Family Engineering for Families of Elementary-Aged Children – A Review of the Potential Impact

Publication: July 2012

Project: Family Engineering

Authors: Jenifer V. Helms, Heather Mitchell, Michelle Phillips, Mark St. John

Type: Report

Download Report (pdf, 29 pages)


Engineering is increasingly becoming a priority in STEM education. In May 2011, the Engineering Education for Innovation Act, or E2 for Innovation Act (HR 1951), was introduced, which “authorizes the Secretary of Education to award planning grants and matching implementation grants to states to integrate engineering education into kindergarten through grade 12 (K-12) instruction and curricula.” A 2009 publication of the National Academy of Engineering and the National Research Council stated that while engineering programs are not prevalent in K-12 classrooms, they do have the potential to “improve student learning and achievement in science and mathematics; increase awareness of engineering and the work of engineers; boost youth interest in pursuing engineering as a career; and increase the technological literacy of all students” (Katelin, L. et al, 2009).

The purpose of this report is to provide an external review of the Family Engineering program and its potential value. This report is summative in that it provides assessments of the overall utility and value of the Family Engineering curriculum; it is “early” in the developmental lifetime of Family Engineering in that much of it is based on data collected prior to the launch of the final product.

Intended Audience

The audiences for this report are people interested in implementing Family Engineering programs in different settings, people interested in engineering education more broadly, potential funders of family engineering programs, and the larger STEM education field.

Other possible audiences: Science and Math Educators, Reform Leaders, District Administrators School and general public.


Any and all errors are claimed by the authors of this document, Inverness Research, Inc.

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