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Research in Engineering and Technology Education


National Center for Engineering and Technology Education

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The objective of this study was to evaluate grade 9-12 students’ motivation while engaged in two different engineering design projects: marble-sorter and bridge designs. The motivation components measured in this study were focused on students’ intrinsic (IGO) and extrinsic (EGO) goal orientations, task value (TV), self-efficacy for learning and performance (SELP), and control belief (CB). After finishing each project, students were asked to complete an Engineering Design Questionnaire (EDQ) survey instrument. The instrument consisted of 26 items modified from motivational scales of the Motivated Strategies for Learning Questionnaire (MSLQ).Besides the motivational scales, five demographic and two open-ended questions exploring students’ most and least motivating aspects about their designs were added to the instrument.

From the statistical tests, the results showed a significant difference on students’ IGO during marble-sorter and bridge design activities. Students’ intrinsic goal orientation was significantly higher on bridge design than marble-sorter design. Students who planned to major in engineering or technology education were more significantly motivated working on the two design activities than those who whose majors were in other areas. Students’ EGO did not appear to be correlated to their IGO, TV, SELP, and CB. Common themes associated with student motivation in the activities are presented in this report.


This report made publicly available by the National Center for Engineering and Technology Education (NCETE).

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