The study summarized in this paper extends the previous work of the authors that attempted to determine whether capstone engineering courses have an effect on readiness for self-directed learning. The previous study suffered from a poor participation rate and several other potential problems. A new experimental design eliminated these problems. Pre-test and post-test data were collected in two sections of a capstone course in Mechanical Engineering. Results show no statistically significant change in the average pre-test and post-test scores; however, a fraction of the students were found to experience significant increases and decreases. A regression analysis was conducted in an attempt to understand the effect of the characteristics of the students such as gender and grade point average as well as project and section; however, no statistically significant correlation between the change in SDLRS score and any of these factors were found. Interviews with instructors were also conducted and suggested that the decreases in the scores for one project were likely due to the nature of the interactions of the project mentor with the students. Implications of the results of this study for curricular design are discussed.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||11|
|Journal||ASEE Annual Conference Proceedings|
|State||Published - Oct 25 2004|
|Event||ASEE 2004 Annual Conference and Exposition, "Engineering Researchs New Heights" - Salt Lake City, UT, United States|
Duration: Jun 20 2004 → Jun 23 2004
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes