link to The University of Texas at Austin - What Starts Here Changes The World
link to UTeach Natural Sciences link to Cockrell School of Engineering
About Undergraduate Programs Graduate Program High School Course Research and Publications
link to UTeachEngineering Home
Apply to a Program Current Students Alumni Program Archives Contact Us

Professional Development
About the ESIT Program


Professional Development: About the ESIT Program

The Engineering Summer Institute for Teachers (ESIT) was offered during the 2009-2011 summers and was an in-depth, hands-on, six-week exploration of engineering design, problem-solving, and pedagogy. Working with university faculty and experienced Master Teachers, ESIT participants completed directed and open-ended design challenges, explored the engineering profession, became critical consumers of engineering curriculum, and walked away with the tools to immediately incorporate design-based instruction into their courses.

Participants spent up to 40 hours per week engaged in active class and lab work and devoted additional hours to completing out-of-class readings and projects.

Participants in the ESIT program benefited from:

  • A stipend, as well as housing and travel assistance for out-of-town participants
  • Continuing education credits or other appropriate credits
  • Online resources
  • Access to Master Teachers and Engineering and Education faculty who supported them throughout the program and beyond
  • A statewide network of teachers working in this new field

ESIT included two integrated components:

Engineering Design Methods (EDM): an engaging, meaningful, and hands-on introduction to what engineers really do. EDM drew content from the foundations of engineering science across multiple disciplines to create contextualized engineering design projects that also covered essential elements as defined by the State of Texas in the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) for engineering. Teachers began with a vehicle design challenge, covered reverse engineering and product redesign of a hair dryer and tackled automation and control (think Robotics!). The course culminated with teachers completing an open-ended design challenge focusing on the engineering design process.

Engineering Education: Research Reform and Practice: an exploration of issues in engineering and engineering education, including accountability; curriculum mapping and alignment; school-to-work issues; and equity issues, including gender, cultural and language issues.

Over 100 teachers from across Texas have participated in the program. For information on our current professional development offerings, please visit

"This was a tremendous program. The content was great, but equally as beneficial were the class discussions between teachers, the field trips, and the future availability of the ESIT organizers." (UT Austin participant)

link to College of Natural Science link to The College of Education link to Center for Energy and Environmental Resources link to Austin Independent School District link to Natural Science Foundation
link to UT Offices A-Z link to UT Directory link to Campus Parking Maps link to UT Search link to UT Home