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The rise of student-to-student learning: Youth-led programs impacting engineering education globally

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2 Author(s)
O'Shea, J. ; Student Platform for Eng. Educ. Dev., Adelaide, SA, Australia ; Delaine, D.A.

Around the globe, students and young engineers are playing an increasing role in the coordination and delivery of engineering education programs. Many youth-led initiatives are now conducted with students involved in all aspects of their creation, organisation and delivery. This trend presents an exciting opportunity for the education of engineering students, both those involved in delivery of the courses and for participants. This paper profiles four leading youth-led engineering education programs and analyses their structure and growth in recent years. Profiled are initiatives coordinated by Engineers Without Borders Australia (EWB-A); the Board of European Students of Technology (BEST); the Electrical Engineering Students' European Association (EESTEC); and the Student Platform for Engineering Education Development (SPEED). Each case study includes a brief history of the organisation, program overview, growth analysis and future projections. The common features amongst these programs were analysed, as were the aspects which made them distinct from traditional university offerings. Key findings about the initiatives include: an international focus; the mixture of formal learning and social aspects; an integral role of volunteers within the organisation; the use of residential programs; and the role of internal professional development of committee members and volunteers. Additionally, this paper outlines the benefits for universities and provides a guide for how engineering faculties can support and nurture these initiatives and effectively create partnerships.

Published in:

Global Engineering Education Conference (EDUCON), 2011 IEEE

Date of Conference:

4-6 April 2011