engineering education for all | early childhood through high school | in and out of school

MARCH 16, 2016


Dear Pre-College Engineering Education (PCEE) Division Members,


I have four big items to share in this newsletter: 1) our election results for PCEE Executive Board positions; 2) a call for your assistance on a new and exciting ASEE organization-wide P-12/pre-college effort; 3) an invitation to this year’s K-12 Workshop in New Orleans; and – with details following my signature – 4) our Marchdiversity/inclusion tip.


1. Election results. Congratulations to the following candidates who were elected to their respective offices for the coming year, 2016-17 (two years for Sec/Treas and Members at Large):

  • Program Chair Elect:  Deborah Besser
  • Secretary/Treasurer (2016-18):  Sharlene Yang
  • K-12 Representative, PK-5:  Allison Vereen
  • K-12 Representative, 6-12:  Jessica Mulhern
  • K-12 Representative, Other:  Jason Brewer
  • Member(s) at Large (2016-18):  Ann McMahon and Manuel Figueroa

Also, I am pleased to announce that I have appointed one of our current Members at Large, Meagan Pollock, to serve as Webmaster in 2016-2017. A huge “Thank you!” to all who ran for office and for all who voted! Rounding out the rest of the PCEE leadership team next year is: me as Chair; Martha Cyr as Chair-Elect; Stacy Klein-Gardner as Immediate Past Chair; Liesl Hotaling as Program Chair; Nancy Ruzycki as Immediate Past Program Chair; Teri Reed as Awards Chair; and Meagan Pollock, Bradley Bowen, and Andrea Burrows as Members at Large. I sincerely look forward to serving with all of you! And a quick reminder: there are many ways to serve beyond being on the executive board … in fact … here’s is an opportunity RIGHT NOW (#2)!


2. Needed – Creative people who are excited about pre-college engineering education! Are you interested in helping the ASEE Standing Board Committee on P12 Engineering Education pull off a “Focus on P12 & Pre-College Engineering Education” series of events in New Orleans? The main idea with these events is to let the ASEE community at-large know about our exciting work in pre-college engineering education, and to suggest that they, too, find ways to positively impact the P12 space. What might you do as a volunteer?

  • Help us plan events;
  • Help staff a special booth that we have to feature pre-college engineering near the registration desk;
  • Help identify and hand out exciting “bling;” and
  • Get the word out at the conference about this ASEE organization-wide effort.

If you are interested, please send your name and how you’d like to help to the Standing Board Committee on P12 Engineering Education at aseep12committee@gmail.com.


3. The ASEE K-12 Workshop. This annual workshop is shaping up to have some excellent sessions and good conversations. Join us in New Orleans on Saturday June 25th for an informative day of professional development for pre-college educators (formal and informal). Learn about how to integrate the “E” in STEM into learning and engage children in authentic engineering practices. Broaden your understanding of the engineering practices as articulated in the Next Generation Science Standards. Register now by clicking here(For those who submitted proposals to present a session at the workshop, all notifications of status have been sent out. Please contact Martha Cyr (mcyr@wpi.edu) if you did not receive notice.)


Our diversity/inclusion tip encourages us to consider ways to boost  students’ STEM self efficacy. Read more, below, for details! Beyond this tip, I have no additional announcements or postings to share at the present time. Feel free to pass items (written as succinctly as possible) to me that would be of interest to our division membership.


Have a good night!





Pamela S. Lottero-Perdue, Ph.D.

Chair, Pre-College Engineering Education Division

American Society for Engineering Education


Associate Professor of Science Education

Director, Integrated STEM Instructional Leadership (PreK-6) Post-Baccalaureate Program

Department of Physics, Astronomy & Geosciences

Towson University





STEM Self Efficacy


STEM Self-efficacy: Do your students believe they can succeed? You can inspire the courage to excel by bolstering student self-efficacy. Self-efficacy is the belief one has in their ability to perform a specific task. Gender differences have been observed in STEM self-efficacy, where men and boys more often have a higher STEM self-efficacy than women and girls. STEM self-efficacy can affect the probability of success in STEM-related fields.


Help students map their climb to STEM success with the following five tips to build self-efficacy:

  1. Break down the task: Smaller tasks are easier to tackle, so break down your goal into small pieces. Then, set short-term goals!
  2. Find a role model: Talk to or observe someone who knows how to do the task well. It’s particularly helpful if the friend or adult has something in common with you (gender, race, age, location)!
  3. Ask for specific feedback: As you progress through the task, trust that feedback can help you improve.
  4. Learn from failure: Failure is OK, and part of learning! Have the courage to initiate, fail, and initiate again.
  5. Celebrate milestones: Reflect on your progress and acknowledge each and every small step forward.


Short-term successes and failures are the stepping-stones to achieving long term goals.


Research indicates that the most effective ways to improve STEM self-efficacy for girls and women are providing opportunities for them to learn through observing others perform tasks, to meet relatable role models who look like them, and through realistic feedback related to a specific learning experience or previous performance.


By building students’ STEM self-efficacy, you will increase their motivation, engagement, performance, persistence, and success!


Learn more: Rittmayer & Beier. 2008. Self-Efficacy in STEM. http://www.engr.psu.edu/awe/misc/arps/arp_selfefficacy_overview_122208.pdf


If you have a diversity/inclusion tip or resource you would like to share with the division, please email Morgan Hynes morganhynes@purdue.edu.



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