nuts
Equipment:
Ruler, Screwdriver, Wrench
Loading:
You must designate one or two bolts to which a wire will connect to attach
the load as shown in the figure. Each load point must be more than 4 inches
from the inside edge of the support (toward the center).
Procedure:
You will work in teams.
Count your sticks, bolts and nuts.
Verify that all your materials are of acceptable quantity and quality.
Craft sticks which are damaged or improperly drilled may be replaced.
Assemble a truss which meets the three objectives keeping in mind the
principles we have discussed today.
Keep a record of the following for your completed truss:
a diagram of your design
the number of long members used
the number of short members used
the number of nut-bolt pairs used
the weight at which your truss fails
Excerpts from the ACSD (American Craft Stick Design) Code:
Nuts must be fully seated (bolt threads show).
All structures must be stable or they cannot be loaded.

252
Loading diagram:
Plexiglass loading frame
greater than 4"
greater than 4
Wire
Support
Support
MIH Stud
and Gravel
Supply, Inc.
Bucket filled
with gravel
sand or rocks
Scoring:
Trusses will be scored as to how well the second and third objectives are met.
The higher the load the truss supports, the higher the score.
The less material used in its construction, the higher the score.
The score is calculated as follows:
Score =
Cost is calculated as follows:
100 x Fdihtre Load
Cost
Cost = 2 x (number of bolts) + number of long craft sticks
+ 0.75 x {number of short craft sticks)

APPENDIX B
THE ENGINEERING BY DESIGN METHODOLOGY
The pages which follow include the formatted
methodology referred to earlier in the dissertation. All
references to Engineering By Design refer to this document.
253

254
Engineering By Design
a Methodology for Designing
Creative Engineering Activities
by Matthew W. Ohland
Step 1: Establish goals.
These may be general. While their success need not be measurable,
it should be easily achievable within the time alotted.
Some sample goals are given below:
To teach a particular concept
To occupy students in an entertaining, educational after school program
To educate students about engineering and its role in society
To develop creative thinking and problem solving skills
To build interpersonal and communication skills through cooperation
Step 2: Select a Focus.
If your objectives are very broad (e.g.: to educate students about engineering),
you may need a focus for the activity. In the example above, you might
decide to focus on building a bridge. This focus will provide a physical
example of the role of all the disciplines of civil engineering.
Depending on your goals, you may have a wide range of choices for a focus.
If this is the case, consider the following factors in selecting a focus:
It is easier to teach something you are interested in.
Involving current issues helps ground the problem in reality.
e g.: recycling, cost concerns, reference to local concerns
If your students have particular interests, consider them.
e g.: students in Florida might be interested in hurricanes
Do not be concerned about the details of the activity during this step; in fact,
the fewer details specified here, the more successful Step 3 will be.
Some examples of the focus of an activity might be:
The difference between mass and weight
How to approximate measurements
The concept of leverage
The concept of moment of inertia
The concept of tributary area
Analyzing failure modes of common toys

255
Step 3: Brainstorm for Ideas.
Quantity is more important than quality in this step.
Brainstorming should be done in small groups which are as diverse as possible.
It may help to do a practice exercise, such as solving an amusing problem.
During brainstorming no ideas should be rejected because seemingly odd
suggestions can lead to outstanding ideas. There should be no
discussion or comment on ideas. During this step, it is helpful to have
someone serve as a recorder to write down ideas as they are suggested.
The recorder may also encourage participation and ensure that criticism
of ideas does not occur during this step.
This step lasts approximately 15-20 minutes, followed immediately by step 4.
Divergent thinking can be encouraged by the introduction of odd constraints.
Many techniques have been suggested to achieve successful brainstorming if it
does not occur on its own. These suggestions include:
Making outlandish departures from the problem foundation
Asking what if questions to encourage divergent thinking
A handy set of such questions was developed by Alex Osborn:
Put to other uses?
New ways to use object as is? Other uses if modified?
Adapt?
What else is like this? What other ideas does this suggest?
Any idea in the past that could be copied or adapted?
Modify?
Change meaning, color, motion, sound, odor, taste, form, shape?
Other changes? New twist?
Magnify?
What to add? Greater frequency? Stronger? Larger? Higher? Longer?
Thicker? Extra value? Plus ingredient? Multiply? Exaggerate?
Minify?
What to subtract? Eliminate? Smaller? Lighter? Slower? Split up?
Less frequent? Condense? Miniaturize? Streamline? Understate?
Substitute?
Who else instead? What else instead? Other place? Other time? Other
ingredient? Other material? Other process? Other power source? Other
approach? Other tone of voice?
Rearrange?
Other layout? Other sequence? Change pace? Other pattern?
Change schedule? Transpose cause and effect?
Reverse?
Opposites? Turn it backward? Turn it upside down? Turn it inside out?
Mirror-reverse it? Transpose positive and negative?
Combine?
How about a blend, an assortment, an alloy, an ensemble?
Combine purposes? Combine units? Combine ideas? Combine appeals?

256
Some other suggestions might be:
Give examples to start off / get common ideas out of the way.
Find something in nature which resembles your model.
Have participants draw pictures of their ideas
the imagery may lead to some very new ideas.
Write ideas on paper and pass them around, adding new twists.
Step 4: Evaluate Ideas.
Once a large number of ideas have been recorded, there is hopefully a synthesis
of those ideas which is clearly preferred by all involved. It is possible
that some research is necessary to evaluate which options are most
feasible. Once an approach has been agreed upon, proceed to Step 5.
Note that while in step 3 anyone can and should offer productive input, this step
is much more selective. In the final selection process, an instructor
intending to use the material should be involved. This instructor must
make judgements regarding the appropriateness of the material and the
feasibility of implementation in the classroom. This is true at any level of
instruction.
Step 5: Establish specific objectives.
These should be specific, observable and measurable.
Some sample objectives are given below:
Students will work in groups of 3 or 4 with all students participating
Students will construct a device which launches a ping-pong ball
Students will evaluate their work and make 3 suggestions to improve it
If given drawings of a layered structured system, students will be able to
indicate the appropriate tributary area for selected members
Students will be able to list at least 7 fields of engineering and give at
least two examples of tasks typical of each.
Step 6: Figure Out the Details.
Now specific details of the activity must be designed based on the objectives.
In doing this, consider that people in general tend to remember:
10% of what they read
20% of what they hear
30% of what they see
50% of what they both hear and see
70% of what they say
90% of what they say and do

257
In order to get the best learning, we must ensure students are active and talking.
The best way to achieve this combination is through a cooperative design.
Instructor-formed groups of three of four work best. Minimize the
amount of time spent lecturing. For example, only give enough
information in a design activity to prevent student confusion.
Keep in mind that constraints on the problem not only keep the problem from
becoming too complicated, but can also force students to consider
different approaches to a problem. You may consider requiring each
student in a group to analyze or comment on a proposed idea.
Also consider that students learn in different ways:
Students may prefer to learn through sensing or intuition.
Any creative design activity will most likely contain both concrete
and abstract content. Make sure of this.
Students may prefer input visually or verbally.
Give students both. Use models or drawings. If feasible, illustrate
the objectives of the activity using the same materials the students
will use.
Learning generally proceeds from induction to deduction.
General principles should proceed from specific observations.
Give examples before making general statements.
Students may learn sequentially or globally.
Give the big picture right away, or global thinkers may not be able
to even begin. Give enough examples for sequential thinkers to
see the pattern.
Students may process information while doing something or by reflecting.
Help out reflective students by asking thoughtful questions and
allowing enough time for students to consider the answer. Dont
necessarily acknowledge the correct answer immediately, so that
all students will continue thinking. The more active students will
generally be fine in design activities such as this methodology is
intended to facilitate.
Challenge higher level thinking skills. Any design process should do this.
A design activity should at the very least be a work of synthesis putting
components together to form new ideas. Students will also use their
evaluation skills in selecting an idea. These skills are at the top of the
cognitive ladder. In the process of the activity, students will naturally use
the less advanced cognitive skills.

Step 7: Improve the Activity.
Consider the following questions about the activity you have just designed
Can it be made simpler without sacrificing any of the objectives?
Does it challenge higher level thinking skills?
Are various learning styles being addressed?
Is the problem constrained enough to encourage creativity?
The best way to identify methods of improving the activity is to try it out.
Have students comment on the activity and how it might be better.
The instructors observations may be most helpful in suggesting
modifications.

APPENDIX C
TRIBUTARY AREA LABORATORY
Contained in this appendix are the lesson materials and
data for the Tributary Area Laboratory used to evaluate the
Engineering By Design methodology.
Special notes regarding the data are included here; the
rationale for the decsisions described here are found in the
dissertation text.
Student #8 did not complete a survey or take the quiz
as a result, he was eliminated from consideration in any
calculations. Answers to statement 11 indicated in bold
were not included in the computation of the average or
standard deviation. Two computations of the Time/Worth
grouping were made -- Time/Worth I includes Qll, but does
not include the teams which went first; Time/Worth II does
not include Qll, but includes the results from all teams.
Answers in bold italics (St28/Q5 and St25/Q18) were blank,
and neutral responses were substituted.
259

260
Tributary Area Brainstorming Session Output
clothing
tire construction
aluminum siding
mobiles
traffic light
grain storage
sandwich
Christmas decorations
banners
counterweight
lasagna noodles
bridge construction
composites
weaving
jet engine lift
liquid storage
ferris wheel
pouring concrete
pavement design
centrifuge
house of cards
blocks
interlocking
toothpick models
popsicle sticks
pickup sticks
legos
erector set
lincoln logs
Jenga (a tower game)
roofing
hung ceiling
ceiling fans
chandelier
cantilever
hanging signs
foundation design
laminate
leaf spring
torsion bar
trees
mudslides
caves
snow avalanche
sinkholes
earthquake
subsidence
pile design
load shifting
catapult
pressure
suction
uplift
soil design
fill design
drainage design

261
Tributary Area Lab Activity Lesson Plan
Discuss laboratory and homework procedures
Introduction
Block tower activity
Group solution of simple load distribution set
Discussion of problem set solution
Group solution of complex load distribution set
Discussion of problem set solution
Brainstorm live load reduction
Discussion of results of live load brainstorming
Formal presentation of LRFD Live Load Reduction
Live load reduction problem set
Discussion of live load reduction problem set
Total laboratory time:
5 minutes
5 minutes
30 minutes
10 minutes
10 minutes
15 minutes
10 minutes
10 minutes
10 minutes
15 minutes
30 minutes
15 minutes
2.75 hours

262
Floor Load Distribution Exercise
Discuss in your group how the total load on a floor surface is distributed to the various
load carrying members which comprise the floor. Discuss what assumptions you make
along the way and write those assumptions down here.
For each of the layouts below, shade the area surrounding members a, b, and c which
represents the portion of the total surface area carried by that member. Dotted lines
represent the edge of the floor surface. To the right, write down the total floor area
which each member carries.
a be
[e *|t H* + + *1
10' 10' 10' 10' 10' 10'
a be
>
)
b + H
20' 10' 10' 20'
a b
25' 25'
I
Figure 11 Load Distribution Problem Set

263
Instructions for Block Tower and Live Load Activities
Block Tower Activity
for the illustration of tributary area
Objective:
Each team will begin with the same configuration of starting blocks and,
following the rules of play, attempt to construct the tallest tower before it topples.
Rules of play:
Blocks must be removed from any but the top layer and placed back on the top
of the stack one at a time.
Only one hand may be used at a time during the removal or placement of blocks.
Hints:
Discuss your strategy as a team before you begin.
You may wish to elect one of your team members (one with a steady hand)
to be the block manipulator.
Dont be afraid to change your strategy after you begin.
Watch what happens to other towers to improve your own ideas!
Live Load Reduction Brainstorming Activity
Introduction:
Since live loads are movable, they do not occur simultaneously over all parts of a
structure. Building designers have argued that this causes load calculations
to be too conservative. Your team has been enlisted by the American Institute
of Steel Constructionto devise a method of reducing live loads which assures
safety but is not overly conservative.
Objectives:
Brainstorm in your groups to list as many different approaches to this reduction as
possible. Then select one or a combination of those ideas and develop it further.
Make sure that the reduction is limited and has clear criteria which define under what
circumstances itmay be used.

264
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Figure 12 Tributary Area Laboratory Exercise

265
Tributary Area Laboratory Student Evaluation
Although your name is requested for the purposes of correlation of your responses with your
performance, this information is considered confidential No one other than the instructors will view this
information with your name attached
Name:
Were you present for the tributary area laboratory? (If N, STOP NOW) Y N
Had you been introduced to the subject of tributary area prior to the activity? Y N
If yes, what level of education have you had on the subject?
(Circle the letter for all that apply)
A. I had the concept described to me.
B A sample problem was done on the board.
C I did a problem informally by myself or with a group
D. A problem was assigned for homework and graded
E. 1 had a test on it.
Please indicate your agreement or disagreement with the following statements. The scale goes from
1 to 5, with 1 indicating strong disagreement and 5 indicating strong agreement with the statement
Strongly
Strongly
Disagree
1
Disagree
Neutral
Agree
Agree
2
3
4
5
I prefer working/studying alone
We spent too much time waiting for other teams to finish their towers.
1 still dont understand tributary area.
The block tower activity helped make me alert for the rest of the lab time.
I would have done just as well or better individually
I would prefer a formal presentation of the concept of tributary area before attempting problems
It was educational to try to figure out tributary area without being told the method right away _
The block tower activity helped me start thinking about how load is distributed. _
Working in a group is better than working by myself.
My team formed a strategy before doing the block tower activity
My team formed a strategy based on the results of other teams
My teams strategy was ineffective because of the limitations of the block tower
Other members in my group helped me see things from a different perspective.
Someone else in my group helped me understand something
The block tower activity was a good use of my lab time.
The lab was too long.
Stretching exercises would have been as good as the block tower activity. _
Being asked to suggest methods for load reduction made me look more closely at the problem _
Trying to guess how live load reduction is accomplished was a waste of my time. _
We spent more time than usual in the lab, but it was worth it _
In the past, I have not enjoyed working in assigned groups. _
Figure 13 Tributary Area Laboratory Student Evaluation

266
Table 14
Survey Responses by Individual
Raw Data
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267
Table 15 Survey Responses by Individual: Concept Groupings
Lab
Group
This
Total
Confi
Time /
Time
St. #
Format
Work
Team
Group
dence
Worth I
Worth -
Stl
2.2
3.8
4.0
3.7
5.0
2.2
1.8
St2
3.2
4.3
4.0
4.0
4.0
4.2
4.2
St3
3.5
2.5
4.0
3.0
4.0
3.8
3.8
St4
2.4
3.5
3.8
3.5
3.0
2.8
2.8
St5
3.5
3.5
3.8
3.7
3.0
3.8
3.8
St6
2.6
4.0
4.0
4.0
4.0
2.7
2.4
St7
2.5
4.5
4.3
4.3
2.0
3.2
2.8
St9
2.5
3.8
3.3
3.5
2.0
3.2
3.0
StlO
2.5
3.8
2.5
3.0
3.0
3.2
2.8
Stll
3.1
4.3
3.5
3.0
3.0
3.7
3.6
Stl2
1.5
4.0
3.0
4.0
1.0
1.0
1.0
Stl3
2.5
3.0
2.8
2.7
4.0
3.0
3.2
Stl4
2.5
4.3
4.5
4.2
4.0
2.3
2.6
Stl5
2.9
1.8
3.0
1.0
5.0
2.3
2.6
Stl6
2.8
2.5
4.3
3.0
4.0
3.0
2.8
Stl7
3.2
2.3
3.5
2.5
5.0
2.7
2.8
Stl0
3.4
3.8
4.5
4.2
5.0
3.6
Stl9
2.2
2.8
3.5
3.2
4.0
2.4
St20
2.0
2.0
2.8
2.5
5.0
2.4
St21
3.1
3.5
4.5
4.0
3.0
3.6
St22
2.9
4.0
3.5
4.0
4.0
3.8
St23
2.4
3.5
2.5
3.0
2.0
2.8
St24
3.1
3.3
3.3
3.2
5.0
3.4
St25
3.0
3.5
3.5
3.5
2.0
3.6
St26
3.2
3.3
4.0
3.5
3.0
3.8
3.8
St27
2.1
4.5
4.0
4.5
2.0
3.0
2.8
St28
2.7
4.5
4.0
4.3
2.0
3.2
3.0
St29
2.0
3.8
3.0
3.3
2.0
2.5
2.2
St30
3.6
4.5
4.3
4.3
3.0
4.0
4.2
St31
3.0
4.0
3.8
3.8
4.0
3.5
3.4
St32
2.0
3.8
3.5
3.8
2.0
3.7
3.8
St33
2.5
3.3
3.5
3.3
3.0
3.0
2.8
Average
2.73
3.54
3.63
3.54
3.34
3.07
3.05
Std. Dev.
0.51
0.74
0.57
0.63
1.15
0.71
0.71
t observed
3.0
4.1
6.2
4.8
1.7
0.5
0.4
P
0.01
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.10
0.64
0.69
Significant?
Y
Y
Y
Y
N
N
N
Range Max
3.6
4.5
4.5
4.5
5.0
4.2
4.2
Min
1.5
1.8
2.5
1.8
1.0
1.0
1.0
Median
2.8
3.8
3.6
3.6
3.0
3.1
2.9

268
Table 16 Survey Responses by Team: Raw Data Averages
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in
CO
in
CO
co
CO
N4
CN
CO
co
CO
CO
ro
ro
o
O
O4
in
CO
CO
CO
o
co
CN
ro
ro
rH
rH
CN
co
CO
CN
ro
O
VO
O
O
GO
co
o
CO
ro
ro
ro
O4
N4
CN
ro
ro
rH
co
O
o
O
CO
CO
O
CD
CO
CN
CN
CN
N4
CO
ro
CN
CN
8*
in
o
o
O
CO
co
ro
in
w
o
O
o
O
rH
rH
rH
CN
a
rH
CN
CO
N*
m
VO
r*
CD

269
Table 17 Survey Responses by Team: Concept Groupings
Max
Min
Lab
Group
This
Total
Confi
Time
/ Time
Format
Work
Team
Group
dence
Worth
- IWorth
3.3
2.8
3.9
3.5
4.0
3.3
3.2
3.4
3.2
4.0
4.0
3.0
3.2
3.0
2.8
3.0
2.9
3.4
2.8
2.7
2.7
3.3
2.2
3.8
2.9
4.5
2.6
2.7
3.1
2.4
3.8
3.5
4.3
3.0
3.3
2.9
3.2
3.4
3.3
3.4
2.9
3.2
3.8
3.9
2.3
3.1
3.0
3.4
3.1
3.8
3.8
3.0
3.5
3.6
3.4
3.2
4.0
4.0
4.5
3.5
3.6
2.8
2.2
2.9
2.9
2.3
2.6
2.7

270
Tributary.-Acea Past-Test
Calculate the tributary area to the beam AB. Sketch it on the
plan view. Assume all joists are equally spaced and in
contact with the slab. The beams AB, DC, and CE are all at
the same elevation but are not in contact with the slab.
There is no column at C.
24'
->K-
30'
? A
30'
32'
Figure 14 Tributary Area Post-test

271
Tributary Area Post-Test Grading System
Below is a list of each of the steps established in
completing the post-test. Each is assigned equal weight (one
point) in the grading system.
1 Joist 1 shares load with the bearing wall
2 Joist 1 contributes to AB
3 Half of Joist 1 rests on the left bearing wall
4 Joist 2 contributes to AB
5 Half of Joist 2 rests on the left bearing wall
6 Beam DC contributes to AB
7 Half of Beam DC rests on the left bearing wall
8 Joist 3 contributes to AB
9 Half of Joist 3 rests on the north bearing wall
10 AB shares load with Joist 3
11 Half of Joist 4 rests on the north bearing wall
12 Joist 4 shares load with the bearing wall
13 Beam CE contributes to AB
14 Half of Beam CE rests on the right bearing wall
15 Joist 5 contributes to AB
16 Half of Joist 5 rests on the right bearing wall
17 Joist 6 contributes to AB
18 Half of Joist 6 rests on the right bearing wall
19 Joist 7 contributes to AB
20 Joist 7 shares load with the bearing wall
21 Half of Joist 7 rests on the right bearing wall
The numbers indicated above correspond exactly to the quiz
scoring numbers tl-t21.

ti t2 t3 t4 t5 t6 t7 t8 t9 tlO til tl2 tl3 tl4 tl5 tl6 tl7 tl8 tl9 t20 t21 Score
272
Table 18 Post-Test
Responses and Scores by Individual
f- O O
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XXX
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X X
X X
X X
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XXX X
XX XX
X XX
X XX
X X
XX X
X X
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X X
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XX X
X X
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XXX
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UUUWUUiJiJIJUUUDUiJtJUUUIJilUUUUIMJUWUUV
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incorrect answer Avg. 18 Median 18 Std. Dev

APPENDIX D
HIGH SCHOOL PHYSICS STATISTICS LESSON
Included in this appendix are the post-test and collected
data from a statistics lesson taught High School Physics class
as part of the evaluation of Engineering By Design.
273

274
CENTRAL TENDENCY AND VARIATION EXAMINATION grading system in bold.
1. Why are deviations from the mean squared in computing standard deviation?
2 pts. To include both positive and negative / both sides of the mean, etc.
2. Of mean, median, and mode, which is the least reliable measure of central tendency? Why?
1 pt. Mode
2 pts. Any reason higher frequency does not guarantee central tendency
3. Of mean, median, and mode, which is most affected by extremely high or low measurements?
2 pts. Mean
4. The ABC test has a mean of 50 and a standard deviation of 10. If only students with an A
average were permitted to take the test, would the mean increase or decrease? Why?
1 pt. Increase
1 pt. Because the remaining students will have a higher set of scores
Would the standard deviation increase or decrease? Why?
1 pt. Decrease
2 pts. Any description of restriction of range / variation
5. Scores on an exam range from 10 to 70 with a mean of 40 and standard deviation of 10.
100 students took the exam. 20 points will be added to each of the scores to avoid
causing shock among students, (without sacrificing the educational standard)
What is the mean of the new set of scores?
2 pts. 60
What is the standard deviation of the new set of scores?
3 pts. 10
6. Considering that household income has a lower limit but no upper limit, speculate as to what
the distribution of household income would look like in the United States.
2 pts. Distribution as drawn has positive skew
1 pt Distribution as drawn has non-zero frequency at low income
What measure of central tendency is best used for this distribution?
2 pts. Median (reliable, but less affected by extreme scores)
1 pt. Mode (less reliable, but still unalTected by extreme scores
1 pt. Mean, if distribution as drawn was normal
7. An exam is given, and the mean score is 50 points out of 100. The standard deviation is 1.
Draw a sketch of this distribution and speculate as to what events might have caused it.
2 pts. If distribution as drawn is tight / clustered
3 pts. Any range restriction cheating / limited, comprehensive knowledge
Figure 15 Statistics Post-test, Page 1

275
8.A bolt manufacturer requires that 95% of the bolts it sells must be able to carry 1000 Kg.
A single bolt is tested and is found to carry 750 Kg. Sue, the plant manager, has
contacted you and asked you to suggest a procedure to assess whether the manufacturing
process meets company requirements. Describe a procedure below, including any
additional measurements or assumptions you make.
2 pts. Test more bolts
1pt. Establishing a criterion (after testing bolts, 5% or fewer fail)
3 pts. For considering the role variation plays in estimating reliability
9.The average number of children born in households in the United States is 2.6.
Sketch what the distribution might look like.
Draw in the mean, median, and mode of your distribution.
2pts. Distribution as drawn has positive skew
1 pt. Distribution as drawn has non-zero frequency at zero children
1 pt. Mean drawn toward extreme scores
1 pt. Mode drawn at high point of distribution as drawn
Is mean a good measure of central tendency for this distribution? Why or why not?
1 pt. No
2 pts. Extreme scores families with many children will affect the mean
10.Would the distribution from #9 be different for the number of baby bunnies
bom to rabbit households? Why or why not?
3pts. Yes rabbits do not have choice / economic factors affecting breeding
If so, sketch the new distribution.
2 pts. Distribution as drawn is essentially normal
1 pt. Distribution as drawn tends toward zero at left end
11.Amy (A) and Bob (B) are trying out for the rifle team. Their shots are shown below.
You are the coach and have to choose one of them for the team. Discuss what each
must do to improve their shooting. Who is the best choice for the team and why?
2 pts. Amy is precise but not accurate -- adjust her sights or her aim.
2 pts. Bob is more accurate, but not precise. Bob must be more consistent.
3 pts. Amy is likely the better choice, because she already has precision.
Figure 16 Statistics Post-test, Page 2

H
&
M
(D
H
vo
ID
Group
Ql
Q2a
Q2b
Q3
Q4a
Q4b
Q5a
Q5b
Q6a
Q6b
Q7a
Q7b
Q8
Q9a
Q9b
QlOa
QlOb
Qlla
Qllb
Total
SI
Ctrl
1
2
2
1
2
3
2
1
2
3
4
1
2
4
2
32
S2
Ctrl
1
2
2
2
1
3
11
S3
Ctrl
1
2
2
2
3
1
3
1
3
18
S4
Ctrl
2
1
2
2
2
3
2
3
1
2
3
3
4
3
3
4
3
43
S5
Ctrl
2
1
2
2
2
2
1
3
15
S6
Ctrl
1
2
2
2
3
3
3
1
4
3
24
S7
Ctrl
2
1
2
2
2
3
2
3
2
3
2
4
3
31
S8
Ctrl
2
2
2
1
4
3
14
S9
exp
1
1
2
2
2
3
2
3
2
2
3
4
1
3
3
4
3
41
S10
exp
2
3
2
1
4
3
15
Sll
exp
2
1
2
2
3
2
3
2
3
2
4
1
1
3
4
3
38
S12
exp
1
2
2
1
2
3
4
15
S13
exp
2
1
2
2
2
3
2
3
2
2
2
1
4
28
S14
exp
1
2
2
2
2
4
3
16
S15
exp
2
1
2
2
2
3
1
2
2
1
3
4
3
28
S16
exp
2
2
3
3
3
1
2
3
19
CO
rr
PJ
rr
H-
cn
rr
H-
n
cn
O
cn
rr
i
H
CD
cn
rr
na
pj
t-i
rr
H-
PJ
# rec'd.
some credit
13 13 13 14
12
10
16
14
Averages
Control Group 23.5
Experimental Group 25
Difference not physically significant,
standard deviation not computed.
CO
o
o
CD
cn
cr
¡3
O-
H-
<
H-
&
c
pj
to
-o
CTi

277
Table 20 Statistics Post-Test Score Summary
Control
Experimental
14
19
31
28
24
16
15
28
43
15
18
38
11
15
32
41
Avg.
23.5
25

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BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH
Matthew Ohland focused on educational research after
coming to the University of Florida under Dr. Marc Hoit. In
addition to his Ph.D. in civil engineering, he is pursuing a
graduate minor in education. Mr. Ohland has a long record of
interdisciplinary work, holding degrees in engineering (B.S.,
1989) and religion (B.A., 1989) from Swarthmore College and in
mechanical engineering (M.S., 1991) and materials engineering
(M.S., 1992) from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.
Mr. Ohland intends to continue research in engineering
education, dedicating his career to the improvement of the
profession.
301

I certify that I have read this study and that in my
opinion it conforms to acceptable standards of scholarly
presentation and is fully adequate, in scop^ and quality,
a dissertation for the degree of Doctor pf/Phi^os^pny.
as
Marc I. Hcjfi/C, cmair
Associate Professor of
Civil Engineering
I certify that I have read this study and that in my
opinion it conforms to acceptable standards of scholarly
presentation and is fully adequate, in scope and quality, as
a dissertation for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
a, Cochair
ofessor of
Engineering
I certify that I have read this study and that in my
opinion it conforms to acceptable standards of scholarly
presentation and is fully adequate, in scope and quality, as
a dissertation for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
Duane S. Ellifritt(
Professor of
Civil Engineering
I certify that I have read this study and that in my
opinion it conforms to acceptable standards of scholarly
presentation and is fully adequate, in scope and quality, as
a dissertation for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
CU 0-fU-
Cli4*ord 0. Hays
Professor of
Civil Engineering

I certify that I have read this study and that in my
opinion it conforms to acceptable standards of scholarly
presentation and is fully adequate, in scope and quality, as
a dissertation for the degree of
Professor of
Instruction and Curriculum
Doctor of Philosophy
This dissertation was submitted to the Graduate Faculty
of the College of Engineering and to the Graduate School and
was accepted as partial fulfillment of the requirements for
Karen A. Holbrook
Dean, Graduate School

LD
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UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
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6
solved through hands-on assignments in the first two years
of employment. In Germany, institutions were established
which require all faculty to have certain minimum levels of
industry experience. In the United States, it is the
current reform movement that seeks to address the problem.
Advances in computer and telecommunications technology
continue to make the economy a global one. Trade agreements
and tariff reductions also knock down international economic
barriers. The political environment in the post-Cold War
era is also a harbinger of new levels of international
cooperation.
This globalization has introduced new economic
constraints which have had a dramatic effect on the
engineering profession. Downsizing has formed smaller core
engineering groups, with other engineers forced into the
roles of subcontractor and consultant. Future engineers
will not only need to adapt from one project to another, but
may need to face transitions from company to company or
industry to industry (Otala, 1993 and Leake, 1993). Much of
an engineer's education will become obsolete after a time.
Some have described this process as a sort of educational
decay, with a half-life of 5 to 10 years (Healy, 1994).


22
meeting a great many of the objectives of the reform
movement (Peterson, 1993).
Pesian in the K-12 Pipeline
There has also been a great deal of interest in recent
years to expand the use of design projects in the K-12
system. Such efforts generally fall into two categories:
those that interact directly with students and those that
seek to expand the talents and perspective of K-12 faculty.
Both of these types of programs are important. There is no
better way to support a student's interest than for the
student to be encouraged by an engineer. As mentioned
earlier, however, the number of students in the school
system is an order of magnitude larger than the number of
teachers. This fact points to the effectiveness of teacher-
oriented programs.
Student intervention
One approach to bringing projects to K-12 students is
through pre-prepared curriculum kits such as those developed
by Snell in conjunction with the Southern Illinois


The time that Dr. Cynthia Holland of Newberry High
School, Newberry, Florida, took out of her busy schedule to
assist with the preparation of a high school statistics
lesson is greatly appreciated. Working with her was not
only educational, but a great deal of fun.
I cannot fail to recognize my family and friends, not
only for their moral support throughout my education, but
also for their special understanding of the level of
commitment necessary to complete this dissertation. While
out-of-state friends and relatives have scarcely heard from
me in the last few months, my wife and mother-in-law have
assumed the bulk of my household responsibilities (including
caring for my two-year-old daughter, Charlotte) during that
same period. This dissertation was primarily completed on a
hand-me-down computer from my generous friend Charles
Powell. While I could scarce have afforded that computer, I
likely would not have finished in a timely fashion without
it. My sister, Karen Ohland, also receives special
recognition for her assistance in processing the data from
the tributary area laboratory.


47
Osborn used many examples from industry to support his
work, but made other assertions which were less well
supported. Fortunately, Osborn's work was fascinating
enough to spark research which verified claims (Parns and
Meadow, 1959). Other research, however, has rejected the
claim that idea generation by groups outproduces the same
individuals working alone (Taylor et al., 1958, Bouchard,
1969 and 1972, Bouchard and Hare, 1970, and Bouchard et al.,
1974) .
More recent research has attempted to pinpoint the
source of the discrepancy which causes the success of group
idea generation to be inconsistent (Diehl and Stroebe, 1987,
Harkins, 1987, Williams et al., 1981, Harkins and Jackson,
1985, and Kerr and Bruun, 1983). The conclusion is that
additional barriers to creativity are introduced when idea
generation is done in groupsthese barriers follow.
Barriers Specific to Group Idea Generation
Diehl and Stroebe (1987) define three potential group
effects. These are evaluation apprehension, social loafing,
and production blocking.


58
engineering education, as indicated by Lumsdaine and
Lumsdaine's choice of "engineer" as the persona
characterizing this stage. Von Oech (1986) uses the "judge"
persona, to whom Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) ascribe the
completion of this stage.
As was true in the case of idea generation, methods for
selecting the best choice abound. Van Gundy (1984) details
16 methods from advantage/disadvantage counting to weighting
systems. In the case of idea selection for creating
engineering design activities, little effort is expected.
In the event that more than one approach is viable and might
be selected, there is great opportunity for the combination
of multiple approaches within an educational context. In
the corporate community, of course, elimination of all but a
single path may be necessary, since each idea will have
development costs associated with it. But common to the
corporate objective and the educational objective is that
further testing is usually possible to determine the
feasibility of various ideas. A simple advantage/
disadvantage discussion, as would commonly be used, will
suffice in this context.


96
principles which can be affected through activity design.
This will include barriers and facilitators to learning
which have been studied by cognitive researchers, especially
those which encourage long-term retention of learned
information.
Interference
This is a common barrier to establishing information in
long-term memory (Postman and Underwood, 1973) Peterson
and Peterson (1959) showed that people permitted to absorb
information without being disturbed were more likely to
retain it than people who were given more information during
an equivalent amount of time. This indicates that simply
pausing while information is mentally rehearsed and passed
from short-term to long-term memory is of educational
benefit. Other ways to encourage the transfer of
information from short-term to long-term memory is through
repetition, including applying new information to a novel
situation.
Retroactive inhibition is the process of confusing new
information with information previously learned. For
example, many students in high school physics have no


250
member, preventing it from breaking. Another type of failure is that a craft stick
pulls apart in the middle in tension. This mode of failure will be uncommon. The
third type of failure possible is joint break-out. This is when the craft stick breaks
right where the bolt is connected. Because buckling strength and joint strength are
the least predictable, these will be the most common modes of failure.
Sample trusses
Below are some samples of common trusses used in bridge construction. These are
generally built by paid professionals from steel rather than a limited number of craft
sticks and bolts. These are provided to give you an idea of how other designers
approached this problem historically, and these are not the only designs possible.
Warren Truss
Howe Truss
Pratt Truss


165
relations in the structure of the research. Public
relations and interpersonal relations will both be important
in gaining access to information and obtaining permission to
conduct research.
Effects in Research Involving People
It is commonly understood by researchers in all fields
that the observation of a system necessarily has an affect
on the system itself. This is the fundamental cause of
these effects listed here, but in research involving people,
we must not only worry about direct effects (e.g., a
researcher investigating employee dynamics has changed the
dynamic because another individual has been added to the
office), but also about indirect psychological effects
(e.g., the employees are likely to behave differently if
they know they are being studied). Four commonly observed
effects are described in the following sections.
The Hawthorne Effect
This effect takes its name from the Hawthorne Plant of
the Western Electric Company which first discovered how


17
women and minorities in engineering is well documented
(Jones, 1992b and Felder et al., 1995).
Less acknowledged, but equally noteworthy in discussing
diversity, is the fact that most successful engineering
students have similar thinking and learning preferences
(Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, 1995b, Frey, 1990, and Felder,
1993). The students who are successful are those who are
likely to prepare for and study engineering the way that is
has traditionally been taught. Changes in the educational
system will allow a more diverse population of engineering
students to be successful.
Fortunately, many of the changes which will benefit
groups underrepresented in engineering will benefit all
students. Sheila Tobias notes, "the best strategy for
increasing the persistence and success in engineering (and
all the sciences) of women and historically underrepresented
minorities is to improve the teaching-learning
environment for all" (Hamlin, 1994, p. 28).
Just as improving the success of groups under
represented in engineering will improve the environment for
all students, approaches which address any of these
objectives may address others as well. The objectives will


46
Because of individual differences in experience and thinking
preferences,5 the best way to gain new perspectives is by
conducting creative problem solving, especially the idea
generation stage, in groups. Further, it is best if the
members of a group have different perspectives and
knowledge, i.e. the group is heterogeneous. This has the
potential to yield greater results than those of an
individual, who will find it more difficult to stray from
his or her preferred perspectives. Heterogeneity will be
discussed further in relation to learning styles in the
later part of chapter 3.
This potential, however, is not always realized.
Osborn (1963) first published his landmark work Applied
Imagination in 1953. Although Osborn details an entire
approach to creative problem solving, the idea generation
stage is where his greatest contribution lies. As the
inventor of verbal brainstorming, which will be discussed in
greater detail later, Osborn claimed that group
brainstorming was an effective method of group problem
solving.
5Various individual differences will be discussed in much
greater detail in the next chapter.


81
authority. The second stage, autonomous morality, arises
when the egocentrism of younger children gives way to the
concern for others. Here, fairness is expected, and rules
are can be flexible but should be agreed upon. In the
second stage, intent becomes as important or more important
than the action itself.
Further conclusions regarding the impact of moral
development on the educational process will be made on the
basis of Kohlberg's theory, summarized in table 3.
Table 3 Kohlberg's Stages of Moral Reasoning
Level/Stage
Description
Preconventional
Level
Rules are set down by others
Stage 1
Punishment and obedience orientation
Stage 2
Instrumental relativist orientation
Conventional
Level
Individual adopts rules and will
sometimes subordinate own needs
to those of the group
Stage 3
"Good Boy-Good Girl" orientation
Stage 4
"Law and Order" orientation
Postconventional
Level
People define own values in terms of
ethical principles they have chosen to
follow
Stage 5
Social contract orientation
Stage 6
Universal ethical principle orientation


67
things exist to serve some purpose for them (Piaget and
Inhelder, 1956). Egocentrism precludes the possibility of
solving many problems, because it introduces such a large
constraint (e.g. that any solution must involve the child)
(Owen et al., 1981). In this stage, a child's thinking is
generally centered, or focused on a single characteristic at
a time. For example, when comparing two objects for size, a
child may focus only on the height, and assume the taller
one is larger, regardless of the width of the shorter
object.
In this stage, certain problem solving concepts are
lacking. They do not understand conservation, demonstrated
by pouring the same quantity of liquid from one container to
one of a different shape. Children who do not grasp the
principle of conservation are likely to think the amount of
liquid has changed. The concept of reversibility is also
absent. Reversibility is necessary to change the direction
of a process to return to the original position. A child
who does not understand reversibility will likely think that
two halves of a sandwich are more sandwich than the whole.
The logical processes with which we make conclusions based
on such principles as reversibility and conservation are


245
Civil Engineering Truss Bridge Laboratory
Bridges are essential to our nation's infrastructure. A simple bridge can be made by
spanning a gap with planks. As the gap becomes wider, however, the planks will
begin to sag excessively even under the weight of a person. If the bridge is longer
still, the planks may break. When one of the planks, called a beam, is loaded, it
bends as shown below. Lines are drawn on the beam for illustration.
A close-up view of a short segment of the beam is shown below. The top part of the
beam is being squeezed (in compression) and the bottom part of the beam is being
stretched (in tension). The force in the beam actually changes continuously from the
top of the beam to the bottom. That means that in the middle (top to bottom), it is
neither in compression nor tension. These forces act so as to bend the beam. This
bending force is referred to as moment, as shown in the diagram.
Compression
Moment
Tension


219
interested in assisting in this educational research are the
teachers who are already good teachers. There is little
which could be done to avoid this, since the collaborating
teacher would undergo additional effort in order to conduct
the educational experiment in addition to teaching the
students. Further, teachers in the public school system are
more bound to established curriculum materials than are
university professors. Using university contacts within the
local teaching community, a high school physics teacher, Dr.
Cynthia Holland (of Newberry High School, Newberry,
Florida), was located who would assist in testing the
Engineering By Design methodology.
The Design of the Activity
The design of the lesson was initiated when Dr. Holland
met with me at her school to develop goals. She indicated
that statistics was not included in the curriculum, but that
she wanted to introduce it along with a spreadsheet/
graphing/statistical analysis software product she wanted to
test out. We agreed that the goal would be to develop a
lesson to teach certain principles of descriptive


252
Loading diagram:
Plexiglass loading frame
greater than 4"
greater than 4
Wire
Support
Support
MIH Stud
and Gravel
Supply, Inc.
Bucket filled
with gravel
sand or rocks
Scoring:
Trusses will be scored as to how well the second and third objectives are met.
The higher the load the truss supports, the higher the score.
The less material used in its construction, the higher the score.
The score is calculated as follows:
Score =
Cost is calculated as follows:
100 x Fdihtre Load
Cost
Cost = 2 x (number of bolts) + number of long craft sticks
+ 0.75 x {number of short craft sticks)


187
lethargy commonly present in an afternoon laboratory. For
the remainder of the afternoon, the classroom somewhat
resembled a beehive.
Student comments indicated a mixed reaction as to the
success of the block tower activity in helping visualize the
natural of structural loading. One student commented, "I
thought the blocks gave us a good conceptual understanding
of [structural] weaknesses," which is very encouraging,
since that explicit goal of the activity was not clearly
communicated to the students prior to the activity.
However, another student indicated, "The block tower
activity was fun, but I failed to note a significant or
helpful connection between it and tributary areas." This
would seem to indicate that the activity only achieved its
intended purpose for students with certain learning
preferences.
Not surprisingly, the most significant weakness of the
block tower activity was the fact that we only had two sets
of blocks. This caused some groups to watch and wait while
other built towerstwo students made special note of the
delay in their comments. One student made a specific
recommendation for improvement of the activity, indicating


257
In order to get the best learning, we must ensure students are active and talking.
The best way to achieve this combination is through a cooperative design.
Instructor-formed groups of three of four work best. Minimize the
amount of time spent lecturing. For example, only give enough
information in a design activity to prevent student confusion.
Keep in mind that constraints on the problem not only keep the problem from
becoming too complicated, but can also force students to consider
different approaches to a problem. You may consider requiring each
student in a group to analyze or comment on a proposed idea.
Also consider that students learn in different ways:
Students may prefer to learn through sensing or intuition.
Any creative design activity will most likely contain both concrete
and abstract content. Make sure of this.
Students may prefer input visually or verbally.
Give students both. Use models or drawings. If feasible, illustrate
the objectives of the activity using the same materials the students
will use.
Learning generally proceeds from induction to deduction.
General principles should proceed from specific observations.
Give examples before making general statements.
Students may learn sequentially or globally.
Give the big picture right away, or global thinkers may not be able
to even begin. Give enough examples for sequential thinkers to
see the pattern.
Students may process information while doing something or by reflecting.
Help out reflective students by asking thoughtful questions and
allowing enough time for students to consider the answer. Dont
necessarily acknowledge the correct answer immediately, so that
all students will continue thinking. The more active students will
generally be fine in design activities such as this methodology is
intended to facilitate.
Challenge higher level thinking skills. Any design process should do this.
A design activity should at the very least be a work of synthesis putting
components together to form new ideas. Students will also use their
evaluation skills in selecting an idea. These skills are at the top of the
cognitive ladder. In the process of the activity, students will naturally use
the less advanced cognitive skills.


234
The results of the tributary area post-test indicated a
path for future research. It would be of great benefit to
remediate frequent errors dealing with a particular concept.
The new lesson can be tested more definitively in the coming
year, made possible by a larger number of enrolled students
which has been divided into two classes. Using the same
post-test to evaluate a group taught with the new laboratory
and a control group taught with the more traditional problem
set approach would more adequately test the real benefit of
the Engineering By Design methodology.


114
with the K-12 system. Although there is benefit to a
heterogeneous ability level, which will be discussed more
extensively when cooperative learning techniques are
described, if ability differences are too great, it becomes
too difficult to serve the needs of the students throughout
the range.
Between-Class Grouping
A solution to differences in aptitude is to group
classes on the basis of ability. In the K-12 system, this
has led to groupings with varying terminology; "low-track,"
"middle-track," "high-track," "advanced," "honors,"
"remedial," "special education," and "gifted" are all such
groupings, though the last two are beyond the normal
variation of ability and are called exceptionalities. The
other methods are all forms of what is known as tracking.
Tracking methods are widely used and supported (Wilson and
Schmits, 1978), although research shows that mild gains in
achievement for "high-track" classes are offset by much
larger losses in achievement by those assigned to "low-
track" groups (Slavin, 1988).


274
CENTRAL TENDENCY AND VARIATION EXAMINATION grading system in bold.
1. Why are deviations from the mean squared in computing standard deviation?
2 pts. To include both positive and negative / both sides of the mean, etc.
2. Of mean, median, and mode, which is the least reliable measure of central tendency? Why?
1 pt. Mode
2 pts. Any reason higher frequency does not guarantee central tendency
3. Of mean, median, and mode, which is most affected by extremely high or low measurements?
2 pts. Mean
4. The ABC test has a mean of 50 and a standard deviation of 10. If only students with an A
average were permitted to take the test, would the mean increase or decrease? Why?
1 pt. Increase
1 pt. Because the remaining students will have a higher set of scores
Would the standard deviation increase or decrease? Why?
1 pt. Decrease
2 pts. Any description of restriction of range / variation
5. Scores on an exam range from 10 to 70 with a mean of 40 and standard deviation of 10.
100 students took the exam. 20 points will be added to each of the scores to avoid
causing shock among students, (without sacrificing the educational standard)
What is the mean of the new set of scores?
2 pts. 60
What is the standard deviation of the new set of scores?
3 pts. 10
6. Considering that household income has a lower limit but no upper limit, speculate as to what
the distribution of household income would look like in the United States.
2 pts. Distribution as drawn has positive skew
1 pt Distribution as drawn has non-zero frequency at low income
What measure of central tendency is best used for this distribution?
2 pts. Median (reliable, but less affected by extreme scores)
1 pt. Mode (less reliable, but still unalTected by extreme scores
1 pt. Mean, if distribution as drawn was normal
7. An exam is given, and the mean score is 50 points out of 100. The standard deviation is 1.
Draw a sketch of this distribution and speculate as to what events might have caused it.
2 pts. If distribution as drawn is tight / clustered
3 pts. Any range restriction cheating / limited, comprehensive knowledge
Figure 15 Statistics Post-test, Page 1


227
variation there is?" This question yielded the following
responses:
A. Calculate the total area over which it lands
B. Find out how far each dart is from the mean
C. Draw a line at the average distance and measure
the perpendicular distance to the landing points
D. Let the computer do it for us
E. Graph data, see how it looks visually
F. See how far each value is from the mean/median/mode
G. Graph mean/median/mode along with rest of data.
The ideas generated here are also excellentA describes the
range (again, in two dimensions); methods similar to
standard deviation are suggested by B, C, and F; C
additionally constrains the problem to one dimension by
measuring only perpendicular distance. While suggestions
like D are an anathema in education, it is certainly a
possible approach to the problem, and is appropriately
included in a list of ideas.11
The Post-test and Results
The post-test is included in Appendix D, with the
scoring system indicated with each question. The test
An all too common one, apparentlythe first post-test
question was "Why are deviations from the mean squared in
computing standard deviation?" Of the 16 students tested,
four students responded "the computer did it" or similar.


53
questions shown below (tabular form of Osborn, 1963, p.
175-176, used by Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, 1995a, p. 211) .
Table 1 Nine Categories of Thought-Starter Questions
Question
Sub-questions
Put to
other uses?
New ways to use object as is?
Other uses if modified?
Adapt?
What else is like this?
What other ideas does this suggest?
Any idea in the past that could be
copied or adapted?
Modify?
Change meaning, color, motion,
sound, odor, taste, form, shape?
Other changes? New twist?
Magnify?
What to add? Greater frequency? Stronger?
Larger? Higher? Longer? Thicker?
Extra value? Plus ingredient? Multiply?
Exaggerate?
Minify?
What to subtract? Eliminate? Smaller?
Lighter? Slower? Split up?
Less frequent? Condense? Miniaturize?
Streamline? Understate?
Substitute?
Who else instead? What else instead?
Other place? Other time? Other ingredient?
Other material? Other process?
Other power source? Other approach?
Other tone of voice?
Rearrange?
Other layout? Other sequence? Change pace?
Other pattern? Change schedule?
Transpose cause and effect?
Reverse?
Opposites? Turn it backward?
Turn it upside down? Turn it inside out?
Mirror-reverse it?
Transpose positive and negative?


269
Table 17 Survey Responses by Team: Concept Groupings
Max
Min
Lab
Group
This
Total
Confi
Time
/ Time
Format
Work
Team
Group
dence
Worth
- IWorth
3.3
2.8
3.9
3.5
4.0
3.3
3.2
3.4
3.2
4.0
4.0
3.0
3.2
3.0
2.8
3.0
2.9
3.4
2.8
2.7
2.7
3.3
2.2
3.8
2.9
4.5
2.6
2.7
3.1
2.4
3.8
3.5
4.3
3.0
3.3
2.9
3.2
3.4
3.3
3.4
2.9
3.2
3.8
3.9
2.3
3.1
3.0
3.4
3.1
3.8
3.8
3.0
3.5
3.6
3.4
3.2
4.0
4.0
4.5
3.5
3.6
2.8
2.2
2.9
2.9
2.3
2.6
2.7


11
controlled by two major factors: student interest and
student preparation. Both of these are necessary.
Preparation for study in engineering is discussed in the
next sectiononly interest will be addressed here.
Many critical factors affecting student interest in
engineering are beyond the control of academia (though not
outside its sphere of influence). Government policies,
economic trends, and salary ranges can all influence student
career and study choices. There is one significant factor
which can be controlled by those in academiaan
understanding of the profession itself. A Gallup poll
sponsored by the American Consulting Engineers Council
indicates that about a third of Americans have no idea what
engineers do ("Thirty Percent," 1990).
Past President of the Accreditation Board for
Engineering and Technology (ABET) Jerrier Haddad notes
(1996, p. 5) that "engineering is an enigma to the lay
public." The lack of understanding of the engineering
profession causes many problems. If prospective engineering
students do not understand what engineering is, they may not
pursue it. Worse yet, students who are not interested in
engineering may pursue it in error. The latter causes the


266
Table 14
Survey Responses by Individual
Raw Data
w
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w
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03
VO
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03
in
03
03
m
-t^ro-'f^rnHn^fN'JrMj'mm^Tfm^ojrnn^^^iN^n^ro
03
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^tN(Niii(NTi'in^(Nroinm^rj^Ti'H^uirnn^fNS^i)^inn^^i/)
¡JfNHnfNnnMfncNfNrornHnoiroM^^tNNnnfM^nnwNtNnn
jHfN(NnNM'^nni/infSri(NHHMHn(N^H ^inHnincNro^n^ojin^Ln^^ro^in^nM^NnNnninfN^tN^
,HtN^^nNHrj(N(NHntNi/)in^(N^ino)(N^fn^^HH(NH(N(\n
03
KooocNOOoooooooooocNHfNjooooLnocvjrooirooiD
W
^rHrHrHrHojrgrsjrorornroro^^^T'inininmvovDvovoO'O-O'O'Coaoaooo
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126
abstract dimension is closely related to sensing and
intuition.
They go on to define visual/auditory learners (1988)
which was later redefined as visual/verbal (Felder and
Brent, 1995), matching the corresponding teaching styles.
The issue here is one of processingthat some students
prefer to process picture-based input and others prefer
verbal (spoken or written words) input. Information can
also be organized inductively or deductively. The
difference here is whether observation precedes general
principle (induction) or phenomena are deduced from a
general principle. Material which is already understood is
organized most efficiently in a deductive manner.
Unfortunately, this approach does not support learning as
well as inductive methods (Felder and Silverman, 1988).
The active/reflective dimension is quite similar to the
extravert/introvert defined by Jung and modeled by the MBTI.
This dimension is concerned with how students process the
information which they perceive, and therefore is
independent of the sensing/intuition characteristic. Active
learners process new information by doing something with it,
through experimentation or relating to others. Reflective


236
Introduction to Engineering
University of Florida
Civil Engineering Laboratory Agenda
1. Roll Call Brief Introduction
2. Summary: the Various Specialties of Civil Engineering
3. Explanation of Tests to Be Performed
4 Concrete Compression Test Discussion of Quality Control
5. Steel Tension Test
6. Introduction to the Truss Bridge Laboratory
7. Truss Bridge Design and Construction
8. Truss Testing and Scoring
9. Discussion of Results
10.
Dismissal Students may stay after with questions


80
interaction, and are thus an issue for developing
cooperation, especially in a pluralistic society. In
addition to his work in cognitive development, Piaget (1964)
studied this facet of development. Piaget's theory of the
moral reasoning was extended by Kohlberg (1963, 1969).
Piaget's theory accounts for only two stages of moral
development, formed by watching children play marbles. The
children's reasoning concerning the rules of the game
yielded insight into their moral development. The first
stage, called heteronomous morality, begins at approximately
the point at which children make the transition from
preoperational to concrete operational thinking. Prior to
this stage, the children's concept of rules was not fully
formed. The youngest children did not know what rules were,
and those up to approximately age 6 did not grasp the
purpose or nature of rules. Piaget therefore assumes that
morality is not possible prior to that stage, since the
concept of rules is not even understood. A brief discussion
of the two stages follows.
The first stage, heteronomous morality, is dominated by
moral reasoning which is imposed by consequence. Rules are
seen as inflexible, and are enforced by an external


238
C. Geotechnical Engineer Works in the field of soil and rock mechanics. Analyzes
subsurface conditions and determines and designs the type of foundation to be used for the
particular structure. Also designs dams, tunnels, and mining facilities.
D. Transportation Engineer Designs highway systems (layout, routing), pavement
material, airport runways, and rapid transit projects. Also involved in computer control of
traffic signals.
E. City Planner- Urban planner, zoning requirements, member of advisory board.
F. Construction Management Major responsibility for insuring that a project is being built
properly and according to schedule. In charge of actual construction.
G. Research Engineer Works for a University or large firm (R&D). Might study stronger
concrete, better wearing asphalt, new construction materials and methods.
CIVIL ENGINEERING JOB CHARACTERISTICS
Below is an outline of typical jobs a civil engineer might do. If the company is large, you
might be involved in one of the items. If, on the other hand, you go to work for a small company,
you may be involved in all aspects of a project.
1. Accumulation and Analysis of Basic Data
a. Runoff information of a river and/or rainfall data
b Subsurface information for the foundation design of a structure
c. Population growth statistics
d Earthquake data
e. Laboratory analysis of soil, cement and water
2. Preliminary Design
a Foundation type and design
b. Structural frame and material
c. Earth or rock filled dam
d. Highway
e. Sewage treatment plant
3. Cost Estimate
a. Determine quantity of material needed for the project
b Figure out total cost of the structure


30
to the process of creating any design project. Many of
these objectives directly address the objectives of the
current reform movement. Other objectives are added which
enhance the ability to implement, sustain, and disseminate
the activities.
Assessment of the Engineering By Design methodology is
accomplished in two ways. The first is by measuring the
success activities made using it, qualitatively and
quantitatively. The second is by reviewing the feedback of
those who have used the methodology. The assessment of
Engineering By Design is included in Chapter 5. Also
included in Chapter 5 are the field observations by the
author of the success of various design projects.
Lastly, conclusions and recommendations are included in
Chapter 6. Conclusions are based on both the formal
assessment and the observations discussed in Chapter 6.


H
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ID
Group
Ql
Q2a
Q2b
Q3
Q4a
Q4b
Q5a
Q5b
Q6a
Q6b
Q7a
Q7b
Q8
Q9a
Q9b
QlOa
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Qlla
Qllb
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SI
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1
2
2
1
2
3
2
1
2
3
4
1
2
4
2
32
S2
Ctrl
1
2
2
2
1
3
11
S3
Ctrl
1
2
2
2
3
1
3
1
3
18
S4
Ctrl
2
1
2
2
2
3
2
3
1
2
3
3
4
3
3
4
3
43
S5
Ctrl
2
1
2
2
2
2
1
3
15
S6
Ctrl
1
2
2
2
3
3
3
1
4
3
24
S7
Ctrl
2
1
2
2
2
3
2
3
2
3
2
4
3
31
S8
Ctrl
2
2
2
1
4
3
14
S9
exp
1
1
2
2
2
3
2
3
2
2
3
4
1
3
3
4
3
41
S10
exp
2
3
2
1
4
3
15
Sll
exp
2
1
2
2
3
2
3
2
3
2
4
1
1
3
4
3
38
S12
exp
1
2
2
1
2
3
4
15
S13
exp
2
1
2
2
2
3
2
3
2
2
2
1
4
28
S14
exp
1
2
2
2
2
4
3
16
S15
exp
2
1
2
2
2
3
1
2
2
1
3
4
3
28
S16
exp
2
2
3
3
3
1
2
3
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13 13 13 14
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Averages
Control Group 23.5
Experimental Group 25
Difference not physically significant,
standard deviation not computed.
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244
Steel
Steel is a structural material which consists mostly of iron and carbon. It can, however, contain
other additives which might change the steel's properties. Steel can be hot rolled or cold formed
into structural shapes, such as the familiar "I" beam-known today as a wide-flange. Unlike
concrete, steel has the same strength in tension as it has in compression.
We will perform a tension test, which can be used to measure the material properties of a steel
specimen (or a specimen of any material, for that matter).
We will perform the tensile test first. A cylindrical coupon made of steel will be placed in the
tensile testing apparatus The coupon will then be pulled until it breaks. A displacement indicator
will be attached to the coupon to take measure the elongation of the specimen.
From the information gathered from this test, we can calculate the modulus of elasticity (a
measure of the steels stiffness), the stress experienced by the coupon, and the strength of the
steel which made up the coupon.
Some of what you have done is very similar to what actual engineers do in "real life".
Congratulations if you like doing this type of work, you are on your way to an exciting career in
engineering.


294
Myers, Isabel Briggs and Myers, Peter B., Gifts Differing,
Consulting Psychologists Press, Palo Alto, CA, 1980.
Nagy P. and Griffiths, A. K., "Limitations of Recent Research
Relating Piaget's Theories to Adolescent Thought," Rev.
Ed. Res. 52, 1982, 513-556.
National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM), Curriculum
and Evaluation Standards for School Mathematics, National
Council of Teachers of Mathematics, Reston, VA, 1989.
"New Report Affirms Future Shortage of Quality Engineers,"
Ind. Engineering 22(1), May 1990, 6.
National Research Council (NRC), "Major Issues in Engineering
Education, a working paper of the Board on Engineering
Education," National Research Council, Washington, D.C.,
page 1, November 1993.
National Research Council (NRC), National Science and
Education Standards, National Committee on Science
Education Standards and Assessment, National Research
Council, National Academy Press, Washington, DC, 1995.
National Science Foundation (NSF), "NSF Announces Multi-
Million Dollar Grants to Form Engineering Education
Coalitions" NSF PR 90-74, Washington, D.C.: National
Science Foundation, 1990.
Nunney, Derek N. and Hill, Joseph E., "Personalized Education
Programs," Instr. Tech. 17(2), February 1972.
Oaxaca, Jaime, "No Time to Lose," ASEE Prism, September 1991,
48.
Ohland, M. W., Hoit, M. I., and Kantowski, M. G., "Teaching
Teachers to Teach Engineering: the 1995 SECME Summer
Institute," accepted for publication, Proc. ASEE Annual
Conference, June 1996.
Osborn, Alex, Applied Imagination, 3rd ed., Scribner's, New
York, 1963.


222
larger total set of data) required that all students work
with similar equipment collecting the same type of data. As
a result, an element of my creative process was integrated
into the lesson plans for both the experimental and control
groups. This flaw in the research design would cause
problems later on in distinguishing between the experimental
and control groups.
The remainder of the lesson was developed as follows:
the experimental group would begin with brainstorming and
discovery activities which are discussed later in this
sectionthe control group would receive a brief introduction
and collect data during that time; data collection for each
group would last three class periods. Since the control
group would start collecting data one day earlier, the
instructor would formally introduce the concepts of
descriptive statistics in her usual manner on day 4, while
the experimental group was still collecting data. The two
groups would then receive instruction as a single group on
how to use the software being introduced. Individual
laboratory pairs would remain together to complete a
laboratory reportreferred to as a "Final Exam Project" by
Dr. Holland. After the laboratory reports were completed, a


216
Using quiz results to diagnose educational shortfalls.
The raw data from the quiz (see Appendix C) also included a
calculation of the percentage of the students who completed
each step correctly. It is hardly necessary to review the
percentages, since the marks for incorrect responses in
three of the columns define a clear line because there are
so many of them. Steps 1, 10, and 20 were completed
correctly by only 55%, 52%, and 48% respectively. The next
lowest is 73%, indicating that these three were not clearly
demonstrated.10
Completion of Step 10 requires some engineering
judgement. The instructor and I concur, with the following
reasoning: although Beam AB is not in contact with the slab,
it must carry half the load between it and Joist 3, because
the Joists 1 and 2, which rest on Beam AB, are in contact
with the slab. The fact that Beam AB is not in contact with
the slab could easily cause a large number of students to
10A statistical test could be performed to compare measured
frequency to expected frequency of step completion. This
would employ a Chi Square design. This analysis was skipped
for brevity's sake since Steps 1, 10, and 20 had such
clearly poor completion percentages.


145
process. It is recognized that this step is normally a much
more significant one, involving compromise and merging of
good ideas to make better ideas. Still, a great many
concerns were evaluated during this step,- in evaluating the
idea of making trusses out of popsicle sticks, nuts, and
bolts, we discussed such practical issues as:
A. Can clearance holes be drilled without splitting?
B. How strong are popsicle sticks in tension?
C. How much variation is there in popsicle strength?
D. In creating a truss bridge, what span will be
necessary to avoid excessive load?
E. Since popsicle sticks are two dimensional,
what will hold up the trusses during testing?
F. How will the load be applied?
G. How far should the load be placed from the supports?
H. Should different sizes of members be provided?
I. If so, what sizes, and how will they be cut?
J. How many of each member size should teams receive?
K. How many nut/bolt pairs should each team receive?
L. How can we mass produce the parts kits?
This order is not necessarily representative of the order in
which we either conceived of these concerns, but closely
represents the order in which they were addressed.
Simple research and calculations were necessary to find
the answers to questions A-D. A drill press and a simple
jig was used to discover two important facts: a stack of
approximately 7 popsicle sticks could be drilled
simultaneously with little scrapif taller stacks were


I certify that I have read this study and that in my
opinion it conforms to acceptable standards of scholarly
presentation and is fully adequate, in scope and quality, as
a dissertation for the degree of
Professor of
Instruction and Curriculum
Doctor of Philosophy
This dissertation was submitted to the Graduate Faculty
of the College of Engineering and to the Graduate School and
was accepted as partial fulfillment of the requirements for
Karen A. Holbrook
Dean, Graduate School


their various areas of expertise to create lessons which are
both technically accurate and educationally sound.
This design methodology was first developed by
analyzing the process used to design an activity for use in
the Civil Engineering component of University of Florida's
Introduction to Engineering class. After the methodology
was formally established, the methodology was used in
collaboration with a University of Florida professor to
design an activity to teach the concept of tributary area.
To evaluate the methodology, a post-test was administered
and feedback from the students was obtained. The post-test
scores were very high (average 18 out of 21), which
indicated excellent mastery but lacked sufficient range to
conduct any correlational studies. Quantitative analysis of
student feedback was conducted, indicating positive results.
A second application of the methodology was conducted
to design a lesson to teach descriptive statistics to a high
school physics class. Constraints on this design caused the
lesson generated using Engineering By Design to be very
similar to the lesson used to teach the control group. As a
result, the post-test indicated only a slight increase in
the performance of the experimental group.
xvi i


37
Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine seem to suggest, probes for a
solution as well, there is the inherent risk of focusing on
possible solutions before the problem has been adequately
defined. Premature attempts at a solution have been shown
to lead to wasted resources. Kepner and Tregoe give a
number of examples of this wasting of resources through
industrial case studies (1965) .
Part of the explorer's role lies in problem definition,
however. Van Gundy (1984) describes the stage of problem
definition as the process of establishing limits or
boundaries for a situation, constructing walls which allow
us to view a problem as finite. VanGundy advocates the
"redefinition" of a problem, a process by which a problem
solver takes the time to look beyond the established
boundaries of a problem. This redefinition is the only
viable role of the explorer within the problem definition
stage.
Earlier work by Parns (1967), creator of what is
called the Creative Problem Solving approach, breaks this
stage into two stages, one of Fact Finding, and a second of
Problem Finding. Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine have wisely
collapsed these two, which overlap significantly.


48
Evaluation apprehension
Evaluation apprehension is the fear of having one's
ideas judged either by others in the group or by an external
observer. Von Oech includes this concern as "Don't be
Foolish." The pressure to conform and avoid standing out
are strong, and are often important, such as when driving in
traffic or singing in a choir. In idea generation, however,
conformity can lead to "groupthink," where participants are
more concerned with approval than generating original ideas.
Research investigating evaluation apprehension has
shown some ambiguity. Colaros and Anderson (1969) found an
inverse relationship between imposed evaluation apprehension
and productivity, as would be expected. Maginn and Harris
(1980), however, discovered that the presence of "judge"
observers did not significantly affect productivity. The
only thing which is clear from the results of these two
studies is that "evaluation apprehension" is difficult to
guarantee, and even more difficult to quantify.
Social loafing
In social work contexts, both social loafing (Harkins,
1987 and Williams et al., 1981) and social facilitation


66
Cognitive Development
The best known theorist of cognitive development is
Jean Piaget, a biologist who applied biological principles
to the psychological studies which he began by analyzing the
behavior of his own children (Slavin, 1988). Piaget's four
stages are sensorimotor, preoperational, concrete
operational, and formal operational. Here, the sensorimotor
stage will be taken for granted, as that stage lasts from
birth to two years, and students in the K-12 system have
moved into the preoperational stage.
The preoperational stage
This stage lasts from age 2 to 7, and is characterized
by a child's development of the ability to use symbols to
represent objects. This includes at the early part of the
stage the ability to understand the difference between an
image (in a photograph, mirror, etc.) and the actual object,
and in the later stages includes the mastery of using the
alphabet and numbers.
Thinking at this stage is strongly influenced by
egocentrism, and a child will normally assume that all


193
We then moved on to discuss the problem set; the
assumptions associated with the established method of
computing tributary area were introduced and justified. It
was explained that, while the edge effect assumption is
often valid, it further complicates the computation of
tributary area. Team 3's misconception that a particular
floor joist carried no load was discussed privately with the
group immediately after they handed in their solution, in
order to avoid the intimidation of correcting such a mistake
in front of their peers.
Tributary area lab assignment
When students seemed confident in the concept of
tributary (when there were no more questions), the
laboratory assignment was handed out, and the professor, the
teaching assistant, and I were available to assist student
teams and answer questions. As these assignments were
turned in, it was clear that the most common error was
ignoring elevations, i.e. strictly dividing up the area
between both girders, half to each. In doing this, the
girders carry an extra load: that load which some of the
joists deliver to beams which, in turn, frame into the


191
a b
25 25 '
Figure 8 Reconciliation of a
Radial Tributary Area Method
with the Traditional Method
I asked the student, "So how shall we divide the areas
of the floor which are not yet accounted for?" (pointing to
the curved-diamond-shaped gaps between the circles). He
indicated dividing those areas into quarters with the dotted
lines shown. At that point, I encouraged him to complete
the logical process he had begun: "and where does each of
those quarters go?" He had already seen the resultwhen the
quarter indicated by the thick line is added to column c's
circle, and the other quarters that adjoin the circle are
also added, the area assigned to column c has increased to
form a square. He was clearly satisfied that his logic was
not faulty; more importantly, he clearly had a deeper


Industry vs. inferiority 77
Identity vs. role confusion 78
Moral Development 79
Preconventional level 82
Conventional level 83
Postconventional level 84
Overall Effect of Developmental Stages .... 85
Learning 85
Behavioral Learning Theory 86
Conditioning 87
Consequences 88
Extinction 92
Discrimination 92
Generalization 93
Modeling 93
Self-regulation 94
Other applications of behavioral learning
theory 94
Cognitive Learning Theory 95
Interference 96
Primacy and recency 98
Mnemonics 98
Practice 99
Organization 100
Common elements of cognitive principles 101
Pedagogy 102
Educational Aims 103
Goals 103
General educational program objectives 104
Instructional objectives 104
An example using all three levels of
educational aims 105
Bloom's Taxonomy of Educational Objectives 106
Knowledge 107
Comprehension 108
Application 108
Analysis 109
Synthesis 109
Evaluation 110
Taxonomy of Affective Objectives Ill
Effective Instruction 112
Aptitude 113
Between-Class Grouping 114
x


295
Otala, Leenamaija, "Studying for the Future: Lifelong Learning
in Europe, the U.S., and Japan," ASEE Prism, October
1993, 23-27.
Otts, John V. "K-12 Education Outreach at Sandia National
Laboratories," Proc. IEEE Southeastcon 1, Williamsburg,
VA, 1991, 46-47.
Owen, S. L., Froman, R. D., and Moscow, H., Educational
Psychology, 2 ed., Little, Brown, Boston, 1981.
Parns, S. J., Creative Behavior Guidebook, Scribner's, New
York, 1967.
Parns, Sidney J. and Meadow, Arnold, "Effects of
Brainstorming Instructions on Creative Problem-Solving by
Trained and Untrained Subjects," J. Ed. Psych. 50(4),
August 1959, 171-176.
Pavlov, Ivan Petrovich, Conditioned Reflexes; An Investigation
of the Physiolgical Activity of the Cerebral Cortex, G.
V. Anrep, trans. and ed., Dover, New York, 1960.
Peterson, Carl R., "Why Integrate Design?" ASEE Prism, May
1993, 26-29.
Peterson, L. R. and Peterson, M. J., "Short-term Retention of
Individual Verbal Items," J. Exp. Psych. 58, 1959, 193-
198 .
Phillips, J. L., The Origins of Intellect: Piaget's Theory, W.
H. Freeman, San Francisco, 1975.
Piaget, J., Play Dreams and Imitation in Childhood, Norton,
New York, 1962.
Piaget, Jean, The Moral Judgement of the Child, Free Press,
New York, 1964.
Piaget, J. and Inhelder, B., The Child's Conception of Space,
Routledge and Kegan Paul, Boston, 1956.


39
discussed in detail in the next section. Critical thinking
is inappropriate in this stage, because it may prevent the
generation of ideas, thus limiting the range of possible
solutions. Critical thinking is just one of the barriers to
creative thinking. The body of research into idea
generation has outlined a great many barriers. Authors of
methods to encourage creative thinking offer various ways of
overcoming these barriers.
The Barriers to Creative Thinking
Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine refer to these as mental
barriers or mental blocks (Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, 1995a).
Von Oech describes them as mental locks (von Oech, 1983) .
To Fabian (1990), they are mind-setsthose barriers which
prevent us from producing new ideas. Such barriers will be
introduced throughout this section. In the following
section, a large number of approaches to generating ideas
will be presented. Reference will be made to how those
approaches attempt to break various barriers.
As earlier, the discussion follows Lumsdaine and
Lumsdaine. Von Oech's list (1983) contains a greater number


150
Quickly, the discussion moves into a demonstration of
what goes on inside a beam when it bends, using a foam beam
with vertical lines painted on its front face (see Appendix
A for an illustration). Students easily note that the lines
at the top have been pushed together, and the lines at the
bottom have been pulled apart. Students also simply relate
these two states respectively to compression and tension,
demonstrated during the part of the Introduction to
Engineering class which precedes the Truss Bridge
Laboratory. The force couple is then drawn on the board,
and defined as moment, and the instructor illustrates moment
again, this time by applying a couple to the foam beam.
Then the question is posed, "If the top is in
compression, and the bottom is in tension, what is happening
in the middle?" (illustrating the middle of the beam in the
vertical direction). If I am not hurried, I will ask
students to all have an answer in their minds (or written
down) before I ask for a verbal response. I have never
taught this lesson when students did not suggest the answer
"nothing." I then define the neutral axis as the line where
neither tension nor compression exists.


194
columns directly. Some students did the same with the area
between the beams, i.e., they failed to realize that a
portion of the uniform load was applied directly to the
girder (at a higher elevation) and was not seen by the
beams. Both of these errors are conservative, because they
apply more load to the intermediary members. Both will,
however, correctly yield the resultant column loading. Two
of the teams (4 and 5) completed the assignment without
error.
Lab assignment discussion
Having quickly reviewed the assignments as they were
turned in, the instructor reviewed the implications of
elevation, and how load is transferred from one layer to
another, sometimes bypassing an intermediary layer. When we
had finished going over the laboratory assignment, we
proceeded to introduce live load reduction through the next
brainstorming exercise.
Live load reduction brainstorming exercise
By the time we had reached this point in the
laboratory, the instructor was concerned that we were


200
further (and demonstrated) when the results of the
evaluation are presented.
Table 8 Likert Scale Definition
Subject
Opinion
Strongly
Disagree
Disagree
Neutral
Agree
Strongly
Agree
Value if
positively
phrased
1
2
3
4
5
Value if
negatively
phrased
5
4
3
2
1
Both positive and negative phrasing of questions is used in
order to ensure that students do not anticipate the meaning
of the statement, but rather read it and respond to it.
Using both positive and negative statements increases the
number of ways available to gather the same information
without seeming repetitious. By assigning the values to the
negative statements in the reverse order, the scores from
multiple statements intended to measure the same attitude
can be averaged.
The scoring of the Likert scale is a bit inconvenient
for modern methods,- when students fill in circles on sheets
which are scanned, the value assigned will be independent of
the phrasing of the question, and thus negative numbers will


107
Evaluation
Synthesis
^4 a? ^4 /7/? / / c- tf tz o
C om /7re/2^>szc/i
Figure 2 Bloom's Taxonomy
The figure above is a more accurate representation of the
overall nature of educational objectives. Although those at
the top indicate higher level thinking skills, those at the
bottom are needed in great quantity to provide support those
at the top. Kubiszyn and Borich (1993) provide action verbs
at each level to help clarify objectives. Their lists are
included in each section.
Knowledge
At the knowledge level, memorization is required. This
can include remembering a process as well as facts.
Although this is the most basic skill in the hierarchy, it
is also the most fundamental. Language itself is rooted in
knowledge, because the letters of the alphabet and even the
words assigned to objects are arbitrary. Kubiszyn and


APPENDIX C
TRIBUTARY AREA LABORATORY
Contained in this appendix are the lesson materials and
data for the Tributary Area Laboratory used to evaluate the
Engineering By Design methodology.
Special notes regarding the data are included here; the
rationale for the decsisions described here are found in the
dissertation text.
Student #8 did not complete a survey or take the quiz
as a result, he was eliminated from consideration in any
calculations. Answers to statement 11 indicated in bold
were not included in the computation of the average or
standard deviation. Two computations of the Time/Worth
grouping were made -- Time/Worth I includes Qll, but does
not include the teams which went first; Time/Worth II does
not include Qll, but includes the results from all teams.
Answers in bold italics (St28/Q5 and St25/Q18) were blank,
and neutral responses were substituted.
259


139
be published to suggest paths that other researchers might
take.
In this case, I will identify six stages of the
scientific method which I will use to describe the two
applications of the scientific method in the present work.
The six stages are as follows:
1. Statement of Problem
2. Research of Problem
3. Formulate a Hypothesis
4. Deduction of Observable Consequences
5. Testing Observable Consequences
6. Infer Conclusions
The first application of the scientific method in this
research is presented here as an example.
The first problem addressed is not the underlying
condition of the engineering education system, but it is the
wide-ranging set of goals proposed for the reform of that
system. Such a wide set of objectives tends to overwhelm
administrators and professors and foster studies without
yielding improvements. This problem is presented in the
early part of chapter 1.
This was followed by research, shown later in the same
chapter, to understand the problem and its context. It was
then hypothesized that design activities, because of their


13
Engineering professors have traditionally separated
themselves from the pre-engineering educational system
(Oaxaca, 1991) but this must change if the engineering
profession is to have high quality graduates in the future.
Partnerships which put engineering educators and practicing
engineering in direct contact with students have a
significant impact. These provide prospective engineering
students with role models and an improved understanding of
the profession. Such local partnerships were recommended by
the 1994 ASEE report "Engineering Education for a Changing
World." Other efforts to improve the image of engineers by
providing appropriate role models in the media are being
pursued by some ("Engineers to the Rescue," 1992). While
programs which reach students directly are important, such
programs are not feasible on a large scale, but will be
relegated to local engineering firms and educational
institutions.
Our efforts will have a greater impact if we work
directly with those in the K-12 system who are fewer in
number and are less transient than the studentsthe teachers
and the counselors, curriculum coordinators, and other
administrators. Collette (1994) estimates 47 million


125
Table 5 Felder and Silverman's Learning and Teaching Styles
Preferred Learning Style
bipolar pair/element
Corresponding Teaching Style
bipolar pair/element
sensory
perception
intuitive
concrete
content
abstract
visual
input
auditory
visual
presentation
verbal
inductive
organization
deductive
inductive
organization
deductive
active
processing
reflective
active student
participation
passive
sequential
understanding
global
sequential
perspective
global
Felder and Silverman's model is largely a synthesis of
a number of other researchers' approaches, with special
attention to applications within engineering education. The
sensory/intuitive pair corresponds to the same pair within
the Jung/Myers-Briggs. To reach students with each of those
learning styles, the corresponding teaching styles are
concrete and abstract. These teaching style terms match one
of the bipolar pairs in the Kolb model, and Felder and
Silverman (1988, p. 676) acknowledge that the Kolb concrete/


185
was unable to separate the class into two groups to provide
a control group. This eliminates the possibility of
conducting a comparative study, because all available
students would be taught by the same method, the one created
through the Engineering By Design methodology. It will not
be possible to objectively conclude that the new approach to
teaching tributary area is better than the method previously
used. In lieu of this more preferable method of evaluation,
other more subjective methods of evaluation are used. A
post-test was administered to all students which, rather
than measuring their performance against a control group,
can be used to measure their performance against a standard
of mastery.
The case study approach to studying the method is also
beneficialevidences of the learning fostered by the new
lesson are insightful as to its effectiveness. A number of
such incidences are reported. Another evaluation instrument
is a survey which was administered to the students and the
student comments which supplemented it. This survey
measured student opinions of the lab, of group work, and
other relevant information. By relating the survey results
to the quiz scores, it is hoped to discover interesting


183
Student teams will list on the assignment sheet
all the assumptions they make during the brainstorming
process.
Student teams will calculate the total area
carried by each delineated structural member.
Problem Set Discussion:
The instructor will then describe the assumptions
and procedure pertaining to the established method of
calculation of tributary area.
The instructor will make special note of those
assumptions which do not apply to the calculation of
tributary area.
Tributary Area Lab Assignment:
Student teams will compute tributary areas of
various members in a more complex problem involving
irregular member spacing and members at mixed
elevations.
The instructor and teaching assistant will
circulate throughout the room to answer questions.
Lab Assignment Discussion:
The instructor will discuss various approaches to
the previous assignment.
The instructor will respond to any student
concerns regarding the computation of tributary area.
Live Load Reduction Brainstorming:
Student teams will generate ideas as to how live
load reduction might be accomplished.
Student teams will evaluate their ideas to choose
the most practical approach.
Student teams will establish guidelines for the
use of their live load reduction method including
criteria and limits.
Live Load Reduction Brainstorming Results:
The instructor will write on the board a set of
unique approaches to live load reduction contributed by
the class.
The instructor will write on the board the limits
and criteria suggested by the various student teams.


218
cannot see the path by which the floor load is able to
transfer to it.
This hypothesis can easily be tested. The instructor
plans to address this specifically upon teaching the class
again, in order to clarify the misconception. If the same
test is administered again, the students' success rate in
completing Steps 1 and 20 should be much more in line with
the other frequencies.
Student comments on the lab as a whole
Two students contributed made comments on the lab as a
whole. These two comments are included here. One student
said simply, "Great idea." The other comment was more
specific (and longer): "Good lab ... different approach was
good ..."
Pesian of an llth-12th Grade Statistics Activity
The greatest barrier to evaluation of the methodology
in an experiment with a teacher in the public school system
is a human relations phenomenon. The teachers who are most


I certify that I have read this study and that in my
opinion it conforms to acceptable standards of scholarly
presentation and is fully adequate, in scop^ and quality,
a dissertation for the degree of Doctor pf/Phi^os^pny.
as
Marc I. Hcjfi/C, cmair
Associate Professor of
Civil Engineering
I certify that I have read this study and that in my
opinion it conforms to acceptable standards of scholarly
presentation and is fully adequate, in scope and quality, as
a dissertation for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
a, Cochair
ofessor of
Engineering
I certify that I have read this study and that in my
opinion it conforms to acceptable standards of scholarly
presentation and is fully adequate, in scope and quality, as
a dissertation for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
Duane S. Ellifritt(
Professor of
Civil Engineering
I certify that I have read this study and that in my
opinion it conforms to acceptable standards of scholarly
presentation and is fully adequate, in scope and quality, as
a dissertation for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
CU 0-fU-
Cli4*ord 0. Hays
Professor of
Civil Engineering


121
holistic, intuitive, innovative, conceptual, and
imaginative.
The HBDI is useful for a number of purposesby-
analyzing the brain dominance characteristics of successful
individuals in different time periods, trends in national
policy can be studied. Also, recognizing that the most
effective teams will be those which have preferences in all
areas present, the HBDI can assess to what extent a team
achieves that end. Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) detail a
number of activities which are appropriate for practicing
thinking skills in each of the four quadrants.
The Kolb Cycle and the 4MAT System
The Kolb cycle (Kolb, 1984) begins with a bipolar model
of learning style, with two bipolar attributes. With only
four possible combinations, a quadrant system is formed.
The quadrants are not arbitrarily ordered, as is the case
with Herrmann'sinstead, the Kolb quadrants are ordered as a
cycle. The Kolb cycle is shown in the following figure.
The two bipolar attribute pairs are as
shownactive/reflective and concrete/abstract. Kolb
proposed that all learning passes through this cycle to


94
behavior of asking questions is reinforced, all the students
will be more likely to ask questions.
Self-regulation
Students are also able to reinforce their own behavior
(Meichenbaum and Goodman, 1971, Meichenbaum, 1977, Wilson,
1984, Kendall, 1981, Bornstein, 1985, Drabman et al., 1973,
Rosenbaum and Drabman, 1982, and Broden et al., 1971) This
is best done by providing the students with a list of
intermediary objectives (or by having them develop their own
list) to use as a checklist to monitor progress.
Other applications of behavioral learning theory
The lessons of how to reinforce good behavior are of
obvious importance when we work with younger children, but
it has generally been assumed in higher education that our
students are self-motivated. Increasingly, this is not the
case. As a higher percentage of the population seeks
college instruction, many students drift into higher
education simply because it is expected. The most common
reinforcer in higher education is the use of grades. Grades
are a secondary reinforcer, because they have no intrinsic


156
The Truss Bridge Laboratory has had excellent success
in meeting the objective of the recruitment and retention of
students. The Civil Engineering department at the
University of Florida has indicated increases in recruitment
since the implementation of the new laboratory. The college
of engineering enrollment figures for spring 1995 indicate
100 civil engineering students of out of 819 total
engineering students of 3rd year status. This class would
have been freshmen before the new laboratory was introduced.
The same figures for spring 1996 (after the implementation
of the new laboratory) show 128 of 758 engineering students
were in civil engineering. This shows not only an overall
increase in enrollment (from 100 to 128), but also an
increase in percentage of the engineering enrollment (from
12.2 % to 16.9 %). Although it is difficult to prove that
the revised laboratory was solely responsible for the
change, the department chairman agrees with Dr. Hoit and me
that the laboratory was the primary cause.
Retention of all students who enrolled in the revised
laboratory course was approximately 50% (Hoit and Ohland,
1995). This was true even for the subgroups of women and
minorities. This showed a significant improvement over the


54
Other guidelines for Osborn's verbal brainstorming also
include encouraging wild ideas, which can spark divergent
thinking, and building from the ideas of others. The
latter, known as "hitchhiking," is given priority in
sessions where group members generally take turns in
presenting their ideas.
The classical verbal brainstorming, essentially as
Osborn introduced it, is the most common method used today.
Fabian (1990) refers to it as the "bread-and-butter"
process. Fabian also points out that, although the
principles are basically simple, they are not always
followed in practice, which has led to varying degrees of
success.
Brainwriting
In order to overcome additional barriers such as
production blocking and evaluation apprehension, some have a
adopted a written method for brainstorming, called
brainwriting. In this approach, ideas are written down in
cells on a piece of paper. Each row on the paper has three
cells. When a group member fills a row, they give up their
paper for another one. In this manner, ideas are


296
Pister, Karl S.( "A Context for Change in Engineering
Education," J. Engineering Ed. 82(2), April 1993, 66-69.
Pols, Y. D., Rogers, C. B., and Miaoulis, I. N., "Hands-On
Aeronautics for Middle School Students," J. Engineering
Ed. 83 (3), July 1994.
Postman, L. and Underwood, B. J., "Critical Issues in
Interference Theory," Memory and Cognition 1, 1973, 19-
40.
Price, G. G., "Cognitive Learning in Early Childhood
Education: Mathematics, Science, and Social Studies, in
Handbook of Research in Early Childhood Education, B.
Spodek, ed., The Free Press, New York, 1982.
Price, Gary E., Dunn, Rita, and Dunn, Kenneth, "Summary of
Research on Learning Style based on the Learning Style
Inventory," Amer. Ed. Res. Assoc., session 6.11, New
York, Educational Resources Information Clearinghouse,
ED137329, 1977.
Rickards, J. P., "Adjunct Postquestions in Text: A Critical
Review of Methods and Processes," Rev. Ed. Res. 49, 1979,
181-196 .
Roethlisberger, Fritz J. and Dickson, William J., Management
and the Worker, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA,
1939 .
Rosenbaum, M. S. and Drabman, R. S., "Self-Control Training in
the Classroom: A Review and Critique," J. Appl. Beh.
Anal. 15, 1982.
Rosenthal, Robert and Jacobson, Lenore, Pygmalion in the
Classroom, Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, New York, 1968.
Ross, J., "The Relationship between the Myers-Briggs Type
Indicator and Ability, Personality, and Information
Tests," Research Bulletin 63-8, Educational Testing
Service, Princeton, NJ, 1963.


29
Dissertation Structure
A comprehensive set of objectives was therefore
established. This set of objectives has been used to create
Engineering By Design, a process for developing design
projects. This process is of course a creative one, so such
a methodology begins with a process similar to standard
creative problem solving techniques. Various approaches to
problem solving and their applicability to the task at hand
will therefore be discussed in Chapter 2.
To create design activities which are educationally
complete, a modern understanding of teaching and learning
must be merged with standard problem solving approaches to
create a more advanced process. Teaching methods and
learning styles are discussed in Chapter 3.
The Engineering By Design methodology was developed
through the creation of a prototype project for the Civil
Engineering section of Introduction to Engineering, a one-
credit graded course at the University of Florida. The
prototype design activity and the development of the
methodology are discussed in Chapter 4. The full set of
objectives is introduced. These objectives can be applied


112
acts are directed by that value complex. Presumably, this
level is similar to the highest level of moral reasoning
postulated by Kohlberg (1969), in that not all individuals
reach this level.
Effective Instruction
Slavin (1988) developed the QAIT model of effective
instruction based on earlier work by Carroll (1963) .
Whereas Carroll's model focused on all factors which account
for the effectiveness of instruction, Slavin constrains the
discussion to those which are in the purview of the
instructor. The QAIT model recognizes four spheres of
effective instruction where the instructor may have
influence: Quality of instruction, Appropriate level of
instruction, Incentive, and Time.
Quality of instruction is a measure of curriculum
design as well as presentation. Appropriateness requires
considering the developmental levels of students discussed
earlier, but also depends on whether or not students possess
the skills prerequisite to the lesson. Incentive is an
affective concept, and so is regulated through the


50
techniques generally allot equal time for contributions by
each member, this particular barrier is much greater in
larger groups.
Overcoming the Barriers to Creative Thinking
There are two main ways to overcome the barriers to
creative thinkingby using a technique which eliminates the
barrier by design, or by imposing rules on top of the
technique which seek to specifically remove the barriers.
There are many techniques throughout the literature. A
discussion of these follows.
Techniques of Idea Generation
A great number of idea generation techniques have been
suggestedmany more than can be described here. Van Gundy
(1984) is an excellent compendium of techniques, detailing
some 30 individual techniques and 31 group techniques. The
division of the techniques into two groups seems to imply
that the individual techniques cannot be used by groups,
whereas many of them can. This, however, does not diminish
the usefulness of Van Gundy's work, which is an excellent


115
In higher education, heterogeneity of ability is
reduced through the choices students make during
registration. Students can skip over certain prerequisite
courses on the basis of prior experience, or take
accelerated courses if they wish. College advising also
plays a role in placing students in the classes appropriate
to their abilities.
Within-Class Grouping
Ability grouping within a class to reduce heterogeneity
(when desired) is also possible (Slavin and Karweit 1982 and
1985 and Goodlad, 1983). Research findings to support this
approach are strong, because such groups can be changed as
necessary (Weinstein, 1976), are focused on particular
skills rather than gross ability measures, and do not have
the same stigmatic effect, because students still identify
with the class as a whole (Cohen and Anthony, 1982) When
such grouping is used, research shows that defining two
ability groups (and no more) is most effective (Slavin and
Karweit, 1984, Spence, 1958, Dewar, 1964 and Walden and
Vowles, 1960) .


164
graduate students from violating this law when working with
students in their university. We must still be concerned to
ensure that informed consent is obtained when appropriate,
however. The influence that professors have over students
can subtly coerce students into participating in experiments
against their desires.
The National Research Act of 1974. This act
established an Institutional Review Board which reviews
research proposals when human subjects are involved. This
review board is concerned with ensuring the rights of
participants and the procuring of informed consent. Again,
this act names specific categories of research which are
exempt from regulation, among which is most common
educational research, including research on instructional
strategies, techniques, curricula, and classroom management.
Engineering By Design methodology meets this proviso, and so
is unaffected by the legislation discussed.
Human relations
Of a more practical nature is the fact that with human
participants, educational research must consider human


184
LRFD Live Load Reduction:
The instructor will make a formal presentation of
the approved LRFD live load reduction method.
The instructor will compare and contrast the
methods suggested by students to the LRFD method.
Live Load Reduction Lab Exercise:
Student teams will compute service loads using
live load reduction for the joists, beams, and girders
of the Tributary Area Lab Assignment.
Students will draw free-body diagrams of all three
member types, showing all service loads.
The instructor and teaching assistant will
circulate throughout the room to answer questions.
Live Load Reduction Problem Discussion:
The instructor will discuss the solution of the
problem described previously.
The instructor will address any student concerns
regarding live load reduction.
Improve the activity
Improvements to the activity are best discussed after
analyzing the activity's performance when conducted. In the
following sections, a case study of the activity as it was
conducted will highlight areas for improvement as well as
closely study the learning which occurred.
Tributary Area Activity Implementation
One constraint on the implementation of this activity
was one of human relationsthe instructor (Dr. Ellifritt)


229
concepts addressed in each post-test question are listed in
the following table.
Table 13 Post-Test Concept Coverage
Question
Concepts covered
1
C
2
A, B
3
A, B, H
4
A, C, J
5
A, C, D, I
6
A, B, H
7
C, D, H, J
8
C, E, H
9
A, B, H
10
A, B, H
11
E, G
Although the test was very difficult (the class average
score was 24.25 out of a possible 56), there was not a
single scoring category (some questions were asked in two
parts) in which no students received credit.
Unfortunately, there was no statistical or practical
significance in the difference between the experimental
group average (25.0) and the control group average (23.5).
Since it cannot be inferred as to whether the activity
created using the Engineering By Design methodology yielded


203
TG=total group, C=confidence, TW=time/worth. An "x"
indicates that a statement measures that concept.
Table 11 Tributary Area Survey Statements and Groupings
Statement
Sense
(+/-)
LF
GW
TT
TG
c
TW
(I)
TW
(II)
1
-
X
X
2
-
X
X
X
3
-
X
4
+
X
5
-
X
X
6
-
X
7
+
X
8
+
X
9
+
X
X
10
+
X
X
X
11
+
X
X
X
12
-
X
13
+
X
X
14
+
X
X
15
+
X
X
X
16
-
X
X
X
17
-
X
18
+
X
19
-
X
X
X
20
+
X
X
X
21
-
X
X


127
processing is characterized by reconciling and reviewing the
material internally.
At first, it appears that if "active" is a learning
style, then the active methods suggested by Dale (1969) are
likely only effective with those individuals. This
highlights the difference between the learning style and the
teaching style. The learning style pair, as stated earlier,
refers to a preferred processing method, not to appropriate
teaching methods. Even students who are inclined to reflect
more on what they are doing will learn better through active
teaching methods, so the engineering classroom must be a
blend of the time-efficient passive and the more learning-
effective active teaching approaches.
The final dimension of the Felder and Silverman model
represents understanding and perspective. Sequential
learners essentially learn information in order, mastering
complex material in stages. Global learners, on the other
hand, may appear to be lagging behind the sequentials and
then make leaps of understanding, possibly unable to display
any understanding at all prior to making the leap
(Silverman, 1987) .


275
8.A bolt manufacturer requires that 95% of the bolts it sells must be able to carry 1000 Kg.
A single bolt is tested and is found to carry 750 Kg. Sue, the plant manager, has
contacted you and asked you to suggest a procedure to assess whether the manufacturing
process meets company requirements. Describe a procedure below, including any
additional measurements or assumptions you make.
2 pts. Test more bolts
1pt. Establishing a criterion (after testing bolts, 5% or fewer fail)
3 pts. For considering the role variation plays in estimating reliability
9.The average number of children born in households in the United States is 2.6.
Sketch what the distribution might look like.
Draw in the mean, median, and mode of your distribution.
2pts. Distribution as drawn has positive skew
1 pt. Distribution as drawn has non-zero frequency at zero children
1 pt. Mean drawn toward extreme scores
1 pt. Mode drawn at high point of distribution as drawn
Is mean a good measure of central tendency for this distribution? Why or why not?
1 pt. No
2 pts. Extreme scores families with many children will affect the mean
10.Would the distribution from #9 be different for the number of baby bunnies
bom to rabbit households? Why or why not?
3pts. Yes rabbits do not have choice / economic factors affecting breeding
If so, sketch the new distribution.
2 pts. Distribution as drawn is essentially normal
1 pt. Distribution as drawn tends toward zero at left end
11.Amy (A) and Bob (B) are trying out for the rifle team. Their shots are shown below.
You are the coach and have to choose one of them for the team. Discuss what each
must do to improve their shooting. Who is the best choice for the team and why?
2 pts. Amy is precise but not accurate -- adjust her sights or her aim.
2 pts. Bob is more accurate, but not precise. Bob must be more consistent.
3 pts. Amy is likely the better choice, because she already has precision.
Figure 16 Statistics Post-test, Page 2


178
a
b c
h +++ H
20' 10' 10 20'
Figure 6 Load Distribution 2
In this exercise, the regularity is removed; exterior joists
no longer carry half of exterior joists, and the area
carried by c is not symmetrical.
In the third problem of this exercise, the floor
becomes a true two-dimensional system. Students are now
asked to distinguish between the area carried by a corner
column (a), an edge column (b), and an interior column (c).
For simplicity, uniform spacing has been reintroduced.
a b
Figure 7 Load Distribution 3


105
concepts, behavior, and anything else that might be taught.
Implicit in the design of instructional objectives is that
their outcomes be measurable. Because they are so specific,
they may be directed toward individuals or groups within a
class. Instructional objectives are therefore developed by
the teacher, but must still be in line with the educational
program objectives and the goals which have already been
established.
An example using all three levels of educational aims
The Hands-On Institute of Science and Technology
(HOIST) was a one-week residential summer institute attended
by 33 high school students. Examples of all three levels of
educational aims are included below as appropriate to that
summer institute.
Goals;
1. To broaden awareness of engineering.
2. To foster problem solving skills.
Educational program objectives:
1. By the end of the institute, students will be able to
name and describe at least 7 engineering disciplines.
2. Students will work cooperatively in teams of three or
four to design and build at least 5 projects.
3. Students will be permitted at least two hours of social
time each day to develop relationships with their
peers.


102
information seems to root that information in the long-term
memory. Specific identification of higher levels of
processing will follow in the next section. Different
students will respond to different approaches. This makes
it important to understand and to be able to use the many
approaches detailed above. A deeper understanding of the
differences among children will also be helpful. These
differences will be discussed in greater detail in the next
section as well.
Pedagogy
Pedagogy is the study of teaching. There are two main
issues heredeciding what to teach and how to teach it. The
process of selecting what to teach begins with society's
needs and ends in the classroom. How to teach begins with
educational research and can include formal training in
educational methods. The discussion here will begin with
how educational aims, statements of what to teach, are
developed.


129
Even those attributes which are measured more continuously,
such as time of day preferencemorning/late morning/
afternoon/evening, are essentially shining light on the gray
areas of the bipolar "morning person" and "night owlAs a
result, the Learning Style Inventory model can be reduced to
an 18 attribute bipolar model.
Clearly, the Learning Style Inventory model is
significantly more complex than those of Felder and others.
As stated earlier, Felder's learning styles yield 32 (25)
individual combinations. In contrast, the model of Dunn et
al. yields 262,144 (218) such combinations. Since in the
educational system of the United States there are 47 million
students, presumably all unique, the Learning Style
Inventory gains almost four orders of magnitude on the
target value. The purpose of such a model, of course, is to
reduce the complexity of the original problem enough to make
it manageable, while still retaining enough of its core to
make the solution meaningful, and the model of Dunn et al.,
seems excessive.
The research of Dunn et al., serves a better purpose,
however, in that it identifies trends of certain attributes
over time and also identified certain gender differences in


86
temperature in the room, the clothing choice of the student
next to them, the noise made when they tap their feet on the
tile floor, and even the voice of the teacher. These pieces
of experience going on all around a student are known as
stimuli. Of the many stimuli we are bombarded with at any
one time, we only consciously notice a small portion. For
example, predictable, repetitive noises, such as an air
conditioner or a clock, which can easily be heard, become
relegated to the subconscious.
How stimuli are internalized is the subject of various
learning theories. Learning has been viewed from two
primary perspectives, behavior and cognition, leading to two
branches of learning theory.
Behavioral Learning Theory
The focus of behavioral learning theories is the way in
which positive or negative consequences can be used
respectively to encourage and discourage certain behaviors.
Because such behaviors are readily observed, such as the
completion of homework, research in this field frequently
focuses on the behavior of animals.


286
Gelman, R., "Preschool Thought," Amer. Psychologist 34, 1979,
900-905.
Godleski, E. S., "Learning Style Compatibility of Engineering
Students and Faculty," Proc. ASEE/IEEE Frontiers in
Education, Philadelphia, PA, 1984, 362-370.
Goodlad, J. I., A Place Called School, McGraw-Hill, New York,
1983 .
Grant, W. H., "Comparability of the Gray-Wheelwright
Psychological Type Indicator and the Myers-Briggs Type
Indicator," Research report, Student Counseling Service,
Auburn University, 1965.
Gray, H. and Wheelwright, J. B., "Jung's Psychological Types
and Marriage," Stanf. Med. Bull. 2, 1944, 37-39.
Greene, R. L., "Sources of Recency Effects in Free Recall,"
Psych. Bull. 97, 1986, 221-228.
Greeno, James G., "Trends in the Theory of Knowledge for
Problem Solving," in Problem Solving and Education:
Issues in Teaching and Research, D. T. Turna and F. Reif,
eds., Wiley, New York, 1980.
Grintner, L. E., "Report of the Committee on Evaluation of
Engineering Education," J. Engineering Ed. 44, September
1955, 26-60.
Hacker, Michael, "Putting Technology in the Middle," ASEE
Prism, February 1993, 16-19.
Haddad, Jerrier A., "Engineering Education and Practice in the
United States: Foundations of Our Techno-Economic
Future," Report of the Committee on the Education and
Utilization of the Engineer, National Research Council,
Washington, D.C.: National Academy Press, 1985.
Haddad, Jerrier A., "The Evolution of the Engineering
Community: Pressures, Opportunities, and Challenges," J.
Engineering Ed. 85(1), January 1996, 5-9.


149
below) of approximately 20 minutes introduces students to
the concepts of moment, moment of inertia, neutral axis,
failure modes, and truss design. This lesson is followed by
a 45 minute period for design. This is done in instructor-
assigned teams of 3-4 people, keeping in mind the grouping
rules discussed earlier with cooperative learning (although,
unfortunately, we have little information on ability level
or the time to assess it). For 10-15 minutes bridges are
then tested to failure (with various phenomena pointed out
by the instructor), and scored on the strength-to-cost
measure mentioned earlier. Prizes have been given out, but
"bragging rights" seem to have as much or more value among
our students.
The lesson is also key to the exercise, since it must
give students enough understanding of the problem so that
they do not feel overwhelmed. The presented lesson follows
closely the handout material, except that the presentation
includes the use of additional visual aids and thoughtful
questions. The lesson begins with the big picture (to build
a bridge to cross an 18" gorge) to get the globals pointed
in the right directionthe big picture includes the
application, which helps the sensors.


270
Tributary.-Acea Past-Test
Calculate the tributary area to the beam AB. Sketch it on the
plan view. Assume all joists are equally spaced and in
contact with the slab. The beams AB, DC, and CE are all at
the same elevation but are not in contact with the slab.
There is no column at C.
24'
->K-
30'
? A
30'
32'
Figure 14 Tributary Area Post-test


197
part of the laboratory were students failing to consider all
the criteria in evaluating the reduction. Practice, of
course, is the only way to hope to reduce the likelihood of
such errors.
Live load reduction problem discussion
This part of the laboratory was done informally, as the
instructor, the teaching assistant, and I were available to
review the results of teams individually.
Evaluation of the Tributary Area Activity
As discussed before, the two most objective methods of
evaluating the laboratory were through a survey filled out
by the students ("Tributary Area Laboratory Student
Evaluation" in Appendix C) and a quiz to measure the mastery-
level of all students ("Tributary Area Post-test" in
Appendix C). As indicated before, there is some opportunity
to examine the interrelation of the survey responses and the
quiz scores, especially with the added factor of experience
level to consider. The survey, the quiz, and their
interrelation will be discussed in the following sections.


65
from learning how the teacher approaches the educational
process.
Here, educational psychology will be divided into four
areasdevelopment, learning, pedagogy, and individual
differences. An overview of each area will be given and the
impact on the Engineering By Design methodology will be
discussed. The discussion primarily follows the structure
of Slavin (1988).
Development
Prior to this century, continuous theories of
development purported that children think as adults do, but
lack the observation and practice which will allow them to
reach the same conclusions. In this century, Piaget
introduced the concept of development through stages, or
discontinuous development. Since that time, stage theories
have been generally accepted, and such theories have been
developed in three realms of development: cognitive, social
(and personal), and moral.


CHAPTER 5
EVALUATION AND ASSESSMENT
Evaluation of Educational Systems
There are particular constraints placed on the process
of designing and evaluating educational systems. There are
also effects which are inherent in research involving
people. These constraints and effects are described in the
following sections, and many of these apply to the research
conducted here. The discussion here primarily follows that
of Borg and Gall (1989).
Constraints on Educational Research
We are accustomed in research to the presence of two
types of variablesthose which the experimenter controls,
and those which the experimenter cannot or chooses not to
control. Differences in terminology abound, and are
summarized in the table below. I will use the terms
159


298
Slavin, R. E. and Karweit, N., Ability-Grouped Active Teaching
(AGAT): Teacher's Manual, Center for Social Organization
of Schools, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD,
1982.
Slavin, R. E. and Karweit, N., "Within-Class Ability Grouping
and Student Achievement: Two Field Experiments," Proc.
Amer. Ed. Res. Assoc., New Orleans, 1984.
Spence, E. S., "Intra-Class Grouping of Pupils for Instruction
in Arithmetic in the Intermediate Grades of the
Elementary School," Diss. Abs. Int. 19, 1958, 1682.
Starkey, John M., Ramadhyani, Satish, and Bernhard, Robert J.,
"An Introduction to Mechanical Engineering Design for
Sophomores at Purdue University," J. Engineering Ed.
83(4), October 1994, 317-323.
Stice, James E., "Learning How to Think: Being Earnest is
Important, but It's Not Enough," in Developing Critical
Thinking and Problem Solving Abilities, J. E. Stice, ed.,
New Directions in Teaching and Learning 30, Jossey-Bass,
San Francisco, 1987a.
Stice, James E., "Using Kolb's Learning Cycle to Improve
Student Learning," Engineering Education, February 1987b,
291-296.
Stigler, S. M., "Some Forgotten Work on Memory," J. Exp.
Psych.: Hum. Learn, and Mem. 4, 1978, 1-4.
Strieker, L. J. and Ross, J., "Intercorrelations and
Reliability of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator Scales,"
Psych. Rep. 12, 1963.
Strieker, L. J., Schiffman, Harold, Ross, J., "Prediction of
College Performance with the Myers-Briggs Type
Indicator," Ed. and Psych. Meas. 25, 1965.
Taylor, D. W. Berry, P. C., and Block, C. H., "Does Group
Participation When Using Brainstorming Facilitate or
Inhibit Creative Thinking?" Admin. Sci. Q. 3, 1958, 23-
47.


45
rarely exposed to it. Well-defined, closed-end problems
leave no ambiguity.
The reason we are taught to avoid ambiguity is that it
can lead to miscommunication. On an exam, this means losing
points. In giving directions, it can result in the follower
becoming lost. Ambiguity, because it introduces multiple
meanings, is also able to lead to new perspectives and idea
generation.
Paradoxes are a common form of ambiguity. Many of the
greatest advances in physics have been characterized by
paradox. The inventors of the jet engine believed that they
had found a way to violate the second law of thermodynamics,
but continued their work anyway. Zeno's paradox encourages
us to develop a more complete understanding of geometry.
Many researchers study the order of chaos. Entertaining
ambiguity is useful in order to proceed to a higher level of
understanding.
The Use of Groups in Idea Generation
It has been discussed that idea generation is dependent
on finding new ways to look at the same information.


207
the data). Student #8 did not complete a survey or take the
quiz; as a result, that student was eliminated from
consideration in any calculations.
Answers to statement 11 indicated in bold in Appendix C
were irrelevant, since that statement did not apply to the
two teams that went first. As a result, those numbers were
not included in the computation of the average or standard
deviation, and two computations of the Time/Worth grouping
were made -- Time/Worth I includes Qll, but does not include
the teams which went first; Time/Worth II does not include
Qll, but includes the results from all teams.
Unfortunately, we must also expect that some survey
respondents will neglect to respond to all statements.
Answers in bold italics (St28/Q5 and St25/Q18) were blank,
and neutral responses were substituted to avoid sample size
differences. Given the limited number of them, and the
availability of a neutral response, this approach should not
compromise the integrity of the reported data.
Tributary area evaluation results
As discussed earlier, three aspects of the survey
results can be studied: student responses to individual


108
Borich (1993) list the following action verbs: define,
describe, identify, label, list, match, name, outline,
recall, recite, select, and state.
Comprehension
Comprehension is distinguished by the ability to
understand what has been committed to memory. For example,
at the knowledge level, a student could identify one picture
as a cat and another picture as a dog. At the comprehension
level, however, the same student could explain the
differencesthereby supporting his or her decision. Action
verbs describing comprehension are: convert, defend,
discriminate, distinguish, explain, extend, estimate,
generalize, infer, interpret, paraphrase, predict, summarize
and translate.
Application
Application requires using previously acquired
knowledge to solve a problem. The essence of application is
novelty, which forces the student to select which principles
from their existing knowledge are related to the task at
hand. Sample action verbs include: change, compute,


26
been very successful for SECMEthose teachers have seen more
than 40,000 SECME students graduate. Those SECME students
have SAT composite scores more than 200 points higher than
the African-American average (Leake, 1994).
Because of the effectiveness of such training programs
for teachers, several such programs have been initiated in
recent years. Washington State University (WSU) established
the six week Teacher Institute for Science and Mathematics
Education Through Engineering Experience, which gives 20-30
middle school, high school, and community college educators
contact with approximately 15 WSU faculty members
("Engineering for K-12 Teachers," 1994). Conrad (1994)
introduced engineering and technology to Arkansas teachers
in a three-week workshop. The Stevens Institute of
Technology Center for Improved Engineering and Science
Education has broadcast teacher training teleconferences
(Chao, 1992). VISION, a three-week institute for teachers
in Howard County, Indiana, is a partnership of Indiana
University, Purdue University at Kokomo, area schools, and
six area businesses (Schwartz, 1996). These programs, and
many others around the country, recognize the importance of
intervention at the faculty level.


248
Two members connected at a joint form a hinged arch, as shown below. A hinged
arch may be added to any stable truss to form another stable truss, as long as the
angle of the arch is other than 180. A truss which can be assembled in this manner
is called a simple truss.
Shown next is a square configuration. This is unstable, because the side pieces will
lean over freely as the top is pushed horizontally. How would this be stabilized?
A pentagonal configuration is also unstable, because as points A and B move apart,
point C is free to move. How many members are required to make this stable? In a
similar fashion, all but the triangle (or more precisely, a hinged arch attached to a
stable structure) will be unstable, so this is the basis of any truss structure.


8
universities through distance learning and other methods.
Commercial interests will assume the rest of this training
responsibility.
A shift toward a curriculum focused on skills and the
ability to learn new knowledge is inevitable. Especially
with the onset of the information age, the amount of
knowledge grows exponentially. A curriculum which attempts
to expand to include new content cannot hope to keep up. We
must, therefore, teach engineering students to learn, and
focus on the skills to apply new knowledge rather than the
knowledge itself (Monteith, 1994). Pister points out that
there is a trade-off in higher education: excessive focus on
increasing students' knowledge takes time away from teaching
students how to use their knowledge in practice (1993).
This increasingly global market for engineering
services and products also prefers engineers with an
understanding of other cultures and languages. The need for
cultural understanding and the diversity of career paths
calls for a strengthening of the liberal arts training
engineering students receive (Morrow, 1994), a suggestion
which has always received considerable resistance (Florman,
1993 and Kranzberg, 1993). A growing number of American


ti t2 t3 t4 t5 t6 t7 t8 t9 tlO til tl2 tl3 tl4 tl5 tl6 tl7 tl8 tl9 t20 t21 Score
272
Table 18 Post-Test
Responses and Scores by Individual
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93
Generalization
A shortcut to learning new concepts is generalization
from previous learning. Generalizations might not occur
naturally, however, and should be identified wherever
possible. In creating an activity, the designer should seek
something from the students' own experience in which to
ground the activity. This will permit the generalization of
the knowledge the students already possess.
Modeling
Modeling is the process by which students learn by
watching others. Bandura (1969, 1977) proposes that humans
learn much by example rather than by consequences. There
are many applications of this principle. If a teacher is
enthusiastic about introducing a design project, students
will be more enthusiastic about doing it.
This principle is effective to the point that students
will imitate other students whose behaviors are reinforced.
Thus reinforcing any student in a group is beneficial to the
group as a whole. This principle is known as vicarious
learning (Broden et al., 1970). A critical application of
this principle is when students ask questions. If the


C TRIBUTARY AREA LABORATORY 259
Tributary Area Brainstorming Session Output 260
Tributary Area Lab Activity Lesson Plans 261
Floor Load Distribution Exercise 262
Instructions for Block Tower and Live Load Activities
263
Tributary Area Laboratory Student Evaluation 265
Tributary Area Post-Test 270
Tributary Area Post-Test Grading System 271
D HIGH SCHOOL PHYSICS STATISTICS LESSON 273
LIST OF REFERENCES 278
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH 301
xiii


132
be included in the engineering curriculum and in the design
activities which are the focus here.
Visual learners remember pictorial representations of
all kindsgraphs and diagrams as well as demonstrations and
pictures. Visual learners are in the vast majority from
college age on (Felder and Brent, 1995), yet teaching is
generally dominated by the written and spoken word. Here,
as per Dale (1969), it is clear that the use of both modes
of presentation together improves learning. As discussed
before, it is natural to want to present information
deductively since we have learned it and have organized in
our minds in such a manner. The best pattern for teaching,
however, is to present material first inductively, from the
observation of phenomena, then to formulate the overarching
principle, and finally proceed to deduce other results from
that principle.
The primary way to satisfy the needs of reflective
processors is to allow time for thoughtespecially when
asking questions, as discussed earlier. Active teaching
methods will benefit both groups, as was introduced earlier.
Experimentation and group work will benefit the active
learners particularly, while demonstrations will offer


231
clearly a hallmark of the John Henry effect. This same
objective may be commingled with the demand characteristic
motivation to thwart the research in order to achieve
superiority over the researcher and the experiment itself.
Anecdotally, the instructor indicated that a lot of learning
went on in the entire class, and that she was very pleased
with the results of the "Final Exam Projects" submitted to
her.12
12These projects, however, are not appropriate as an
evaluation of the experimental lesson, since they tested a
great many objectives not addressed specifically by the
lesson, such as laboratory procedure and writing syntax.


237
WHAT IS A CIVIL ENGINEER?
Civil Engineering is a broad engineering discipline that incorporates many different aspects of
engineering As a CE, you generally would work in one of the following areas:
1. In Private Practice
Plans, designs, constructs and operates physical works and facilities used by the public.
2. In Academia
Teaches students the fundamentals of civil engineering. Also involved in research in order
to advance the state-of-the-art
3. In Public Practice
Plans cities and/or regions, oversees layout and construction of highways and pipelines.
4 In Combination with other Disciplines
A civil engineering degree combined with another degree such as:
Engineering Geologist, Engineering Economist, or Engineer/Attorney
Civil Engineering itself is composed of various different areas of engineering.
The general types of civil engineers include:
Structural Engineer, Water Resources Engineer, Geotechnical Engineer, Transportation
Engineer, and Construction Management Engineer
Below is a short description of each of the above types of Civil Engineers.
A. Structural Engineer Plans and design of buildings of all types, bridges and specialized
structures (power plants, nuclear reactors, television towers and radar facilities).
Wherever concrete, steel, aluminum or wood are required to carry loads, Structural
Engineers do the planning and design. Usually works closely with the Architect
B Water Resources Engineer Works with water, its control and the development of water
supplies. There are several areas that one can work in:
1. Hydraulic Engineer/Hydrologist Analyzes rain fall data, characteristics of flow in
open channels and pipes, designs, reservoirs, studies pollution migration and
coastal and shore line protection.
2. Sanitary Engineer Plans and designs municipal water facilities such as water
treatment plants and sewage treatment plants. Also may operate and maintain
these facilities
3. Water Related Structural Engineer Design such project as hydroelectric plants,
canals, docks and piers


148
reinforce every member in any of the designs we had
analyzed. Students would therefore have to selectively
reinforce (if at all) and therefore judge which members most
needed reinforcement. We also chose the number of bolts to
be too few to build a trapezoidal truss three panels high.
This would prevent students from simply building large
trusses by brute force, but force them to devise more
complicated geometries to achieve greater separation of the
top and bottom chord (and greater moment capacity, in
general).
We also devised a scoring system based on the ultimate
load divided by a cost parameter, to challenge students to
consider the benefits of designing a small, but sturdy
structure rather than building a behemoth which only seeks
to carry the maximum load.
Figure Out the Details
In order to foster a team effort in producing a group
product (as recommended by Felder and Brent), it was decided
that the actual design process should dominate the time
spent on the activity. As a result, a lesson (described


292
Maginn, B. K. and Harris, R. J., "Effects of Anticipated
Evaluation on Individual Brainstorming Performance," J.
Appl. Psych. 65, 1980, 219-225.
Mahendran, M., "Project-Based Civil Engineering Courses," J.
Engineering Ed. 84(1), January 1995, 75-79.
Massey, Walter E., "Personal Commitment," ASEE Prism, January
1992, 52.
Mayer, R. E., "Can Advance Organizers Influence Meaningful
Learning?" Rev. Ed. Res. 49, 1979, 371-383.
McCarthy, Bernice, "Using the 4MAT System to Bring Learning
Styles to Schools," Ed. Leadership 48(2), October 1990,
31-37.
McCaulley, M. H., "Psychological Types in Engineering:
Implications for Teaching," Engineering Education, April
1976, 729-736.
McCaulley, M. H., The Myers Longitudinal Medical Study,
Monograph II, Center for Applications of Psychological
Type, Gainesville, FL, 1977.
McCaulley, M. H., Applications of the Myers-Briggs Type
Indicator to Medicine and Other Health Professions,
Monograph I, Center for Applications of Psychological
Type, Gainesville, FL, 1978.
McCaulley, Mary H., Godleski, E. S., Yokomoto, Charles F.,
Harrisberger, Lee, and Sloan, E. Dendy, "Applications of
Psychological Type in Engineering Education," Engineering
Education, February 1983, 394-400.
McCaulley, Mary H. and Natter, Frank L., "Psychological
(Myers-Briggs) Type Differences in Education," In The
Governor's Task Force on Disruptive Youth: Phase II
Report, F. L. Natter and S. A. Rollin, Tallahassee, FL,
1974 .


70
One key to problem solving, the ability to infer, is
developed during this stage as well. Pre-operational
children will describe things only as they appear, whereas
in this stage, children will use other information to draw
their conclusions (Flavell, 1986). Other important skills
which appear during this stage include inversion (negative/
positive concepts), reciprocity (if Tom is taller than
Sally, then Sally is shorter than Tom), and inclusion (the
ability to compare part to whole) (Slavin, 1988) Knowing
that these concepts are developing in children in this age
range (through the end of elementary school) alerts us to
target their development in the younger children in the
range and their advancement in older children in the range.
Flavell (1985) describes this stage as one in which
children take a very practical-minded approach to solving
problems. This follows Piaget's conclusion that abstract
thinking skills are weak during this stage. This stage is
therefore a crucial one for the use of hands-on activities.
Children at this stage will have difficulty making any
progress toward understanding any concept for which a
physical model is not produced.


247
The more material and the farther away from the center it is, the higher the moment
of inertia, and hence the stronger the beam. As nature would have it, achieving
greater distance from the center is more beneficial than adding more material,
because the moment of inertia increases as the square of that distance.
Obviously, we cannot remove all the material from the middle of the beam, because
the top and bottom must be connected. The material in the middle also keeps the
top and bottom from sliding with respect to each other in what is called shear. Yet
there is a more efficient way to focus material at the top and bottom and provide
resistance to shear. The middle part of the beam does not need to be solid and
continuous, but can instead be made up of thin rods. This is shown in the figure
below.
This configuration establishes the basis for what is known as a truss. A truss is the
oldest and most often used method of making more efficient bridges, and you will
be building one today. A truss is a structure made from straight links connected at
joints. The joints are always at the ends of the links, never in the middle. The links
are called members, and in your case, they are craft sticks with drilled holes. The
joints are assembled with small bolts in your case. If the term members makes you
think of a team, you are on the right track. When a load is applied to any joint, the
members will share the load, although not equally.
Stability and Simple Trusses
There is an important characteristic of a useful truss: it must be stable, which is to
say that it should not move freely in any direction. Below are some configurations
of members joined at the ends. The first shown is the most basic triangular truss.
The left support only allows connected members to rotate. The right support
additionally allows horizontal movement. This configuration is stable, because there
is no motion which can freely occur.


205
square root of sample size; used as a measure of the
standard deviation of various measures of the mean). Where
N is sample size and the standard deviation is given by s,
the observed t statistic is given by equation 1:
t observed =
(S / yfij)
Equation 1 The t Statistic
Once an observed value of t has been obtained, the
probability that the measured mean is truly different can be
calculated from the t distribution. If this probability is
lower than the criterion established, a (normally 0.05),
then it can be stated with 95% (1-a) confidence that the
observed difference between the average and the hypothesized
mean is a true difference. The t-test was used in the
manner described above on both the raw data for each
question and on the question groupings described above. The
former is shown in Table 1 and the latter in Table 2, both
in Appendix C.
Statistical and Practical Significance. It is always
important to note the difference between statistical


221
the educational process surrounding the data, she had not
established exactly what data was to be collected. The
third difficulty compounded the secondbecause I began to
discuss the lesson with Dr. Holland and then postponed
completing it with her, I entered into what is referred to
as an incubation period, where idea generation begins
(Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, 1995a). During this time, I
recalled an account related to me by a former classmate of
mine, now Dr. Robert Smith of Sandia National Laboratory,
who was demonstrating projectile motion for some public
school students in an "Ask Mr. Science" educational format.
During his demonstration, students had noticed that the
projectile did not always appear to land in the same place,
even though conditions appeared identical for each trial.
As a result, a broad discussion of variation and error
ensued.
Seeking to create the same climate of inquiry that my
former classmate had achieved, I was very interested in
capturing the excitement of a projectile experiment to spark
the thinking of the high school students. When Dr. Holland
and I met again, she was very interested in the approach I
suggested. Unfortunately, simplicity (and generating a


23
University at Edwardsville engineering school (Meade, 1992)
and by Turner (1996) sponsored by the Florida Department of
Education. Crawford et al. (1994) extended that approach to
develop an engineering design curriculum for grades K-5. In
the higher grades, more advanced projects are possible.
Conrad and Mills (1994) introduced "Stiquito" to students in
the middle grades. The design and programming of the robot
insect allows students to learn and employ concepts from
electrical, mechanical, chemical, computer, and industrial
engineering.
Other programs bring engineers into the classroom as
mentors, focused on conducting hands-on exercises to teach a
concept. Examples at the elementary level include the
Emeritus Scientists, Mathematicians and Engineers and A
World in Motion (Meade, 1992). In the middle grades, Pols
et al. (1994) used aeronautics activities as a vehicle for
exposing students to engineering. At the high school level,
even more aggressive programs exist which include a short
lecture followed by demonstration and laboratory time. Such
a structure was used by Ayorinde and Gibson (1995) to
present a primer in composites engineering to high school
students in an engineering preparatory program. Such


264
1
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Figure 12 Tributary Area Laboratory Exercise


116
Learning Styles
There has been a great quantity of research on learning
styles, thinking preferences, and personality types in the
last century. As a result of trying to characterize such a
complex system as human individuality, there is much overlap
of these various characterizations. Redundancy even seems
to be present to a degree within some of these typologies.
The most common of these will be discussed here, with final
and particular attention to those of Felder and Silverman
(1988), which have achieved common usage in recent research
in engineering education because of Felder's engineering
focus. All of these methods follow two basic
principlessome number of bipolar descriptor pairs can be
identified and all individuals will lie somewhere in the
continuum between each bipolar pair.
These are included here rather than with the discussion
on learning, because teaching styles closely parallel
learning styles. Another factor which influenced the
placement of this discussion is that the focus here is on
the teaching methods needed to address the various learning
types.


297
Ross, J., "The Relationship between a Jungian Personality
Inventory and Tests of Ability, Personality, and
Interest," Austr. J. Psych. 18, 1966.
Rothkopf, E. Z., "Some Theoretical and Experimental Approaches
to Problems in Written Instruction," in Learning and the
Educational Process, J. D. Krumboltz, ed., Rand McNally,
Chicago, 1965.
Rundus, D. and Atkinson, R. C., "Rehearsal Processes in Free
Recall: A Procedure for Direct Observation," J. Verb.
Learn, and Verb. Beh. 9, 1970, 99-105.
Saretsky, Gary, "The John Henry Effect: Potential Confounder
of Experimental vs. Control Group Approaches to the
Eveluation of Educational Innovations," Proc. Amer. Educ.
Res. Assoc., Educational Resources Information
Clearinghouse ED 106309, Washington, DC, April 2, 1975.
Schauer, Andrew H., "Effects of Observation and Evaluation on
Anxiety in Beginning Counselors: A Social Facilitation
Analysis," J. Couns. Dev. 63(5), Jan 1985, PAGES.
Schwartz, Rachael A., "Helping K-12 Teachers See Science and
Math in New Ways," ASEE Prism, January 1996, 14.
Shavelson, Richard J., Statistical Reasoning for the
Behavioral Sciences, 2 ed., Allyn and Bacon, Needham
Heights, MA, 1988.
Shimmerlick, S. M., "Organization Theory and Memory for Prose:
A Review of the Literature," Rev. Ed. Res. 48, 1978, 103-
120.
Silverman, Linda K., "Global Learners: Our Forgotten Gifted
Children," 7th World Conference on Gifted and Talented
Children, Salt Lake City, UT, August 1987.
Slavin, Robert E., Education Psychology: Theory into Practice,
2nd ed., Prentice Hall, Englewood Cliffs, NJ, 1988.
Slavin, Robert E., "Synthesis of Research on Cooperative
Learning," Ed. Leadership 48(5), February 1991, 71-82.


120
the brain itself (Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, 1995a). The
hemispherical division of the brain into "left" and "right"
accounts for the cerebrum, about 80% of the brain. The
cerebrum controls vision, hearing, body sensation,
intentional motor control, reasoning, conscious thinking and
decision making, language and nonverbal visualization,
imagination, and idea synthesis.
Each cerebral hemisphere surrounds one half of the
limbic system, which controls hunger, thirst, sleeping,
waking, body temperature, chemical balances, heart rate,
blood pressure, hormones, and emotions. The limbic system
is vital to the process of moving information into short-
and long-term memory. By recognizing the contribution of
the limbic system, which is also laterally divided, the four
quadrant model was introduced.
The four quadrants were labeled alphabetically, and the
preferences associated with the quadrants are as follows
(Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, 1995a, p. 80): A logical,
factual, critical, technical, analytical, and quantitative;
B conservative, structured, sequential, organized,
detailed, and planned; C interpersonal, kinesthetic,
emotional, spiritual, sensory, and feeling; D visual,


18
now be summarized, and the intended approach to address them
will be introduced.
Summary of Reform Objectives
There are a great many individual objectives in the
reform movement. These are described in detail in the
previous sections and are summarized in the list that
follows.
1. Satisfy the changing needs of the profession
a. Emphasize team skills and communication
b. Provide more hands-on design experience
c. Teach students to learn
d. Make students strongest in transferrable skills
e. Strengthen liberal education
2. Increase enrollment
a. Teach nature of engineering to students/teachers
b. Help teachers to foster interest in engineering
3. Improve student quality
a. Remediate in-service teachers to meet standards
b. Prepare pre-service teachers to meet standards
c. Inform K-12 personnel of pre-engineering curriculum
d. Encourage all genders, races, and thinking types
It is proposed here that design activities, when properly
devised, can accomplish most of these objectives. In the
section which follows, design activities will be discussed
as to the success they have had and what changes might be
made to them to further enhance their applicability.


97
problem learning and applying the right hand rule until the
left hand rule of other phenomena is introduced later. When
the right hand rule is the only choice, students are able to
apply it. After the new information is introduced (the left
hand rule) and the students must choose which rule to apply,
retroactive inhibition causes them to lose the ability to
apply the original rule (until they master both concepts
together). The key characteristic here is the loss of
previous information or skills.
Proactive inhibition is characterized by the
interference of learning new information because of
previously learned information. If the response in the
above case was that students continued to use the right hand
rule in all cases, the case would be one of proactive
inhibition, because the previous information was retained,
but prevented the learning of new information (the left hand
rule). Inhibition can be minimized by varying the
presentation technique when presenting different material
(Andre, 1973 and Andre et al., 1976).
Retroactive and proactive facilitation can also occur.
Slavin (1988) uses the example of learning foreign
languages. An American student who studies Latin might


215
Figure 10 Post-test Score Distribution
Range restriction. While this high level of mastery is
good evidence of the teaching benefit of the laboratory, the
very narrow range precludes the use of the quiz grades to
compare various groups of students (among teams, experienced
students vs. inexperienced students, etc.) due to a
principle known as range restriction. This is especially
true in measuring correlation coefficients, as noted by
Shavelson (1988).
Because range restriction has occurred, it is therefore
impossible to use the quiz score as a predictor of anything
other than the mastery level of the class as a whole. It is
possible, however, to study which steps were missed most
frequently. This study may yield additional information
which is useful to the educational process.


285
Felder, R. M., Felder, G. N., Mauney, M., Hamrin, C. E. Jr.,
and Dietz, E. J., "A Longitudinal Study of Engineering
Student Performance and Retention. III. Gender
Differences in Student Performance and Attitudes," J.
Engineering Ed. 84(2), April 1995, 151-163.
Felder, Richard M., Leonard, Rebecca, and Porter, Richard L.,
"Oh No, Not Another Teaching Workshop!" J. Coll. Sci.
Teach. 21(4), February 1992, 207-213.
Felder, Richard M. and Silverman, Linda K., "Learning and
Teaching Styles in Engineering Education," Engineering
Education, April 1988, 674-681.
Fentiman, Audeen W. and Demel, John T., "Teaching Students to
Document a Design Project and Present the Results," J.
Engineering Ed. 83(4), October 1994, 329-333.
Flavell, J. H., Cognitive Development, Prentice Hall,
Englewood Cliffs, NJ, 1985.
Flavell, J. H., "Really and Truly," Psych. Today, January
1986, 38-44.
Florman, Samuel C., "Learning Liberally," ASEE Prism, November
1993, 18-23.
Frey, Walter W., "Schools Miss Out on Dyslexic Engineers,"
IEEE Spectrum, December 1990, 6.
Gallupe, R. B., Bastianutti, L. M., and Cooper, W. H.,
"Unblocking Brainstorms," J. Applied Psych. 76, 1991,
137-142.
Gallupe, R. B., Dennis, A. R., Cooper, W. H., Valacich, J. S.,
Bastianutti, L. M., and Nuna Maker, J. F., "Electronic
Brainstorming and Group Size," Acad. Management J. 35,
1992, 350-369.
Gardner, H., Developmental Psychology, 2 ed., Little, Brown,
Boston, 1982.


ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
I am forever in debt to Dr. Hoit for sticking his neck
out for me; this dissertation is far from conventional.
This Civil Engineering department and its chair, Dr. Paul
Thompson, are also recognized for being receptive to the
inroads of educational reform. My research was also helped
significantly by the SUCCEED coalition and the National
Science Foundation and their efforts to change the culture
of engineering education. Of those in SUCCEED, Dr. Rich
Felder of NCSU and Dr. Tim Anderson have had a special role
for me as mentors, as did Dr. Jonathan Earle of the
University of Florida, Dr. Don Steiner of Rensselaer
Polytechnic Institute, and Dr. Fred Orthlieb of Swarthmore
College.
The members of my committee themselves were selected
because they have in common my admiration for their
expertise as educators. Each of my committee members
deserve special mention for their most prominent
contributions to this work; Dr. Hoit for learning right
IV


APPENDIX B
THE ENGINEERING BY DESIGN METHODOLOGY
The pages which follow include the formatted
methodology referred to earlier in the dissertation. All
references to Engineering By Design refer to this document.
253


168
what the experimenter is trying to find out about them as a
subject. This effect can also influence the research
outcome in either directionthe subject might or might not
discern the actual research objective, and if discerning it
correctly, the subject might or might not wish to fulfill
the objective (some subjects will always attempt to stymie
the researcher).
Evaluation of Engineering By Design
The purpose here is to evaluate the methodology itself.
One approach to this problem was to ask those who had used
the methodology in creating an activity to evaluate the
effectiveness of the methodology in aiding that process. It
rapidly became clear that this method of evaluation would be
ineffective. The primary difficulty was one of evaluator
bias, which has two contributing factors, which follow.
The first cause of bias is that I am too closely
associated with the methodology, because of my extensive
involvement with those testing it. This confuses the
evaluator's opinion of me and my efforts with their opinion


24
programs are very successful because just as teachers are
intimidated by mathematics and science, most engineers are
intimidated by a classroom full of young people. Around the
country, various companies (Chen, 1990), educational
institutions (Meade, 1992), and even governmental
organizations (Otts, 1991) sponsor such programs.
Design competitions have also been effective in
introducing students to engineering. Titcomb et al. (1994)
used design problems appropriate for a high school physics
course to establish a design competition which had the
participation of nearly half the high schools in Vermont.
The Junior Engineering Technical Society (JETS) offers a
year-long comprehensive high school program, with design
competitions playing a key role (JETS, 1994) .
An excellent blend of these various methods is the
summer institute. Special programs such as the Hands-On
Institute of Science and Technology (HOIST), held at the
University of Florida summer 1995,4 can provide a more
4H0IST was held at the University of Florida from July
9-15, 1995. It was coordinated by Marc Hoit and Matthew
Ohland of the Civil Engineering department, and funded by a
combination of student fees and a grant from the American
Society of Civil Engineers. A report of the implementation
of the institute is in progress.


106
Instructional objectives
1. Given a list of constraints, student teams will design
and construct a container to protect an egg from
breaking when dropped.
2. Student teams will have one day to select and procure
their own materials for their design.
3. Student teams will analyze unsuccessful container
designs to determine at least one reason for the
container's failure.
Note how the ability to measure the objectives increases in
the later stages. A clear understanding of the
instructional objectives is essential to appropriate
assessment.
Bloom's Taxonomy of Educational Objectives
It was discussed earlier that the more students process
information, the more likely they are to retain it. One way
of increasing a student's level of processing is through
repetition. Another is through the use of higher level
thinking skills. Bloom et al. (1956), divided educational
objectives into six categories of thinking skills, in
ascending order of complexity. The six categories are shown
below. Many authors simply list these in order (e.g.
Slavin, 1988 and Howard et al., 1996), which tends to
trivialize the importance and abundance of the lower levels.


137
requiring a group product. The Felder and Brent study,
which used cooperative learning techniques in five
successive semesters of a chemical engineering curriculum,
found overwhelming evidence of the success of such methods.
Their report highlights their application of methods
suggested in Slavin (1991) and others.
In addition to cooperative learning, there are many
teaching methods which offer promise for meeting the needs
of various types of learners. McKeachie (1986) is an
excellent reference for teaching methods in higher
education, and his appendix B lists the goals potentially
achieved through each method. The various methods used in
developing the Engineering By Design methodology will be
pointed out as they are implemented.


Ill
Taxonomy of Affective Objectives
Krathwohl et al. (1964), also designed a taxonomy of
objectives related to attitudes and values, or affective
objectives. These are also relevant, because we frequently
want to impart attitudes (toward learning, toward
engineering, toward teamwork, etc.) through education. The
five objectives are arranged in a hierarchy, as with the
previous cognitive objectives.
Receiving (or Attending) simply indicates awareness at
the lowest level, and willingness to listen at a higher
level. Once a student is actively participating, either by
request or by choice, that level is termed responding. At
the highest level of responding, the student will clearly be
engaged by and pleased with the activity. The next level is
valuing, which proceeds through acceptance, preference, and
commitment stages (Kubiszyn and Borich, 1993) Organization
requires students to balance different values which
conflict, such as wanting to encourage development, but
prevent forestland destruction. The last level,
characterization by value, requires a consistent set of
values which is internalized such that all the student's


85
Overall Effect of Developmental Stages
The presence of some stages will limit the nature of
the activities which are appropriate for students. In other
cases, we must keep in mind the developmental level of the
students to make sure we expect them to strive, but not to
make objectives so far ahead as to cause frustration. With
respect to Erikson's stages of social development,
understanding the crises that can be anticipated throughout
a student's development not only helps us as educators to
direct that development, but also to understand certain
behaviors exhibited by students.
Learning
Learning, as opposed to development, depends on
experience. Learning and development are clearly
intertwined, but the distinction is intended to separate
those parts of a child's growth which we can affect
(learning) from those which we cannot (development), which
result from the physiological maturation of the human brain.
A child is constantly experiencing many things: the


277
Table 20 Statistics Post-Test Score Summary
Control
Experimental
14
19
31
28
24
16
15
28
43
15
18
38
11
15
32
41
Avg.
23.5
25


290
"Keirsey Temperament Sorter Jungian Personality Test,"
http://sunsite.unc.edu/jembin/inb.pl, Internet, maintained
by Jonathan Magid, 1996.
Kendall, P. C., "Cognitive-Behavioral Interventions with
Children," in Advances in Clinical Psychology 4, B. B.
Lahey and A. E. Kazdin, eds., Plenum, New York, 1981.
Kepner, Charles H. and Tregoe, Benjamin B., The Rational
Manager, McGraw Hill, New York, 1965.
Kerr, N. and Bruun, S., "Dispensability of Members' Effort and
Group Motivation Losses: Free-Rider Effects," J. Appl.
Psych. 44, 1983, 78-94.
Ko, Edmond I. and Hayes, John R., "Teaching Awareness of
Problem-Solving Skills to Engineering Freshmen," J.
Engineering Ed. 83(4), October, 1994, 331-335.
Kohlberg, L., "The Development of Children's Orientations
Toward Moral Order. I: Sequence in the Development of
Human Thought," Vita Humana 6, 1963, 11-33.
Kohlberg, L., "Stage and Sequence: The Cognitive-Developmental
Approach to Socialization," in Handbook of Socialization
Theory and Research, D. A. Goslin, ed., Rand McNally, New
York, 1969, 347-380.
Kolb, David A., Experiential Learning: Experience as the
Source of Learning and Development, Prentice-Hall,
Englewood Cliffs, NJ, 1984.
Kranzberg, Melvin, "Educating the Whole Engineer," ASEE Prism,
November 1993, 26-31.
Krathwohl, D. R., Bloom, B. S., and Masia, B. B., Taxonomy of
Educational Objectives: The Classification of Educational
Goals. Handbook II: Affective Domain, McKay, New York,
1964 .
Krueger, W. C. F., "The Effect of Overlearning on Retention,"
J. Exp. Psych. 12, 1929, 71-78.


241
DEFINITIONS OF TERMS
During the course of this lab, you will be introduced to and use the following terms. You will
need to know the meaning of these terms in order to understand the tests. These terms are used
by many types of engineers all the time.
Compression This, as you would expect, describes a "squeezing" action or force on an object.
Tension The opposite of compression, or a "stretching" action or force on an object.
Stress A measure of force per unit of area, lb/in2 (psi), kN/m2 [the same units as pressure]
Strain A measure of deformation or elongation of a material, its units are inch per inch; it is the
ratio of a change in length to the original length of a specimen
Strength The stress value at which a sample of material fails.
Modulus of Elasticity Relates stress to strain and visa versa. It is the ratio of the stress on a
sample to the amount of stain that level of stress causes. It is also the slope of the straight line
portion of the stress-strain curve for a specific material.
Elastic Range The portion of the stress-strain relationship for a material where if the specimen
loaded and then unloaded, it will return to its original undeformed shape. The straight line portion
of the stress strain curve.
Moment Bending forces in a beam characterized by compression at the top and tension at the
bottom of the beam, or vice versa.
Neutral Axis A line which runs along the length of a beam where stress and strain are equal to
zero.
Moment of Inertia This is one measure of the stiffness of a beam. It relates cross sectional area
and the distance from the neutral axis at which the majority of the area is located to the ease in
which the beam is bent. Example: An "I" beam has a greater moment of inertia than a flat plate of
the exact same cross sectional area


100
obviously, is the intent of homework. Another interesting
point is that students benefit from continued practice after
mastery has already been achieved. This is known as
overlearning (Krueger, 1929), a principle which has led to
approaches such as drilling of basic facts.
Organization
Classification of information is important for its
successful transfer to long-term memory. Various ways to
help students organize information have been effective
(Ausubel, 1960 and 1963, Ausubel and Youssef, 1963, Hartley
and Davies, 1976, Lawton and Wanska, 1977, Mayer, 1979, Van
Patten et al., 1986, Bower et al., 1969, and Shimmerlick,
1978).
Instructors at all levels generally recognize the
benefit of organizing their lessons. Less understood,
however, is that students benefit immensely from having that
organizational layout shown to them. Hierarchical outlines
are very effective in this regard. When hierarchy is not
well suited to the material being covered, even an agenda is
helpful. This coordinates well with the principle of self-
regulation discussed within behavioral learning theoryif


146
drilled, even the slightest wobble in the drill bit would
consistently cause the bottom popsicle sticks to split
longitudinally (this not only answered A, but inadvertently
L, since a similar jig is still in use). Rather than
attempt to answer B by placing a popsicle in special grips
in a low-load tensile tester, it was recognized that the
sticks should never fail in tension, since failure at the
connections (where the sticks have been drilled) will occur
first. Keeping this in mind, D-G were all addressed
simultaneously. Simple Warren trusses (a chain of
equilateral triangles, illustrated in the laboratory in
Appendix A) were tested across various spans (D). The two-
dimensional truss was held up by two small heavy boxes,
later developed into a special loading frame with plexiglass
panels allowing monitoring of deformation (E) The load was
applied by wrapping a light gauge wire around two of the
joints toward the middle, and hanging from it a 5-gallon
pail which was gradually filled with gravel (F).
It quickly became clear that a 12-inch span resulted in
loads which were too high (especially if the truss were
reinforced in any way), so an 18-inch span was selected.
This was also a convenient length; the drilled holes at the


177
The student teams are asked to indicate the floor areas
carried by joists a, b, and c. Joist b is a typical
interior member, for which students are expected to easily
agree that half of the area between b and its neighbors is
carried by b. Joist a is on an edge, forcing students to
decide what sort of effect applies there. What is actually
appropriate is dependent upon student assumptions, which
they are asked to declare. Joist c shares load with an
interior and an exterior joist. If students are consistent
in the application of their method (regardless of their
agreement with the established method of calculating
tributary area), c should carry half of what b carries plus
the portion of an exterior bay not carried by the edge
joists, indicated by the area assigned to a.
Although jumping right into defining tributary area
prior to formally defining it is great for global learners,
these problems are ordered so that sequential learners will
be able to piece together smaller concepts into a larger
picture. In this manner, the second problem of the set
introduces a new level of complexity: non-uniform joist
spacings.


212
This is also shown in Appendix C as "Tributary Area
Post-test." Here, however, the joists have been numbered in
order to describe the grading system devised. The
instructions given to the students are given following the
diagram for reference.
<
24' i

30'

A
'
1 '
1 '
1
3
4
1
ZO 0
O 0
D
VZ7A
Bearing wall
nzD
Beam
C £
' I
^
7 f
A
30'
y
A
32'
V
Figure 9 Tributary Area Post-test
Calculate the tributary area to the beam AB. Sketch it
on the plan view. Assume all joists are equally spaced
and in contact with the slab. The beams AB, DC, and CE
are all at the same elevation but are not in contact
with the slab. There is no column at C.
Students were given approximately 15 minutes to complete
this exercise.


169
of the methodology. The second difficulty is caused by the
interdisciplinary nature of the methodology. One of the
evaluators, Dr. Duane S. Ellifritt, Professor of Structural
Engineering at the University of Florida, has much practical
teaching experience but is less aware of the fundamentals of
learning and teaching which are applied in the methodology.
The second evaluator, Dr. Cynthia Holland, a secondary
teacher of Physics and Chemistry, has a strong understanding
of educational principles, but is less well-versed in design
and creative problem solving. The result is that each is
biased by their respect for the elements of the process
which are less familiar.
Fortunately, there is another approach to evaluating
the methodologythrough the activities it produces. If the
methodology is beneficial, the activities produced using it
should be educationally superior to those traditionally
used. The ideal model of this type of experiment would
include two randomly selected populations of students who
are well-matched with respect to any attributes which may
effect the outcome of a learning experiment, such as
aptitude, learning style, demographics, and attitudes.
These populations should be representative of the population


5
Context of the Current Reform
Not surprisingly, many of the goals of the current
reform movement are echoes of earlier reports reverberating
off today's political, economic, and social conditions. It
is pertinent to analyze these driving forces in order to
understand the movement's true objectives.
The driving forces behind this reform are manythe
demands of industry [the employer of 70% of engineering
graduates (Farrington et al., 1994)], concerns of a
shortfall of engineers, and existing weaknesses in the
preparation of students for study in engineering (the
student pipeline) are among them.
The demands of industry
The engineering curriculum model in the United States
after World War II was heavy on mathematics and science and
lighter on design (Hubband, 1993). The United States and
other countries using that model would discover that the
lack of hands-on training would prevent new engineers from
becoming effective designers without additional training
(Farrington et al., 1994). In Japan, this problem was


130
the measured attributes. In addition, it identifies certain
important parameters for classroom design. It seems
appropriate that the Learning Style Inventory (and similar
models) be used only in such studies. The educational
process is overly complicated by attempts to vary the room
temperature or lighting conditions to optimize student
learning.
Why and HQM...to_Teac]i..tfl-All Learniag_Typ.es
As discussed in chapter 2, different approaches are
necessary to identify the best solutions in problem solving.
In fact, some problems may require a variety of perspectives
to find any solution at all. Westcott and Ranzoni (1963)
studied groups of college students and correlated many
factors with their approaches to problem solving. While
aptitude and academic achievement were not adequate
predictors of problem solving style, personality differences
had a significant effect. This is confirmation that
students with different learning styles are the harbingers
of new approaches to the problems that "traditional"
engineers seek to solve.


211
This was no surprise, given the previously discussed
responses to statements 5, 9, 13, and 21 all indicated a
positive opinion of cooperative education in general and of
the teamwork experience in the tributary area laboratory
specifically. Of these groupings, the opinion in support of
"This Team" was the strongest (3.63).
Strength of opinion is personality driven. As noted
earlier, the likelihood of indicating a "Strong" opinion is
heavily influenced by individual differences (Kubiszyn and
Borich, 1993). Students 9, 22, 23, 25, 26, 31, and 32 had
no responses of strong agreement or disagreement, and even
more surprising, student 12 indicated simple agreement or
disagreement for only two of the 21 statements. Agreement
and disagreement, when indicated, were consistently
"Strong."
Tributary area post-test
A post-test designed to measure the mastery level of
the students was designed by the instructor. The post-test,
which required application of all the principles of
tributary area students had been taught, is shown below.


along with me how to conduct educational research, Dr.
Kantowski for offering assistance in that journey, but
letting us learn for ourselves, Dr. Ellifritt for his
collaboration in designing the tributary area laboratory,
Dr. Glagola for treating me as a peer and serving as a
sounding board, and Dr. Hays for making sure I came to the
University of Florida in the first place.
In developing and conducting the Truss Bridge
Laboratory, I have had a great deal of assistance from many
sources. Dr. Hoit shared in its design. I am grateful to
Renee Alter, Lincoln Smith and Bennett Ruedas for their
assistance in preparing truss kits; Ken Simon deserves
special mention for his regular assistance in recovering
undamaged popsicle sticks. Dr. Hoit, Renee, Line, and Todd
Sessions have all played a part in conducting the
laboratory, but preparation of the laboratory space itself
has been trusted to Danny Richardson, Hubert Martin, and
Bill Studstill. Of those, Danny assists every time the
Introduction to Engineering class is held, and earns special
recognition as proof that doers can also be teachers.
The SECME institute afforded a number of benefits to
this research, and the SECME adminstration and master
v


163
In published data tables, subjects are referred to by a
"subject number." As the researchers, the participating
instructors and I can associate the subject number with the
participant at any time to retrieve further information, but
it would be impossible for anyone else to discern the
participant from the number.
Legal constraints
In general, most of the legal constraints do not impact
research designs which follow the APA ethical guidelines,
but intend to provide legal recourse against researchers who
do not follow such principles. The two laws which most
affect research involving people are described in the
following sections.
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974.
This act protects the confidentiality of educational
records, requiring written consent (from the student or
parents) to obtain any educational records from which the
student can be identified. Fortunately, school personnel
with "legitimate educational interest" are exempted from
this process, which significantly relieves professors and


27
Integration into state curricula
The most aggressive approach is to integrate design
directly into the curriculum. Since curriculum is generally
established by a state's board of education, this is still
difficult to do on a nationwide basis. Since there are only
50 states, however, the number of entities to work with to
institute this kind of change is significantly smaller than
even the number of schools in the K-12 system. New York
State is the leader in this sort of curriculum development.
Since 1986, middle school teachers have been prepared
through in-service training to offer a course called
"Introduction to Technology," which all students are
required to take (Hacker, 1993). This movement, which began
in the middle grades, has led to a "Principles of
Engineering" elective course which is taught at the high
school level.
Typical Design Project Objectives
It is important to note that design projects are
employed in all these approaches to improving the
engineering educational system. It is the multidisciplinary


189
not penalize the team. One student's comment made it clear
that we had not clearly conveyed that approach: "I like to
have some knowledge of a method before trying to complete a
graded homework on that method."
In their solution to the exercise itself, teams 1, 2,
4, 5, 6, and 7 defined all of the tributary areas consistent
with the standard definition of the concept. Team 3
identified all but one area correctly; in the second
problem, they forced the area surrounding joist c (and its
reflection) to be symmetric, leaving no floor surface to be
carried by joist b. Essentially, the team removed joist b
to create uniform spacing. Team 8 postulated an edge
effect, which would be consistent with that which occurs
with uniformly loaded continuous beams, where interior
supports carry considerably more than twice the load of
exterior supports (AISC, 1986, p. 3-142). This error is
simply caused by a different set of assumptions, where the
assumptions made in the established definition of tributary
area make the area simpler to compute, forgoing the
increased accuracy of the more complicated set of
assumptions.


CHAPTER 2
CREATIVE PROBLEM SOLVING
Introduction
"No single technological advance will be the key to a
safe and comfortable long-term future for civilization.
Rather, the key, if any exists, will lie in getting large
numbers of human minds to operate creatively and from a
broad, open-minded perspective, to cope with new
challenges." This quote (Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine, 1995a,
xv) by Paul MacCready, inventor of the various "Gossamer"
low-energy aircraft, highlights the importance most flexible
skill we can impart to engineering studentsthe ability to
think creatively.
The key to creative problem solving is recognizing that
real problems have more than one solution. While we seek
the optimum, we will never know that we have achieved it. A
new approach or a new understanding of the fundamentals
underlying the problem may lead to great improvements in the
31


9
engineering students are conducting a portion of their
studies abroad, as well (Ercolano, 1995).
Altogether, industry representatives seem to agree on
certain deficits in engineering graduates: the ability to
work on a team, the ability to communicate effectively, and
an awareness of workplace expectations (Katz, 1993).
Concern of a shortfall of engineers
There is considerable difference of opinion as to the
level of this concern. Many sources indicate a serious
shortfall of engineers will occur within a decade. Heckel
(1996) indicates a 25% downturn in freshman enrollments
since 1980 and a 9% decline from Fall 1992 to Fall 1994.
Bakos and Hritz (1991) claim that the shortage is at all
degree levels, and is caused by changes in demographics and
student interest level. Lohmann (1991) anticipates a
shortfall of engineering graduates not because of
demographics or interest but because of inadequate
preparation in the public school system. Other reports
agree with the issue of quality raised by Lohmann ("New
Report," 1990).


113
principles of behavioral theory and measured against the
affective objectives. Time is both a measure of time
scheduled to teach and of time spent actually spent
teaching. The next section will discuss how individual
differences among students affect instruction.
Individual Differences
The impact of individual differences on instructional
effectiveness is extreme. None of the four elements in the
QAIT model is unaffected by the diverse aptitudes,
attitudes, knowledge, skills, and learning styles of the
students. Some of these can be influenced by an instructor.
Aptitudes and learning styles cannot be modified in the
short term, and so are parameters rather than variables in
the learning process.
Aptitude
In higher education, differences in aptitude are
somewhat constrained, since the United States does not yet
have government-mandated higher education, as is the case


181
without excessive risk. This has traditionally been a
difficult point for students, who think a quantity of actual
load is simply being neglected. This exercise also contains
more critical thinking than the first. Students must not
only evaluate their ideas, but then establish criteria for
their use. This should encourage students to understand why
limits and criteria are necessary (e.g., if the reduction as
a percentage is allowed to grow unbounded, it may eliminate
the load entirelyobviously well after the limits of safety
have been exceeded). We allowed 10 minutes for this
exercise.
Next on the agenda we decided to give a formal
presentation of the live load reduction method recognized by
the LRFD design code (AISC, 1986). We estimated that 15
minutes would be sufficient for this. Following the formal
presentation, student teams returned to the complex
tributary area problem and calculated service loads
(comprised of dead load plus reduced live load, not
factored) for a typical joist, beam and girder. Student
teams were allotted 30 minutes to show their results in the
form of free body diagrams of each member type. Students
were not required to consider the columns.


101
students are informed at the outset of the objectives of a
lesson, the path they should take to succeed is clearer.8
Common elements of cognitive principles
There are many other approaches to improve learning.
Questions can encourage students to fill in gaps or
anticipate what might happen (Felder, 1988, Rickards, 1979,
Berliner, 1968, and Rothkopf, 1965). Questions presented
prior to instruction can narrow students' thinking, however
(Hamilton, 1985 and Hamaker, 1986). Also important is that
questions not imitate the instructional material, but
manipulate it so as to force students to think about it
(Andre and Sola, 1976 and Andre and Womak, 1978). Having
students assess important issues through outlining (Anderson
and Armbruster, 1984 and Van Patten et al., 1986) or
summarization (Doctorow et al., 1978 and Brown et al., 1983)
are also effective.
The key to the principles mentioned here and others
(Slavin, 1988) is that a higher level of processing of
8The same principle applies to research subjects, as will be
addressed in chapter 5; knowing the expected outcome of the
research can influence their behavior.


98
better understand English through the process. This would
be an example of retroactive facilitation. If, on the other
hand, a student found that the study of one romance language
(Italian, say) facilitated the study of a second romance
language (e.g. Spanish), this would be an example of
proactive facilitation.
Primacy and recency
Another useful piece of information is that if a number
of concepts are learned, those at the beginning and the end
are retained best (Stigler, 1978, Rundus and Atkinson, 1970,
and Greene, 1986). This has profound implications for the
structure of a planned activity or lesson.
Mnemonics
There are many techniques to improve the process of
transferring information from short-term to long-term
memory. Such techniques are called mnemonics (Higbee,
1979). Among the best are those that rely on imagery
(Anderson and Hidde, 1971). For example, when I present the
Truss Bridge Laboratory (the prototype design activity
discussed in the next chapter) to adult groups, I ask them


289
Inhelder, B. and Piaget, J., The Growth of Logical Thinking
from Childhood to Adolescence, Basic Books, New York,
1958 .
JETS (Junior Engineering Technical Society, "JETS Report,"
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Johnson, D. W., Johnson, R. T. Holubec, E. J., and Roy, P.,
Circles of Learning: Cooperation in the Classroom,
Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development,
Alexandria, VA, 1984.
Johnson, David W., Johnson, Roger- T., and Smith, Karl A.,
Cooperative Learning: Increasing College Faculty
Instructionan Productivity, ASHE-ERIC Higher Education
Report No. 4, The George Washington University, School of
Education and Human Development, Washington, DC, 1991.
Jones, Chris, "Secondary School Revisited," ASEE Prism,
January, 1992a, 24-27.
Jones, Chris, "Minority Statistics," ASEE Prism, April 1992b,
18.
Jung, C. G., Psychological Types, Harcourt, Brace, New York,
1923 .
Kahney, Hank, Problem Solving: A Cognitive Approach, Open
University Press, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1986.
Katz, Susan M., "The Entry-Level Engineer: Problems in
Transition from Student to Professional," J. Engineering
Ed. 82(3), July 1993, 171-174.
Keefe, J., Languis, M., Letteri, C., and Dunn, R., Learning
Style Profile, National Association of Secondary School
Principals, Reston, VA, 1986.
Keirsey, David and Bates, Marilyn, Please Understand Me:
Character and Temperament Types, 5th ed., Prometheus
Nemesis, Del Mar, CA, 1984.


267
Table 15 Survey Responses by Individual: Concept Groupings
Lab
Group
This
Total
Confi
Time /
Time
St. #
Format
Work
Team
Group
dence
Worth I
Worth -
Stl
2.2
3.8
4.0
3.7
5.0
2.2
1.8
St2
3.2
4.3
4.0
4.0
4.0
4.2
4.2
St3
3.5
2.5
4.0
3.0
4.0
3.8
3.8
St4
2.4
3.5
3.8
3.5
3.0
2.8
2.8
St5
3.5
3.5
3.8
3.7
3.0
3.8
3.8
St6
2.6
4.0
4.0
4.0
4.0
2.7
2.4
St7
2.5
4.5
4.3
4.3
2.0
3.2
2.8
St9
2.5
3.8
3.3
3.5
2.0
3.2
3.0
StlO
2.5
3.8
2.5
3.0
3.0
3.2
2.8
Stll
3.1
4.3
3.5
3.0
3.0
3.7
3.6
Stl2
1.5
4.0
3.0
4.0
1.0
1.0
1.0
Stl3
2.5
3.0
2.8
2.7
4.0
3.0
3.2
Stl4
2.5
4.3
4.5
4.2
4.0
2.3
2.6
Stl5
2.9
1.8
3.0
1.0
5.0
2.3
2.6
Stl6
2.8
2.5
4.3
3.0
4.0
3.0
2.8
Stl7
3.2
2.3
3.5
2.5
5.0
2.7
2.8
Stl0
3.4
3.8
4.5
4.2
5.0
3.6
Stl9
2.2
2.8
3.5
3.2
4.0
2.4
St20
2.0
2.0
2.8
2.5
5.0
2.4
St21
3.1
3.5
4.5
4.0
3.0
3.6
St22
2.9
4.0
3.5
4.0
4.0
3.8
St23
2.4
3.5
2.5
3.0
2.0
2.8
St24
3.1
3.3
3.3
3.2
5.0
3.4
St25
3.0
3.5
3.5
3.5
2.0
3.6
St26
3.2
3.3
4.0
3.5
3.0
3.8
3.8
St27
2.1
4.5
4.0
4.5
2.0
3.0
2.8
St28
2.7
4.5
4.0
4.3
2.0
3.2
3.0
St29
2.0
3.8
3.0
3.3
2.0
2.5
2.2
St30
3.6
4.5
4.3
4.3
3.0
4.0
4.2
St31
3.0
4.0
3.8
3.8
4.0
3.5
3.4
St32
2.0
3.8
3.5
3.8
2.0
3.7
3.8
St33
2.5
3.3
3.5
3.3
3.0
3.0
2.8
Average
2.73
3.54
3.63
3.54
3.34
3.07
3.05
Std. Dev.
0.51
0.74
0.57
0.63
1.15
0.71
0.71
t observed
3.0
4.1
6.2
4.8
1.7
0.5
0.4
P
0.01
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.10
0.64
0.69
Significant?
Y
Y
Y
Y
N
N
N
Range Max
3.6
4.5
4.5
4.5
5.0
4.2
4.2
Min
1.5
1.8
2.5
1.8
1.0
1.0
1.0
Median
2.8
3.8
3.6
3.6
3.0
3.1
2.9


217
miss Step 10. This is not a shortfall of the educational
process, but is inherent in the process of engineering,
wherever judgement is involved.
Steps 1 and 20, however, are essentially the same
error: failing to see that, when a joist is parallel to a
bearing wall, the wall will carry half of the load between
them. Since students have a firm grasp on load sharing
between two joists (based on their completion of other steps
with a much higher success rate), but do not see as well
that walls share in the same manner, I hypothesize that the
root of the error lies in students' inability to relate the
picture in plan to a physical structure.
In a physical structure, for a bearing wall to carry a
vertical load, it must somehow be attached to it. In some
cases (such as in the basement garage at my house), this is
done by anchoring a ledger beam to the bearing wall with
carriage bolts. In the plan view provided to students (such
as in the post-test), however, this ledger beam is not
shown. In fact, there is no indication in the picture
provided as to how load transfer to the bearing wall might
occur. As a result, I have hypothesized that students fail
to assign any load to the bearing wall simply because they


75
those later stages may have implications regarding
continuing education, which is not the focus here.
Trust vs. mistrust
In this stage, the child should learn to trust
(Erikson, 1968). This trust is generally founded in a
maternal figure. If a child's mother does not meet the
child's needs of love, stability, and security, the child is
likely to develop a mistrust in the world. In education,
this will lead to a variety of attitudes, e.g.: skepticism,
cynicism, and negativism.
Autonomy vs. doubt
During this stage, children seek independence and
autonomy. Supportive parents will help a child develop a
sense of autonomy within bounds. If a child is not
encouraged to do this, or worse, restricted so that he or
she cannot do this, the self-confidence of the child
suffers. Children who do not successfully resolve the
crisis of this stage are hindered in the development of
their self-esteem and leadership skills.


201
have incorrect values. This discrepancy requires additional
manipulation of the data in order to obtain an average.
In previous work with Likert scales, I analyzed their
behavior and discovered a simplifying scoring principle.
The table below shows that for a negative phrase, the sum of
the assigned value and the desired value always equals 6.
Table 9 Manipulation of Negatively Phrased Statement Scores
Assigned
Value
1
2
3
4
5
Desired
Value
5
4
3
2
1
Sum
6
6
6
6
6
Thus we find that desired value = (6 assigned value). By
making this substitution in formulae which sum negatively
phrased statement values, averages can be correctly
computed.
Student Evaluation Statements. The table below gives
the statements included in the Tributary Area Student
Evaluation and their corresponding numbers.
Concept groupings. The groupings are abbreviated as
follows: LF=lab format, GW=group work, TT=this team,


280
Borg, Walter R. and Gall, Meredith Damien, Educational
Research: An Introduction, 5th ed., Longman, New York,
1989.
Bornstein, P. H., "Self-Instructional Training: A Commentary
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72 .
Bouchard, T. J., "Personality, Problem-Solving Procedure, and
Performance in Small Groups," J. Applied Psych. Monograph
53(2), 1969, 1.
Bouchard, T. J., "A Comparison of Two Group Brainstorming
Procedures," J. Applied Psych. 59, 1972, 418-421.
Bouchard, T. J., Drauden, G., and Barsaloux, J.,
"Brainstorming Procedure, Group Size, and Sex as
Determinants of the Problem Solving Effectiveness of
Groups and Individuals," J. Applied Psych. 59, 1974, 135-
138.
Bouchard, T. J. and Hare, M., "Size, Performance, and
Potential in Brainstorming Groups," J. Applied Psych. 54,
1970, 51-55.
Bower, G. H., Clark, M. C., Lesgold, A. M., and Winzenz, D.,
"Hierarchical Retrieval Schemes in Recall of Categorized
Word Lists," J. Verb. Learn, and Verb. Beh. 8, 1969, 323-
343 .
Boyer, Ernest L., "Scholarship Reconsidered: Priorities of the
Professorate," The Carnegie Foundation for the
Advancement of Teaching, Princeton University Press,
Lawrenceville, NJ, 1990.
Broden, M., Bruce, C., Mitchell, M. A., Carter, V., and Hall,
R. V., "Effects of Teacher Attention on Attending
Behavior of Two Boys at Adjacent Desks," J. Appl. Beh.
Anal. 3, 1970, 199-203.
Broden, M., Hall, R. V., and Mirrs, B., "The Effects of Self-
Recording on the Classroom Behavior of Two Eighth-Grade
Students," J. Appl. Beh. Anal. 4, 1971, 191-199.


21
design projects, which culminate the curriculum for an
engineering bachelor's degree, are common (Miller and Olds,
1994 and Harris and Jacobs, 1995). If used in absence of
design practice in the earlier part of the curriculum, such
design projects perpetuate the approach to design discussed
earlier by Ercolano (1996), wherein students are not
permitted to experience design until their formal education
is finished. This results in students who are not
experienced in design, and discourages some students who
might make excellent designers, but lose interest in the
curriculum in which design is not well integrated.
Design far Fr.eshmen and .Sophomores
In the late 1960's, some faculty realized the
shortcomings of traditional laboratories and introduced
project-based courses into the curriculum (Durfee, 1994) .
More importantly, there has been a recent trend to insert
design activities into the first two years of the
engineering curriculum (Mahendran, 1995, Durfee, 1994, Dally
and Zhang, 1993 and Dym, 1994). Such early design
experiences have been found to be the most successful in


209
Students resist, then accept discovery method.
Students agreed with "I would prefer a formal presentation
of the concept of tributary area before attempting
problems," indicating their uneasiness with what was likely
their first exposure to this teaching method. As was
discussed earlier, however, the student teams all did
remarkably well at predicting the most basic tenets of the
established method of calculating tributary area. Later in
the same laboratory, after students had such success with
the first application of the method, students attitudes
toward its second application, speculating a live load
reduction technique, was positive as measured by responses
to two statements: students agreed with "Being asked to
suggest methods for load reduction made me look more closely
at the problem" and disagreed with the statement "Trying to
guess how live load reduction is accomplished was a waste of
my time."
Students saw educational benefit in the tower activity.
Responses to two statements point to the fact that students
took the block tower activity seriously (agreement with "My
team formed a strategy before doing the block tower


Step 7: Improve the Activity.
Consider the following questions about the activity you have just designed
Can it be made simpler without sacrificing any of the objectives?
Does it challenge higher level thinking skills?
Are various learning styles being addressed?
Is the problem constrained enough to encourage creativity?
The best way to identify methods of improving the activity is to try it out.
Have students comment on the activity and how it might be better.
The instructors observations may be most helpful in suggesting
modifications.


293
McKeachie, Wilbert J., Teaching Tips: A Guidebook for the
Beginning College Teacher, 8th ed., D. C. Heath,
Lexington, MA, 1986.
McMasters, John H., "Paradigms Lost, Paradigms Regained:
Paradigm Shifts in Engineering Education," SAE Technical
Paper Series, paper 911179, April 22-26, 1991.
Meade, Jeff, "Far From Elementary," ASEE Prism, January 1992,
20-23.
Meichenbaum, D., Cognitive Behavior Modification: An
Integrative Approach, Plenum, New York, 1977.
Meichenbaum, D. and Goodman, J., "Training Impulsive Children
to Talk to Themselves: A Means of Developing Self-
Control," J. Ab. Psych. 77, 1971, 115-126.
Miller, P. H., Theories of Developmental Psychology, W. H.
Freeman, San Francisco, 1983.
Miller, Ronald L. and Olds, Barbara M., "A Model Curriculum
for a Capstone Course in Multidisciplinary Engineering
Design," J. Engineering Ed. 83(4), October 1994.
Monteith, L. K., "Engineering EducationA Century of
Opportunity," J. Engineering Ed. 83(1), January 1994, 22-
25 .
"The More Things Change," excerpts of a debate between R. D.
Chapin and A. M. Greene, Jr., ASEE Prism, January 1993,
16-17.
Morrow, Richard M., "Issues Facing Engineering Education," J.
Engineering Ed. 83(1), January 1994, 15-18.
Myers, I. B., Manual: The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator,
Educational Testing Service, Princeton, NJ, 1962.
Myers, I. B. and Davis, J. A., "Relation of Medical Students'
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Testing Service, Princeton, NJ, 1965.


171
Design of a Tributary Area Activity
Tributary area is a concept which is used to determine
the surface loads carried by a particular member. Tributary
area is used to determine reductions of movable, or live
loads. Since such loads are determined statistically, based
on how close together desks can reasonably be placed and
other such parameters, it is reasonable to assume that a
column which carries load from a number of sources will not
be loaded at the maximum load from each simultaneously.
Therefore, reduction of live loads is permitted under
certain circumstances, as will be discussed later.
Simply stated, the tributary area of a member is that
area directly above that member plus half the area between
it and its neighboring members on all sides. The figure
below illustrates the tributary area of the center beam.
Of course, if the one sentence description of tributary
area given in the last paragraph were adequate to impart a


64
As in Stice's case, most professors who are good at
teaching have become so by virtue of trial-and-error, having
little or no training or study in what he calls "the craft
of teaching." This situation is compounded by the current
academic incentive and reward system, under which research
interests must take priority over teaching, and faculty who
are outstanding teachers but merely adequate researchers are
never granted tenure or are relegated to an inferior
position (Felder, 1994).
Application of the Engineering By Design methodology is
intended to influence the current situation in two ways.
The first is for engineering professors to become aware of
the issues of educational psychology. The methodology
clearly does not provide training in those areas, but can at
least increase awareness and point the way for those
interested in improving student learning.
A second is in establishing a framework to support the
partnership of engineers with teachers. As stated earlier,
each party brings different knowledge to this partnership.
Teachers stand to gain insight into the engineering design
process and the application of scientific knowledge.
Engineering educators, on the other hand, stand to benefit


167
group) due to a threat to job, status, salary, and other
measures of worth (Saretsky, 1975) .
The Pygmalion Effect
This effect, its name drawn from Pygmalion in the
Classroom (Rosenthal and Jacobson, 1968), characterizes the
phenomenon witnessed in George Bernard Shaw's Pygmalion
(also known as My Fair Lady). In the Rosenthal and Jacobson
study, teachers' expectations influenced the achievement of
their students. Here it is the expectations of the observer
which influence the participant's behavior. The best
approach to avoiding this effect is for the researcher to
refrain from communicating any expectations to the research
participants. This effect can be positive or negative,
following the experimenter's expectations.
Demand characteristics
The effect due to demand characteristics are
essentially the converse of the Pygmalion Effect. Demand
characteristics are the collective evidence which the
participant perceives in an attempt to discern the research
objective. This is caused by a person's curiosity as to


28
nature of design that makes this possible. Properly posed
design projects are capable of meeting many of the
objectives of the reform movement. Encouraging creative
behavior is a common theme in design projects (Ko and Hayes,
1994, Mahendran, 1995, and Durfee, 1994). Creative thinking
is among the most transferrable of skills. Others also
include documenting the design process and making a
presentation of the results (Fentiman and Demel, 1994, and
Starkey et al., 1994). This adds written and presentation
skills to the interpersonal communication which already
accompanies such design projects. Still others choose to
include social context in their projects, showing young
engineers how they can be a service to the community.
Clearly, a great number of objectives are possible in
properly planned design activities.
Essentially, because the design projects are themselves
designed, it is possible to include a wide variety of
objectives. This is testament to the interdisciplinary
nature of the design process. Since such a wide variety of
objectives is possible, it is appropriate to consider what
set objectives has been most effective and what additional
objectives might make design projects even more effective.


42
have." The need for different perspectives in idea
generation has already been discussed. Unfortunately,
multiple choice testing, closed end problems, and other
artifacts of our formal schooling teach us that there is
only one correct answer to a problem. To knock down this
barrier to creativity, we must introduce an entirely new
approach than the one that is commonly used.
Looking at a problem in isolation
Avoiding this barrier is the remainder of the job of
the "explorer" persona introduced earlier. Here the
explorer can introduce new directions for ideas based on the
context of the problem. The common analogy for this barrier
is "not being able to see the forest for the trees." The
key to encourage multidisciplinary approaches to problems.
This is a substantial argument in support of partnerships of
engineers and educatorsas discussed earlier, each brings
different contextual information to the partnership.
Following the rules
Innovative ideas come from the unconventionalif
participants in the idea generation stage remain bound to


104
do not change rapidly; they are usually established at a
high level, such as by society, by the school board, by the
American Society of Engineering Education (ASEE), by the
Accreditation Board of Engineering and Technology (ABET),
etc.; and they provide a great deal of flexibility. More
examples of goals are given in the design of the methodology
in chapter 4.
General educational program objectives
These objectives are more specific than goals, but not
as specific as instructional objectives. They have more
focus than goals, and are measurable, but are still broad
with respect to outcomes and time scale. In the public
school system, these are generally established by the school
administration in response to school board goals. In higher
education, these are set at the college or departmental
level.
Instructional objectives
Paramount in teaching is the establishment of
instructional objectives. Objectives identify what is to be
taught. The may specify factual information, skills,


117
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI)
The MBTI was designed to assess and apply the
psychological types identified by Jung (1923) First
designed in 1942 (Myers and Myers, 1980), the MBTI was
introduced formally in 1962 (Myers, 1962), and was well
received as a valuable instrument for educational purposes.
Extensive research on the MBTI (Conary, 1966, Myers and
Davis, 1965, Ross, 1963 and 1966, Strieker and Ross, 1963,
and Strieker et al., 1965) encouraged its use over the Gray-
Wheelwright measure, developed concomitantly and also based
on Jung's types (Gray and Wheelwright, 1944, Grant, 1965).
The MBTI became further institutionalized through the
efforts of McCaulley (1976, 1977, 1978), and gained
recognition in engineering education in 1980, when a
consortium of engineering schools sponsored by the ASEE
Educational Research and Methods (ERM) division collected
baseline MBTI data on entering students and tracked them
(McCaulley et al., 1983). The ASEE-ERM study found that
certain typesthose more skilled in communication and
teamworkwere not retained as well as other types. This
finding indicates not only that the curriculum might be made
more receptive to students preferring communication, but


224
Central tendency
Since students quickly notice (or assume a priori) that
darts launched from the same trajectory do not always land
in the same spot, it was soon natural to move into the
brainstorming exercise. Students were then asked, "How
should we determine the "ideal" landing spotthe one we
would predict?" The various ideas recorded by the teams in
the experimental group were as follows (in no particular
order):
A. Shoot from the floor (presumably to avoid ceiling)
B. Use the same dart for each test
C. Measure how far to left or right the dart goes
D. Graph the results
E. Calculate time in the air by measuring maximum
height and doubling the free fall time
F. Weigh the dart
G. Take average of where the darts land
H. Find the center of the smallest circle which
encompasses all the data points
I. Determine the landing zone hit the most
J. Draw a circle with the average as the center
K. Find out how far each darts lands from the average
The ideas above range in scope, including experimental
procedure, prediction of sources of error, data analysis,
and descriptive statistics. The last two are particularly
interestingeven before any discussion of variation, these
two ideas, especially K, essentially describe the procedure


300
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Williams, K., Harkin, S., and Latane, B., "Identifiability as
a Deterrent to Social Loafing: Two Cheering Experiments,"
J. Personality Soc. Psych. 40, 1981, 303-311.
Wilson, B. and Schmits, D., "What's New in Ability Grouping?"
Phi Delta Kappan 59, 1978, 535-536.
Wilson, R., "A Review of Self-Control Treatments for
Aggressive Behavior," Beh. Disorders, 9, 1984, 131-140.
Wolf, M., Birnbauer, J. S., Williams, T., and Lawler, J., "A
Note on Apparent Extinction of Vomiting Behavior of a
Retarded Child," in Case Studies in Behavior
Modification, L. Ullmann and L. Krassner, eds., Holt,
Rinehart, and Winston, New York, 1965.
Zimmerman, E. H. and Zimmerman, J., "The Alteration Behavior
in a Special Classroom Situation," J. Exp. Anal, of Beh.
5, 1962, 59-60.


This dissertation, all that I have, and all that I am
are dedicated to my wife, Emily.


170
as a whole (e.g.: that of all students who take high school
Physics) for the results to be generalized.
One of the populations (called the control group) would
be taught with the traditional approach, while a matching
population (called the experimental group) would be taught
with a product of the Engineering By Design methodology.
Unfortunately, the constraints discussed earlier applythe
students within a class have already been established, and
students cannot be moved between classes for the purposes of
the experiment.
As a result of various constraints, each of the two
experimental activities will fall short of the ideal case in
a number of ways. The first, conducted with the aid of Dr.
Duane S. Ellifritt, was intended to teach the concept of
"tributary area" to students in CES 4605Analysis and Design
in Steel at the University of Florida, Fall 1995. In the
second, I worked with Dr. Cynthia Holland to develop an
activity to teach statistics to a group of high school
Physics students. These two activities and the results of
their implementation will be discussed in the following
sections.


12
student and the educational institution to waste valuable
resources to uncover the error. If teachers and high school
counselors do not understand the requirements for entrance
into engineering study, students who are otherwise excellent
candidates for such study will be hindered by poor
preparation if they do matriculate. The problem is greater
stilleven those who are truly not interested in engineering
should learn what engineers do, because these others may
become lawmakers, voters, investors, etc. who will make
decisions which affect the engineering profession. More
importantly, many of those not interested in engineering may
be relatives of students that someday consider engineering.
The advice of relatives is one of the strongest influences
on a student's choice of a career path (Van Valkenburg,
1991) .
One of the primary stumbling blocks to the
understanding of engineering by the general populous is that
although the basic sciences are taught in the K-12
curriculum, engineering is not traditionally present in the
curriculum at all.
To establish a foothold for engineering in K-12
schools, engineering educators must play a role.


34
Problem definition is the most critical step in the
problem solving process. The less defined a problem is, the
more solutions it will have. Definition, therefore, is the
process which reduces the scope of a problem, and thus the
time necessary to achieve an acceptable solution. Although
most problem solvers recognize problem definition as the
first step in the process, the actual approach those
individuals use is frequently quite different (Kepner and
Tregoe, 1965).
Kahney (1986) breaks down the data which go into the
definition of a problem into four categories. There is
information about
the initial state;
the goal state;
operators (specific actions permitted in the solution);
and operator restrictions (constraints on the actions).
Kahney goes on to clarify these groupings through comparison
to the "Towers of Hanoi" problem, shown below in its initial
state, with three differently sized rings stacked on peg "a"
as shown. The largest ring is on the bottom, the smallest
is on top, and the medium-sized ring is in the middle.
The goal state is to achieve the same configuration,
but with the rings on peg "b" instead.


128
Comprehensive models of learning style
Dunn et al. (1989) denounce the bipolar models in favor
of what they refers to as a "comprehensive model," which
serves as the basis of the Learning Style Inventory (Dunn et
al., 1985) and similar models (Hill, 1971, Keefe et al.,
1986). Dunn and her colleagues begin by approaching the
problem from a holistic perspective, identifying four broad
categories of effects on learning, each with subcategories.
These are: "a. Immediate environment (sound, heat, light,
and design); b. Own emotionality (motivation,
responsibility, persistence, and structure); c. Sociological
needs (self, pairs, teams, peers, adults and/or varied); and
d. Physical needs (perceptual preferences, time of day, food
intake, and mobility)" (Price et al., 1977).
However, when measures are defined based on the
attributes encompassed by the Learning Style Inventory
model, they generally take on the same form as the bipolar
attributes of the other models, e.g. soundquiet/sound
preferred; lightbright/low; temperaturecool/warm;
design-informal/formal. In effect, therefore, what Dunn
refers to as a comprehensive model is primarily a bipolar
model which considers a much large number of attributes.


210
activity") and saw educational benefit in it (agreement with
"The block tower activity was a good use of my lab time").
The time delay incurred due to it was seen as a drawback to
the benefit, however (agreement with "The lab was too
long").
Students are positive about cooperative learning. The
remaining significant statements all indicated positive
attitudes toward cooperative learning in general or toward
this specific experience working in a team. Agreement with
"Working in a group is better than working by myself" and
"Other members in my group helped me see things from a
different perspective" as well as disagreement with "I would
have done just as well or better individually" are a good
indicator that the cooperative learning goals were met by
this laboratory design.
By the same criteria of significance used for studying
the responses of the population to individual statements,
the groupings can be analyzed. Among the groupings, only
three measures met both standards of significanceall three
which measured group interaction: "Group Work (GW)" (3.54),
"This Team (TT)" (3.63), and "Total Group (TG)" (3.54).


162
If participants incur unwanted consequences as a result
of the research, the investigator is responsible for
corrective action if possible.
Information regarding any research participant is
considered confidential unless consent is given by the
participant. The participant must be informed if their
confidentiality is threatened by the nature of the
study.
Informed consent is obviously criticalparticipants must be
aware of any risks and breaches of confidentiality and
consent to them. In the case of the present work, any
carefully considered lesson plan should have an acceptable
outcome, so there will never be more than "minimal risk" to
the students. The other participants, the instructors
testing the methodology, are also at minimal risk.
Debriefing is significantly simpler if the consequences to
the participant are minimized. In the case of this
research, all subjects were aware of the research objectives
ahead of time. Especially in the case of the tributary area
described later in this chapter, the lesson was so different
from what students typically experience that the lesson
would appear to lack validity (known as face validity)
without prior explanation of the research being conducted.
Confidentiality is assured in this experiment through
removing the names of students from all published accounts.


265
Tributary Area Laboratory Student Evaluation
Although your name is requested for the purposes of correlation of your responses with your
performance, this information is considered confidential No one other than the instructors will view this
information with your name attached
Name:
Were you present for the tributary area laboratory? (If N, STOP NOW) Y N
Had you been introduced to the subject of tributary area prior to the activity? Y N
If yes, what level of education have you had on the subject?
(Circle the letter for all that apply)
A. I had the concept described to me.
B A sample problem was done on the board.
C I did a problem informally by myself or with a group
D. A problem was assigned for homework and graded
E. 1 had a test on it.
Please indicate your agreement or disagreement with the following statements. The scale goes from
1 to 5, with 1 indicating strong disagreement and 5 indicating strong agreement with the statement
Strongly
Strongly
Disagree
1
Disagree
Neutral
Agree
Agree
2
3
4
5
I prefer working/studying alone
We spent too much time waiting for other teams to finish their towers.
1 still dont understand tributary area.
The block tower activity helped make me alert for the rest of the lab time.
I would have done just as well or better individually
I would prefer a formal presentation of the concept of tributary area before attempting problems
It was educational to try to figure out tributary area without being told the method right away _
The block tower activity helped me start thinking about how load is distributed. _
Working in a group is better than working by myself.
My team formed a strategy before doing the block tower activity
My team formed a strategy based on the results of other teams
My teams strategy was ineffective because of the limitations of the block tower
Other members in my group helped me see things from a different perspective.
Someone else in my group helped me understand something
The block tower activity was a good use of my lab time.
The lab was too long.
Stretching exercises would have been as good as the block tower activity. _
Being asked to suggest methods for load reduction made me look more closely at the problem _
Trying to guess how live load reduction is accomplished was a waste of my time. _
We spent more time than usual in the lab, but it was worth it _
In the past, I have not enjoyed working in assigned groups. _
Figure 13 Tributary Area Laboratory Student Evaluation


228
administered was intentionally difficult to avoid range
restriction. Some questions allowed students to speculate
far beyond the descriptive statistics taught through the
lessoneven to the point of defining principles of
inferential statistics. The various concepts addressed by
the questions on the post-test are listed below. Each
concept is designated by a letter for reference in the table
of questions which follows.
Table 12 Concepts tested by the Statistics Post-Test
Key
Concept
A
Measures of central tendency
B
Limitations of measures of central tendency
C
Measures of variability
D
The magnitude of standard deviation
E
Statistical inference (predicting population
behavior from a sample of the population)
F
The effects of sample size
G
Accuracy and precision
H
Factors which affect distribution shape / skew
I
The effect of "curving" by adding a constant
J
The principle of range restriction
Note the advanced nature of some of these concepts,
which require the students not only to prove their
understanding of what was covered in the lesson, but to
extend their understanding well beyond that coverage. The


7
Such a profession requires that engineers have a lifelong
commitment to learning, which will be at their expense.
These conditions demand that engineers understand the
process of engineering and possess diverse fundamental
skills. These will be more vital than specialized skills,
since engineers will frequently work outside of their field
of specialty.
Traditionally, there has been a misalignment of the
direction industry suggests for academia and the direction
academia charts for itself ("The More Things Change," 1993).
Industry representatives generally prefer more practical
knowledge so that new hires can "hit the ground running."
Sources in academia generally criticize this approach,
citing that the more broadly trained engineer will
ultimately serve the company better. In this age when
technology and particular practices is evolving so quickly,
the needs of industry are approaching what has traditionally
been the suggestion of academia.
If the formal education of engineers becomes more
general in nature, there will be a concomitant increase in
the specialization of continuing education. This increase
in demand for continuing education can be answered partly by


55
transferred among group members via the paper. This
technique has advantagesparticipants can write down their
ideas at their own pace, and the effects of more vocal or
dominating people are minimized. For these reasons, this
method is gaining popularity in the United States (Fabian,
1990). Although this technique helps more introverted group
members participate fully, it should only be used until a
group has developed a rapport. The reason I suggest this is
as follows: speaking and hearing stimulate greater cognitive
activity than writing and reading.6 This effect may be
mitigated somewhat by achieving visual stimulation by
encouraging brainwriting participants to draw pictures in
the cells.
Electronic brainstorming
In further attempts to eliminate creative barriers,
brainstorming has recently been computerized (Gallupe et
al., 1991 and Gallupe et al., 1992). In this process,
members each sit at their own computers, but their ideas are
automatically sent to other group members. Gallupe et al.
6Research to support this claim is discussed in the
following chapter.


243
Unlike steel, concrete is adequate in strength in only one direction Concrete is very good in
compression but useless in tensioq. Engineering design is based on concrete's compressive
strength. Compressive strength, f c, refers to what concrete is capable of resisting from loads
when they are pushing on the concrete (compression). Compressive strengths for concrete are
usually in the range of 3,000 to 6,000 psi (pounds per square inch). To correct for the lack of
tension strength in concrete, high tensile strength steel is placed in the tension side of concrete.
The steel used for reinforcement usually consists of round steel bars often called rebars When this
combination occurs it is called reinforced concrete.
When civil engineers design, they obviously need to know the strength of the material that they
are using. By knowing the strength of the material that is being used and the loads (forces i.e
people, cars, furniture, wind) that will be acting on the particular member (beam, column, arch,
etc.) the engineer can pick the correct dimensions for the design.
In today's lab, two tests will be introduced to check the structural quality of concrete (find its
strength). The first test involves loading the concrete cylinder shown in the drawing until failure
This test is useful for checking the strength of the concrete that is presently being used for a
construction site. The American Concrete Institute's Code specifies that a pair of cylinders shall be
tested for each 150 yd3 of concrete or for each 5000 ft2 of surface area actually placed. This is a
quality control measure
Measurement of Compressive Strength of Concrete, f c.
6" x 12" concrete cylinder used for testing.
Possible sources of error:


LIST OF TABLES
Table page
1 Nine Categories of Thought-Starter Questions .... 53
2 Erikson's Stages of Personal and Social Development 74
3 Kohlberg's Stages of Moral Reasoning 81
4 Myers-Briggs Type Indicator Attributes 118
5 Felder and Silverman's Learning and Teaching Styles 124
6 Various Terms Used in Classifying Variables 160
7 Classification of Experience as a Continuous
Variable 198
8 Likert Scale Definition 200
9 Manipulation of Negatively Phrased Statement Scores 201
10 Tributary Area Evaluation Statements 202
11 Tributary Area Survey Statements and Groupings 203
12 Concepts tested by the Statistics Post-Test 228
13 Post-Test Concept Coverage 229
14 Survey Responses by Individual 266
15 Survey Responses by Individual: Concept Groupings 267
16 Survey Responses by Team: Raw Data Averages 268
xiv


225
by which standard deviation is calculated (standard
deviation is essentially the average distance from the
mean). Idea I is precisely the definition of mode. It is
no great surprise that students did not suggest anything
corresponding well to the median as a measure of central
tendencythe median has no meaning in a two-dimensional
problem. If the problem had been restricted to a one
dimensional problem (say strictly to distance from the
launcher) rather than a two-dimensional estimate of the
actual landing spot, students may have been more likely to
describe the median as a measure.
Decreasing observer dependence
The instructor then illustrated the effect of the
observer on measurementif the dart doesn't stick when it
lands, different observers will think the dart landed in
different places. Students asked to speculate, "How can we
more accurately determine the landing spot?" Student ideas
are listed belowin this list as in the others, redundant
ideas are not repeated, but all ideas are included.
A. Put chalk/paint on the end of the dart
B. Have one person watch very closely
C. Use a video camera to record trajectory


ENGINEERING BY DESIGN:
A METHODOLOGY FOR DESIGNING
CREATIVE ENGINEERING ACTIVITIES
By
MATTHEW WILLIAM OHLAND
A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL
OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT
OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF
DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
1996
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA LIBRARIES


198
Student evaluation
The student evaluation measured a number of things.
Initially, it was intended to assess student attitudes
toward various aspects of the laboratory. When experience
was noted as a factor in the course of the laboratory, a
means of measuring it was added to the evaluation. The
results of the student evaluation are also discussed in this
section. Agreement level for individual statements as well
as statement groupings were tested for statistical
significance.
Measurement of experience. Experience was measured as
a continuous variable by classifying the experience level
into six categories. The first category was no experience,
assigned the value of zero. This level and the others were
classified as indicated below with the associated experience
score (Exp). Experience here must be an independent
variable, because we cannot affect itit is a measurable
characteristic of each student. It can, however, affect
various dependent variables such as quiz score and survey
responses.


3
(Regional Initiatives in Science Education) ("Educational
Reform for K-12," 1995)3 and issued the working paper
mentioned above (NRC, 1993), and the ASEE issued the report
"Engineering Education for a Changing World" (ASEE, 1994) .
Support for the current reform also comes from the private
sector which, in addition to its representation in the above
groups, has offered statements and programs of its own
(Black, 1994 and McMasters, 1991).
Altogether, there are many more reports and initiatives
in support of engineering education reform than can be
mentioned here. Tobias (1992), noting the proliferation of
reports just addressing American undergraduate mathematics
and science [pre-engineering], estimates that 300 such
reports have been issued since 1983. Tobias goes on to note
the lack of impact of these reports despite the staggering
cost in dollars and time. Though Tobias' focus is on
introductory courses in undergraduate science, her
observations shed insight on the reform of engineering
education as a whole.
3Project RISE receives funding from NSF and the Howard
Hughes Medical Institute.


136
Cooperative learning methods also have significant positive
effects on the affective (attitude) domain (Johnson et al.,
1991).
There are other hallmarks of proper cooperative
learning which distinguish it from what might simply be
referred to as "group work"heterogeneity and social skills
development have also been defined (Johnson et al., 1984).
Women and minority students will be most effective if they
are not outnumbered in their team (Heller and Hollabaugh,
1992). Instructor assigned teams have much more of a
positive effect than student chosen teams on student
attitudes toward group experience (Feichtner and Davis,
1991).
Cooperative learning techniques for technical subjects
have been studied specifically in more recent years (Adams
and Hamm, 1990). A longitudinal study was recently
completed by Felder and Brent (1994) which studied the
process of cooperative education in technical courses in
higher education. Felder and Brent cite a body of research
in recent years showing the success of cooperative learning
in higher education. Rotating various functions within a
team is suggested to maintain interdependence, along with


254
Engineering By Design
a Methodology for Designing
Creative Engineering Activities
by Matthew W. Ohland
Step 1: Establish goals.
These may be general. While their success need not be measurable,
it should be easily achievable within the time alotted.
Some sample goals are given below:
To teach a particular concept
To occupy students in an entertaining, educational after school program
To educate students about engineering and its role in society
To develop creative thinking and problem solving skills
To build interpersonal and communication skills through cooperation
Step 2: Select a Focus.
If your objectives are very broad (e.g.: to educate students about engineering),
you may need a focus for the activity. In the example above, you might
decide to focus on building a bridge. This focus will provide a physical
example of the role of all the disciplines of civil engineering.
Depending on your goals, you may have a wide range of choices for a focus.
If this is the case, consider the following factors in selecting a focus:
It is easier to teach something you are interested in.
Involving current issues helps ground the problem in reality.
e g.: recycling, cost concerns, reference to local concerns
If your students have particular interests, consider them.
e g.: students in Florida might be interested in hurricanes
Do not be concerned about the details of the activity during this step; in fact,
the fewer details specified here, the more successful Step 3 will be.
Some examples of the focus of an activity might be:
The difference between mass and weight
How to approximate measurements
The concept of leverage
The concept of moment of inertia
The concept of tributary area
Analyzing failure modes of common toys


Copyright 1996
by
Matthew William Ohland


90
negative. Just as with reinforcers, it is success in
stopping the unwanted behavior which proves a consequence to
qualify as a punisher. If a selected consequence gives an
adolescent perceived status among his or her peers, the
consequence will serve as a positive reinforcer of the
unwanted behavior, rather than as a punisher.
Although punishers have been shown to be effective
(Hall et al., 1971), it is generally agreed that punishers
should only be used when attempts at reinforcing the
corresponding appropriate behavior have failed (Slavin,
1988) .
Immediacy of consequences
The time relationship of behavior and consequences is
obviously very critical. If the food pellet were delivered
to the rat in Skinner's experiment even a single minute
after pressing the bar, the rat might be doing something
else (like walking around) at the time, and the latter
behavior would be reinforced instead. It is clear that to
be most effective, consequences should follow behavior
immediately or as quickly as possible (Leach and Graves,
1973) .


87
Conditioning
Pavlov's classical conditioning theory is well known
(Pavlov, 1960). An unrelated stimulus (such as the ringing
of a bell) can be associated with a positive consequence
(the presentation of food) for a dog. As a result, the dog
can be conditioned to salivate when the bell is rung,
regardless of the presentation of food. While Pavlov's work
stimulated new directions in learning research, it has
little application here, because if the researcher continues
to ring the bell without the presentation of food, the
conditioning will be lost.
Thorndike (1932) similarly proposed the Law of Effect,
stating that actions rewarded by positive consequences are
reinforced and actions resulting in negative consequences
are discouraged.
Whereas Pavlov and Thorndike examined situations where
there was a clearly desirable stimulus involved, Skinner
established an environment where there was no clear positive
consequence, much like a child growing up in its
environment. Skinner placed rats in a box with all stimuli
controlled by the experimenter. A bar which could be
pressed by the rat was present in the box. Although the rat


152
A). Examples illustrate the concepts of stability and
instability.
Failure modes are then discussedthe yardstick is used
to demonstrate buckling, but students easily predict what
will happen when the stick is compressed. The geometry
change caused by buckling members is illustrated with the
help of the foam beam. Students also easily predict that
tensile failure will not occur in the middle of a popsicle
stick, but at the joints, as is quickly demonstrated with a
constructed truss (which has been prepared with a pre-broken
joint). Students then relate these two failure modes to the
concepts of ductile and brittle failures witnessed earlier
in the class (steel and concrete, respectively). Students
generally observe quickly that the broken joint causes an
immediate failure, but are less able to see that buckling
allows the structure to redistribute load (which they
readily witness later, as at least one bridge will
invariably experience such a buckling failure and
redistribution, enduring considerable total deformation
prior to failure).
After a brief demonstration of how the trusses will be
loaded and a discussion of the objectives and the scoring


161
researcher can vary the temperature greatly, dependent only
upon the complexity of the equipment. In educational
research, as in any research involving people, there are
limits to how different variables can be manipulated, due to
the ethical, legal, and practical considerations discussed
in the remainder of this section.
Ethical principles
In 1981, the American Psychological Association (APA)
published a list of 10 ethical principles for the conduct of
research involving human participants (Committee on
Scientific and Professional Ethics and Conduct, 1981).
Those most commonly violated by graduate students are
reviewed here (Borg and Gall, 1989):
If the participants are at more than "minimal risk,"
the investigator must clarify the obligations and
responsibilities of the researcher and of the
participants in a clear and fair prior agreement. The
investigator must receive "informed consent" from each
participant.
If deception or concealment is necessary to the
research, the investigator must determine if the
potential outcome merits the use of such techniques,
must evaluate alternate approaches, and must give
participants a true explanation as soon as possible.
After the completion of the study, participants should
be debriefed as to the nature of the study.


TABLE OF CONTENTS
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS iv
LIST OF TABLES xiv
ABSTRACT xvi
CHAPTERS
1 INTRODUCTION 1
The Reform of Engineering Education 1
Previous Reform Movements 1
Proponents of the Current Reform Movement ... 2
Context of the Current Reform 5
The demands of industry 5
Concern of a shortfall of engineers ... 9
Weaknesses in the student pipeline .... 14
Summary of Reform Objectives 18
Design Activities as a Method of Meeting Reform
Objectives 19
Traditional Laboratory Exercises 19
Capstone Design Courses 20
Design for Freshmen and Sophomores 21
Design in the K-12 Pipeline 22
Student intervention 22
Faculty intervention 25
Integration into state curricula 27
Typical Design Project Objectives 27
Dissertation Structure 29
viii


77
Piagetian principles and concepts, is also well supported by
Erikson's theory.
Considering the importance of nurturing the exploration
phase of development, this clearly supports the
implementation of such programs as Head Start (Department of
Health and Human Services, 1996), founded in 1965 by the
Federal government, which can provide a discovery
environment for children who are otherwise at an economic
disadvantage.
Industry vs. inferiority
A time of tremendous learning, this stage finds
children learning much by trial-and-error, since their
logical processes are not yet developed. It is at this
stage that the use of failure as a tool for learning must be
emphasized. Otherwise, children may focus on the failure,
which will stunt their continued learning. Since this stage
is from 6 to 12 years of age, elementary school is the time
to ensure this message is taught clearly to students.
Activities at this level should allow children to
explore false paths as rigorously as true ones, and provide
only the most basic problem structure. It is important,


158
identified by the section titles. The methodology does not
simply list these steps, but describes the process of each
and gives examples, as appropriate, to help clarify each
step's purpose and application. The methodology itself is
included as appendix B.


110
activities educationally attractive. Synthesis will
obviously rely heavily on the previous levels of thinking
skills, since the new product will be a synthesis of what
the student has already learned. Sample synthesis verbs
are: categorize, compile, compose, create, design, devise,
formulate, rewrite, and summarize.
Evaluation
Evaluation is the highest level of educational
objective identified by Bloom and his colleagues. Some have
disagreed to the ordering of these objectives, especially
with respect to the last two, but the success associated
with the application of Bloom's principles reduces the
concerns of ordering to more an issue of semantics.
Inherent in evaluation is the need for a standard or
criterion to serve as a basis for judgement. The criteria
themselves may be defined by the student. Evaluation
objectives are described by: appraise, compare, contrast,
conclude, criticize, defend, justify, interpret, support,
and validate.


79
conditions, parental influence diminishes, and peer
influence, both positive and negative, can have a
significant impact on development.
This stage continues to the end of high school, when
the final part of identity is established as students choose
career paths. If students do not establish a strong sense
of identity through this stage, they will suffer from what
Erikson terms "role confusion." The increased role of the
peer group in this stage indicates that group activities are
vital as well. Cooperative learning strategies, discussed
later in this chapter, will help focus adolescents toward
success as part of a team.
Moral Development
Although at first this seems irrelevant, especially in
an educational system so shaped by secular humanism, there
is much of moral development which affects the educational
process. Moral development will not only find impact in
ethics, which should be integral with the engineering
process, but also in the nature of "rules" and how they are
interpreted. Morals also have bearing on social


103
Educational Aims
In formulating what we are to teach, we must eventually
develop specific instructional objectives and standards by
which mastery is to be measured. Because they are so
important, instructional objectives are the first order of
instruction discussed by Slavin (1988) and others. The
process does not simply begin with instructional objectives,
however. Formulating more general goals is an important
step, and is included by Kubiszyn and Borich (1993) .
Especially since the goal stage is incorporated into the
Engineering By Design methodology in chapter 4, the early
stages of the "what to teach" process will be discussed
further here.
Goals
Goals are the most general specifications of desired
educational outcome. "To learn archery" is a goal, but in
no way describes the teaching method or the mastery level
students are expected to achieve. This is what sets goals
apart from instructional objectives. Because they are not
specific, goals have a number of interesting propertiesthey


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89
reinforcers which work for one individual will not
necessarily work for another individual. While playing in
the tub may be a reinforcer for some children, but not
particularly useful in reinforcing the behavior of a cat.
Reinforcers can be either primary or secondary.
Primary reinforcers are those which satisfy basic needs,
such as food, water, love, and security. Secondary
reinforcers are consequences which are assessed an
importance because of a relationship which has been
established to a primary reinforcer. For example, praise is
a secondary reinforcer, because it can enhance a child's
security.
Reinforcers can also be categorized as positive or
negative. Positive reinforcers are most commonpleasant
consequences to encourage good behavior. Negative
reinforcers are, on the other hand, exemptions from unwanted
responsibilities.
Punishers. Consequences intended to discourage a
specified behavior are considered punishers. These are not
the same as negative reinforcers, which reinforce good
behavior by allowing children to avoid something seen as


15
worse picture, where 95% of the American population is
scientifically illiterate (Lohmann, 1991). The K-12 system,
and sometimes the K-14 system (adding junior colleges), is
referred to as the student pipeline. Viewing engineering
education as an industry, the pipeline is the supplier of
the raw material which engineering schools turn into a
finished product, the graduate engineer. As is usually the
case, flaws in the raw material can have a significant
effect on the both the process and the end product.
These deficiencies in the K-12 pipeline are a call to
action for the engineering community. The problem must be
approached at all levels. It is critical for the future of
the engineering profession that elementary, middle, and high
school students have the scientific literacy required in
today's society. It is also essential that those students
who develop an interest in engineering be well prepared to
pursue it.
In response to the perceived drop in quality of
mathematics and science education in the student pipeline,
new standards have been introduced. The National Research
Council recently issued the National Science and Education
Standards (NRC, 1995) and the National Council of Teachers


Within-Class Grouping 115
Learning Styles 116
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) 117
The Herrmann Brain Dominance Instrument
(HBDI) 119
The Kolb Cycle and the 4MAT System 121
Felder's learning styles 124
Comprehensive models of learning style 128
Why and How to Teach to All Learning Types 130
The Non-Constant Nature of Preferences 133
Cooperative Learning 134
4 THE ENGINEERING BY DESIGN METHODOLOGY 138
Application of The Scientific Method 138
The Development of Engineering By Design 142
Establish Goals 142
Select a Focus 143
Brainstorm for Ideas 144
Evaluate Ideas 144
Figure Out the Details 148
Establish Specific 153
Improve the Activity 154
5 EVALUATION AND ASSESSMENT 159
Evaluation of Educational Systems 159
Constraints on Educational Research 159
Ethical principles 161
Legal constraints 163
Human relations 164
Effects in Research Involving People .... 165
The Hawthorne Effect 165
The John Henry Effect 166
The Pygmalion Effect 167
Demand characteristics 167
Evaluation of Engineering By Design 168
Design of a Tributary Area Activity 171
Establish goals and select a focus 172
Brainstorm for ideas 172
Evaluation of ideas 174
Figure out the details 174
Establish Specific Objectives 182
xi


14
students in the K-12 system, but less than a tenth that many
teachers and administrators.
The benefit of this kind of intervention in the K-12
educational system is two-fold. To be sure, those
interested in engineering will learn what it is and what
precollege study is appropriate to be prepared for it.
There is another important benefitengineers can help reform
the system which threatens the quality of students entering
college programs, as feared by Lohmann (1991) and others.
This concern and its remediation are discussed more
thoroughly in the section which follows.
Weaknesses in the student pipeline
Walter Massey, former Director of the National Science
Foundation, has said of the public education system (1992,
p. 52), "Somehow, over the past several decades, we have
allowed science and mathematics education to erode to the
extent that we are jeopardizing our ability to produce
skilled scientists and engineers, technical workers, and a
scientifically literate public." There seems to be
consensus regarding Massey's portrayal of the condition of
K-12 education in the United States. Some paint an even


226
D. Shoot the dart into sand/whipped cream
E. Coat the floor with carbon paper
F. Coat the dart with a sticky substance
G. Use radar/laser tracking system
Sources of error
The teams in the experimental group then brainstormed
the question, "Why is there variation in the landing spot?"
to generate the following list of possible sources of error:
A. Shooter technique
B. Aerodynamics are different for each dart
C. The dart is different each time you shoot it
D. Air currents
E. Chaos
F. Dart weight differences
G. Recoil of apparatus
H. Movement of apparatus by pulling launch string
I. Apparatus has instability in base
J. The apparatus is just a toy
K. The darts are different sizes
L. The way that the dart is loaded
Students have covered three major categories of sources of
error: the effects of experimenter inconsistency (A, H, L),
equipment accuracy (C, F, G, I, J, K), and uncontrolled
environmental conditions (B, D, E).
Measuring variation
Having identified sources of variation, students were
asked to speculate, "How should we measure how much


291
Kubiszyn, Tom and Borich, Gary, Educational Testing and
Measurement: Classroom Application and Practice, 4th Ed.,
Harper Collins, New York, 1993.
Kutscher, Ronald E., "Projection of Employment of Engineers
1990-2005," J. Engineering Ed. 83(3), July 1994, 203-208.
Lawton, J. T. and Wanska, S. K., "Advance Organizers as a
Teaching Strategy: A Reply to Barnes and Clawson," Rev.
Ed. Res. 47, 1977, 233-244.
Leach, D. M. and Graves, M., "The Effects of Immediate
Correction on Improving Seventh Grade Language Arts
Performance," in Individualizing Junior and Senior High
Instruction to Provide Special Education Within Regular
Classrooms, A. Egner, ed., University of Vermont,
Burlington, 1973.
Leake, Woodrow, "Most Likely to Succeed," ASEE Prism, April
1993, 9.
Leake, Woodrow W., "SECME Spells SUCCESS," ASEE Prism, October
1994, 13.
LeBuffe, Claire and Ellis, R. A., "Enrollments '92: Staying
the Course," ASEE Prism, June 1993, 31-33.
Likert, Renis, "A Technique for the Measurement of Attitudes,"
Archives Psych. 140, 1932.
Lohmann, Jack R., "Myths, Facts, and the Future of U.S.
Engineering and Science Education," Engineering
Education, April 1991, 365-371.
Lumsdaine, Edward and Lumsdaine, Monika, Creative Problem
Solving: Thinking Skills for a Changing World, McGraw
Hill, New York, 1995a.
Lumsdaine, Monika and Lumsdaine, Edward, "Thinking Preferences
of Engineering Students: Implications for Curriculum
Restructuring," J. Engineering Ed. 84(2), April 1995b,
193-204.


204
The "lab format" grouping measures students attitude
toward the format of the laboratory overall; "group work"
measures their general attitude toward group work; "this
team" represents a measure of the group experience they had
in the tributary area laboratory; "total group" includes all
the components of the previous two groupings; "confidence"
assesses students' perceived understanding of tributary
after the laboratory; "time/worth" is a measure of whether
or not students valued the laboratory as a whole, i.e., if
it was worth their educational time.
Case I research and the t statistic. If the population
of students as a whole truly has no opinion regarding a
particular statement, the response should be normally
distributed with a mean of 3, the neutral response. This
provides us with a hypothetical mean to conduct a t-test for
"Case I" research, which answers the question (Shavelson,
1988, p. 317), "Does a particular sample belong to a
hypothesized population?" The t statistic is the difference
between the measured average, x, and the hypothesized
population mean, fj. (in this case, 3), normalized by the
standard error (the sample standard deviation divided by the


239
c From this you may have to reduce the scope of work to fall within the budget
4. Design Drawings and Specifications
a Prepare contract plans and specifications for bidding contractors
b. Answer any questions they may have regarding the project.
5. Supervision of Construction
a. Responsible for inspection during construction
b. Certifies that the facility was built according to the plans/specs
6. Operations and Maintenance
a. Monitor the operation of the facility
b. Suggest improvements to enhance the operation
Of course, as a recent graduate, you would not be expected to perform the above tasks on
your own. You would be assigned to an engineer who would teach you "the ropes As you
gained experience, you would be given more and more responsibility.
Generally speaking, you will work a standard 40 hour week, or 8 hour/day. Civil
engineering jobs usually start early in the morning 7:30 to 8:00 a m., since that is when
construction begins. The days ends around 4:30 to 5:00 p m. One usually does not work on
weekends, unless there is a disaster. Civil engineers will almost certainly conduct field work
regularly. A lot of civil engineering involves work outside of the office Another attribute is that
since you have taken a lot of different types of engineering courses, you can work on a variety of
different types of jobs say a shopping center one month, an earth dam another and a highway
project the next. Finally, civil engineers travel a lot. Since you are involved in the construction of
a project, you must go where the work is being done. Many of our graduates travel to Saudi
Arabia, the Orient and South America.
EDUCATIONAL REQUIREMENTS
All civil engineers have attended a 4-5 year curriculum at an accredited college and
received their Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering (BSCE) degree. Many then continue on
to obtain their Master of Engineering degree. This usually takes an additional 1 to 1.5 years. If
you are really into research, you may continue on with your education and attempt to earn your
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD). This degree can take anywhere from 2 to 6 years beyond the
Master's degree. While most students finish college with their BSCE degree, remember that a
long time ago it was a big deal to have your high school diploma. Today, more and more
companies are hiring Master's degree recipients and the trend is continuing.


284
Ercolano, Vincent, "Designing Freshmen," ASEE Prism, April
1996, 20-25.
Erikson, E. H., Identity, Youth, and Crisis, Norton, New York,
1968 .
Erikson, E. H., Identity and the Life Cycle, 2 ed., Notron,
New York, 1980.
Fabian, John, Creative Thinking and Problem Solving, Lewis,
Chelsea, Michigan, 1990.
Farrington, P. A., Messimer, S. L., and Schroer, B. J.,
"Simulation and Undergraduate Engineering: The Technology-
Reinvestment Project (TRP)," Proc. 1994 Winter Simulation
Conf., IEEE, Piscataway, NJ, 1387-1393.
Feichtner, S. B. and Davis, E. A., "Why Some Groups Fail: a
Survey of Students' Experiences with Learning Groups,"
The Organizational Behavior Teaching Review 9(4), 1991,
75-88 .
Felder, Richard M., "Creativity in Engineering Education,"
Chemical Engineering Education, Summer 1988, 120-125.
Felder, Richard M., "Reaching the Second TierLearning and
Teaching Styles in College Science Education," J. Coll.
Sci. Teach. 23(5), March/April 1993, 286-290.
Felder, Richard M., "The Myth of the Superhuman Professor," J.
Engineering Ed. 83(2), April 1994, 105-110.
Felder, Richard M. and Brent, Rebecca, "Cooperative Learning
in Technical Courses: Procedures, Pitfalls, and Payoffs,"
Educational Resources Information Clearinghouse ED377038,
NSF-DUE-9354379, Washington, DC, October 1994.
Felder, Richard M. and Brent, Rebecca, Effective Teaching: A
Workshop, University of Florida, May 26-27, 1995.


206
significance and practical significance. Three factors can
contribute to statistical significance: a tight distribution
(a small value of s), a high number of samples (N) and a
large gap between the measured x and the hypothetical \i
will all yield a high value of the observed fc statistic.
Only one of these, the difference between x and p,
contributes to practical significance. For example, a study
measuring the I.Q. (in the general population, p=100) of
students may conduct a special thinking skills training
program, might measure I.Q. in a post-test to discover
x =105. Appropriate values of s or N can make the resulting
x statistically significant, but it is difficult to justify
the expense and effort of such a special program to gain
only 5 points in I.Q.the result does not have practical
significance. Unfortunately, while statistical significance
is an objective and calculated quantity, practical
significance can be the subject of disagreement.
Special notes regarding the survey data. Before
discussing the results of the evaluation, it is important to
draw attention to a number of notes regarding the table of
raw data (these notes are also included in Appendix C with


Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate School
of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy
ENGINEERING BY DESIGN:
A METHODOLOGY FOR DESIGNING
ENGINEERING DESIGN ACTIVITIES
By
Matthew William Ohland
August 1996
Chairperson: Dr. Marc I. Hoit
Major Department: Civil Engineering
There has been a great effort in recent years to effect
a significant change in engineering education. This reform
movement has had many objectives and proponents. Herein it
has been postulated and shown that properly formulated
design activities can fulfill a great many of the reform
objectives. Furthermore, it was hypothesized that it was
possible to design a methodology for creating such
activities in order to facilitate their implementation. The
crux of the Engineering By Design methodology is a framework
for collaboration of engineers and educators which combine
xvi


10
On the other hand, there are other reliable sources
which forecast no shortage of engineers at all. The Bureau
of Labor Statistics (Kutscher, 1994) indicates an increase
in engineering employment which will maintain a constant
percentage of total employment base. LeBuffe and Ellis
(1993) indicate that during the decade following the early
1980's engineering enrollment followed demographic trends.
Van Valkenburg (1991) indicates that there is great
exaggeration regarding any potential shortage, citing an
American Council on Education study which indicated that
more students anticipated study in engineering than in any
other discipline. Van Valkenburg also seems to suggest that
any oversupply of engineers will be absorbed by the
workforce, because engineering graduates are excellent
candidates for "crossover," finding employment in alternate
fields.
Since there seems to be consensus that having an
adequate supply of engineers is vital to the national
economy and it has been suggested that generating an
oversupply of engineers is an acceptable outcome, it seems
appropriate to look more closely at the factors which impact
student enrollment in engineering. Student enrollment is


123
quadrants of the Kolb cycle are taken from 4MAT (McCarthy,
1990, p. 35). Whereas Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) use
the Herrmann model as the focus of whole brain teaching
through creative problem solving, the Kolb model and the
4MAT system are also used in such a manner. Using
McCarthy's objectives, Harb and colleagues (1993) provide
lists of appropriate activities characterizing each of the
quadrants.
Stice, in reviewing the effectiveness of teaching
through the Kolb cycle (1987b), indicates that retention
increases as more of the quadrants are used, in apparent
correspondence with Dale's cone of learning (Dale, 1969, p.
107). This cone of learning, as developed and revised by
Hyland, is used by Felder and Brent (1995, p. E4) in the
Effective Teaching Workshop (Felder et al., 1992). Just as
using higher level thinking skills will help commit
information to long-term memory (Bloom et al., 1956), the
higher a student's level of active engagement while
learning, the more the student will retain.
The essence of the cone of learning concept is that
retention has been assessed for different levels of activity
in a hierarchy from passive to active. Below, the most


288
Harris, T. A. and Jacobs, H. R., "On Effective Methods to
Teach Mechanical Design," J. Engineering Ed. 84(4),
October 1995, 343-349.
Hartley, J. and Davies, I. K., "Preinstructional Strategies:
The Role of Pretests, Behavioral Objectives, Overviews,
and Advance Organizers," Rev. Ed. Res. 46, 1976, 239-266.
Healy, Tim, "Educating Engineers for Times of Rapid Change,"
Proc. ASEE/IEEE Frontiers in Education 1994, 52-55.
Heckel, Richard W., "Engineering Freshman Enrollments:
Critical and Non-Critical Factors," J. Engineering Ed.
85(1), January 1996, 15-21.
Heller, P. and Hollabaugh, M., "Teaching Problem Solving
through Cooperative Grouping. Part 2: Designing Problems
and Structuring Groups," Am. J. Phys. 60(7), 1992.
Higbee, K. L., "Recent Research on Visual Mnemonics:
Historical Roots and Educational Fruits," Rev. Ed. Res.
49, 1979, 611-629.
Hill, J., Personalized Education Programs Utilizing Cognitive
Style Mapping, Oakland Community College, Bloomfield
Hills, MI, 1971.
Hogan, R. and Emler, N. P., "Moral Development," in Social and
Personality Development, M. E. Lamb, ed., Holt, Rinehart,
and Winston, New York, 1978.
Hoit, M. I. and Ohland, M. W., "Institutionalizing Curriculum
Change: A SUCCEED Case History," Proceedings ASEE/IEEE
Frontiers In Education 25, Atlanta, November 1995, 1817-
1821.
Howard, Richard A., Carver, Curtis A., and Lane, William D.,
"Felder's Learning Styles, Bloom's Taxonomy, and the Kolb
Learning Cycle: Tying it All Together in the CS2 Course,"
ACM/SIGCSE, Philadelphia, February 1996, 227-231.
Hubband, F. L., "Design for the Future," ASEE Prism, 2(9) p.
4, May 1993.


134
studied. Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) found that
students in computer science drifted away from Herrmann's
quadrant "C" thinking. Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine also noted,
but were not surprised, that the department was devoid of
female students.
It is therefore assumed that learning and thinking
preferences can be conditioned. As a result, teaching
methods which encourage a variety of styles should increase
students ability to function in all modes of learning and
thinking, thereby producing whole-brain thinkers and
facilitating the process of life-long learning.
Cooperative Learning
One teaching method is at the heart of the creative
design process, especially in keeping with the teamwork-
oriented objectives of engineering educational reform. That
method is cooperative learning. There is a plethora of
research on the subject of cooperative learning, and
although there is some dissent, the bulk of that research
indicates a significant positive impact of the method
(Slavin, 1991).


33
the design of a creative activity itself. For now, only the
conventional stages will be discussed. Each stage will be
considered as it applies to the activity designer and to the
activity participants. The additional stages which are
included in Engineering by Design (which will only be
completed by the activity designer) will be covered in
chapter 4.
Problem Definition
"The uncreative mind can spot wrong answers, but it
takes a very creative mind to spot wrong questions." This
quote by Anthony Jay cited by Fabian (1990) is directed at
the importance of a well posed problem. Real problems
rarely are clearly defined. In creating the methodology,
this means that the activity designer must be sure to be
aware of all goals of the activity on a conscious level, so
that the design of the activity is a well-posed problem. In
the designed activity, however, it is the activity
participants who must define the problemthis is a skill
which they must practice to develop.


69
younger elementary school children are overwhelmed by parts
of the activities which children even a year or two older
are able to grasp. As a result, the youngest are typically
relegated to carrying out work (using only motor skills) as
directed by their older peers. This does not imply that the
activities are wasted on the younger children. Those
children are still learning social skills, cooperation,
teamwork, etc., while participating in a technical activity.
They are not, as are the older children, engaged in the more
advanced process of problem solving.
The concrete operational stage
This stage is characterized by a child's development of
the concepts of conservation and reversibility. In this
stage, children are able to decenter their thinking,
focusing on multiple parameters. Children can separate
themselves from their surroundings, overcoming the
egocentrism characteristic of the preoperational stage
(Slavin, 1988). Because of these advances, children develop
an increased ability to think logically (Phillips, 1975) .
This stage of development lasts from approximately age 7 to
age 11.


202
Table 10 Tributary Area Evaluation Statements
1
I prefer working/studying alone.
2
We spent too much time waiting for other teams
to finish their towers.
3
I still don't understand tributary area.
4
The block tower activity helped make me alert for the rest of lab
time.
5
I would have done just as well or better individually.
6
I would prefer a formal presentation of the concept of tributary
area before attempting problems.
7
It was educational to try to figure out tributary area without being
told the method right away.
8
The block tower activity helped me start thinking about how load is
distributed.
9
Working in a group is better than working by myself.
10
My team formed a strategy before doing the block tower activity.
11
My team formed a strategy based on the results of other teams.
12
My team's strategy was ineffective because of the limitations of the
block tower.
13
Other members in my group helped me see things from a different
perspective.
14
Someone else in my group helped me understand something.
15
The block tower activity was a good use of my lab time.
16
The lab was too long.
17
Stretching exercises would have been just as good as the block tower
activity.
18
Being asked to suggest methods for load reduction made me look more
closely at the problem.
19
Trying to guess how live load reduction is accomplished was a waste
of my time.
20
We spent more time than usual in the lab, but it was worth it.
21
In the past, I have not enjoyed assigned groups.


43
the conventional way of doing things, new ideas are
constrained. We cannot, however, completely abandon order,
or chaos will result. Some rules will remain, which will be
discussed later. Exactly what rules are appropriate will
depend on the method of idea generation and whether it is
done individually or in groups. Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine
(1995a) seem to have covered von Oech's "That's not Logical"
barrier (1983) in this category.
Negative thinking
This barrier is particularly serious, in that it
affects not only the negative thinker, but also influences
all those around him or her. Counted here are attitudes
which are negative in many (if not all) contextsnegativism,
sarcasm, debasing remarks, and others. Criticism is also
included here. As stated earlier, critical thinking and
discrimination are important in the next stage, but are not
conducive to idea generation.
Fgar_o£ failure
Lumsdaine and Lumsdaine (1995a) also characterize this
barrier as one of "risk-avoidance." In nature, genetic


223
post-test (described later) would be administered to all
students.
Designing Experimental and Control Groups
The physics class used for the experiment had sixteen
students. Dr. Holland divided the students into two groups,
an experimental group and a control group. The two groups
were designed to be similar with respect to the ability
level of the students. The groups were also gender-
balanced. By balancing ability and gender between the
experimental and control groups, these would not have to be
considered as factors contributing significantly to any
measured effect.
Introductory Brainstorming Activity
The brainstorming activity occupied one class period.
Students were shown the experimental apparatus, a NERF
device which launches foam darts, attached to a hinged
platform which can be adjusted to fix the launcher
continuously over a great range of launch angle. Students
were allowed to test it out for a while.


4
This forces us to question the possibility of reform.
Is the current reform movement simply to be placed on a
shelf as a testimony to the organizational inertia of
academia? What distinguishes the current effort is the
apparent paradigm shift of the National Science Foundation
(Pister, 1993). Just as the NSF was the driving force in
creating the research-driven university climate which Boyer
(1990) referred to as the "scholarship of discovery," the
NSF is also leading the engineering education community into
a new era which also encourages and financially supports
research in teaching and learning.
Another necessary proponent of any major change is the
Accreditation Board of Engineering and Technology (ABET).
Academic institutions have traditionally been concerned that
proposed changes might threaten a school's accreditation.
Recently, however, ABET has become more concerned with
quality than specific content and "bean counting" (Harris et
al., 1994, p. 71). This paradigm shift in ABET will permit
universities and colleges to be more flexible in their
approach to engineering education without the threat of
losing accreditation.


95
valuetheir value must be taught. Grades can also be a
punisher, because a student who does not achieve certain
grades may have to take courses again or not be able to
pursue desired courses or even a major. Grades also
generally do not satisfy the immediacy of consequences
principle, either. Periodic (but not necessarily
predictable) quizzes or other assessment can help.
Returning assignments quickly is also important.
The other principles find similar application in higher
education, especially in today's climate, in which such a
large percentage of the population matriculate in college.
Self-regulation is the best objective for higher education,
but students must be taught that process if they have not
learned it in the K-12 system.
Cognitive Learning Theory
There has been a great revolution in the study of
cognitive learning since World War I (Slavin, 1988) .
Concepts such as short term and long term memory are
commonly understood to the extent that they are important
here. Therefore, this section will only discuss those


192
understanding of the material by presenting it in this
manner.
The next occurrence came as a big surprise to me and to
Dr. Ellifrittwe had not yet formally introduced the concept
of tributary area, and had therefore not yet referred to it
by name, when one of the students asked, "Is what we've been
doing something like tributary area?" The question of prior
experience had arisen in the planning the laboratorywe were
both confident that the concept was not covered in any other
classes that these students would have taken, and we were
both wrong, apparently. At that point, I asked for a show
of hands as to how many students in the class had heard of
tributary area before the lab9 of 33 students, more than a
quarter of the class, raised their hands. This caused two
problems: the experience was not evenly distributed among
the groups, and it raised questions as to what effects
experience might have on the results. However, by measuring
experience as a continuous variable (assigning numerical
values to different levels of experience), it made it
possible to test if experience was a factor. This will be
discussed in detail later in this chapter.


61
Summary of Approach Chosen for Methodology
Recognizing that objective definition may be much more
nebulous than under traditional circumstances, the problem
definition stage was broken down into multiple stages. For
example, one potential objective is "to keep students
occupied after school has formally ended, preferably with
some educational pursuit." Seeking simplicity, especially
in working with in-service teachers who are likely not as
trained in problem solving techniques as engineers,
classical brainstorming was chosen during the idea
generation phase. Blocking and other barriers are not
expected to be significant, since groups are expected to be
small, comprised of 1-2 teachers/professors and 1-2
engineers.
Advantage/disadvantage listing are expected to be
sufficient in the idea selection stage. Solution
implementation is expected to be feasible by the nature of
the design objectives. Evaluation and assessment receive
special attention in an added stage.
There is one more stage which is added to Engineering
By Design: a stage which is intended to ensure that the


19
Design Activities as a Method of Meeting Reform Objectives
Design is one of the defining elements of the
engineering profession. Since World War II, however, design
has been primarily relegated to the later years of
engineering education, the first two to three years of
curriculum comprised mostly of basic mathematics and
science. This has placed a burden on prospective engineers
that they must endure what was seen as "necessary
preparation" prior to engaging in design. Many would-be
engineers have lost interest in such pursuits before
reaching the part of the curriculum which included design
(Ercolano, 1996).
Traditional Laboratory Exercises
It has long been recognized that experiments are an
excellent method by which students can achieve hands-on
experience; this is the foundation for laboratory activities
included as part of a course or as an entire course in the
high school and college curriculum. Unfortunately, such
activities have traditionally had little to do with design.


CHAPTER 1
INTRODUCTION
The Reform of Engineering Education
Previous Reform Movements
There is currently a widely recognized need for reform
of the engineering education system of the United States.
The current reform movement is the most recent of a number
of periodic evaluations of the state of engineering
education. Previous evaluations included those by the
Society for the Promotion of Engineering Education (SPEE)1
chaired by Wickenden (1930) and Hammond (1940 and 1944), by
the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE)
chaired by Grintner (1955), and by the National Research
Council (NRC)2 chaired by Haddad (1985).
1Founded in 1893, the Society for the Promotion of
Engineering Education changed its name to the American
Society for Engineering Education in 1946.
2The National Research Council is the operating agency of
the National Academy of Sciences (NAS), the National Academy
of Engineering (NAE), and the Institute of Medicine.


BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH
Matthew Ohland focused on educational research after
coming to the University of Florida under Dr. Marc Hoit. In
addition to his Ph.D. in civil engineering, he is pursuing a
graduate minor in education. Mr. Ohland has a long record of
interdisciplinary work, holding degrees in engineering (B.S.,
1989) and religion (B.A., 1989) from Swarthmore College and in
mechanical engineering (M.S., 1991) and materials engineering
(M.S., 1992) from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.
Mr. Ohland intends to continue research in engineering
education, dedicating his career to the improvement of the
profession.
301


256
Some other suggestions might be:
Give examples to start off / get common ideas out of the way.
Find something in nature which resembles your model.
Have participants draw pictures of their ideas
the imagery may lead to some very new ideas.
Write ideas on paper and pass them around, adding new twists.
Step 4: Evaluate Ideas.
Once a large number of ideas have been recorded, there is hopefully a synthesis
of those ideas which is clearly preferred by all involved. It is possible
that some research is necessary to evaluate which options are most
feasible. Once an approach has been agreed upon, proceed to Step 5.
Note that while in step 3 anyone can and should offer productive input, this step
is much more selective. In the final selection process, an instructor
intending to use the material should be involved. This instructor must
make judgements regarding the appropriateness of the material and the
feasibility of implementation in the classroom. This is true at any level of
instruction.
Step 5: Establish specific objectives.
These should be specific, observable and measurable.
Some sample objectives are given below:
Students will work in groups of 3 or 4 with all students participating
Students will construct a device which launches a ping-pong ball
Students will evaluate their work and make 3 suggestions to improve it
If given drawings of a layered structured system, students will be able to
indicate the appropriate tributary area for selected members
Students will be able to list at least 7 fields of engineering and give at
least two examples of tasks typical of each.
Step 6: Figure Out the Details.
Now specific details of the activity must be designed based on the objectives.
In doing this, consider that people in general tend to remember:
10% of what they read
20% of what they hear
30% of what they see
50% of what they both hear and see
70% of what they say
90% of what they say and do


16
of Mathematics released Curriculum and Evaluation Standards
for School Mathematics (NCTM, 1989). These standards
indicate specific objectives for each grade level. For
these standards to achieve their intended purpose of
improving the education in the pipeline, teachers must be
adequately prepared to meet the standards. Unfortunately, on
the whole, precollege faculty are not up to the task.
Numerous studies indicate that many precollege faculty are
unlikely to teach mathematics and science well due to both
insufficient education and perceived inadequacies (Lohmann,
1991 and Jones, 1992a). Engineers, especially those in
academia, must therefore work with in-service and pre
service teachers to help develop both competence and
confidence. Partnerships as described earlier as well as
appropriate courses at the college level will achieve this
aim.
Another weakness in the pipeline is the lack of
diversity. Diversity is important in engineering to achieve
the best divergent thinking as a profession, apart from any
moral considerations. The engineering student population is
predominantly comprised of white males with certain
thinking/learning preferences. The underrepresentation of


83
skills. One example of the application of this would be in
the sharing of equipment during an activity. Clear rules as
to how the equipment is to be shared should be established
ahead of time.
Conventional level
Stage 3 is the first of the conventional level, which
is very similar to Piaget's autonomous state. Acceptance is
important in this cooperative stage, and is gained by
finding those things that please others. Hogan and Emler
(1978) describe this stage as focusing on the "Golden Rule."
Since students in this stage are able to assume the
perspective of others, they can modify their behavior for
the benefit of their team, their class, the teacher, and
others. This stage is not surprisingly concomitant with the
onset of the adolescent strengthening of peer relationships
described by Erikson. The combination of this stage of
moral development and the simultaneous stage of social
development make this the most critical time to develop
teamwork skills.
Stage 4 heralds the replacement of the "rules of the
pack," which govern peer acceptance, by the rules of


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The laboratory would conclude with 15 minutes of
discussion regarding the solution to the last problem. An
outline of the lesson plan for the entire laboratory is
included in Appendix C. A 15 minute post-test would be
administered on a later date, to evaluate students' mastery
of the subjectthis quiz and the results from its
administration will be discussed later.
Establish Specific Objectives
Some of the objectives are specified directly on the
handout sheets in Appendix C, discussed in the next section.
The instructional objectives consistent with the activities
listed in the previous section are included here.
Introduction:
The instructor will describe the laboratory and
homework procedures as well as the format of this
laboratory.
The instructor will describe and illustrate the
layered nature of structural systems.
Block Tower Activity:
Student teams will begin with the same
configuration of starting blocks and, following the
rules of play, attempt to construct the tallest tower
possible before it topples.
Load Distribution Brainstorming:
Student teams will indicate on the provided
diagram how the surface area of a floor is distributed
to various supporting structural members.