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Using active learning to teach technical and non-technical skills in the same course

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2 Author(s)
R. Martinazzi ; Eng. Technol. Div., Pittsburgh Univ., PA, USA ; J. Samples

The use of student teams to teach collaboratively is a model applicable to what engineers will be doing in their professional life. The sense of working with others and depending on their competence is important in any team project. The authors describe an educational program which leads to the development of this team atmosphere and allows students to work through the pitfalls in a comfortable environment. The development of other skills is a spin-off that is immensely important to all professionals who deal with the public. It is also a recognized weakness in the engineering profession that must be addressed. The responses of the students who have experienced this program illustrate the obvious advantages to addressing these weaknesses. Finally, the apparent willingness of students to subjugate grades in favor of greater learning objectives is inspirational. This occurs in some measure because the course emphasizes the holistic development of the students from their first to last terms. Students learn to believe that the whole is greater than the sum of the parts; that teams can do much more than individuals

Published in:

Frontiers in Education Conference, 1997. 27th Annual Conference. Teaching and Learning in an Era of Change. Proceedings.  (Volume:1 )

Date of Conference:

5-8 Nov 1997