FABE 810 College Teaching in Engineering

3 Credits - S/U Graded


Instructor:    R. J. Gustafson, Associate Dean, College of Engineering and

                        Professor,  Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering Dept.

Room 181A Hitchcock Hall, 2070 Neil Avenue

Phone:            614/292-0573  Off   614/848-8273 Home

Fax: 614/688-3805

e-mail:            gustafson.4@osu.edu

Office Hours:  Arranged

Class Time: Thursdays, 5:30 - 8:00 PM, Rm 104 Agr. Eng. Bldg.

Teaching Assistant:          Geraldine Arnold

                                                e-mail:  Arnold.261@osu.edu

                                                Phone: 688-9483 (Home)


                                                Course Description and Outline




Designed as initial preparation for instruction in professional engineering programs at the college level.  Focuses on skills, strategies and issues common to university teaching in general and engineering instruction more specifically.  Designed to introduce  learner to literature and research relevant to practicing teachers of engineering.




Students will be aware of, and know how to access the body of knowledge available to assist in design and implementation of teaching/learning at the college level; e.g. be knowledgeable of key organizations supporting engineering instruction like ASEE and ABET, general publications in education, and instructional resources as OSU Office for Faculty and TA Development.


Students will be aware of the curriculum issues related to engineering education specifically; e.g. accreditation requirements, laboratory development and design instruction.


Students will be able to recognize the options for types of instructional approaches to engineering materials and have understanding of their appropriate application.


Students will be able to implement both a formative and summative evaluation plan for their teaching.


Students will have developed their own philosophy of teaching statement.




March 29

1.  Introduction

- Introduction and discussion of course goals

- Historic perspectives in teaching engineering and university teaching

- Elements of a philosophy of  teaching statement

Reading: McKeachie, Chapter 1

   Chism, Chapter 1 - The Teaching Self

Assignment: Philosophy of Teaching Statement Development


April 5

2.  Course Planning and Syllabus Design; Learning Objectives

Reading: Chism, Chapter 3 - Preparing a Course

Supplemental Reading:        Grunert, The Course Syllabus, (See Ref. List.)


April 12

3.  Learning Styles; Dr. Jamie Cano, Associate Professor, Community and Human Development

- Basics of learning styles

- Practical implications for teaching engineering


Learning Styles by Jamie Cano (Unpublished Handout)

Supplemental Reading:        McKeachie, Chapter 27

Chism, Chapter 2 - How Students Learn


April 19

4.  Gateway Freshman Engineering Conference

            Students will be invited to participate in a Ohio Freshman Engineering Conference

            This conference will start Thursday evening and end Friday mid-afternoon.

            Students will be asked to participate as their schedules allow.

            Full meeting program will be handed out in at first class meeting.



5.  Lecture/Presentation in the College Environment & Cognitive Levels of Learning;  Dr. L. H. Newcomb, Associate Dean, College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences


Levels of Cognitive Learning and Their Application to Questioning Practice by L. H. Newcomb and M. K. Trefz (Unpublished Handout)

Selected Handouts on Bloom’s Taxonomy, Cognitive Levels of Learning, and Vocabulary Useful in Developing Learning Objectives by L. H. Newcomb (Unpublished Handouts)

Supplemental Reading: McKeachie, Chapter 5


May 3

6.  Teaching with Technology; Where are we going and why?: Dr. John Chovan, College of Education


May 10

7a.  Teaching Non-traditional Audiences and Students: Dr. Keith Smith, Director, Ohio State University Extension

- Characteristics of Adult Learners

- Teaching adults through outreach

- Professional and workplace presentations

Principle Readings: 

Even, M. J. 1987. “Why adults learn in different ways”, Lifelong learning 10(8):22-27.                   

Severiens, S.E. and G.T.M. TenDam. 1994. “Gender differences in learning styles: a narrative review and quantitative meta-analysis”, Higher Ed 27:487-501.

7b.  Curriculum Structure in Engineering and Teaching with Technology

Part 1 ABET and Accreditation

Reading: Criteria for Accrediting Programs in the United States,  General Criteria Section. 



May 17

8.  Teaching Design, and Laboratory Development and Management

Panel Discussion with Current Faculty (TBD)



McKeachie, Chapter 11

Wilcznski, V. and S. M. Douglas. 1995. “Integrating Design Across the Engineering Curriculum: A Report From the Trenches”,  J. Eng. Ed. July, pp. 235-239.


May 24

9a.   University Life and the New Faculty Member

University Life and The New Faculty Member, Dr. David Ashley, Dean, College of Engineering

- Nature of a University

- Expectations of Faculty

- Dealing with Promotion and Tenure Issues

- Developing a Teaching Portfolio

- Faculty governance

Reading: Sample Departmental Pattern of Administration (Handout)


9b.  Alternatives to Traditional Lecture & Humor in the Classroom

- Role Plays

- Case studies

- Simulations

- Development in distance education

- Individualized instructional development

Reading: Howell, “Introducing Cooperative Learning into a Dynamics Lecture Class”, J. of Eng. Ed., Jan 1996, p. 69-72.   


May 31 

10.  Evaluation of Student Learning and Instruction; Dr. Li Tang, Instructional Development Specialist, Office of Faculty and TA Development         

Reading: Chism, Chapter 6 - Assessing Student Performance



Course Requirements


All students are required to complete:


a.         All reading assignments, such that they can contribute to class discussion and analysis.  Brief written reaction or summarization papers may be required for selected readings. 

b.         Development of a personal philosophy of teaching statement.  Each student is to develop a teaching philosophy statement early in the course and refine it through the term.

c.         A micro teaching session.  Each student will be required to plan, prepare and teach a ten to fifteen-minute session on a topic of the student’s interest.  Audience will be 3 to 5 peers.  Both peer and instructor feedback will be given on the teaching session.

4.                  Exit interview with the instructor.  Each student will be required to schedule a 20 minute meeting with the instructor during finals week. 


Course Policies:


Absences: This is an intensive ten-week course.  Students are expected to attend each class session.  (Missing one course meeting is the equivalent of missing three one-hour classes). More than one unexcused absence will result in a grade of “unsatisfactory.”

Grading: This course is graded Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory in order to allow students to learn and experiment with teaching in a non-threatening environment.  A grade of “satisfactory” however, is certainly not automatic.  Each element will be graded on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis.  Students who do not complete all course requirements will not earn a satisfactory grade.

Audit Option: Students who elect to audit the course are expected to attend all classes and participate in class discussion and activities.  They are not required to hand in written assignments.

Academic Misconduct: Cheating or plagiarism will be reported using official University procedures.

Students with Disabilities: Course materials and exercises can be made available in alternative formats.  Please contact the instructor for further information.


Course Evaluation:


A series of evaluation tools will be used throughout the course.  Final evaluation will include University SEI and form developed by the instructor.  All will be done anonymously.  Some questions at the final student interview may be directed towards course content as well.




All students enrolling in this course for credit will receive a one-year basic student membership to the American Society of Engineering Education (ASEE).


Required Texts:


McKeachie, W.J., 1993.  Teaching Tips, D.C. Heath and Co., Lexington, MA.


Chism, N. & Associates. 1998 (5th Ed.).  Teaching at The Ohio State University: A Handbook, Faculty and TA Development, The Ohio State University.  Provided by Instructor.


Anon. 2000. Criteria for Accrediting Programs in Engineering in the United States, Engineering Accreditation Commission, Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology, Inc., Baltimore, Maryland. Provided by Instructor.  (Http://www.abet.org)


Other References:


Angelo, T.A. and K. P. Cross. 1993.  Classroom Assessment Techniques; A Handbook for College Teachers, 2nd Ed., Jossey-Bass Publishers, San Francisco, CA.


Davidson, C. I. And S. A. Ambrose. 1994. The New Professor’s Handbook, Anker Publishing Co., Inc., Boltan, MA.


Grinert, J. 1997. The Course Syllabus, A Learning-Centered Approach, Anker Publishing Co., Inc., Boltan, MA.


Menges, Robert J. 1999. Faculty in New Jobs, A Guide to Settling In, Becoming Established, and Building Institutional Support, Jossey-Bass Pub., San Francisco, CA.


Nichols, R. J., B. Amick, and M. Healy. 1994. The Value of Classroom Humor. In E. C. Wadsworth (Ed.) To Improve the Academy, 1994: Resource for Faculty, Instructional, and Organizational Development (pp. 329-343). New Forums Press, Inc., Stillwater, OK.


Nilsen, D.L.F. 1993. Humor Scholarship: A Research Bibliography. Greenwood Press, Westport, CT.


Rando, W.C. and L.F. Lenze. 1994.  Learning from Students: Early Term Feedback in Higher Education.  National Center on Postsecondary Learning and Assessment, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA.


Wankat, P.C. and F.S. Oreovicz. 1993.  Teaching Engineering, McGraw-Hill, New York. Out of print, but available at http://unitflops.ecn.purdue.edu/ChE/News/Book/