Circuits is often the first required course in an electrical engineering curriculum that demands application of multiple concepts from prerequisite math and physics courses. This integration of knowledge can be a challenge for many students. Effective teaching methods can enhance the overall learning experience, increase program retention, and improve student understanding of foundational topics in electrical engineering. This paper outlines a mastery-based grading structure implemented in a sophomore-level circuits class. The focus is placed at this level because the course is a critical prerequisite for many other courses in the electrical and computer engineering (ECE) curriculum. The knowledge that students are expected to gain in circuits is paramount to successful completion of their degree. However, faculty often observe that many students pass circuits without being able to consistently apply many of the fundamental concepts therefore causing them to struggle through subsequent courses. The overall goal of this mastery-based grading scheme is to create a more positive student learning experience that also translates to improved long-term performance. It also helps to alleviate some level of test anxiety and the stress students feel in a fast-paced, rigorous course such as circuits.
© 2019, American Society for Engineering Education, Proceedings of ASEE Annual Conference, Tampa, FL.
Salzman, Noah; Cantley, Kurtis D.; and Hunt, Gary L.. (2019). "Work in Progress: Mastery-Based Grading in an Introduction to Circuits Class". 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, 26320-1 - 26320-13.