Difficulty understanding heat and temperature concepts has been recognized in engineering education. Confusion has been shown to persist after instruction. The purpose of this study was to determine whether undergraduate engineering students’ knowledge of four heat transfer concept areas significantly changed with instruction and whether this varied by major and GPA. Two hundred twenty-eight undergraduate engineering students from six institutions were assessed prior to and after instruction. Results showed significant improvement in most concept areas but mean scores were below mastery. Previously documented misconceptions persisted after instruction. Significant differences were found by major and GPA. Suggestions for future research provided.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/michael_prince/6/