The impact of design swapping on student design sketch quality

Shawn Jordan, Nielsen Pereira, Odesma Dalrymple

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


This study seeks to explore the implementation of design swapping to encourage students to document their designs. Design swapping involves having teams swap design sketches shortly after a design review such that they construct another team's design. Teams are incentivized to document their designs through sketches because other teams build their designs. This study seeks to investigate the effects of the timing of notification of students on the overall quality of design sketches in the setting of an engineering summer camp for middle and high school students and student perceptions of the design swapping activity. Data sources included design sketches, design sketch quality scores, and individual reflective survey question responses. A total of 136 middle and high school students participated in the study, split across 39 teams at 8 different sites. Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics, repeated measuresANOVAs,and thematic analyses. Results showed that students who were notified prior to a design review of an imminent design swap generated higher-quality design sketches than those who were not notified or notified after a design review. Some participants saw design swapping as a positive opportunity for growth and real-world engineering experience, while others found it challenging. Design swapping is a viable pedagogical strategy to encourage students to generate higher-quality design sketches, and provides students with a surrogate client in the absence of a real client.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1984-1998
Number of pages15
JournalInternational Journal of Engineering Education
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2016


  • Design quality
  • Design sketches
  • Pre-college design
  • STEM
  • Swapping sketches

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Engineering(all)


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