Alignment of Student Expectation and Teacher Communication of CDIO - Building a New Education Using CDIO

Alignment of Student Expectation and Teacher Communication of CDIO - Building a New Education Using CDIO

L. Jensen, J. Aagaard, P. Andersson (2012).  Alignment of Student Expectation and Teacher Communication of CDIO - Building a New Education Using CDIO. 8.


By September 2011 the National Food Institute, part of the Technical University of Denmark (DTU), started a new education in food analysis. The education is a Bachelor of Engineering program spanning over 3½ years. At DTU a decision was made approximately 7 years ago that CDIO should be implemented as a teaching paradigm in all Bachelor of Engineering education programs. Hence this new education is developed in a CDIO context. At the National Food Institute this gives some special challenges. Being a former research institute, education has not been one of the cornerstones in the institute and very few employees had the pedagogical knowledge of teaching and had at the most a very limited teaching experience from occasionally being guest lecturers. At the same time, students at this new education program in food analysis have a quite different profile compared to the classical engineering students at DTU. 

To acknowledge these challenges, the central teaching developing unit at DTU, Learning Lab DTU, and the National Food Institute started a project to align the student expectation with engineering education of the coming teachers’ in the principles of CDIO. Students just graduating high school were not schooled to take responsibility for their own acquiring of knowledge and were adapted to being told what to do and reminded by the teachers. Teachers on the other hand were more focused on research and discipline. 

The aims of this project are twofold. One aim is to find the right strategies to implement CDIO as a teaching paradigm and to qualify the teachers to teach in accordance with the CDIO principles and methods, at the same time as this new education is constructed. Another aim is to work with, and investigate, the students’ development in a CDIO context with special focus on their perception of engineers and engineering practice. The overall question is what impact CDIO as a teaching paradigm has on the students’ formation of their identities as engineers. To investigate and seek the answer to this question and to understand what strategies work most efficiently to implement CDIO within the conditions of this education, the project includes a longitudinal study including focus group interviews with students and a systematically follow up and triangulation of the students’ results and grades linked to the teaching methods each study year. In this paper the first initial study from the students’ experiences from the first year of their education will be reported. Already during the first year a development in the way they perceive their education and their future roles as engineers can be reported. 


Authors (New): 
Lars Bogø Jensen
Julie Maria Aagaard
Pernille H Andersson
Technical University of Denmark, Denmark
CDIO as Context
National Food Institute
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