Undergraduate engineering laboratory courses are designed to increase students’ hands-on capabilities through application of theoretical knowledge. However, a laboratory manual may lack any connection to prior content, and expectations for thoughtful, developed writing are minimal. In this article, an instructor’s implementation of a collaborative project to build Rube Goldberg machines combined with the course laboratory reports presented via blogs has been evaluated. An end-of-semester survey was conducted with the 18 students in the course and results are discussed along with the analysis of blog comments and student products. Overall, the intervention was deemed successful as a means to improve students’ engagement, learning, and collaborations, despite some students’ concern that blogging may not have improved their learning.
Hicks, T., Bruner, J., & Kaya, T. (2017). Implementation of blogging as an alternative to the lab report. International Journal of Engineering Education 33(4), 1257–1270.