Date of Award

Fall 2022

Document Type

Open Access Dissertation

Department

Educational Studies

First Advisor

Ismahan Arslan-Ari

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to evaluate the academic impact of a technology-based instructional module for content vocabulary instruction in the Project Lead the Way (PLTW) Introduction to Engineering course. The goal of the study was to answer two key questions: 1) How does implementing a technology-based instructional module impact Engineering vocabulary academic gains for students taking the Introduction to Engineering course? and 2) What is the effect of implementing a technology-based instructional model on attitudes towards learning Engineering vocabulary for students taking the Introduction to Engineering course? This study was conducted with Introduction to Engineering students (N=23) during the second semester of a year-long course. Students were instructed during this module through the use of various computer-based learning platforms, providing both imagery and text, allowing for at-will access and review, and creating varied forms of practice.

Data were collected through pre- and posttests, focus group interviews, and surveys. Data were analyzed through paired t-test and inductive analysis. Quantitative analysis revealed significant growth from pre- to post-assessment for engineering vocabulary academic gains. Qualitative analysis revealed increased scores and improved attitudes towards learning from pre- to post-intervention.

The findings of this study indicated that although technology-based instruction had a positive impact on academic gains, relevance of the material and the relationship with the instructor influences both academic gains and attitudes towards learning. The research has implications for future research with technology-based versus traditional instruction and reevaluation with students who are more than one-year post-Covid virtual learning.

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