An exploratory study of how scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTl) inspires the use of the CDIO framework in engineering education

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Peer-Reviewed Research
  • SDG 8
  • SDG 4
  • Abstract:

    The traditional perspective of teaching has for a long time been centred on “how much” content has been learnt by the students, resulting in the lecture method as the main teaching method. However, this method of teaching is progressively being replaced by one that focuses on “how well” the content has been learnt. According to Huber & Hutchings (2005), students are subsequently engaged more actively and become masters of their own learning. The Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) undoubtedly enhances the development of innovative ways of teaching through learning practices that reflect on evidence. Through the reflection on evidence, and communication of results, SoTL has inspired a progressively innovative teaching method in the core module Professional Orientation, a project-based, first-year module presented in the UP EBIT ENGAGE programme. By inquiry and reflection on the way Professional Orientation students learn when doing the project activities in one project, the LEGO tower crane project, progressive re-curriculation had been done from 2010 to 2014. With the 2014 LEGO project, positive results were noted – a higher mean statistic (result) and a lower standard deviation statistic for the total weights lifted. Student feedback on conducting the project activities and on teamwork, were also positive. Future LEGO projects may yield even better results if lecturers employ a more holistic assessment rubric to include aspects such as the optimization of the budget. In general, the application of the CDIO framework as used in the LEGO project has additionally been found to enhance the integration of a student's learning experiences in acquiring knowledge for his or her/her discipline as well as developing skills such as teamwork, goal setting, conflict resolution and effective communication.