Investigating the Relationships of Student Engineering Team Size and Make-up with Project Success and Team Satisfaction

Investigating the Relationships of Student Engineering Team Size and Make-up with Project Success and Team Satisfaction

Academic Year:
2014 - 2015 (June 1, 2014 through May 31, 2015)
Funding Requested:
$3,000.00
Project Dates:
-
Applicant(s):
Chair Uniqname:
Overview of the Project:
This proposal requests assistance for a learning-analytics style investigation of team performance data from the researcher's sections of a team-based, project-based course (Engineering 100) going back to 2007. The goal of the study is to investigate relationships between team make-up and resulting team performance and team satisfaction. Using team performance and satisfaction information from a variety of naturally-occurring teams (about 1200 students on 240 teams, all assigned by instructor), I would like to see whether "best practices" for team formation (avoid stranding minority and female students/ make diverse teams/ etc) are supported in this sample of first-year engineering student teams working on semester-long projects.
Proposal PDF:
Additional Supporters:
<p>Fred Terry, fredty@umich.edu</p>
Final Report Fields
Project Objectives:

In this project, I wanted to consider how individual students' demographic characteristics, and the demographic breakdown on teams, affected student scores on the peer assessments and team satisfaction.

Project Achievements:

I found that women are rated lower on perceived ability (by both men and women, but more by men), and teams with international students and/or two or more women are less happy than teams of all men or teams with one woman. I've talked with a lot of others who use teams about what these things mean for us going forward, and I'm planning to learn from the focus groups and create some team instructional materials informed by these findings.

Continuation:
Yes: I'm hoping to do some focus groups in the fall to try to get at the "why" behind some of the differences found. I'm particularly interested in the finding that teams with a stranded woman are more satisfied than teams with 2 or more women. I'd like to understand why (and how to support teams better).
Dissemination:
This set of findings was presented at poster fairs at UM in April and May 2016 (Engineering Education poster fair and Enriching Scholarship kickoff)and at ASEE 2016 in June.