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Project-based learning (PBL), a learning environment in which projects drive learning, has been successfully used in various courses in the educational programs of different disciplines. However, concerns have been raised as to the breadth of the content covered and, in particular, whether PBL can be applied to specialized subjects without compromising the coverage of the required technical content. This paper discusses the advantages and drawbacks of using the PBL methodology in teaching specialized subjects in electrical power engineering, based on the authors' reflections and student feedback. The design and delivery of a PBL-based course in power system modeling and analysis is used as an example. It is asserted that proper usage of PBL makes it possible to deliver both technical content and generic professional skills in a specialized course.
Date of Publication: Nov. 2012