Assessing professional skills in engineering education.
Von Konsky, Brian R.
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CAJANDER, A., DANIELS, M., MCDERMOTT, R. and VON KONSKY, B.R. 2011. Assessing professional skills in engineering education. In Proceedings of the 13th Australasian computing education conference (ACE 2011), 17 - 20 January 2011, Perth, Australia. Sydney: Conferences in research and practice in information technology (CRPIT) [online], 114, pages 145-154. Available from: http://crpit.com/Vol114.html.
In this paper, we report the results of introducing a face-to- face Peer Assisted Study Scheme (PASS) and an electronic Peer Assisted Study Scheme (ePASS) into a first year introductory programming unit, core to four undergraduate IT degrees. PASS is a program of supplementary instruction through which successful senior students facilitate weekly face-to-face study sessions in targeted key first year units. Sessions are open to all students enrolled in the target units and participation in PASS is voluntary. ePASS is a discussion board monitored by PASS Leaders. Results show that although attendance at face-to-face sessions is less than 25%, the students that attended found the sessions very useful. Of those that participated in PASS, over 40% attended to help them achieve an excellent grade, and not purely to obtain a pass grade It was therefore not surprising that the proportion of regular PASS attendees who failed the target unit was much lower than in the unit overall, while the proportion of regular PASS attendees achieving Distinctions and High Distinctions was higher. ePASS did not meet our objectives either in terms of the volume or nature of use.