Drexel College of Computing & Informatics (CCI) Professor Ellen Bass, PhD recently presented at the 10th International Conference on Applied Human Factors and Ergonomics (AHFE 2019) in Washington, DC (July 24-28).
Her paper, titled “Curriculum Infusion through Case Studies: Engaging Undergraduate Students in Course Subject Material and Influencing Behavior,” was presented during the July 27 Human Factors in Training, Education, and Learning Sciences session (of which she also served as co-chair).
Her study (co-authored with Holly Foster, Douglas Lee, Susie Bruce and R. Reid Bailey) investigates infusing health promotion topics into an engineering course via problem-based case studies and lectures to assess student learning and self-reported behavior.
Two sections of junior-level systems engineering students participated in the study: one with 52 students and the other with 36 students. One section was given a celebratory drinking case study, and the other section was given a distracted driving case study and a lecture about hazardous drinking.
With both sections, the study found that student ability ratings related to the course subject matter generally improved. The lecture appeared to enhance health promotion knowledge, and students self-reported behavior changes after learning about both cases.
The study underscores that case studies as a form of curriculum infusion for health promotion topics show promise. The use of case studies overall was well-received by students and coupled with lecture material can increase student health promotion knowledge and behavior change.
Bass has over thirty years of human-centered systems engineering research and design experience in air transportation, healthcare, meteorology and other domains. The focus of her research is to develop theories of human performance, quantitative modeling methodologies, and associated experimental designs that can be used to evaluate human-automation interaction and human-human collaboration in the context of total system performance.
She earned a doctorate in systems engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology, a master of science degree in advanced technology from the State University of New York at Binghamton, and a bachelor of science degree in bioengineering and in economics from the University of Pennsylvania. She shares joint appointments in both CCI and the College of Nursing and Health Professions (CNHP). She also holds affiliate status in the School of Biomedical Engineering, Science and Health Systems.