KEEN: AEE Paper Appendix

Developing an Entrepreneurial Mindset in Engineering Students using Integrated E-Learning Modules 

RONALD S. HARICHANDRAN, NADIYE O. ERDIL, QING LI, JEAN NOCITO-GOBEL AND MARIA-ISABEL CARNASCIALI

University of New Haven, West Haven, CT

Appendix: Administration of E-Learning Module Development and Large-Scale Mini-Grant Program

The administration of the program to develop 18 e-learning modules and deploy them at 42 universities and colleges around the country required complex logistics. We hired a part-time coordinator to help with the administration. The tasks performed to orchestrate the development and deployment of the integrated e-learning modules are described here.

Development of E-Learning Modules

The details of e-learning module development are as follows:

1. Requests for proposals (RFPs) were distributed by e-mail to faculty at member institutions of the Kern Entrepreneurial Engineering Network (KEEN), engineering deans at numerous colleges and universities (asking them to forward to their faculty), and working professionals known to us. Click here for a typical RFP.

2. Based on the proposals received, 3-4 modules were developed during each 4-month cycle.

3. A payment of $3000 was offered to content experts to develop each module and each of them signed a formal contract with the University of New Haven. The contract included a statement of work to be completed and the schedule. To encourage timely development, payments were made upon achievement of specific tasks:

  • An initial payment of $500 was made about one week after starting the development cycle when each developer completed the online training and participated in a webinar orienting them about KEEN’s goals.
  • A second payment of $1000 was made at the end of three months when each developer submitted a near final draft of the content for his or her module.
  • A final payment of $1500 was made at the end of the development cycle when each developer submitted a ready-to-implement e-learning module.

4. A team of 3-4 reviewers provided feedback to each developer when preliminary content was proposed and when near final drafts were provided. Reviewers who had sufficient knowledge about the content for each module, typically including a faculty member who would integrate the module into a course, were selected from the University of New Haven, other KEEN institutions and practicing engineers. Each reviewer was paid an honorarium of $250.

Large-Scale Deployment of E-Learning Modules 

The details of deploying e-learning modules at other institutions are as follows: 

1. RFPs were distributed by e-mail to faculty at KEEN institutions, and engineering deans at numerous colleges and universities (asking them to forward to their faculty). Click here for a typical RFP.

2. About 25 proposals were selected for deployment during the following academic year. The selection was made to obtain broad deployment across different institutions and to have a good distribution across all modules being deployed.

3. Each faculty member was expected to attend a half-day training workshop held before the ASEE Annual Conference. Up to $750 was paid toward travel, lodging and meals to participate in the workshop. Training instructors to effectively integrate an e-learning module into their courses and develop a contextual activity aligned with their course content and the module was critical for successful deployment.

4. A stipend of $2000 was offered to faculty deploying modules and each of them signed a formal contract with the University of New Haven. The contract included a statement of work to be completed and the schedule. Faculty could use the funds in whatever manner they chose, including using it as a stipend for themselves, for efforts toward uploading modules to their Learning Management Systems (LMSs), etc. Indirect costs by institutions was not allowed. The $2000 was paid only at the end of the semester in which a module was deployed after the faculty member provided all requested student surveys and feedback.

5. An IT specialist at the University of New Haven prepared common course cartridges for each of the e-learning modules. Instructions were sent to each faculty member deploying a module on how to download the appropriate common course cartridge and install it into the LMS at his or her institution. Generally, an IT specialist at the faculty member’s institution helped with the installation.

6. Each faculty member deploying a module was required to administer a module-specific pre-survey containing 6-8 items to students in his or her course before they began the e-learning module. They administered the same survey after students completed the e-learning module and the contextual activity. We used online surveys to reduce data collection errors and for easy administration, and we sent faculty frequent reminders to ensure that the surveys were done on time.

7. At the end of the semester, each faculty member deploying a module was asked to submit a web-based feedback form, the course syllabus indicating how the e-learning module would be integrated, and a description of the contextual activity developed to reinforce what students learned through the module. Click here to view the feedback form.