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The Assessment of Learning in Engineering Education: Practice and Policy

ISBN: 978-1-119-17554-4
364 pages
March 2016, Wiley-IEEE Press
The Assessment of Learning in Engineering Education: Practice and Policy (1119175542) cover image

Description

Explores how we judge engineering education in order to effectively redesign courses and programs that will prepare new engineers for various professional and academic careers

  • Shows how present approaches to assessment were shaped and what the future holds
  • Analyzes the validity of teaching and judging engineering education
  • Shows the integral role that assessment plays in curriculum design and implementation
  • Examines the sociotechnical system’s impact on engineering curricula
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Table of Contents

Preface, xiii

Acknowledgments, xv

1 Prologue 1

1.1 General Introduction: The Functions of Assessment 1

1.2 Health Warning: Ambiguities in the Use of the Term “Assessment” 6

1.3 The Assessment of Persons for the Professions 8

1.4 The Engineering Profession 10

1.5 The Development of Higher and Engineering Education as Areas of Academic Study in the 1960s 12

1.6 Assumptions About Examinations: Reliability 12

1.7 Myths Surrounding Examinations 14

1.8 The Introduction of Coursework Assessment 17

1.9 Rethinking Validity 19

1.10 Wastage (Dropout): The Predictive Value of School Examinations for Satisfactory Performance in Higher Education 20

1.11 Factors Influencing Performance in College Courses 22

1.12 Assessment: Results and Accountability 25

1.13 Assessing the Learner 26

Notes 27

References 27

2 Assessment and the Preparation of Engineers for Work 35

2.1 Engineers at Work 36

2.2 An Alternative Approach to the Education and Training of Engineers for Industry 37

2.3 Toward an Alternative Curriculum for Engineering 42

2.4 Creativity in Engineering and Design 43

2.5 Furneaux’s Study of a University’s Examinations in First-Year Mechanical Engineering: The Argument for “Objectives” 48

2.6 Discussion 51

Notes 53

References 54

3 The Development of a Multiple-Objective (Strategy) Examination and Multidimensional Assessment and Evaluation 61

3.1 The Development of an Advanced Level Examination in Engineering Science (For 17/18-Year-Old High School Students): The Assessment of Achievement and Competency 62

3.2 Skills Involved in Writing Design Proposals and Practical Laboratory Work 72

3.3 A Balanced System of Assessment 74

3.4 Pictures of the Curriculum Process 75

3.5 Multidimensional Assessment and Evaluation: A Case Study 79

3.6 Discussion 83

Notes 84

References 85

4 Categorizing the Work Done by Engineers: Implications for Assessment and Training 89

4.1 Introduction 90

4.2 A Study of Engineers at Work in a Firm in the Aircraft Industry 91

4.3 The Application of The Taxonomy of Educational Objectives to the Task Analysis of Managers in a Steel Plant 96

4.4 The Significance of Interpersonal Competence 96

4.5 A Comparative Study of British and German Production Engineers (Managers) 101

4.6 Engineering Knowledge 103

4.7 Discussion 105

Notes 105

References 107

5 Competency-Based Qualifications in the United Kingdom and United States and Other Developments 111

5.1 The Development of Competency-Based Vocational Qualifications in the United Kingdom 112

5.2 Outcomes Approaches in High Schools in the United Kingdom 115

5.3 Standards in Schools in the United States 116

5.4 Education for Capability: Capability vs. Competence 117

5.5 Ability (Assessment)-Led Curricula: The Alverno College Model 119

5.6 The Enterprise in Higher Education Initiative in the United Kingdom and the SCANS Report in the United States 122

5.7 The College Outcome Measures Program 125

5.8 Discussion 127

Notes 130

References 130

6 The Impact of Accreditation 133

6.1 ABET, European Higher Education Area (Bologna Process), and the Regulation of the Curriculum 134

6.2 Taxonomies 135

6.3 Outcomes-Based Engineering Education 142

6.4 Mastery Learning and Personalized Systems of Instruction 147

6.5 Discussion 152

References 152

7 Student Variability: The Individual, the Organization, and Evaluation 157

7.1 Introduction 158

7.2 Learning and Teaching Styles 161

7.3 Study Habits/Strategies 163

7.4 Intellectual Development 165

7.5 Critical Thinking 168

7.6 The Assessment of Development 172

7.7 The Reflective Practitioner 174

7.8 Adaptive Expertise 180

7.9 Discussion 181

Notes 182

References 183

8 Emotional Intelligence, Peer and Self-Assessment, Journals and Portfolios, and Learning-How-to-Learn 189

8.1 Introduction 190

8.2 Emotional Intelligence 191

8.3 Self- and Peer Assessment 193

8.4 Learning Journals and Portfolios 206

8.5 Learning-How-to-Learn 209

8.6 Discussion 210

Note 211

References 211

9 Experiential Learning, Interdisciplinarity, Projects, and Teamwork 217

9.1 Introduction 218

9.2 Project Work as a Vehicle for Integrated Learning and Interdisciplinarity 219

9.3 Learning to Collaborate 220

9.4 Constructive Controversy 224

9.5 Communication, Teamwork, and Collegial Impediments to the Development of Good Engineering Practice 225

9.6 The Demand for Skill in Innovation: Can It Be Taught? 227

9.7 Creativity, Teamwork, and Reflective Practice (See Also Section 2.4) 228

9.8 Can Teamwork Be Taught? 229

9.9 Discussion 235

References 236

10 Competencies 241

10.1 Introduction 242

10.2 The Iowa Studies (ISU) 244

10.3 The Outcomes Approach in Australia, Europe, and Elsewhere 246

10.4 The CDIO Initiative 247

10.5 A Standards-Based Approach to the Curriculum 248

10.6 Recent European Studies 252

10.7 Impact of Subjects (Courses) on Person-Centered Interventions 255

10.8 The Potential for Comparative Studies: Choosing Competencies 256

10.9 Expressive Outcomes 258

10.10 Discussion 259

References 260

11 “Outside” Competency 265

11.1 Introduction 266

11.2 Accidental Competencies 267

11.3 Understanding Competence at Work 269

11.4 Contextual Competence 270

11.5 A Post-Technician Cooperative Apprenticeship 272

11.6 Theories of Competence Development in Adult Life 275

11.7 Discussion 278

Notes 279

References 280

12 Assessment, Moral Purpose, and Social Responsibility 283

12.1 Introduction 283

12.2 Moral Purpose and the Power of Grading 284

12.3 From Reliability to Validity: Toward a Philosophy of Engineering Education 284

12.4 Screening the Aims of Engineering Education 285

12.5 The Role of Educational Institutions in the Preparation for Industry (the Development of Professional Skills) 287

12.6 The Role of Industry in Professional Development 289

12.7 Assessment and the Curriculum 290

12.8 Changing Patterns in the Workforce, the Structure of Higher Education 291

12.9 Lifelong Education and Credentialing 293

12.10 Conclusion 295

Notes 297

References 298

A A Quick Guide to the Changing Terminology in the Area of “Assessment” 301

A.1 Objectives and Outcomes 301

A.2 Assessment and Evaluation 307

References 308

B Extracts from the Syllabus and Notes for the Guidance of Schools for GCE Engineering Science (Advanced) 1972 Joint Matriculation Board, Manchester 311

B.1 Extract 1 (pp. 2–6) 311

B.2 Extract 2 (p. 9) 317

B.3 Extract 3 (pp. 13–16) 318

Author Index 325

Subject Index 339

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Author Information

John Heywood is a Professorial Fellow Emeritus of Trinity College Dublin, the University of Dublin. He was awarded the best research publication award of the Division for the Professions of the American Educational Research Association in 2006 for his book "Engineering Education: Research and Development in Curriculum and Instruction" published by Wiley/IEEE. He is co-author of Analysing Jobs– a study of engineers at work. His other publications include three books on Assessment in Higher Education. He is a Fellow of the American Society for Engineering Education and a Life Senior Member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers.
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Reviews

Once again, Dr. John Heywood assembles and synthesizes a vast amount of data and literature into a readable and thoughtful discussion of an important issue, assessment.  Given current debates on what should be assessed and what should be included in accreditation of engineering programs, this is a timely book that will be an invaluable resource for engineering educators and all who care about preparing effective engineers.  Dr. Heywood’s holistic approach challenges readers to reexamine their assumptions about learning, teaching, and assessment.

Dr. Susan M. Lord, Professor and Chair of Electrical Engineering, University of San Diego, San Diego CA 921102009-2010 IEEE Education Society President
Fellow, IEEE and ASEE

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