Johansen-Crosby Lecture

Event Date/Time: 
April 19, 2018 - 9:10am
Event Location: 
3540 EB
Stephanie Farrell
Spatial Skills Training to Promote Access and Equity in STEM Education

Spatial skills are strongly linked with academic and professional success in STEM fields. The development of spatial skills is influenced by a variety of academic and nonacademic experiences throughout childhood and into adulthood, and spatial ability varies significantly across race, gender, socioeconomic status, and culture – disadvantaging groups that are already underrepresented in STEM fields. Spatial skills can be developed relatively quickly even in adults, and training to increase the spatial ability of engineering students increases the retention and achievement of students who enter engineering programs with poor spatial skills. Therefore, training to improve spatial skills has important implications for increasing diversity and participation of underrepresented groups in engineering. This talk will explore the importance of spatial skills training in engineering/technology education with a particular focus on diversity and describe effective, efficient approaches to integrating spatial skills into an already dense curriculum.