Proactive Student Learning: Towards Innovation in Engineering Education
(English)Article in journal, Editorial material (Other academic) Submitted
This paper investigates student prerequisites for innovation in education. It looks at the level of proactivity and autonomy in students taking two full-year engineering design masters-level project courses. This research is rooted in what traditionally is categorized as a problem-based learning course. The paper presents strategies to improve the quality of student learning by shaping learning activities to encourage strong self-discipline and motivation to perform. The case studies address activities that contributed to radical new outputs and a total of three patent applications. Outcome-based project learning is frequently cited across a multitude of studies in the field, but evidence is scarce regarding the characteristics that drive early-phase innovation efforts and maximize students’ level of autonomy. This paper shows that early-phase innovation excels through deep-level learning, where embedded knowledge is applied in and stimulated by peer interactions. Proactive characteristics are apparent in work motivation, time on task and overall performance. Clearly stated learning objectives are critical in curricula design, in combination with open and flexible coaching that nurtures the intrinsic motivation to learn, participate and understand future work roles and processes.
proactivity, student, learning, innovation, motivation, project, engineering, design
Engineering and Technology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-133897OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-133897DiVA: diva2:663462
QS 20132013-11-112013-11-112013-11-12Bibliographically approved