Knowing Concepts in the Social and Material Context of Engineering Practice Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/3b591c752

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  • It is expected that information taught in the context of school will ultimately transfer to workplace settings. To support this transition, educators and researchers advocate for organizing foundational ideas, or concepts, in specific domains of knowing. In the domain of transportation engineering, knowing of concepts, which include "big ideas" such as sight distance, volume, capacity, and vehicle operations around curves, are expected to seamlessly transition between school and practice. The foundational mathematical and scientific principles that govern these concepts are perceived to be separated from context, thus individuals are expected to carry their knowing across dissimilar situations. However, evidence within educational research often diverges from this expectation. Further, most research on conceptual understanding tends to concentrate on students' individual understanding in the context of school. Although such lines of inquiry provide valuable insight into conceptual understanding of students, it only addresses one setting of learning. If students are expected to utilize their knowing in practice, then the setting of the practice should also be addressed. The concentration on individual understanding within most conceptual understanding research is disconcerting in consideration of engineering practice, which is inherently dependent on interactions with others and tools in the world. This dissertation addresses these issues by examining the role of concepts in engineering practice. Using a process of inquiry informed by qualitative research methods (particularly, content analysis and ethnographic methods), the author examined the relationship between concept and context of engineering practice. Based on data gathered, the author developed four manuscripts that addressed what concepts are relevant to transportation engineering practice, when and where concepts emerge in processes and activities of practice, how engineering concepts were utilized, and why engineers utilized them in practice. Themes addressing the relationship between concept and context provide a foundation for a proposed theoretical framework addressing the sociomateriality of transportation engineering concepts in practice.
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  • description.provenance : Submitted by Floraliza Bornasal (bornasaf@onid.orst.edu) on 2015-06-11T18:36:12Z No. of bitstreams: 2 license_rdf: 1223 bytes, checksum: d127a3413712d6c6e962d5d436c463fc (MD5) BornasalFloralizaB2015.pdf: 7934004 bytes, checksum: cf30eed12e811373a944eb663afe4486 (MD5)
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  • description.provenance : Made available in DSpace on 2015-07-08T17:21:25Z (GMT). No. of bitstreams: 2 license_rdf: 1223 bytes, checksum: d127a3413712d6c6e962d5d436c463fc (MD5) BornasalFloralizaB2015.pdf: 7934004 bytes, checksum: cf30eed12e811373a944eb663afe4486 (MD5) Previous issue date: 2015-06-10

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