Live Energy: U.S. Faculty Co-Author an Electronic Textbook to Deliver the Most Up-to-Date and Relevant Content in Energy and Sustainability
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This paper presents the ongoing activities of a National Science Foundation (NSF)-funded collaborative research project, its iterative research design, and the preliminary findings. Five engineering professors at five university campuses, [Texas A&M University (TAMU) College Station, Prairie View A&M University (PVAMU), California State University Long Beach (CSULB), The Pennsylvania State University (Penn State), & Stanford University] as well as a technology expert and four learning scientists at the leading campus (TAMU) have worked in collaboration over three years on three objectives. One objective was to create an online textbook for teaching energy and its sustainability to all college majors. To provide the most meaningful and relevant information to students from all majors in their courses, our five professors, who are experts in their fields, have authored an online textbook with embedded dynamic content that can be frequently updated according to emerging technical developments and sociopolitical, economic, and environmental events. To assess the pedagogical merit of the developed textbook, as our second objective, we identified several instruments and administered them at the participating campuses to collect student data. The third objective was to explore and document the characteristics of the culture emerged as our professors co-authored the textbook. In our ethnographic analyses, we utilized the notion of community of practice. In this paper, we summarize and discuss the project accomplishments, student learning outcomes, and the collaboration among the professor co-authors. Our project activities, administration of the instruments, and the lessons learned provide insights to similar efforts aimed to implement online and up-to-date content material in teaching courses that are trans-disciplinary and dynamic in nature. © American Society for Engineering Education, 2014.
author list (cited authors)
Ehlig-Economides, C., Yalvac, B., Binks-Cantrell, E., Pisupati, S., Gilman, D., Toossi, R., ... Ayar, M.