Evaluation of National Engineers Week Future City Program
National Engineers Week Foundation (EWeek) hired Concord Evaluation Group (CEG) in 2011 to conduct an independent evaluation of the Future City program (http://futurecity.org). Future City has been operating since 1992. According to EWeek, the Future City program is “a national, project-based learning experience where students in 6th, 7th, and 8th grade imagine, design, and build cities of the future. Students work as a team with an educator and engineer mentor to plan cities using SimCityTM 4 Deluxe software; research and write solutions to an engineering problem; build tabletop scale models with recycled materials; and present their ideas before judges at Regional Competitions in January. Regional winners represent their region at the National Finals in Washington, DC in February.” The evaluation study was designed to capture general data from all Future City participants through surveys administered to students, parents, and mentors at the Regional Competitions (some regions were unable to administer the surveys on competition day and administered them immediately after). Teachers and Regional Coordinators were surveyed online after the competition in all regions. In addition, the evaluation study was designed to collect in-depth data from a sample of programs from across the country. Five regions volunteered to take part in site visits (ID, MA, KS, NJ, and IN). Within these regions, Regional Coordinators contacted teachers to identify those who were interested in participating in the site visits. Our final Site Visit sample included 19 schools across five states.