Characterizing design learning: A mixed-methods study of engineering designers' use of language

Cynthia J. Atman, Deborah Kilgore, Ann Mckenna

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

147 Scopus citations

Abstract

Using multiple quantitative and qualitative methods to examine engineering design learning, we found that students taking a course in engineering design and/or studying engineering for four years acquired engineering design language that is common to a larger community of practice as well as common to their own programs and institutions of higher learning. The study also suggests that engineering design language shapes the knowledge that students have about engineering design. Finally, students did not always put their design knowledge into practice, suggesting the need for educational improvements and research to bridge this gap.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)309-326
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Engineering Education
Volume97
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 2008
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Academic pathways study
  • Adaptive expertise
  • Engineering design

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Engineering(all)

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