Focus areas: K-12 education in STEM disciplines (science, technology, engineering, and math)
The Engineering Education Laboratory supports the national research agenda for the new discipline of Engineering Education as described in the October 2006 edition of the Journal of Engineering Education. Some of the areas identified include Engineering Epistemologies, Engineering Learning Mechanisms, Engineering Learning Systems, Engineering Diversity and Inclusiveness, and Engineering Assessment. Primary research efforts in undergraduate education are aimed at understanding and improving the gender climate in the College of Engineering & Information Technology and determining the effectiveness of the Introduction to an Honors University (IHU) program on undergraduate student performance and retention. Research efforts in the K-12 arena focus on identifying the content necessary to prepare elementary school teachers to teach engineering in the classroom, understanding the impact of a comprehensive high school engineering program (Project Lead the Way) on the recruitment and retention of undergraduate engineering majors, developing Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) professional learning communities called STEM Academies, and determining the effectiveness of alternate teacher preparation programs specifically applied to STEM.