The intervention has targeted incoming students in Engineering and Computer Sciencedegrees. Participating students were selected who had a record of participation in Pre-Calculus classes in high school, but who had not demonstrated their readiness to take Calcu-lus, as measured by placement tests and existing credit. The course design uses an emporiummethod, speciﬁcally the Assessment and Learning in Knowledge Spaces (ALEKS) software,in a computer lab to deliver to students an intensive program of mathematical practice andexploration. The course design is meant to take advantage of students? existing knowledge,rewarding them for it in fact, and focus them on speciﬁc Algebra and Trigonometry topicsin which they need more practice and one-on-one instruction [1, 2]. The purpose of this activity is to accelerate the Calculus preparedness for a subset ofstudents held back due to standardized test scores and perhaps limited mastery of the prereq-uisite content. The beneﬁts are improved engineering readiness, reduced time-to-graduation,and improved performance in gatekeeper courses. To maintain student interest, and connect the problems and topics they are working indetail on, we included in the course cooperative activities with engineering problems asso-ciated with railway safety and transportation; making use of tours of existing laboratoriesand experimental apparatuses. This combination of a problem focused course, tailored toindividual student?s needs and experiences, emphasizing mastery, and then motivated bydirect connections to current engineering problems and research is providing for an impor-tant improvement in the engineering degree experience for a subset of students who wouldtraditionally be at a disadvantage in their program.References Twigg, C. A. (2011, May-June). The Math Emporium: Higher Education’s Silver Bullet. Change: The Magazine of Higher Learning. Fine, A., Duggan, M., & Braddy, L. (2009). Removing remediation requirements: Eﬀec- tiveness of intervention programs. PRIMUS, 19(5), 433?446.
First published in Proceedings of the ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition Conference. © 2015 American Society for Engineering Education.
American Society for Engineering Education
Date of publication
Pierce, Virgil U. and Kypuros, Javier A., "Utilizing an Emporium Course Design to Improve Calculus Readiness of Engineering Students" (2015). Mechanical Engineering Faculty Publications and Presentations. Paper 9.
V. Pierce and J. A. Kypuros, “Utilizing an Emporium Course Design to Improve Calculus Readiness of Engineering Students,” Proceedings of the ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition, Seattle, WA, June 14-17, 2015.