Civil Engineering Faculty Add to Villanova's ASEE Wins

Villanova University Civil Engineering Associate Professor and recently named Department Chair Shawn Gross, PhD, and Assistant Professor Eric Musselman, PhD, have been named the recipients of the American Society for Engineering Education's (ASEE) Stephen J. Ressler Best Paper Award. “Observations from Three Years of Implementing an Inverted (Flipped) Classroom Approach in Structural Design Courses" is recognized as the best paper on a topic in Civil Engineering education, presented at the ASEE annual conference and published in the conference proceedings in the year prior to the award.  

Associate Professor Shawn Gross, PhD, and Assistant Professor Eric Musselman, PhD
Associate Professor Shawn Gross, PhD, and Assistant Professor Eric Musselman, PhD

In their paper, Drs. Gross and Musselman present observations from their transition to an inverted classroom approach in a pair of upper-level undergraduate courses in Structural Design. Gross explains how the courses were originally taught: “Previously, about two-thirds of a typical class meeting period was devoted to a lecture and the remainder devoted to solving quick problems using a PowerPoint format.” In the inverted format, students are required to watch the lectures outside of the classroom and nearly all of the in-class time is spent solving problems in a real-time manner using a tablet PC. The professors’ paper reviews the motivation behind the decision to switch to the inverted format and explains the intended beneficial impacts on student learning. Details on the structure and relationship of individual course components in the inverted model also are presented, as are the impacts on faculty planning and preparation. In addition to the faculty perspective, the students’ perspective is also addressed, along with data that presents student performance.  

This is the third prize that Villanova Engineering professors will be presented with at the upcoming ASEE conference in late June in New Orleans. Randy Weinstein, PhD, professor and associate dean of academic affairs, will receive the Corcoran Award for "Improved Performance via the Inverted Classroom." The Corcoran Award recognizes the most outstanding article published in Chemical Engineering Education

Professor William Kelly, PhD; Associate Professor Noelle Comolli, PhD; and Assistant Professors Jacob Elmer, PhD, and Zuyi “Jacky” Huang, PhD, earned the Martin Award for “Preparation of Biology Review and Virtual Experiment/Training Videos to Enhance Learning in Biochemical Engineering Courses.” The Martin Award is given to the author(s) of the outstanding Chemical Engineering paper presented at the previous year’s ASEE annual conference.

Finally, as one of the top six nominations in the Best Diversity Paper Competition, Andrea Welker, PhD, professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, will present “Where are they Now? Analyses of Alumnae Data” during a special conference session titled Action on Diversity. 

All the winners will be recognized at the 2016 annual ASEE Meeting in late June in New Orleans.