Engineering Education Inquiry


Credit Hours:


Learning Objective:

The course is an introduction to engineering education research and its main goal is to introduce students to engineering education research. The course is designed in alignment with the following goals and objectives:
  1. Engage in professional and ethical conduct of engineering education research
    1. Define research as a form of argument with claims and evidence
    2. Recognize ethical considerations in various aspects of research such as its design, authorship, and citation
    3. Use appropriate (basic and advanced) library resources to locate literature and reports
    4. Acknowledge and document citations and references in APA format
    5. Engage in scholarly critique (of work written by scholars or peers) in a constructive and professional manner
  2. Craft arguments from evidence
    1. Write effective titles, abstracts, and keywords
    2. Identify variations in arguments associated with different components of research articles
    3. Synthesize existing literature in a systematic way to craft arguments on the state of research in a specific area
    4. Describe differences between narrative reviews and systematic reviews
    5. Present ideas and arguments succinctly and clearly
  3. Explore repertoire of research methodologies used in engineering education
    1. Recognize the need for different methodologies
    2. Compare a range of research methodologies by explaining variations in research methods (sampling, data collection, analysis) and purpose
    3. Identify different philosophical foundations associated with specific research methodologies
    4. Recognize the role of theoretical and conceptual frameworks in research
    5. Distinguish quality criteria associated with qualitative, quantitative, or mixed research methods


This graduate level course on inquiry in the newly established field of Engineering Education aims to introduce students to research in engineering education. This course covers a survey of educational research methodologies as well as strategies for locating, documenting, and critically reading literature for the purpose of crafting arguments from evidence. In this course, students will engage in professional and ethical conduct of research through readings, videos, discussions and assignments; define and practice research as crafting arguments from evidence; and 3) explore a rich repertoire of research methodologies used in engineering education. Research literature in engineering education will be analyzed and synthesized to form arguments from evidence while recognizing multiple paradigmatic lenses including positivist, post-positivist, post-modernist, constructivist, and critical theory. Qualitative, quantitative, mixed and blended approaches will be compared in alignment with contemporary academic thought and ways they reveal the complexity of phenomena under study. This course is one of the required core courses for the graduate degree in Engineering Education at Purdue University.

Topics Covered:

Module 1: Introduction to research
Module 2: Qualitative research methods
Module 3: Quantitative research methods
Module 4: Crafting arguments in research


Applied / Theory:

50 / 50

Web Address:

Web Content:

Syllabus, Grades, Lecture Notes, Homework Assignments, Message Board


All readings will be available through Purdue Libraries

Computer Requirements:

ProEd Minimum Computer Requirements. On-line conferencing and collaboration software as well as software to facilitate video-recording and sharing will be needed.

Other Requirements:

Piazza ( and WebEx (

ProEd Minimum Requirements:


Tuition & Fees: