Engineering interest and attitude development in out-of-school time

Chris San Antonio-Tunis, Joelle Clark, Christine M. Cunningham, Cathy P. Lachapelle

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Since its inclusion in the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), engineering has continued to emerge in classrooms and informal settings. As educators become familiar with this discipline, there is opportunity for research to inform our understanding of how youth are relating to engineering concepts and practices. This paper examines how engaging with engineering in out-of-school-time (OST) settings impacts youths' interests and attitudes toward engineering. Data are drawn from four OST sites that implemented a hands-on engineering curriculum with 52 middle-school-aged youth. Quantitative analysis of survey data indicate that exposure to engineering activities has a significant effect on youth's engineering attitudes. Qualitative analysis of video data, using event maps and discourse analysis, suggests why and how youths' attitudes may change. This study advances the field's understanding of how engineering interest and affiliation may be developed among middle-school-age youth in informal learning environments. Implications for educators and curriculum developers are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalASEE Annual Conference and Exposition, Conference Proceedings
StatePublished - Jun 15 2019
Event126th ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition: Charged Up for the Next 125 Years, ASEE 2019 - Tampa, United States
Duration: Jun 15 2019Jun 19 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Engineering


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