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Suma Rajashankar, Ph.D. Department of Electrical Engineering

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Presentation on theme: "Suma Rajashankar, Ph.D. Department of Electrical Engineering"— Presentation transcript:

1 Enhancing Engagement in STEM Classrooms via the Project Based Inquiry Learning (5E) Model
Suma Rajashankar, Ph.D. Department of Electrical Engineering Northern Illinois University

2 National STEM Crisis U.S. behind in student indicators. Foreign nationals ahead in jobs and degrees. Urban students are falling behind. Many plans exist to address this. New national STEM Initiative addresses programs and teachers.

3 Ranking of G8 countries: 10th grade math & problem solving
2000 2003 OECD Ranking 2nd 3rd 4th 6th 7th 8th Math Science Reading Problem Solving 24th 18th 14th Source: PISA, 2000, Courtesy of Cisco Systems

4 STEM Pipeline

5 Mission Statement - Association for American Universities (AAU)
Reforming the Undergraduate STEM Education The AAU Initiative The goal of the AAU Undergraduate STEM Education Initiative is to help influence change in the culture of STEM departments at AAU universities so that they will use evidence-based, student-centered, active, sustainable pedagogy in their classes, particularly at the freshman and sophomore levels.

6 AAU Report Rationale Workforce needs → Competitiveness
Desire for a scientifically-literate population New scholarship on what works in the classroom: evidence-based teaching methods Several AAU institutions are already at the forefront of improving STEM undergraduate education

7 AAU Report Problems present…
STEM completion rates not good Research universities don’t produce as many STEM majors as other colleges and universities Evidence-based teaching methods are not widely adopted. Why? Teaching (and learning) are not effectively evaluated and rewarded

8 AAU Report Degree Completion Report

9 AAU Report Areas of STEM Reform
Course Content/ Curriculum Recruitment/Retention of Women and URM Graduate Student Training Pedagogy Faculty Development Future Faculty Development (graduate student training) Institutional/State/Federal Policy Course content/curriculum K-12 Teacher Development Workforce Development Recruitment/retention of underrepresented student populations in STEM (including women and minorities) Undergraduate STEM Education Reform

10 National Report from The National Academies !!
National Academy of Sciences National Academy of Engineering Institute of Medicine National Research Council

11 National Report from The National Academies !!
SCENARIO: Fewer than 40% of students who enter college intending to major in a STEM field complete a STEM degree. CURRENTLY: ~ 300,000 bachelor and associate degrees in STEM fields annually in the U.S. FUTURE NEEDS: 1 million more STEM professionals in the next decade than the U.S. will produce at the current rate if the country is to retain its historical preeminence in science and technology. SOLUTION: Increasing retention of STEM majors from 40% to 50% would generate three-quarters of the 1 million additional STEM degrees over the next decade. “Many student who abandon STEM majors perform well in their introductory courses and would make valuable additions to the STEM workforce.” “To meet this goal, the United States will need to increase the number of students who receive undergraduate STEM degrees by about 34% annually over current rates.”

12 National Report from The National Academies !! Solution? - RETENTION!!
Retaining more students in STEM majors is the lowest-cost, fastest policy option to providing the STEM professionals This will not require expanding the number or size of introductory courses, which are constrained by space and resources at many colleges and universities.

13 RETENTION has Problems…
Reasons for students leaving STEM (Push-Pull issue): Discouraged/loss of confidence due to low grades in early years Morale is undermined by competitive STEM culture Curriculum overload, fast pace overwhelming Poor teaching by STEM faculty Inadequate advising or help with academic programs Loss of interest in STEM, i.e., turned of by “SCIENCE” Reference: “Talk about Leaving: Why undergraduates leave the STEM disciplines? – Seymour and Hewitt, 1997

14 RETENTION has Problems…(Contd.)
RECRUITMENT AND RETENTION AT THE UNDERGRADUATE LEVEL IN STEM DISCIPLINES IS AN ISSUE !! April 2013, report by NSF shows: Recruitment and retention in the first two years in STEM disciplines, specially in Physics is a problem. Many undergraduates come to college not well prepared in physics and mathematics, a problem that is partially linked to K-12 STEM teacher preparation. The freshmen physics curriculum has remained static, is often not very exciting.

15 Need for 21st Century skills, Why?
20th Century 21st Century 1 – 2 Jobs 10 – 15 Jobs Critical Thinking Across Disciplines Integration of 21st Century Skills into Subject Matter Mastery Mastery of One Field Subject Matter Number of Jobs: Teaching Model: Assessment Job Requirement: Courtesy of Dorrington Group

16 20th & 21st Century skills framework!!
20th Century Education Model 21st Century Learning Model Ref:

17 STEM tied to acquisition of 21st Century skills!

18 Relation between Engagement & Retention!

19 Student’s “Engagement” in Engineering – University of Ulster, UK Report

20 Student’s “Engagement” in Engineering – University of Ulster, UK Report (Contd.)
How many hours do students spend on their studies outside timetabled classes? Typical class contact (hours): 18 – First Year 18 – Second Year 15 – Final Year

21 Student’s “Engagement” in Engineering – University of Ulster, UK Report (Contd…)
Survey of easy to learn situations/activities!!

22 Student’s Survey Responses – University of Ulster, UK Report (Contd…)
1. Real-life assignments, engineering activities Material is more interesting when we see its relevance. Lecturers should relate lecture material using real-life examples/anecdotes. Assignments and exercises should be related to ‘real’ engineering. Company visits to see what engineering is about what jobs engineers do. Science and maths is easier to understand when we see where it is used in everyday situations.

23 Student’s Survey Responses – University of Ulster, UK Report (Contd…)
2. Lecturer attributes Like to feel that our lecturers care about us and make an effort to be helpful. Good if he/she can relate classroom material to real-life engineering problems. Humorous Classes are more interesting if the lecturer uses a variety of media, e.g. videos, software, demonstrations. Approachable, available outside class and provides good feedback on our assignments. We like a lecturer that encourages interaction and allows us to ask questions.

24 Student’s Survey Responses – University of Ulster, UK Report (Contd…)
3. Team-working Enjoyable – provided we have clear outline of what’s expected. Good if all team members contribute equally. We see the benefit of ‘team-work’ for industry. Put good students together in groups. We don’t like group work in final year. We like ‘shared experience’ of working together in small group tutorial. Makes you feel part of a team.

25 Learning Styles What is Authentic Learning?
Authentic Learning is an approach to teaching in which the students work on realistic problems participate in activities that solve real life problems create products that have real life meaning. The learning environments are multidisciplinary, similar to a real world application ( managing a city, building a house, flying an airplane, setting a budget, solving a crime).

26 Characteristics of Authentic Learning
Learning is real-world oriented Learning is often interdisciplinary. The classroom is learner centered and allows for a variety of learning styles. Students have ownership of their learning. Instruction uses hand-on approaches Learning is active and student driven. Teachers act as coaches or learning facilitators. Learning uses real-time data, which students investigate and from which they draw conclusions. Team working important aspect. Students produce a product that is directed toward a real audience.

27 Comparison of the two forms of Authentic Learning
Project-based Inquiry learning (PBIL) Core problem embedded in scenario 21st Century skills primary focus Oral and written presentations required Multidisciplinary with a focus on STEM connections 5E Instructional Strategy required Field Trips are required Project-based learning (PBL) Essential Question 21st Century skills not primary focus Presentation an option Multidisciplinary Field Trips are optional 5E instructional strategy optional

28 Engage Explore Explain Extend Evaluate 5E’s Instructional Model
The 5E model was originally proposed by the BSCS (Biological Science Curriculum Study) This Instructional model results in learning which is both ACTIVE AND COLLABORATIVE.

29 5E Learning Model Flow of Core-problem
Engage Focus Attention Stimulate Think Access prior knowledge Explore Guide students to think, plan, investigate and organize and collect information Explain Analyze the learning and deepen conceptual understanding Extend Expand Solidify Understand and apply to real-world situations Evaluate Informal and formal modalities The 5 E's is an instructional model based on the constructivist approach to learning, which says that learners build or construct new ideas on top of their old ideas. The 5 E's can be used with students of all ages, including adults. Constructivism is a learning strategy that draws on students' existing knowledge, beliefs, and skills. With a constructivist approach, students synthesize new understanding from prior learning and new information. The constructivist teacher sets up problems and monitors student exploration, guides student inquiry, and promotes new patterns of thinking. Working mostly with raw data, primary sources, and interactive material, constructivist teaching asks students to work with their own data and learn to direct their own explorations. Ultimately, students begin to think of learning as accumulated, evolving knowledge. Constructivist approaches work well with learners of all ages, including adults. Recently, two more E’s have been added to the model. Elicit was added to the Engage part which adds the important step of accessing students’ prior knowledge. This is an important part of getting kids ready to learn. And “extend” was added to the elaborate component as a way to get kids to transfer some of their knowledge into other learning opportunities. This important part is how students will ultimately connect their learning in science to the world, starting with other school subjects, and beyond that to the working world. We need to show our students how the concept or skills is practical or useful in real life. That’s why the “extend” was added. Notice that the arrows go back and forth in this model, of course indicating that learning is a cycle not a linear list of steps.

30 5E Learning Model - Planning tool for Instructors
Proposed by Roger Bybee and colleagues at Biological Sciences Curriculum Study (BSCS) This model has been used to develop many BSCS curricular materials and textbooks for biology teaching and learning as well as for aspiring k-12 teachers. This model is based on both: Conceptual change model of learning Constructivist view of learning. For the conceptual learning to occur, the learner must become aware of his/her prior ideas about a topic, become receptive to newer ideas and then learn to integrate new information encountered in a classroom into their existing conceptual framework. Finally because this model suggests that any instruction should have multiple components, it leads the instructor to design learning environments that are accessible to students in a variety of different learning styles and preferences.

31 Strategies for using the 5E Model to align teaching with learning!!
Instructor dilemmas: “I have heard about all these innovative teaching strategies being used in biology, but I just don’t know where to start to change from only lecturing” “I feel like I have all sorts of teaching tools that I have learned about, but I cannot figure out when to use which ones” Potential 5E Strategy: Design class sessions to have at least two components of the 5E model, even if you can’t hit all five in a given class meeting. Reference: Kimberly Tanner, CBE Life Science Education, (3), p Start small, for example by adding an Engage activity where students write and think about what they already know before the lecture. It can take as little as 2–3 minutes. If you'd like to give them a chance to Explore these ideas with their colleagues, try using a think-pair-share (Smith et al., 2009 ; Tanner, 2009 ) for 3–5 minutes. Alternatively, ask students to write down the “muddiest point” or “most confusing point” during your lecture and have students hand that in as an Evaluation exit ticket at the end of class. In large classes that number in the hundreds, reading even 10% of these “muddiest point” Evaluations can give you insights into where and how to start the next class most usefully. For many instructors, the first step in applying the 5E model is to add any one other component to their classroom plan in addition to using the lecture to Explain.

32 Strategies for using the 5E Model to align teaching with learning (Contd.)!!
Instructor dilemmas: “I don’t have time to connect the biology I teach to real life. I have too much to cover to do that and its not needed – majors are already inherently interested in the biology I am teaching” “What I'm about to tell students is not something they're going to have any prior experience with, so it doesn't make sense to ask students to think about what they know before I start lecturing.” Potential 5E Strategy: Start your class session with something that engages students and/or elicits their prior knowledge. Reference: Kimberly Tanner, CBE Life Science Education, (3), p Based on what is known about learning, engaging students is essential for good results and it can take as little as 5 minutes. While majors and nonmajors may have different career goals in relationship to biology, they are all still humans who need to see the rationale for and relevance of the material at hand, as captured in the ever-present refrain of “Why do I need to know this?!?” Engaging students can be as simple as asking them what they already know about the day's topic before you start; this strategy has the bonus of revealing what students already know (Allen and Tanner, 2002 ). Asking students to evaluate a challenge statement—a statement based on a common misconception—can be useful for getting students to realize that they still have things to learn. Additionally, Engage activities can include brief demonstrations, personal stories, a current events story, and/or a video clip or television advertisement pertinent to the biological topic at hand, as well as a problem scenario or assessment question. Finally, the Engage activity for a new unit or topic can come at the end of the previous class session, especially if you are trying to find out what students already know, or in the form of a homework assignment that challenges them to find a news report relevant to the next class topic.

33 Strategies for using the 5E Model in Engineering!!
This 5E model is a wonderful tool that could be integrated within any existing course delivery in engineering at the freshman and the sophomore levels. The 5Es provide the framework for utilizing everyday engineering examples to progress around the learning cycle. In this process, students are engaged by demonstration of an everyday example. Reference: E.A. Patterson, European Journal of Engineering Education, 36(3), 2011, p

34 Everyday Examples in Engineering E3
5E Model embedded!! VIBRATING RULER For Junior Dynamics Topic: Free and Forced Vibration Activity: Clamp one end on the bench and flick the free end of the ruler so that it vibrates. Slide it onto the bench so that the pitch of the noise changes the frequency will go up. Show the students how to equate kinetic and strainenergy to find the natural frequency. Ask students to repeat the analysis for a whip aerial with a ball on the tip.

35 Engage Engineering !!

36 What is ENGAGE?
Extension Services Project funded by the National Science Foundation The overarching goal of ENGAGE is to increase the capacity of engineering schools to retain undergraduate students by facilitating the implementation of three research-based strategies to improve student day-to-day classroom and educational experience. The ENGAGE project team and participating Engineering Schools work together to improve student day-to-day classroom and educational experience, and to increase engineering schools' capacity to retain undergraduate students.

37 What is ENGAGE? (Contd.) As a result of the project, engineering schools are expected to: Integrate Everyday Examples in Engineering (E3s) into selected ENGAGE targeted courses Identify students with weak spatial skills and effectively support student spatial visualization skill development Effectively build and support faculty knowledge and skill to better engage and interact with students inside and outside of the classroom Establish processes to sustain project efforts

38 ENGAGE Schools!! 70 schools are currently participating in this program

39 Mini-grant Opportunities in ENGAGE !!

40 Conclusion In order to increase the recruitment and retention of students in the STEM disciplines, 21st century skills must be incorporated. Retention in STEM disciplines will increase if students are “Engaged” To enhance Engagement, 5E Instructional strategy needs to be implemented 5E Learning model is centered around active learning which eventually leads to greater engagement in the STEM discipline resulting in higher retention rates. All lesson plans for Everyday Examples in Engineering (E3) from ENGAGE program are prepared using the principle of the 5E’s All E3 lesson plans, solutions and topics are listed by course area in:

41 Questions?


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