College Directory

Benjamin Ahn

  • Assistant Professor

Main Office

2249 Howe Hall
Ames, IA 50011-2271
Phone: 515-294-6491


  • Ph.D., Engineering Education, Purdue University
  • M.S., Aeronautics and Astronautics Engineering, Purdue University
  • B.E., Aerospace Engineering, University of New South Wales

Interest Areas

  • Engineering education
  • Assessment development
  • Student-centered pedagogy


Benjamin’s research focuses on improving engineering undergraduate education in classrooms and research settings. Specifically, his research interests include

  • integrating student-centered pedagogy and technology in engineering mechanic and aerospace engineering classrooms and assessing the effect of such integration on student learning,
  • designing effective summer or year-long undergraduate research (UR) experiences,
  • assessing the development of undergraduates’ research skills, and
  • examining the roles of graduate student and postdoctoral research mentors in UR settings.
  • developing and examining engineering students’ leadership skills during their undergraduate years.

Brief Biography

Benjamin obtained a B.E. in Aerospace from the University of New South Wales (Australia), an M.S. in Aeronautics and Astronautics from Purdue University, and a Ph.D. in Engineering Education, also from Purdue University. Prior to joining Iowa State University, he was a postdoctoral associate for the MIT-SUTD Collaboration at MIT.

Selected Publications

  • Saulnier, C. R., Ahn, B., Bagiati, A., & Brisson, J. G. (2015). Leadership development through design based wilderness education. International Journal of Engineering Pedagogy, 5(1), 47-56.
  • Ahn, B., Cox, M. F., London, J., Cekic, O., & Zhu, J. (2014). Creating an instrument to measure leadership, change, and synthesis in engineering undergraduate. Journal of Engineering Education, 103(1), 115-136.
  • Ahn, B., Cox, M. F., Zephirin, T., Taylor, K., Osagiede, A., Haller, Y., Groll, E., & Adams, S. G. (2014). Designing courses using case studies and content, assessment, and pedagogy to cultivate professional skills among engineering students. International Journal of Engineering Education, 30(6B), 1621-1635.
  • Ahn, B., Cox, M. F., Diefes-Dux, H., & Capobianco, B. (2013, June). Examining the skills and methods of graduate student mentors in an undergraduate research setting. 120th American Society of Engineering Education Annual Conference and Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia.
  • Ferguson, D. M., Cawthorne, J. E., Ahn, B., & Ohland, M. W. (2013). Engineering innovativeness. Journal of Engineering Entrepreneurship, 4(1), 1-17.
  • Ahn, B., Ismailov, M., & Heister, S. D. (2012). Experimental study swirl injector dynamic response using a hydro-mechanical pulsator. Journal of Propulsion and Power, 28(3), 585-595.

Positions Available

Three Ph.D. positions, Engineering Mechanics program in mechanics and materials, Anson Marston Distinguished Professor Valery Levitas group

Three positions available to perform work on federally funded projects on modeling stress-induced phase transformations, plasticity, and their interactions at nano-, micro-, and macroscales. For more information and how to apply, click here.

Aerospace Engineering Hours

  • Office, 1200 Howe: Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Spring Break office hours, March 18-22: 7:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
  • Howe Hall: Monday-Saturday, 6 a.m.-10:30 p.m.; Sunday, 7 a.m.-10:30 p.m.
  • Emergency contact: Building supervisor Jim Benson, 515-294-4946