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Blended Design and Project Based Learning: a future for engineering education
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Tuesday, December 8 • 1:45pm - 2:00pm
| 5A | Debate Activity as an Effective Interactive Learning Approach for Civil Engineering Students

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Conducting critical review and being a critical thinker are two major competencies expected from Civil Engineering students after graduation from university. Despite the emphasis on the above skills as the obtained graduate attributes, industry has expressed concerns about inability of students to integrate teamwork, communication, and oral presentation skills with critical thinking (investigators’ industry network and previously reported by Roy & Macchiette, 2005 and Scott 2009). Although traditional teaching techniques such as lectures and classroom quizzes and exams help students to obtain the technical knowledge and assess themselves, implementing debates in engineering subjects can effectively facilitate critical thinking as well as oral presentation skills. Vo and Morris (2006) used debate to supplement the traditional lecture by engaging the learner allowing the teachers to create an environment that supports students move away from just receiving knowledge into an atmosphere of active participation. Additionally, as highlighted by Dickson (2004), debating contemporary issues in the classroom can be an invaluable approach for encouraging critical thinking.

The research team has attempted to improve the learning experience of Civil Engineering students by introducing debate activities in engineering subjects. This will encourage the students to be active learners (against passive learner or lecture receivers). The research team considers this process as an activity (what students actually do) and not a task (the work prescribed by the teacher). In this project, a main stream civil engineering subject, namely Soil Behaviour which is a third year undergraduate subject is targeted. 


Tuesday December 8, 2015 1:45pm - 2:00pm
Rincon Room RACV Torquay map C3

Attendees (5)