Abstraction thresholds in undergraduate electrical engineering curricula

Lance C. Perez, Presentacion Rivera-Reyes

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

1 Scopus citations


A great deal of work has been done to study the types of problems posed to students in various disciplines and to examine the approaches used by students and experts to solve these problems. This paper describes a knowledge representation framework developed by Hahn and Chater [41] for analyzing a person's episode of reasoning while solving a problem and presents some preliminary results of the application of this framework to students taking a course in signal and systems. This course occurs in the junior year of an electrical engineering undergraduate curriculum at a larger public university. The preliminary results demonstrate that the framework can be successfully used to distinguish between different types of reasoning that students use when solving problems in this course. This study is part of a larger effort that is trying to determine if there is a specific point in a typical undergraduate electrical engineering curriculum at which the cognitive demand of the problems being posed exceeds the cognitive supply being brought to the problem by a typical student. The Hahn and Chater framework is being used to assess cognitive supply.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication2016 ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition
PublisherAmerican Society for Engineering Education
StatePublished - Jun 26 2016
Event123rd ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition - New Orleans, United States
Duration: Jun 26 2016Jun 29 2016


Other123rd ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityNew Orleans

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)


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