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The goal of these projects is to develop tools to support the collaborative activities of undergraduate engineering students. In collaboration with faculty and students in the College of Engineering, we are conducting a design based project to design and study tools that provide the students with the ability to create shared representations during their collaborative activity, and tools to support Teaching Assistants in Implementing Collaborative Learning. 

The first study (CSTEPS 1) focuses on understanding the current practices in introductory engineering courses, and developing collaborative software to be used on multi-touch tables or tablets. Additionally, tools to allow the Teaching Assistant to manage the technology were designed and tested. 

The second study (CSTEPS 2) focuses on the collaborative practices of students, using data analytics to map the log files from the use of software created in CSTEPS 1, to the interaction behaviors of groups. This data will be use to provide live prompts to TAs and students in order to help them learn how to engage in productive collaborations. 

Funding Sources

CSTEPS 1 is funded by the National Science Foundation’s Cyberlearning and Future Learning Technologies Program (Award Number: 1441149).

CSTEPS 2 is funded by the National Science Foundation’s Cyberlearning and Future Learning Technologies Program (Award Number: 1628976).​ 

Shehab, S., & Mercier, E. (2017). Designing engineering tasks for collaborative problem solving. In B. K. Smith, M. Borge, E. Mercier, & K. Y. Lim (Eds.), Making a Difference—Prioritizing Equity and Access in CSCL: The 12th International Conference on Computer Supported Collaborative Learning. Philadelphia: The International Society of the Learning Sciences.

Mercier, E., Ferguson, L., Kessler, M., & Shehab, S. (2016, April) The Emergence of Collaborative Practices during a Month of Engineering Problem Solving Activities. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, Washington, DC.

Mercier, E.M., Shehab, S.,Sun, J. & Capell, N. (2015) The development of collaborative practices in introductory engineering courses. To appear in the proceedings of CSCL 2015.

Research for improving education looks at TAM students

MechSE  |  6.12.15

C&I professors to collaborate on NSF-funded grant

College of Education  |  9.20.16



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