Grant: Gilbert Whitaker Fund for the Improvement of Teaching
Project Title Overview of the Project
Microsoft Kinect Platform for Game and App Development for Patients with Autism
David Chesney
$10000.00
01/01/2012 - 12/31/2014
The purpose of this proposal is to create an ‘eco-system' in which students can create meaningful computer applications and games for children with autism. Students working on the game and app development are freshman- to senior-level undergraduates in the Computer Science and Engineering Division of the College of Engineering. The overall team for the project is widely collaborative, including the College of Engineering, UM Health Systems, Eastern Michigan University School of Education, and Microsoft Corporation. The underlying objective of this project is to do something meaningful and relevant for children in need, and also to have a significant educational experience while doing so.
Developing a Framework for Hands-On Collaborations between Engineering and Medical Students on Open-Ended Projects
Amy Cohn
Michelle Macy

$9700.00
05/01/2012 - 12/31/2012
We propose to develop and test-pilot a program in which small teams of engineering and medical students, an engineering faculty member, and a clinical member of the medical faculty will work together on hands-on projects within the clinician's practice. The educational goals are to: A) Provide students with improved skills for solving open-ended problems; B) Engage students in learning about the application of engineering tools to improve healthcare delivery; and C) Develop interdisciplinary communication skills between students, with a particular focus on functioning in new environments, reducing barriers caused by technical jargon, and collaborating across fields to identify relevant problems and collectively formulate solution approaches.
Scarlett Middle School Summer Program for ESL Teaching Interns and Adolescent English Language Learners
Debi Khasnabis
Catherine Reischl

$10000.00
02/01/2012 - 01/31/2013
This proposal requested funds to investigate and grow opportunities for learning for graduate students, teacher education faculty, local English as a Second Language teachers, and elementary- and middle-school English Language Learners. Building on a pilot program conducted in summer, 2011, UM faculty worked with Ann Arbor teachers to create an ESL science and social studies curriculum and assessments grounded in culturally relevant pedagogies. The program took place for 4 weeks in July, 2012 and was extended for a second summer in July 2013. Teacher education graduate students who were learning to teach ESL enacted carefully designed practices that support their learning of ESL teaching and completed a performance-based assessment used to evaluate their ability to enact high-leverage ESL teaching practices. Analyses of these efforts have led to refinement of practice-based teacher education pedagogies and have informed larger efforts to reform teacher education.
Revised Elementary French Curriculum
Lori Mc Mann
Kathleen Meyer
Lorrel Sullivan

$10000.00
10/01/2011 - 05/01/2014
The primary goals of this project are 1) to prepare for the implementation of a redesigned curriculum in the elementary French program (French 101-232), including new textbooks, 2) to enact a 2nd year curriculum that will be more easily adaptable to UM study abroad courses, 3) to incorporate newer technological trends and fully exploit the capabilities of the enhanced classrooms, and 4) to improve excellence in teaching practices in these multi-sectioned courses. At present, we are conducting a search for a new textbook for French 101, 102, 103 and another textbook for French 231 and 232, which we will implement in the Fall of 2012 and possibly pilot during a spring or summer term (2012). The steps comprising the project for which we are requesting funding are as follows:• survey students during the Winter term of 2012 to establish a point of reference to assess the effectiveness of the revised curriculum at a later date.• redesign course curriculum in the Fall 2012 and Winter 2013 terms.• restructure /reform the elementary French review course, French 103, so that it responds better to students' needs for review. • incorporate and adapt multimedia activities for each course.• offer workshops / training to instructors for the use of new materials and technology.• offer opportunities each term for cultural hands-on, interactive events (food tasting, French games, music, film, etc. ) in order to create excitement about these cultures and to build a greater community of undergraduate learners of French. • survey students again after having used new materials for at least one year to assess results and determine further improvements to be made.
Faculty Seminar on Critical Issues in the Translation Classroom
Christi Merrill
$10000.00
03/01/2012 - 02/28/2013
Christi Merrill from the Department of Comparative Literature led a collaborative seminar of 11 UM faculty, 9 of whom taught a translation course in conjunction with the Fall 2012 LSA Theme Semester on Translation (http://www.lsa.umich.edu/lsa/theme/upcoming) and expressed interest building a vibrant interdisciplinary undergraduate program in translation. Seminar participants were chosen in university-wide competition; they were asked to meet regularly over the course of the theme semester and to contribute to an online toolkit of materials to be used in the translation classroom. Whitaker funds were used to award research funds of $1000 to each seminar participant.
Longitudinal Musculoskeletal Education for Medical Students
Seetha Monrad
Lisa DiPonio

$10000.00
01/01/2012 - 12/31/2014
The goal of this project is to:1.Develop and maintain multidisciplinary, interactive musculoskeletal educational activities for 3rd and 4th year University of Michigan medical students that provide opportunities for formative assessment and feedback2. Create and administer a validated, reliable musculoskeletal skills assessment for 4th year medical students3. Increase medical students' confidence in their ability to examine and diagnose patients with musculoskeletal disorders.
Enriching Undergraduate Environmental Science Education in the Rockies
Chris Poulsen
Gregory Dick

$10000.00
05/01/2012 - 07/01/2012
Introduction to Environmental Science in the Rockies (EARTH 202) is a new interdisciplinary field course taught for the first time at the Camp Davis Rocky Mountain Field Station in Wyoming in the spring of 2011. This proposal requests support from the Gilbert Whitaker Fund for the Improvement of Teaching to broaden and enrich the curriculum and student participation in EARTH 202 through the acquisition of scientific equipment and media technology for use in team research projects and production of video logs.
Leveraging Technology to Develop Collaborative Communities of Inquiry in Social Work Education
Mary Ruffolo
Elizabeth Voshel

$10000.00
05/01/2012 - 08/31/2012
This innovative initiative will use a range of technologies to offer blended learning opportunities that combine web-based e-learning with periodic in-person class sessions to assess student attainment of professional social work practice behaviors over the course of their program. Using as a guide the Anderson (2008) model of online learning, the initiative will facilitate the development of a community of inquiry that involves students, field instructors and classroom instructors learning together, and will incorporate communication (asynchronous and synchronous), paced collaborative learning, independent development of products and structured learning resources. The innovative initiative builds on the integrative learning and e-portfolio activities already in place at the School of Social Work (SSW). Since 2004, the SSW has piloted optional courses that involved developing e-portfolios focusing on integrative learning (combining classroom learning and field internship learning). In the preliminary evaluations of these courses, it is clear that students who engage in developing e-portfolios that integrate classroom learning with field internship learning are better able to articulate what skills they have demonstrated and how these skills will continue to be enhanced in their emerging professional career. Instructors can view artifacts that students have developed in their portfolios to assess the degree to which students have met core professional practice behaviors. To date, this pilot work has been limited to approximately 60 students a year. The mechanism to assess demonstration of professional practice behaviors and to link these to student-centered outcomes-based program assessments has not been adequately developed yet. The current format for integrative learning requires significant instructor feedback and peer interactions. With the emergence of a range of technologies that can help bring to scale integrative learning and outcome based assessments, the SSW in this proposal is seeking to develop web-based learning tools to help us expand our pilot work and bring integrative learning methods using e-portfolios to scale. To meet this demand, we want to develop and evaluate a blended learning program that guides students through the process of portfolio development using technology to support this initiative. We need to adapt our current classroom-based portfolio pedagogy to a model that leverages new technologies and expands the activities, contexts, and processes in which students engage. Students in the MSW program spend more time out of the classroom than in one, and would benefit from technological tools that allow them to capture learning in the moment and context in which it happens. This program must also facilitate the participation of instructional staff guiding students through this process, including faculty, lecturers and staff in SSW, field instructors in several hundred sites across Southeast Michigan, SSW alumni, and members of the community at large. Technological tools will allow us to connect all of the educators that guide MSW students through the program, and will allow students to connect their field and classroom experiences to each other.
Teaching Design Heuristics for Creative and Diverse Concept Generation
A. Harvey Bell, IV
$10000.00
06/01/2011 - 12/31/2012
The project will survey the students of various Engineering 100 sections to understand the specific course instruction on the students' creative engineering opportunities. The analysis of this data will allow an understanding of the techniques which best allow to students to experience creativity and develop an understanding of the students' attitude toward the creative engineering process. Importantly, the methodology which is developed by this proposal can be used for assessment of the creative learning opportunities in other engineering courses.
Assessment of Student Learning in First-Year Writing Requirement Courses
Anne Curzan
$9994.00
05/01/2011 - 05/31/2012
This project aims to develop an innovative assessment tool to measure students' achievement of the goals of first-year writing requirement (FYWR) courses. Similar assessment initiatives have often focused on final essay and course grades as a way to measure student achievement, and have aimed to standardize grading and rubrics to make the process a more efficient and effective one. This project adopts a very different approach, using the revised Directed Self-Placement as a model. The FYWR courses aim to hone students' skills at reading critically and at writing academic arguments that put their arguments in conversation with published scholarship. They also aim to develop students' meta-awareness of the rhetorical demands of different kinds of writing situations and genres as well as their awareness of their most effective writing process. Therefore, in order to measure students' achievement of these goals, any assessment tool needs to ask students both to produce written academic argument and to reflect on the reading and the writing they have produced, in terms of genre conventions and rhetorical strategies and in terms of their writing process. This project is financially modest yet pedagogically sweeping: it promises to benefit every year over 4000 undergraduates' experience in our writing classrooms and further the pedagogical development of over 80 GSIs, most of whom plan to pursue careers in education, and over 30 Lecturers.
Portable Physiology Computer Lab: Enhancing Student Learning of Physiology and Computational Modeling
Santiago Schnell
Elizabeth Rust

$10000.00
01/01/2011 - 08/31/2013
Mathematical and computational modeling, along with the recording and analysis of physiological signals using computational devices are at the forefront of the biomedical sciences. We are requesting partial support to create a Portable Physiology Computer Laboratory. This lab will be used in the Human Physiology Laboratory and Computational Systems Physiology courses. The lab will provide hands-on experience in computational modeling and analysis tools to biomedical sciences students who otherwise have limited exposure to mathematical modeling and computer science. At the start of the term, our project will assess the level of student knowledge of relevant material from previously taken traditional courses. Data will be collected to monitor student progress throughout the semester and then reassessment will occur at the end of each course. Biological concepts and models are becoming more quantitative, and biological research has become critically dependent on computational approaches. By increasing the students' knowledge of and experience with sophisticated computational modeling and analysis tools, we expect students to be better positioned to contribute to the future discoveries in biomedical research.
Michigan Learning Communities Collaborative Assessment Project
Carol Tell
$10000.00
03/01/2011 - 12/15/2012
The Michigan Learning Communities (MLCs) are nationally-recognized programs aimed at assisting students in their transition from high school to college, as well as assisting their sophomore mentors with the challenges unique to the sophomore experience. MLCs at the University of Michigan are also models of integrative learning as they seek to have high impact on student academics as well as co-curricular activities during the students' time in the programs and well beyond. The MLCs have many common goals and missions, yet each has a unique identity that appeals to a wide array of student interests. For many students, the MLCs are a key factor in choosing to come to Michigan because they help to make a large university feel much smaller and close-knit. The MLC directors have implemented individual program assessment tools but recognize the paramount importance of MLC-wide assessment in order to assess [determine] how well we are collectively achieving our goals and how we can best achieve even highter levels of success for our students. In the short term, we want to see what we are doing well and what areas we can improve on; in the longer term, we are looking to stay ahead of the curve and be innovative and dynamic as we continue to assess ever-changing student needs. This project proposes to secure financial support for a part-time researcher who can devote the staff time needed to implement this long-anticipated collaborative assessment across the MLCs. In order to create a relevant and eficient survey assessment tool, we propose that the 22-month long pilot phase involve four MLCs that form a representation of the larger community of MLCs. The development of a collaborative assessment tool will allow LSA Undergraduate Education to evaluate more accurately the overall role that MLCs play in student development and success, as well as to evaluate how both their common and unique structures work within the larger Undergraduate Education framework. Severaly integral themes that are common across our programs have already been identified by the MLC Directors. These themes will provide a foundation to begin development of an assessment tool and include: academic excellence, retention, student leadership, civic engagement, research, and internationalization. This project will also allow faculty affiliated with MLCs to take eveidnce-based practices regarding high-impast pedagogical approaches back to their respective home units.
The School of Kinesiology Curriculum Reform Project
Patricia VanVolkinburg
$9940.00
01/01/2011 - 04/30/2013
The Curriculum Analysis Project will examine two of the four undergraduate majors in the School of Kinesiology (movement science and sport management) along with the discussion about adding a fifth major. Over the past five years the school has grown tremendously. In addition, several new tenure-line and tenured faculty have been hired in each academic area. As is normal, some faculty have been lost due to retirement (2011) and family relocation. The sizable increase in enrollment in both majors requires that we examine how best to meet the academic needs of our students. In the end, we hope to have answered a few key questions including: • Given the increased enrollment of these programs, how well are we preparing lower-division students for upper level coursework? • Additionally, how well are we preparing upper division students for future careers or graduate study? • How can we best maximize the learning of critical knowledge and skills needed for graduates to work in a global environment? • How will the inclusion of a new major meet the needs of current studnets and new students?
Evaluation of a New Core Curriculum for SNRE’s Interdisciplinary Professional Masters Program
David Allan
$8350.00
01/01/2010 - 10/01/2011
SNRE seeks support from the Gilbert Whitaker Fund to undertake an evaluation, with assistance from CRLT, of its recently instituted core curriculum. With CRLT's assistance, we seek to (1) facilitate faculty discussions about the SNRE core curriculum including desired outcomes, course learning goals, and ways to improve; (2) collect data using surveys and focus groups to evaluate the whether the core is, overall, meeting its objectives and how individual courses are meeting course-specific learning goals; (3) facilitate a faculty-wide discussion through a working meeting or a retreat to discuss implications of information gained through the above process; and (4) develop an evaluation process to assist SNRE in the evaluation of student experience in the core on an on-going basis.
Practice-Centered Curriculum Research and Development for Graduate Health Information
Judith Calhoun
Kai Zheng

$10000.00
05/01/2009 - 04/30/2010
The current climate for healthcare reform, combined with the new administration's determination to aggressively promote the adoption of HIT, has created the need for skilled individuals who are capable of planning, implementing, managing, and integrating clinical and administrative information, technologies, and systems in health care organizations. However, the School of Public Health Department of Health Management and Policy has not yet incorporated HIT into its core curriculum. Further, there is a paucity of prior publications addressing curriculum planning related to profession-based skill development in HIT, and there are no known practice-centered curriculum endeavors based on market-oriented evidence in graduate-level HIT courses. The proposed project aims to address this gap.
Development of an Interdisciplinary Management and Leadership Curriculum for Medical Residents
James Cooke
$10000.00
05/01/2009 - 04/30/2010
Funding from The Gilbert Whitaker Fund for the Improvement of Teaching is requested to support the development and implementation of a unique leadership curriculum aimed at improving teaching and learning for medical residents at the University of Michigan. The project's goal is to create a comprehensive leadership curriculum with multiple learning tracks and then pilot at least two of the targeted areas during elective months within the 2010-11 academic year. Learning tracks will offer residents the opportunity for individualized training in high priority areas such as research, clinical practice, education, healthcare policy, healthcare administration, international medical practice, and the delivery of medical care to the underserved. As a first step, the planning group will create an overarching curricular plan and then involve 30 family medicine residents in the pilot testing of at least two of the targeted areas. The enhanced learning experiences will have an impact on hundreds of resident learners over time given that participation in the leadership curriculum will be required of all residents in our program. The initiative will also offer a rare opportunity for interdisciplinary collaboration among faculty in the Department of Family Medicine (DFM), Ross School of Business, and the School of Public Health, and also for innovative partnering with university professional staff. The proposed project and planning process are an important departure from both existing and traditional curricular planning practices. While the results will improve teaching and learning in the Dept. of Family Medicine, the resulting curricular framework will be relevant to other residencies at the University of Michigan and across the country.
Use and Usefulness: Assessing Learning Resources in Large Lecture Science Classes
Brian Coppola
$9885.00
09/01/2010 - 08/31/2012
We have developed and tested a new assessment survey, called "Use and Usefulness," which is both easy to administer and provides a wealth of information about how students are engaging class resources. In the proposed project, we wish to expand the scope of our study, which was developed in the organic chemistry teaching program, to include the other major introductory LSA science courses in physics, EEB, and MCDB. We hypothesize that this cross-disciplinary comparison will produce a unique profile on how introductory science classes at the University of Michigan encourage self-regulated learning practices.
Introducing Intercultural Competence Through Case Studies
Maria Dorantes
$10000.00
05/01/2009 - 04/30/2010
For intermediate Spanish, we seek to introduce the use of online case studies to have students attain higher levels of intercultural communicative competence. We feel that students will not only gain knowledge on intercultural competence at the international level, but also within their own communities. This innovation aligns with the university's educational goal for more internationalization of the curriculum. We would like to use media clips of "critical incidents, " authentic cultural scenarios that prompt reflective thinking. Outside of class students will analyze these incidents and also be asked to evaluate and reflect on a peer's response in order to prompt additional reflective growth on the world and themselves through the lens of another language and culture.
Assessing the LSA Upper-Level Writing Requirement
Anne Ruggles Gere
Naomi Silver

$10000.00
02/01/2010 - 02/01/2012
The Sweetland Writing Center plans to undertake a comprehensive analysis and assessment of the Upper-Level Writing Requirement (ULWR). To enhance the coordination and support offered to students and instructors who participate in LSA's Upper-Level Writing Requirement, we propose a multi-pronged approach that will (i) collect data on the current state of the ULWR and visions for its future; (ii) revise institutional guidelines and application materials to direct faculty proposing or renewing ULWR courses; and (iii) develop instructional materials, workshops, and other forms of faculty and GSI support to promote best practices and excellent writing instruction in all departments.
Redesigning Clinical Skill Training through Technology
Bonnie Hagerty
Michelle Aebersold

$9934.00
05/01/2009 - 04/30/2010
Project Summary: The purpose of this project is to restructure and redesign clinical laboratory teaching and learning activities for the sophomore year in the School of Nursing baccalaureate program using eLearning technologies. Goals are to increase student access to skill learning activities to improve proficiency, increase quality and safety of student clinical performance, establish consistency in teaching skills, reduce costs by reducing the number of faculty necessary for clinical skills training, promote integration of knowledge and skill learning from an evidence-based perspective, and improve student and faculty satisfaction with clinical skill training. School of Nursing faculty, Clinical Learning Center and information technology staff will review, evaluate, select, and develop educational technology that will restructure lab clinical skill teaching and learning in the sophomore year. Appropriate products will be purchased from vendors and some tools such as additional modules will be developed with an expert in instructional design. An educational program for faculty will be planned and implemented in consultation with an expert in teaching methods using new technologies. Students will have unlimited opportunities to review and learn skill development through eLearning systems, develop more proficiency in clinical skill performance prior to hospital placements, and become more responsible and accountable for their learning through self-directed experiences. The School of Nursing will benefit from reduced faculty costs, and improved utilization of hospital clinical placements with students better prepared to care safely for patients. [Project Duration]: Planning for the project implementation began in April of 2009. The revisions to the undergraduate courses N254 and N221 began in September of 2009 for N254 and mid-August 2009 for N221. The revisions that were rolled out were the complete redesign of the skills lab portion of each of those courses. The revisions to N256 rolled out in January 2010. All faculty and instructors associated with the skills lab were trained in the new format in August of 2009. [Overview of the Project]: In the first term, sophomore students enroll in two lab based courses, Assessment of Health and Illness and Health Maintenance I. In these beginning nursing courses, students learn basic skills necessary to assess the health status of individuals from infancy through old age. Emphasis is on the assessment of physical, developmental, psychosocial, cultural, and spiritual dimensions of the clients. Students learn to distinguish normal from abnormal and judge the functional abilities of the client. Key objectives address mastery of basic nursing skills necessary to provide proficient evidence-based nursing care. The following term, students enroll in Health Assessment II and Health Maintenance II. In these courses, students expand their assessment and skill repertoire, integrating content from other courses such as pharmacology and pathophysiology. Usually 14-16 students are assigned to a course section with one clinical lab instructor per section. Each instructor teaches skills through demonstration and supervision of students in their section. This results in inconsistency in teaching and evaluation of skill mastery and limits opportunities for students to practice those skills. In addition, multiple faculty are required to supervise the lab sections. Additionally, the teaching strategies have focused on traditional methods to deliver content. Our students come from a diverse background and our teaching methods need to embrace more learner-centered approaches and more multi-contextual learning environments (Giddens, 2007). [Phase One]: We reviewed, evaluated, selected and developed appropriate educational technology that will allowed us to restructure the sophomore lab learning experiences for two courses, Health Maintenance I and Health Maintenance II. These courses focus on fundamental skill development such as vital signs, medication administration, tube care, and catheterizations. By redesigning teaching and learning methods to incorporate new technologies, students: • have access to unlimited opportunities to review explanations and demonstrations through eLearning activities to better prepare them for skills practice and evaluation • learn skills from uniform content and performance expectations, and consistent teaching approaches • become more proficient in clinical skill performance prior to hospital placements, thus promoting patient safety and maximizing hospital clinical experiences • become more responsible and accountable for their learning through self-directed learning experiences • demonstrate greater satisfaction and enthusiasm for their learning. The School of Nursing has benefited from reduced instructional costs, improved utilization of hospital clinical placements, and improvement in student and faculty satisfaction.
Institutionalizing Assessment as Part of Introductory Course Reform in Physics
Timothy McKay
August Evrard

$9720.00
05/01/2010 - 08/31/2011
The Department of Physics is undertaking significant reform of all of its large introductory physics courses. These reforms include modernization of content and major changes in the structure of the classes. This Whitaker proposal seeks funds to establish a solid framework for assessment in advance of these reforms, and to utilize these assessment tools during the next two years. In the long term, we will use these tools to continuously monitor change in the effect of our courses on students, building more substantive and quantitative assessment in to the fabric of the Department's teaching.
Investigating the Efficacy of Screencasts as Learning Tools in College of Engineering Courses
Joanna Millunchick
$10000.00
09/01/2010 - 08/31/2012
University lecturing is changing as a result of increasing student populations, student diversity, and transformative technologies. One of the newest technological developments is the availability of screencasts, recordings that captures audio narration along with video images. Many instructors have adopted this approach in their courses, but we still need to take a closer look at what kind of screencasts impact student learning, and how students and instructors use those screencasts. This proposal requests funds to examine how this new learning technology is used in various settings and determine whether it impacts student learning. Specifically, we will conduct focus groups with students in classes that use screencasts and interviews with instructors to examine attitudes towards these new resources and effects of their availability on the "learning workflow." The results of these focus groups and interviews will also form the basis of more rigorous studies on their impact on student learning.
Thinking and Teaching in Global Dimensions: A Joint Proposal for A May Seminar
Douglas Northrop
Bob Bain

$10000.00
05/15/2009 - 06/04/2009
The applicants propose a May Seminar for up to 10 faculty and 12 graduate students on the topic of "Thinking and Teaching in Global Dimensions," to be held at the University of Michigan from May 18-June 4 in nine four-hour sessions (9 a.m.-1 p.m., three per week). The Seminar is conceived as a training site in global and world history, a relatively new field for both research and teaching. There is very high demand in particular for accomplished teachers of world history at both the university and K-12 levels, but few UM faculty and graduate students have any formal training in this area. We see this seminar as a springboard for curricular reform in both History and Education—by reaching beyond the national, regional, and temporal frames that shape most History classes at UM. The seminar aims to better prepare graduate students for the future teaching demands they will face, and simultaneously to work with faculty to infuse their teaching with more sensitivity to global and interregional concerns. Globalizing the curriculum also provides clear benefits and new skills to undergraduates, such as the ability to move more fluidly among and between global, national and local scales. Specific outcomes from this Seminar will include new course proposals in global history; substantial modifications to existing courses; new collaborative teaching initiatives across disciplinary lines; expanded K-12 outreach activities; and preparation of new teaching modules. These outcomes address the state of Michigan's new content expectations for world history and geography—of direct relevance to our undergraduates and graduate students pursuing careers in K-12 education—and also help Ph.D. students prepare more effectively for the new contours of an academic job market.
Sculpting Light Sculpting Space
Cynthia Pachikara
Tsz Yan Ng

$10000.00
09/01/2009 - 04/30/2011
The aim of this project is to develop an interdisciplinary light-based studio pedagogy that would serve students in both Art + Design (A&D) and Architecture (TCAUP). The project aims to explore the collision of the physical behavior of projected light with architectural drawing conventions that employ projective logics. Additionally, the ambition is to treat light as medium and event. In so doing, the project intends to cultivate teaching methods that challenge normative ideas of architecture and installation art as static forms, and instead, nurture the idea of product-as-process. This grant would assist in conceiving innovative teaching methods that nurture real scale light play in the studio context and promote creative production of illuminated, inhabitable environments. This project would expand the knowledge base and help to improve the teaching approaches of Cynthia Pachikara (A&D, TCAUP) and Tsz Yan Ng (TCAUP) who would use the funds to collaborate on curricular development.
Interdisciplinary Design Education Strategies
Papalambros Panos
Richard Gonzalez
Shanna Daly

$10000.00
06/01/2009 - 04/30/2010
Designing products, systems, or services offers students a unique way to explore the disciplinary knowledge accumulated in their chosen curriculum in a hands-on manner, representative of the problems they will face in their chosen careers. In engineering, application of technical knowledge through design is essential; however, the ability to apply disciplinary knowledge through design is dependent on students' design skills. These include strategies to approach design tasks, decision-making, innovative thinking, dealing with ambiguity, understanding the user, interdisciplinary communication, working within constraints, evaluating alternatives, and iterating on solutions. The goals of this project are to (i) assemble and analyze qualitative data of design pedagogies from design educator, and form a collection of strategies that can be used in diverse disciplinary design education contexts; (ii) develop curricular materials to help introduce innovative educational strategies into undergraduate design curricula and experiences. Our experience over the past several years in teaching the courses Analytical Product Design (ME455, DESCI 501, ARTDES 300) and Design Process Models (PSYCH 541, DESCI 502, ARTDES 350) have encouraged us to pursue a more systematic documentation of practices across campus, and a codification suitable for curricular implementation, not only in the above courses but in several other courses, including mainstream core classes (e.g., ME 250, 350, 450 and MDE 350). The faculty team associated with the Design Science (DESCI) Program provides a natural vehicle for curricular dissemination.