Challenges in K-12 engineering education: Lessons from Massachusetts

Although technology/engineering has been a part of the Massachusetts state curriculum frameworks since 2001, meaningful implementation has been slow for a number of reasons. For example, technology/engineering is considered outside the purview of the liberal-arts. Science teachers are slow to accept technology/engineering as an additional part of their responsibility. There is no place in the […]

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What is the difference between engineering and technology?

Engineering is a design process, combining knowledge of the properties of materials, models that predict how these behave, and innovative thinking, to create often-novel solutions to human needs. In contrast, it may be helpful to think of technology as the process of making things, using tools, materials, and process skills to bring into physical reality […]

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What is technology?

Technology is the knowledge or expert skill of how to make things, from the Greek words technos (art or skill) and –ology (branch of knowledge), typically through the use of tools. Typical examples of technologies include such things as baking, weaving, soldering, injection molding, welding, glass making, or semiconductor manufacturing. Technology (process/tool skills) should be […]

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What is engineering?

Engineering is the process of designing of solutions to human problems. Engineers apply ingenuity in devising novel solutions, using expert knowledge of the properties of materials and systems to model the behavior of the design. In ancient and medieval times  engineering was primarily concerned with the design of military fortifications and weapons (engines of war) from ingeniare ‘contrive, […]

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Learning Dimensions: Another way to assess

Mike Petrich and Karen Wilkinson, from the Tinkering Studio at San Francisco’s legendary Exploratorium museum, have created an alternative Learning Dimensions Framework for the assessment of student engagement in project-based learning. Students are assessed for such measures as engagement, initiative and intentionality, social scaffolding, and development of understanding. While these measures are not easy to […]

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