Research

Alaine Allen

Alaine AllenDepartment: Staff/Administrator

Email: allen@pitt.edu

Phone: 412-624-9628

Office: 145 Benedum Hall

Engineering Education Focus: My research interests focus on increasing access to STEM education for students from historically marginalized populations and creating a culture of inclusive excellence in the STEM learning environment.

Active Grants and Recent Achievement Awards:

  • National Science Foundation INCLUDES DDLP #1744446 "Diversifying Access to Urban Universities for Students in STEM Fields"

Alaine's CV

Matthew Barry

Matthew-BarryDepartment: Mechanical and Materials Science

Email: matthew.michael.barry@pitt.edu

Phone: 412-624-9031

Office: 204 Benedum Hall

Engineering Education Focus: Interests include studying the effects of communities of practice on undergraduate engineering students, and the degree of which hands-on engineering and design fortifies learning.

Recent Engineering Education Papers:

  • A New Approach to Teaching Statics Using a Makerspace, Lee A. Dosse, Matthew M. Barry, Karthika Ramanathan, Renee M. Clark. 2019 IEEE Frontiers in Education Conference, Cincinnati, OH, USA, October 16-19.

Active Grants and Recent Achievement Awards:

  • Visiting Committee Excellence in Education Award, awarded by the Mechanical Engineering and Material Science Visiting Committee, University of Pittsburgh, 2018

Matthew's CV

Mary Besterfield-Sacre

Mary-Besterfield-Sacre-EERCDepartment: Staff/Administrator

Email: mbsacre@pitt.edu

Phone: 412-624-9836

Office: 148 Benedum Hall

Engineering Education Focus: Mary's principal research is in engineering education assessment, which has been funded by the NSF, Department of Education, Sloan Foundation, Engineering Information Foundation, and VentureWell. Mary's current research focuses on three distinct but highly correlated areas – innovative design and entrepreneurship, engineering modeling, and global competency in engineering.

Recent Engineering Education Papers:

  • Streiner, S.C., and M. Besterfield-Sacre, “Development of the Global Engineering Programming Model: A Participatory, Mixed-Methods Approach,” Journal of International Engineering Education. 1, no1 (2018) pp. 1-34. https://doi.org/10.23860/jiee.2018.01.01.03 (2) 3.
  • Clark, R.M., A. Kaw, Y. Lou, A. Scott, and M. Besterfield-Sacre. “Evaluating Blended and Flipped Instruction in Numerical Methods at Multiple Engineering Schools,” International Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, 12, no 1 (2018) pp. 1-16. DOI: 10.20429/ijsotl.2018.120111. (3) 6.
  • Besterfield-Sacre, M.E., S. Zappe, A. Shartrand, and K. Hochstedt (2016). “Faculty and Student Perceptions of the Content of Entrepreneurship Courses in Engineering Education,” Advances in Engineering Education, 5, no1 (2016): 1-27.

Active Grants and Recent Achievement Awards:

  • Collaborative Research: INCLUDES – Toward an Alliance to Prepare a National Faculty for Broadening Success of Underrepresented 2-Year and 4-Year STEM Students NSF-ICER 1649105
  • Innovation Through Propagation: Determining an Engineering Education Research Agenda, NSF/ DRL-1451263
  • Collaborative Research: Assessing the Spectrum of International Undergraduate Engineering Educational Experiences, NSF/EEC–1160404

Mary's CV

Melissa Bilec

Melissa-BilecDepartment: Civil & Environmental Engineering

Email: mbilec@pitt.edu

Phone: 412-648-8075

Office: 153 Benedum Hall

Engineering Education Focus: Integrating sustainability into the engineering curriculum through experiential and project based learning. Examining the connections between sustainability, diversity, inclusion, and equity.

Recent Engineering Education Papers:

  • Burke, R.D., Dancz, C.L.A., Ketchman, K.J., Bilec, M.M., Boyer, T.H., Davidson, C., Landis, A.E., Parrish, K.P. (2018). “Faculty Perspectives on Sustainability Integration on Undergraduate Engineering Curriculum.” ASCE Journal of Professional Issues in Engineering Education and Practice, 144(3), 04018004. https://doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)EI.1943-5541.0000373.
  • Danzc, C.L.A., Bilec, M.M., Landis, A.E. (2018). “Active Experiential Sustainable Engineering Module for Engineering Education.” Journal of Professional Issues in Engineering Education and Practice, 144(1): 04017011. https://doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)EI.1943-5541.0000345.
  • Dancz, C.L.A., Ketchman, K.J., Burke, R.D., Hottle, T.A., Bilec, M.M., Parrish, K., Landis, A.E. (2017) “Utilizing Civil Engineering Senior Design Capstone Projects to Evaluate Students’ Sustainability Education Across Engineering Curriculum.” Advances in Engineering Education, 6(2).

Active Grants and Recent Achievement Awards:

  • Received Senior Vice Chancellor for Engagement’s Partnerships of Distinction award

Melissa's CV

Karen Bursic

Karen-BursicDepartment: Industrial Engineering

Email: kbursic@pitt.edu

Phone: 412-624-9837

Office: 1037 Benedum Hall

Engineering Education Focus: While some of my early research was focused on teaching design, I am primarily interested in what works in the classroom. I have published papers on the use of model-eliciting activities, active learning, and student response systems. I've also studied the differences between teaching analytics to engineering vs. business students. Currently I am developing an engineering economy concept inventory to be used to assess learning.

Recent Engineering Education Papers:

  • “Motivation and Analytics: Comparing Business and Engineering Students,” with Natalie M. Scala, Stella Tomasi, and Andrea Goncher, INFORMS Transaction on Education, Articles in Advance, published online November 9, 2017. https://doi.org/10.1287/ited.2017.0187.
  • “Work in Progress – An Engineering Economy Concept Inventory”. 2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Columbus, Ohio, June 2017. https://peer.asee.org/29138.
  • “Flipping Engineering Courses: A School Wide Initiative,” with Renee M. Clark, Mary Besterfield-Sacre, Daniel Budny, William W. Clark, Bryan A. Norman, Robert S. Parker, John F. Patzer II, and William S. Slaughter, Advances in Engineering Education, Vol. 5 Issue 3, 2016.

Active Grants and Recent Achievement Awards:

  • Best Paper ASEE Engineering Economy Division 2017 annual conference

Karen's CV

Renee Clark

Renee-Clark-EERCDepartment: Industrial Engineering

Email: rmclark@pitt.edu

Phone: 412-648-5359

Office: B12 Benedum Hall

Engineering Education Focus: Dr. Clark conducts research on both externally and internally-funded education-related projects with faculty interested in enhancing and assessing instructional practices within their classrooms. Renee conducts both quantitative and qualitative assessment and evaluation and focuses on pedagogies for active learning, learner-centered instruction, and engineering professional development, including reflection and metacognition, simple active learning to drive interactivity and application, flipped classrooms, adaptive learning, design thinking, and game-based instruction. Another current research area for Dr. Clark is promoting the propagation of active learning in the Swanson School via a 2018 award from the Provost’s Office, in which she coaches and mentors faculty who have an interest in implementing or enhancing active learning in their classrooms, often for the first time. She is also a newly-appointed associate editor for Advances in Engineering Education.

Recent Engineering Education Papers:

  • Jeffrey, D. & Clark, R. (2019). Supplementing Western Perspectives of Learner-Centered Instruction with a Daoist Approach Towards Authentic Power Sharing in the Classroom. International J. of Contemporary Education, 2(1), 9-16.
  • Clark, R., & Dickerson, S. Assessing the Impact of Reflective Activities in Digital and Analog Electronics Courses. Accepted for publication in IEEE Transactions on Education, November 2018, DOI 10.1109/TE.2018.2885720.
  • Clark, R., & Dickerson, S. (2018). A Case Study of Post-Workshop Use of Simple Active Learning in an Introductory Computing Sequence. IEEE Transactions on Education, 61(3), 167-176.

Active Grants and Recent Achievement Awards:

  • Co-Principal Investigator: NSF Research Initiation: Systematic Use of Simulation in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Classroom to Drive Reflection and Metacognition; 9/1/2018-8/31/2020; $200,000 (Award # 1830735)
  • Project Director: University of Pittsburgh Office of Provost 2018 Innovation in Education Award Propagation of Active Learning within the Swanson School of Engineering; 5/1/2018-4/30/2019; $15,000

Renee's Resume

Ahmed Dallal

Ahmed-DallalDepartment: Electrical and Computer Engineering

Email: ahd12@pitt.edu

Phone: 412-383-4423

Office: 1203 Benedum Hall

Engineering Education Focus: Dr. Dallal primarily focus on education development and innovation. In particular, the use of active learning in electrical engineering and design based learning.

Recent Engineering Education Papers:

  • A. Dallal, and R. Clarck, Progression of the Use of Active Learning in Electrical Engineering Courses, 2019 American Society for Engineering Education. ASEE Annual Conference Proceedings, 2019.

Active Grants and Recent Achievement Awards:

  • Outstanding Mentor Mentee Award; PITT STRIVE Program

Samuel Dickerson

Sam-DickersonDepartment: Electrical and Computer Engineering

Email: dickerson@pitt.edu

Phone: 412-624-22163

Office: 1206 Benedum Hall

Engineering Education Focus: Current focus is on the use of computer-aided simulation tools to improve student understanding of electrical and computer engineering topics. Most recent work is the development and study of a novel method for promoting reflective and metacognitive thinking in engineering students. Other topics of interest include studying the impact of simple-active learning, propagating active-learning among faculty, the intersection of entrepreneurship and engineering education and Internet-of-Things education.

Recent Engineering Education Papers:

  • Dickerson, S.J., & Clark, R.M. (2018). A classroom-based simulation-centric approach to microelectronics education. COMPUTER APPLICATIONS IN ENGINEERING EDUCATION, 26(4), 768-781.Wiley. doi: 10.1002/cae.21918.
  • Clark, R.M., & Dickerson, S.J. (2018). Assessing the Impact of Reflective Activities in Digital and Analog Electronics Courses. IEEE Transactions on Education. doi: 10.1109/TE.2018.2885720.
  • Clark, R.M., & Dickerson, S.J. (2018). A Case Study of Post-Workshop Use of Simple Active Learning in an Introductory Computing Sequence. IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON EDUCATION, 61(3), 167-176.Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. doi: 10.1109/TE.2018.2808274.

Active Grants and Recent Achievement Awards:

Samuel's CV

April Dukes

April DukesDepartment: Industrial Engineering

Email: aprila@pitt.edu

Phone: 412-383-6014

Office: B12 Benedum Hall

Engineering Education Focus: I facilitate professional development on instructional best practices for current and future STEM faculty, in both synchronous online and in-person environments.

Recent Engineering Education Papers:

  • Dukes AA, Sowko, LA, Gartner M, Barber BJ, Clark, RM. (2010) Assessing the Impact of Embedding Nursing Students in Bioengineering Senior Design Projects: Student Perceptions of Interprofessional Team Benefits and Challenges. ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, 2019.

April's CV

Leanne Gilbertson

Leanne-GilbertsonDepartment: Civil & Environmental Engineering

Email: lmg110@pitt.edu

Phone: 412-624-1683

Office: 202 Benedum Hall

Engineering Education Focus: In collaboration with the EERC, I am studying how the incorporation of design thinking engages students in learning about sustainable engineering and design. We are collecting data in a long-term study to probe how this pedagogical approach enhances student creativity, retainment of content, and application to their future engineering careers. Continued data collection will enable us to further look at learning outcomes across gender, socioeconomic, and disciplinary diversity.

Recent Engineering Education Papers:

  • Clark, R.; Stabryla, L. M.; Gilbertson, L. M. “Use of Active Learning and the Design Thinking Process to Drive Creative Sustainable Design Solutions.” 2018 ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition, Salt Lake City, UT. https://peer.asee.org/31186.

Active Grants and Recent Achievement Awards:

  • University of Pittsburgh Innovation in Education Awards, Teaching Sustainable Engineering Through Design Thinking. $15,000 (2017-2018)
  • Mindlin Foundation, Teaching Sustainable Engineering Through Design Thinking. $10,000.00, 5/1/2017 – 4/30/2018

Leanne's CV

Robert Kerestes

Robert KerestesDepartment: Electrical and Computer Engineering

Email: rjk39@pitt.edu

Phone: 412-383-5251

Office: 1224 Benedum Hall

Engineering Education Focus: My focus is in improving methods for teaching electric power and electromagnetic engineering through the use of active learning and design based instruction.

Recent Engineering Education Papers:

  • Cook, T., Lyle, J., Kerestes, R. "Work in Progress: Reinforcement of Engineering Education with Hands-on Learning of Technical Skills", 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition
  • Kerestes, R., Qu, Z., Turgut, D., "Enhanced Workforce Development via the 2017 FEEDER Student Summer Program", 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Active Grants and Recent Achievement Awards:

  • 2018 Office of the Provost Personalized Education Award - "Development and Implementation of a Real-Time Tutor Sourcing Application"
  • 2019 John C. Mascaro Faculty Lectureship in Sustainability
  • 2019 Office of the Provost Innovation in Education Award - "Integration of Computer Aided Design into Electrical Engineering Curriculum using COMSOL Multiphysics"
  • 2019 Office of the Provost Open Educational Resource Grant - "Development of Open Educational Resources for Core Electrical Engineering Courses"

Robert's CV

Arash-MahboobinArash Mahboobin

Department: Bioengineering

Email: mahboobin@pitt.edu

Phone: 412-624-9819

Office: 302 Benedum Hall

Engineering Education Focus: My research interests include computational and experimental human movement biomechanics, bio-signal processing, and engineering education. Specific areas of biomechanics and bio-signal processing research include developing muscle-actuated forward dynamic simulations of gait (normal and pathological), analysis and modeling of human postural control, and time-varying signals and systems. Engineering education research includes curriculum and laboratory development of biomechanics and bio-signal processing concepts.

Recent Engineering Education Papers:

  • IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON EDUCATION, VOL. 61, NO. 2, MAY 2018; American Society for Engineering Education, 2018, 2017, 2016.

Active Grants and Recent Achievement Awards:

  • Provost’s Personalized Education Grant Program, 2018 (under review)

Arash's CV

Irene Mena

Irene-MenaDepartment: Mechanical and Materials Science

Email: imena@pitt.edu

Phone: 412-648-2134

Office: 147 Benedum Hall

Engineering Education Focus: First-year engineering education; academic integrity in first-year engineering students

Recent Engineering Education Papers:

  • Mena, I. B., & Sanchez, D. V. P (2017). Perceptions of Academic Integrity of Students in a First-Year Engineering Program. Paper presented at the American Society for Engineering Education Conference & Exposition, Columbus, OH.
  • Mena, I. B., & Dale, A. T. (2017). Exploring Students’ Perceptions of Complex Problems and Stakeholders. Paper presented at the American Society for Engineering Education Conference & Exposition, Columbus, OH.
  • Mena, I. B., & Clark, W. W. (2016). Designing a Big Machine: A Description and Assessment of a Mechanical Engineering Design Project. Paper presented at the American Society for Engineering Education Conference & Exposition, New Orleans, LA.

David Sanchez

David SanchezDepartment: Civil & Environmental Engineering, Mascaro Center for Sustainable Innovation

Email: david.sanchez@pitt.edu

Phone: 412-624-9793

Office: 153 Benedum Hall

Engineering Education Focus: My engineering education research includes identifying and tracking Sustainability student outcomes, student personal and professional formation as it relates to well-being, habits and culture, Academic Integrity

Recent Engineering Education Papers:

  • Greene, M., Nguyen, C., Sanchez,D.V.P., 2019, “Identifying Phenomena and Developing Sustainable Engineering Educational Modules that Integrate STEM Education Best Practices and Next Generation Science Standards for Middle School Science Teachers ASEE Annual Conference proceedings, June 2019
  • Mena, I.B., Sanchez, D.V.P., Perceptions of Academic Integrity of Students in a First- Year Engineering Program American Society of Engineering Education Columbus OH June 2017. 1.
  • Dickerson, S.J., Jacobs, S.P., Garcia A.M., Sanchez, David V.P., Joint Assessment and Evaluation of Senior Design Projects by Faculty and Industry, Frontiers In Education, October 2016.

Active Grants and Recent Achievement Awards:

  • Constellation Energy Inventor Labs, Pitt Sustainability Faculty Award 2018, Pittsburgh Business Times Energy Leadership Award, SSOE Diversity Award, Pitt EXCEL best mentor award

David's CV

Deanna Sinex

Deanna SinexDepartment: Bioengineering

Email: dce14@pitt.edu

Engineering Education Focus: Deanna’s first research interest is mapping the development and evolution of identity and self-efficacy among STEM students who identify with historically excluded groups to understand how perceptions of historical and present day-barriers enable, or limit, matriculation through STEM programs. Deanna’s second research interest involves the development and application of engineering concepts and active learning techniques in clinical and institutional learning environments, to help improve literacy of fundamental, yet critical aspects of health.

Deanna's CV

Lisa Stabryla

Lisa StabrylaDepartment: Civil & Environmental Engineering

Email: lms162@pitt.edu

Phone: 412-651-6975

Office: 341 Benedum Hall

Engineering Education Focus: Lisa is a mid-career PhD student and aspiring faculty member. She has been an active member in Pitt-CIRTL since the summer of 2016 and recently earned the CIRTL Scholar Certificate through completion of a mentored teaching-as-research project (TAR) and dissemination of her findings at local and national conferences. Her project explored the use of active learning and the design thinking process in the engineering classroom to increase the practice of sustainability and creativity in students’ design solutions to a real-world sustainability challenge.

Recent Engineering Education Papers:

  • Clark, R.; Stabryla, L.M.; Gilbertson, L.M. “Use of active learning and the design thinking process to drive creative sustainable engineering design solutions.” 2018, American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) 125th Annual Conference & Exposition.

Active Grants and Recent Achievement Awards:

  • Stabryla, L. and L. Gilbertson. “Teaching Sustainable Engineering Through Design Thinking.” The Mindlin Foundation. Grant No. MF17-US05. $10,000. December 2016.
  • Stabryla, L. and L. Gilbertson. “Teaching Sustainable Engineering Through Design Thinking.” Innovation in Education Awards 2017 program. University of Pittsburgh. $15,000. March 2017
  • ASEE Design in Engineering Education Division Best Paper Finalist 2018, Engineering Graduate Student Organization CEE TA Award 2017, National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate (NDSEG) Fellowship, 2017

Lisa's CV