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North American 2017 Materials Education Symposium

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Engaging Students in Learning Materials Science through Computation

Dr Lan Li | Boise State University

Engaging Students in Learning Materials Science through Computation

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US17LLI US17LLI (1785 KB)

We developed and implemented 15 computational modeling modules in 5 undergraduate materials-related courses. Each course was scheduled 2-5 modeling classes. Before each class, students were required to watch short computational modeling lecture videos, reading textbook chapters, and completing reading homework.
In the class the instructor used computational modeling tools to demonstrate the selected course contents and guided the students to use the tools to solve materials problems. We evaluated students' performance and experience of learning the modules.
The evaluation showed the modules:
(1) Increased student awareness and interest of computation;
(2) Fostered learning of materials science topics; and
(3) Improved student engagement.
The evaluation also indicated two controlling factors that affected student learning: computational modeling-course topic coupling and assessment method. The presentation will discuss the modules and how to tailor them for graduate education.