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STEM College/University Measurement Research

 

Engineering Creativity and Propensity for Innovation Index
 

The Engineering Creativity and Propensity for Innovation Index (ECPII) measures students’ creativity and propensity for innovation in engineering.  The index was designed and tested as a consequence of ongoing conversations with engineering educators nationally and the desire to assess the role that comprehensive educational and engineering experiences have in important industrial and academic skill sets: creativity and innovation.  It is highly reliable and has been tested for content and constructs validity using Wilson’s 4 building blocks for item response theory.  The ECPII is aligned to several theoretical perspectives.  With regard to creativity theory, it is aligned to robust creativity research by Torrance, Abedi’s and Khatena’s, and Rogers’ work on innovation and entrepreneurship.  The ECPII has 6 important constructs (described below).  These constructs are closely aligned to the cited combined research on creativity and innovation and domains specific to engineering.   The index includes two important structures (outcome space): (1) A 6-point Likert type component and (2) a set of three problem sets, for which the students respond to one. The instrument was designed and tested for validitty and reliability in accordance with best practices in instrument design established by both the Educational Testing Service (ETS, 2006) and the National Council of Measurement Education (NCME, 2006) and groundbreaking work on item response theory (IRT) by Mark Wilson (2011).
Engineering Initiative: Students’ ability to take action to work within the discipline without cuing or prompting. Involves an innovative behavior benefiting creativity with regard to self-starting, proactivity, persisting to overcome difficulties in the pursuit of goals, and even contributing more than the requirement.
Engineering Inquisitiveness: Students’ level and depth of curiosity about engineering processes, how things work, and diverse problem solving approaches within and beyond the engineering discipline.
Engineering Individuality: Students’ openness and independence in thinking in engineering contexts. In this realm, openness refers to the ability to take in, process and utilize new and non-traditional information with self- efficacy and drive.
Engineering Disciplined Imagination and  Design Thinking: Students’ ability to imagine diverse problem solving approaches within the engineering discipline coupled with their ability to use diverse , forward thinking and planned engineering problem-focused design processes in the face of distractors.
Engineering Flexibility: Students’  broad-based diversity in thinking processes within and beyond the engineering mindset  in related settings. Encompasses cognitive persistence and ongoing engaged motivation in potentially adverse or unfamiliar situations.
Engineering Fluency:  Students’ depth of understanding of diverse aspects of engineering problem solving and how it relates to the broader world.
This instrument  may be used for college and university students and for community college students. For additional information related to this instrument,  please contact Dr. Gisele Ragusa at ragusa@usc.edu

 

The Engineering Global Preparedness Index
 

The Engineerng Global Preparedness Index is designed to measure engineering students’ preparenedness for global workforces. It is aligned with both the engineering education perspective and the international education perspective taking at its core.  In its present form, there are total of 30 items on the Engineering Global Preparedness Index (EGPI) with three to five response items per subscale. This item distribution and scale total is supported by the item response theory (IRT; Wilson, 2007) for  designing difficult to observe (professional skills) latent constructs, as is the case with the construct, global preparedness in engineering. The instrument was designed and tested for validity and reliability in accordance with best practices in instrument design established by both the Educational Testing Service (ETS, 2006) and the National Council of Measurement Education (NCME, 2006) and groundbreaking work on item response theory (IRT) by Mark Wilson (2011).
Subscales for the index were developed accordingly, while also aligning with sound theoretical and empirical research on global citizenry (Meyer, Sleeter, Zeichner, Park, Hoban & Sorensen, 2010; Zeichner, 2009; Ahmed, 2009; Eckhardt Doerry, 2003) and the National Academy of Engineering’s (2005) expectations for engineering global preparedness. Four important subscales are utilized as sub-constructs in the described EGPI. The subscales (or sub-constructs) of the EPGI are described as follows:
Global Engineering Ethics:  Depth of concern for people in all parts of the world; sees moral responsibility to improve life conditions through engineering problem solving and to take such actions in diverse engineering settings.
Global Engineering Efficacy:  Belief that one can make a difference through engineering problem solving; support for one’s perceived ability to engage in personal involvement in local, national, international engineering issues and activities towards achieving greater good using engneering problem solving and technologies.
Engineering Global-centrism: Valuing what is good for the global community in engineering related efforts, not just one’s own country or group; making judgements based on global needs for engineering and associated technologies, while not focusing on ethnocentric standards.
Engineering Community Connectedness: Awareness of humanity and appreciation of interrelatedness of all peoples and nations and the role that engineering can play in improving humanity, solving human problems through engineering technologies, and meeting human needs across nations.
This instrument  may be used for college and university students and for community college students. For additional information related to this instrument,  please contact Dr. Gisele Ragusa at ragusa@usc.edu

 

The College Pedagogical Practices Inventory
 

The College Pedagogical Practices Inventory (CPPI) is a multidimensional instrument that measures the usage and type of formal and informal practices used by students to support their academic experiences  in college and universities and correlates these practices with other latent constructs. There are totally 85 items on the CPII including 25 items related to students’ background and socio-demographic information. The instrument was designed and tested for validity and reliability in accordance with best practices in instrument design established by both the Educational Testing Service (ETS, 2006) and the National Council of Measurement Education (NCME, 2006) and groundbreaking work on item response theory (IRT) by Mark Wilson (2011).
The CPPI included three major scaled subsections. These are described below:
The College Self-Efficacy Inventory.  This section of inventory, (CSEI), is a 14-item, 4-point scale  designed to assess students’  college going efficacy that relate to different aspects of college life and engagement in college related tasks and activities.
College Independence and Social Capital. The subsection of the inventory, (CISC), included four 5-point sub-scales described below and was adapted from Berry and Finney (2004) research. There were totally 24 items across all sub-scales. (described below)
Communication and College Culture. A 9-item sub-scale assessing students’ perceptions of their ability to interact with peers from different cultures.
College Knowledge. A 6-item sub-scale measuring students’ perceptions of their knowledge of the college student support structures.
College Flexibility. A 2-item sub-scale assessing students’ perceptions of their ability to deal with controversial situations. 
Requisite Skills. A 7-item sub-scale measuring students’ perceptions of their academic skills.  
 
College Pedagogical Practices.  The CPP  subsection of the inventory included three 4-point subscales described below. It had 23 items across all subscales asking students to estimate an average of how often they engaged in student support services on their campus. Responses ranged from (1) never to (4) 1-4 times per week.
College Academic Support. 11-item subscale explored how often students made use of the college’s academic support services, for example, tutoring, labs, workshops and others.
College Social Support. A 5-item sub-scale asked students to estimate how often they engaged in extracurricular activities and college-based support groups.
College Resources. A 7-item sub-scale was created to understand how often students utilized campus resources such as counseling, mentoring or financial aid advising services.
This instrument  may be used for college and university students and for community college students. For additional information related to this instrument,  please contact Dr. Gisele Ragusa at ragusa@usc.edu