Teaching Engineering Design to High School Women
Dally, James W.
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There has been a pressing need to develop a program to gain an understanding of major engineering principles and an insight into various engineering careers to the students who will soon graduate from high school. this paper presents the experiences of teaching high school women during the 1991 & 1992 Summer Study in Engineering Program. The program, initiated in 1975, is designed to foster the young and intelligent high school women to find out if engineering is the right career for them in this challenging world. Teaching engineering design through a project approach is the primary focus of this program. By actually building the product, the students are exposed to the product development cycle and gain important hands on experience. The participating students are organized into groups to learn the concepts of team work and co-operative learning. They acquire entry level computer skills through the preparation of technical reports and engineering drawings. Our experiences have shown that the women students are motivated and enthusiastic in learning engineering fundamentals and developing their critical thinking skills. They experience college life through participation and gain confidence in making future decisions in their coming years of academic careers