Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

Malcolm H. Ray, Advisor

Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

Frederick L. Hart, Department Head

Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

Judith E. Miller, Committee Member

Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

Leonard D. Albano, Committee Member




"The objectives of this research were (1) to develop experimental active-based-learning curricula for undergraduate courses in transportation engineering and (2) to assess the effectiveness of an active-learning-based traffic engineering curriculum through an educational experiment. The researcher developed a new highway design course as a pilot study to test selected active-learning techniques before employing them in the traffic engineering curriculum. Active-learning techniques, including multiple-choice questions, short problems completed by individual students or small groups, and group discussions, were used as active interludes within lectures. The researcher also collected and analyzed student performance and attitude data from control and experimental classes to evaluate the relative effectiveness of the traditional lecture (control) approach and the active-learning (experimental) approach. The results indicate that the active-learning approach adopted for the experimental class did have a positive impact on student performance as measured by exam scores. The students in the experimental class also indicated slightly more positive attitudes at the end of the course than the control class, although the difference was not significant. The author recommends that active interludes similar to those in the experimental curricula be used in other courses in civil engineering."


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Degree Name



Civil & Environmental Engineering

Project Type


Date Accepted





engineering education, traffic engineering, active learning, transportation engineering, Active learning, Traffic engineering, Study and teaching (Higher), Constructivism (Education)