Discipline-Based Education Research (DBER) in Engineering

What is DBER?

Discipline-based education research (DBER) in engineering encompasses the study of teaching and learning in engineering from the perspective of engineering as a whole and the individual engineering disciplines – their domain knowledge, practices, culture, world outlook, and concerns. It is the study of the teaching and learning of our youngest engineering hopefuls to the practices and wisdom of our retiring engineers and all students and practitioners in between. The body of research that is generated provides the evidence for local, national, and global change in how we educate students.

The vision for the College of Engineering (COE) DBER initiative is to be a national leader in this research space. To this end, the COE DBER community nurtures and conducts rigorous and collaborative engineering education research within and across engineering disciplines, conducting applied and fundamental research to addresses research questions concerning the knowledge and skills, attitudes, and behaviors acquired by students through formal curricula and informal programming. COE DBER faculty and their research groups impact teaching and learning locally while making national and international contributions to the knowledge-base for engineering education.

COE DBER engineering faculty reside in their respective disciplines where, through their presence and participation on their faculties, they build relationships and collaborations with their disciplinary colleagues to conduct engineering discipline-specific education research that focuses on aspects unique to the education and preparation of professionals in their discipline. The faculty also engage with the greater COE and university communities to conduct cross-disciplinary research focused on aspects common to the education and preparation of all engineering professionals.