Institute for Scholarship on Engineering Education (ISEE)

More Information

Enabling Engineering Student Success >>

CAEE Final Report, Section 5.0 contains details about ISEE

Summer Summit Sample Schedule >>

Outline of a typical week-long Summer Summit

ISEE Scholars at FIE >>

Work presented by Scholars as part of the concluding Leadership Summit at two FIE Conferences

ISEE Model >>

Description in a Research Brief and ASEE paper

ISEE Scholars (2004-2007) >>

Three cycles of the year-long Institute for Scholarship on Engineering Education involved a diverse group of 49 Institute Scholars in engineering education-related research while developing models to support similar efforts in the future.

Research Objectives

  • Expand the engineering education research community on CAEE campuses and nationally.
  • Formulate principles and develop models for building and sustaining the engineering education research community.
  • Investigate the pathways of scholars into the field of engineering education research.

Three Institutes for Scholarship on Engineering Education

Each Institute was designed with a different theme. The individual projects for the 2004–2005 Institute (hosted by the University of Washington) focused primarily on classroom changes under the broad theme of “classroom as lab.” For the 2005–2006 Institute (hosted by Stanford University) Scholars worked on projects that targeted impact on engineering education at their campus (i.e., a theme of “campus as lab”). The focus of the 2006–2007 Institute (hosted by Howard University) was “nation as lab” with the theme “Advancing Engineering Education Research to Meet the Needs of the 21st Century.”

The ISEE cycle consisted of five main phases:

  1. design and/or adaptation of the Institute model for the current cycle,
  2. recruiting Scholars for each year’s Institute,
  3. a week-long Summer Summit launch event at the host school,
  4. implementation of various activities during the academic year to support Scholars in their studies, and
  5. a culminating Leadership Summit event that brought the Scholars together to share the results of their research projects with each other and a national audience.

The Summer Summit engaged the Scholars in the process of engineering education research and introduced many to new techniques and ideas in educational research. Activities and discussions during the Summit helped Scholars refine their research questions, decide on appropriate methodology, and form a community with their fellow Scholars and the ISEE team that could provide support during the ensuing year. A sample schedule for the week-long Summit meeting is available here.

Scholars for the first two Institutes were recruited primarily from the core CAEE campuses. The 2006-2007 Scholars were recruited through a competitive, national application process and were asked explicitly to consider issues of diversity in their projects. Posters summarizing Scholars' work were presented at Leadership Summits held as part of Special Sessions at recent FIE Conferences. Posters are available from the 2005 and 2007 Conferences.

Developing Models for Research Community Building

As part of staging the three year-long Institutes, the ISEE team also formulated principles and developed models for expanding and supporting the community of engineering education scholars. The three Institutes served as models for others interested in organizing similar community-building activities. A Research Brief and ASEE paper describing the design of the Institutes are available here.

Investigating Pathways into Engineering Education Research

The ISEE team also investigated the pathways that researchers followed into the field of engineering education research. Results from a study of thirteen engineering education researchers described two significant aspects of their pathways into the field of engineering education research: the importance of a community of practice perspective and the development of a composite identity. This study of pathways further extended the team's understanding of capacity building for engineering education research that was developed during the implementation of the three Institutes.