Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Teaching and Learning

First Committee Member

Hasan Deniz

Second Committee Member

LeAnn Putney

Third Committee Member

Randall Boone

Fourth Committee Member

Merryn Cole

Fifth Committee Member

Mohamed Trabia

Number of Pages



The recent science education standards placed a special emphasis on engineering design to build a foundation of students’ learning in engineering and enhance their scientific understanding by using engineering as a real-world context. However, the standards documents put a strong focus on engineering design without providing a comprehensive outlook on the features of the engineering discipline. Such an approach could deprive students of the chance to develop disciplinary knowledge and understand the connections between engineering, science, technology, and society. In this respect, the aim of this study was to illuminate the epistemic aspects of engineering for K-12 science and engineering education. In this study, a mixed methodology which incorporates constructivist and pragmatic paradigms was performed. A three-round Delphi study was conducted with an expert panel including practicing engineers in industry, researchers in the field of philosophy/history of engineering, and engineering/science educators. The themes, drawn from the Delphi study, were further analyzed and discussed with the experts in the field of K-12 science and engineering education. The constructivist grounded theory was employed in order to analyze the data. The study unraveled twenty-three themes coupled with twelve overarching themes with respect to the epistemic aspects of engineering. The conceptual framework which sheds light on the epistemic aspects of engineering could be invaluable for teacher preparation, professional development programs, and for those who are concerned with enhancing their daily classroom practices as well as K-12 curriculum developers and policymakers.


Curriculum and Instruction; Delphi Study; Engineering Education; Epistemology; K-12 Education


Science and Mathematics Education

File Format


File Size

15900 KB

Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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