Professor Bielefeldt’s research focuses on various aspects of engineering education, with particular interest in ethics education, social responsibility, service-learning, education for sustainability, and diversity. She is also actively involved in the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SOTL) involving her courses and undergraduate research mentoring.

Bielefeldt was a driving force behind the creation of the PhD degree in Engineering Education at CU Boulder (approved by the Board of Regents in April 2023), which will be recruiting its first cohort of doctoral students for Fall 2024 [Link for more information]. The degree program will allow students flexibility to select education-focused coursework (minimum 12 credits) and technical coursework (engineering or computer science, minimum 9 credits), with additional graduate coursework (to total 30 course credits overall plus 30 credits of dissertation). The doctoral degree is housed in the Integrated Design Engineering Program, and faculty from across campus will affiliate (including from the College of Engineering & Applied Science, School of Education, and the College of Arts and Sciences). Email Dr. Bielefeldt for more information on the program. 

Link to more information on research and publications at: Angela R. Bielefeldt on ResearchGate and Google Scholar


Design and Development: Colorado Science and Engineering Inquiry Collaborative (ScEnIC)


ADVANCE Partnership: Strategic Partnership for Alignment of Community Engagement in STEM (SPACES)


Research Initiation: Enhancing Engineering Students’ Innovation Self-Efficacy through Design of K-12 STEM Projects


Past Projects


Efficacy of Macroethics Education in Engineering

  • CCE-STEM, National Science Foundation. 
  • Grant #1540348, #1540341, #1540308, #1755390. Abstract
  • coPIs: Chris Swan (Tufts University), Nathan Canney (Seattle University/CYS Engineers).
  • Research team: Daniel Knight (Research Associate), Madeline Polmear (PhD student), Jake Lewis (CU MS student), David Zhao (CU undergraduate student).
  • Publications:
    • Analysis of Macroethics Teaching Practices and Perceptions in Engineering: Comparison of Educators Within and Outside the United States. European Journal of Engineering Education, 2019. Abstract
    • Disciplinary Variations in Ethics and Societal Impact Topics Taught in Courses for Engineering Students. ASCE Journal of Professional Issues in Engineering Education and Practice. 2019. 145(4). Abstract.
    • Ethics Education of Undergraduate and Graduate Students in Environmental Engineering and Related Disciplines, Environmental Engineering Science, 2018. Abstract
    • Intersections between Engineering Ethics and Diversity Issues in Engineering Education, Journal of Professional Issues in Engineering Education and Practice, 144 (2), April 2018. Abstract
    • Macroethics and Microethics Education of Biomedical Engineering Students in the United States, Ethics in Biology, Engineering and Medicine: An International Journal, 7 (1-2), 2016. Abstract
    • Faculty Perceptions of Challenges to Educating Engineering and Computing Students About Ethics and Societal Impacts. 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition. Best Paper Engineering Ethics Division. Abstract
    • Challenges and Opportunities: Faculty Views on the State of Macroethical Education in Engineering, 2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition. Abstract
    • Incorporation of Ethics and Societal Impact Issues into First-Year Engineering Courses: Results of a National Survey, 2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition. Best paper First-Year Programs Division. Abstract
    • Incorporation of Ethics and Societal Impact Issues into Senior Capstone Design Courses: Results of a National Survey, 2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition. Abstract

Leadership Behavioral Complexity Among Engineering Capstone Design Students

  • Chancellor's Award for Excellence in STEM Education grant, University of Colorado Boulder. 
  • Research team: Rebecca Komarek
  • Abstract: This study borrows from business literature to implement the assessment of leadership behavioral complexity using the Competing Values Framework in engineering capstone classes, encouraging the integration of leadership training into courses already required. Survey data will be used to assess the changes in leadership behavioral complexity among students during their capstone experience (full year and single semester) and after a short leadership‐focused intervention. Furthermore, comparisons are drawn among self, peer and instructor assessments of leadership behavioral complexity. Finally, institutional and demographic data will be used to understand what experiential and environmental factors affect levels of leadership behavioral complexity.
  • Publications:
    • R. Komarek, D. Knight, A. Bielefeldt, "Evolution of Leadership Behaviors During Two-Semester Capstone Design Course in Mechanical Engineering." 2018 American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) Annual Conference & Exposition. Salt Lake City, UT. 13 pp. https://peer.asee.org/30460
    • R. Komarek, D. Knight, A. Bielefeldt, "Exploring the Use of the Competing Values Framework in Engineering Education." 2017 American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) Annual Conference & Exposition. 18 pp. https://peer.asee.org/28343

Other Past Projects

  • Co-PI. “REU Site in Environmental Sustainability.” National Science Foundation. PI Lupita Montoya. 2013-2016. Website: https://www.colorado.edu/reu/ 
    • Example publication: Bielefeldt, A.R., L.D. Montoya, G. Rulifson. 2017. Methods Matter: Contrasting Undergraduate Research Experience Outcomes based on Surveys and Interview Methods. ASEE/IEEE Frontiers in Education (FIE) Conference. Oct. 18-21. Indianapolis, IN. 8 pp.
  • PI. “Assessing Engineering Students’ Understanding of Social Responsibility from Undergraduate and Graduate Education into Professional Life.” National Science Foundation EEC. 2012-2016.
  • PI. “Collaborative Research: Engineering Faculty Engagement in Learning Through Service.”  National Science Foundation. 2010-2014.
    • Link for more information: https://www.colorado.edu/faculty/bielefeldt/research/engineering-faculty-engagement-learning-through-service
    • Example publications:
      • Paterson, K.G., A.R. Bielefeldt, C.W. Swan, G. Rulifson, D. Kazmer, O. Pierrakos. 2013. Designing Value into Engineering Learning Through Service Activities Using a Blueprint Model.  International Journal for Service Learning in Engineering, Humanitarian Engineering and Social Entrepreneurship. 8 (Fall Special Issue), 64-83. ISSN 1555-9033. http://library.queensu.ca/ojs/index.php/ijsle/issue/view/461.
      • Bielefeldt, A.R., C. Swan, K. Paterson, D.O. Kazmer, O. Pierrakos. 2015. Learning Through Service Engineering Faculty: Characteristics and Changes over Time. American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) Annual Conference and Exposition Proceedings. June 15-17. Seattle, WA. Paper ID #12480. DOI: 10.18260/p.24415. 18 pp. https://peer.asee.org/24415
      • Tucker, B.G., D.O. Kazmer, A.R. Bielefeldt, K. Paterson, O. Pierrakos, A. Soisson, C. Swan. 2014. The Reflective Learner: Perspectives of Engineering Faculty Engaged in Learning Through Service.  International Journal for Service Learning in Engineering, Humanitarian Engineering and Social Entrepreneurship. 9 (2), 29-46.  https://doi.org/10.24908/ijsle.v9i2.5448
  • PI.  “REU Site in Environmental Engineering.”  National Science Foundation.  2010 – 2013; 2006-2009. Website: http://spot.colorado.edu/~bielefel/REU.html
  • PI. “Collaborative Proposal:  Evaluation of Sustainable Engineering Education via Service Learning Efforts in Engineering.” National Science Foundation. 2009-2011
    • Example publications:
      • McCormick, M., A.R. Bielefeldt, C. Swan, K. Paterson. 2015. Assessing Students’ Motivation to Engage in Sustainable Engineering. International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education. 16 (2), 136-154. DOI 10.1108/IJSHE-06-2013-0054.
      • McCormick, M., K. Lawyer, J. Wiggins, C. Swan, K. Paterson, A.R. Bielefeldt. 2015. Sustainable Engineering Assessment Using Rubric-Based Analysis of Challenge Question Responses. Journal of Professional Issues in Engineering Education and Practice. 141(2). 10.1061/(ASCE)EI.1943-5541.0000211.