2019 FYEE Conference

Implement Hands-on Activity for Statics Course into Student Success Program

Presented at M3A: Learning in Context 1


This is an Abstract for a full paper. The University of Wisconsin-Platteville (UWP) has been educating engineers for more than 150 years, earning a national reputation as a prestigious institution. The College of Engineering Math and Science Student Success Programs (EMS SSP) plays a crucial role in helping students become the next generation of successful engineers. The mission of this program is to equip students for academic success by providing innovative learning strategies and to encourage students to connect with campus resources and to each other.

In EMS SSP program, there are three Living Learning Communities (LLC) for students pursing a degree in STEM fields. The Explore EMS LLC is available to all incoming freshman within the College of EMS. The Women in STEM LLC has two options available, one for incoming freshmen and one for sophomore and transfer students.

In this proposed project, a faculty from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering and people from EMS SSP programs will work as a team to integrate some fundamental engineering hands-on activities related to statics course into Women in STEM LLC.

Statics is the first course taken by students from the fundamental engineering courses. It will be a beneficial practice to implement some hands-on activities based on some fundamental principles of mechanics into the LLC programming. These hands-on activities will allow students to engage and explore the subject they will study in the near future. It will also be another beneficial opportunity to develop connections and networking between students and faculty members.

We have developed five hands-on activities based on Engineering Mechanics – Statics courses and will implement one activity of “Adding Forces – Resultants and Equilibrium” into the Women in STEM LLC on February and March 2019.
“Adding Forces – Resultants and Equilibrium” will be integrated into several groups with total 50 students. Using the kits acquired students are asked to work with a set of experiments in a small group with 2 or 3 students. There were total 18 groups’ students and we will do this activity outside the lecture time. After this activity, we will do survey with 5 questions and will discuss the students’ feedback in this proposed project.

Through these activities at the LLC for first-year engineering students, it will provide a bridge between the formal academic program and out-of-classroom learning of students. It will also promote personal and intellectual growth and development of students through contact with members of faculty. In addition, it will provide a transition between classroom and residence hall life leading into higher student retention, satisfaction, and success.

  1. Prof. Xiaohong Wang University of Wisconsin, Platteville [biography]
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