Advancing the Maker Movement: Making and Makerspaces at Engineering and Engineering Technology Schools and Departments and Outside the Engineering Academic Maker Community
The American Society for Engineering Education surveyed engineering and engineering technology deans on how they think about Making, how Makerspaces are utilized on their campuses, how Making is used in their curriculum, and what positive student outcomes they attribute to Making. A separate survey sent to the broader Maker community asked that population how it defines Making, how it finances and manages Makerspaces, and how it engages members of the community in Making.
The report summarizes the results from both surveys. Some of the main findings from the surveys include:
• Engineering deans, engineering technology deans, department chairs, and the non- Engineering academic Maker community all define Making as taking an idea or concept and creating it in material form. Engineering deans, engineering technology deans, and department chairs also defined Making as engaging students in hands-on engineering activities, while the non-Engineering academic Maker community defined Making as a community-oriented activity that is hobby-focused and brings personal satisfaction.
• Most engineering deans, engineering technology deans, and department chairs reported having a Makerspace or multiple Makerspaces on campus. Those who reported having multiple Makerspaces are more likely to integrate Making into their curriculum and programs and were more likely to report positive student outcomes attributed to Making than respondents who reported one or no Makerspace on campus.
• Not all engineering deans, engineering technology deans, and department chairs have the same view of what constitutes a Makerspace. While all respondents viewed designated spaces that housed 3D printers and scanners, laser cutters, or automatic and robotic systems as Makerspaces, some respondents did not view spaces that housed carpentry tools, machine shops, and fabrication labs as Makerspaces.
• One suggestion from the non-Engineering academic Maker community on how to use Making to attract diverse students to engineering is to provide Making opportunities for K-12 students so they learn design and engineering processes like prototyping and testing, and to use Making as an opportunity to raise awareness among K-12 students of engineering as a profession and a field of study.
View the report here: 2017 Advancing the Maker Movement