Engineering and Physics Faculty Research and Publications


Shame Amid Academic Success: An Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis Case Study of a Student’s Experience with Emotions in Engineering

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date



Shame provides a key mechanism of social inclusion and exclusion in engineering contexts. In order to better understand how engineering students experience shame, we used interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA) to critically examine the individual experience of shame in the case of a high-performing, White woman who was a junior mechanical engineering major at a faith-based university (n=1). In particular, we attended to the complex relationship between personal expectations that formed the context for her shame experiences: achieving excellence in performing tasks while maintaining strong social relationships with others. We discuss the implications of this single case study on broader narratives of inclusion in the context of engineering education.


This paper was presented at the 2018 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition held June 23-27, 2018.

Copyright held by

American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE)