A simulation task to assess students' design process skill

  • Sims-Knight J
  • Upchurch R
  • Fortier P
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Research has shown that the quality of one's design process is an important ingredient in expertise. Assessing design process skill typically requires a performance assessment in which students are observed (either directly or by videotape) completing a design and assessed using an objective scoring system. This is impractical in course-based assessment As an alternative, we developed a computer-based simulation task, in which the student respondent "watches" a team develop a design (in this instance a software design) and makes recommendations as to how they should proceed. The specific issues assessed by the simulation were drawn from the research literature. For each issue the student is asked to describe, in words, what the team should do next and then asked to choose among alternatives that the "team" has generated. Thus, the task can be scored qualitatively and quantitatively. The paper describes the task and its uses in course-based assessment. © 2005 IEEE.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Assessment
  • Computer simulation
  • Continuous improvement
  • Course-based assessment
  • Design process
  • Engineering education
  • Learning systems
  • Simulation
  • Students
  • Systems analysis

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  • J E Sims-Knight

  • R L Upchurch

  • P Fortier

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