An initial exploration of hidden curriculum perspectives and pathways in engineering
Idalis Villanueva, Ph.D., Department of Engineering Education, Utah State University
While much effort has taken place to help underrepresented and minoritized groups persist in engineering, not much improvement has been seen over the past few decades. This seminar will explore some of the hidden messages and pervasive ideas that, while commonly known, can compromise the sense of belonging of these groups in engineering. In this seminar, we will explore the role that hidden curriculum, or the hidden messages of a learning or working environment, can have on students and faculty in engineering. This seminar was created using a “workshop teaching model” where part of the activities are aimed to have participants actively engage with the topic presented. Finally, simple strategies to communicate in a more inclusive manner, using hidden curriculum, will be shared for participants wishing to incorporate some of these actions in their courses.
Dr. Idalis Villanueva has a B.S. degree is in Chemical Engineering from the University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez and a M.S. and Ph.D. degree in Chemical and Biological Engineering from the University of Colorado-Boulder. Also, she completed her postdoctoral fellowship from the National Institutes of Health in Analytical Cell Biology in Bethesda, Maryland. After her postdoctoral fellowship, she worked as a lecturer in the Fischell Department of Bioengineering in the University of Maryland where she developed an interest in engineering education research. For the past 8 years, Dr. Villanueva has worked on several engineering education projects where she derives from her experiences in engineering to improve outcomes for minoritized groups in engineering using mixed-methods and multi-modal approaches. She currently is an Assistant Professor of Engineering Education and Adjunct Faculty of Biological Engineering at Utah State University. In 2019, she received the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) award for her 2017 NSF CAREER project on hidden curriculum in engineering. She also received the Utah State University Faculty Researcher of the Year (Robins) award and the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers Excellence in Advising award (Region 3) in the same year.