Engineering Online Gateway System Ensuring And Evaluating Student Learning Through Automated, Milestone Exams

Marcial Lapp, Jeffrey Ringenberg, T. Jeff Fleszar
2010 Annual Conference & Exposition Proceedings   unpublished
Many engineering courses use a sequential teaching strategy by which new material builds on concepts previously presented. While such a strategy lends itself to a natural presentation of course concepts, students who do not have a solid grasp of the initial material often fall behind and continue to struggle through the remainder of the course. To combat the problem of the "struggling student", we present a computer-based examination system that can be used at various times throughout the
more » ... er to ensure students have grasped the vital concepts of the course up to that particular point. This examination system can be used as a "gateway" through which all students must pass prior to taking a regular exam. Depending on the outcome of this gateway assessment, students may be required to seek help from the professor or a graduate student instructor before taking the regular exam. These help sessions focus primarily on the areas of the gateway assessment where improvement is needed as indicated by the students' gateway results. Through the development of this computer-based examination system, which can provide real-time C++ code compilation and testing, we seek to ensure adequate comprehension of the material presented in an introductory engineering/programming course. We have gathered statistically significant evidence that suggests a strong correlation between a student's performance on our automated gateway system and their upcoming exam performance. This indicates that the gateway assessment performance is indicative of overall course performance. We also present ideas for further adoption of our gateway system throughout the engineering education community.
doi:10.18260/1-2--16253 fatcat:w4vx5npugva5rnp25aeq6sakpi