FLATE Presents at 2022 HI-TEC Conference

Supported by the National Science Foundation’s Advanced Technological Education (NSF ATE) program, HI-TEC, the High Impact Technology Exchange Conference, is a national conference on advanced technological education where secondary and postsecondary educators, counselors, industry professionals, trade organizations, and technicians can update their knowledge and skills. Charged with preparing America’s skilled technical workforce, the event focuses on the preparation needed by the existing and future workforce for companies in the high-tech sectors that drive our nation’s economy.  FLATE gave three presentations at the 2022 HI-TEC Conference in Salt Lake City, Utah, July 25-28:
  • Women’s Perceptions of Problem-Solving In a Virtual Learning Environment
  • CTE Graduate Trends by Program Visualized Instantly!
  • Integrating Industry 4.0 into Manufacturing Technician Curriculum.

Ernie Friend, Executive Director of FLATE, along with Dr. Kimberly T. Luthi, Faculty, at the College of Aeronautics, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University-Worldwide, and Dr. Angelicque Tucker Blackmon, CEO and Chief Inspiration Officer, Director of Research & Evaluation at Innovative Learning Center presented on the study of Women’sPerceptions of Problem-Solving In a Virtual Learning Environment. Virtual learning opportunities in computing and information technology courses are designed to facilitate the development of critical thinking skills, positive learning outcomes, and increased problem-solving abilities. However, before engaging students in activities to increase their problem-solving skills, the research team needed to understand the influence of virtual courses on students’ problem-solving perceptions since perceptions influence performance.

This study is an analysis of women’s perceptions of their problem-solving confidence, style, and personal control before and after their participation in online courses. The leading hypothesis for this study is: based on access to self-paced online learning environments, women students who completed the participate in supported network and information technology courses will demonstrate increases in their perceptions of problem-solving confidence and personal control and demonstrate decreases in problem-solving avoidance. The presentation was well received by the audience in attendance with many questions and comments during and after the event.

Dr. Marilyn Barger, FLATE's Senior Education Advisor, also gave these presentations at the 2022 HI-TEC Conference:  

  • CTE Graduate Trends by Program Visualized Instantly! This presentation presented and demonstrated the new, free CTE Graduates tracking app developed by the Hidden Innovation Infrastructure NSF project at Rutgers Education and Employment Research Center.  Dr. Barger serves as co-PI for this project.  The attendees of this session had time to try the app and provide feedback about the functionality and data output. The new data tool, which will support the research of the NSF ATE project will hopefully support many community college workforce programs.
  • Integrating Industry 4.0 into Manufacturing Technician Curriculum.  This presentation looked back at the data output of the FLATE NSF Conference Grant to determine the skills gap between what skills manufacturers anticipated that they would need in the near future and what educators thought their 2-year graduates would need. With the gaps in hand, the presentation examined the curriculum frameworks to define gaps in the current curriculum as well as the appropriate places in the program to integrated the missing skills.

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