A Description and Analysis of Multimodal Learning Environments in North America for Future CDIO Workspaces Implementation

A Description and Analysis of Multimodal Learning Environments in North America for Future CDIO Workspaces Implementation

C. Fortin, G. Huet, E. Crawley (2008).  A Description and Analysis of Multimodal Learning Environments in North America for Future CDIO Workspaces Implementation. 14.


CDIO programs foster active learning and project based courses, which are key for the learning of disciplinary knowledge, design skills and also provide opportunities to improve students’ personal and inter-personal skills in an information rich environment. Workspaces that can support this type of hands-on learning are fundamental, and one of the twelve CDIO standards therefore recommends that participating institutions provide workspaces that are student- centered, user-friendly, accessible, and interactive. Workspaces have been developed in many universities worldwide and particularly within institutions collaborating within the CDIO initiative. This paper focuses first on a brief description and comparison of three innovative Multimodal Learning Environments (MLE) in North America, implemented at institutions that are collaborating within the CDIO initiative.

These initiatives are the Integrated Teaching and Learning Laboratory (ITLL) at University of Colorado in Boulder (USA), the Aeronautics and Astronautics Learning Laboratory for Complex Systems at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge (USA) and the Integrated Learning Centre (ILC) at Queen’s University in Kingston (Canada).

The objective of this comparative study is to provide guidelines to the CDIO community for the implementation of such facilities and to bring forward some of the lessons learned generated by these past endeavors. A selected number of quantifiable parameters are proposed and applied to a MLE currently under development at École Polytechnique Montreal. The paper hence proposes a framework, which aims to help future workspaces development by identifying the key characteristics related to the design, implementation and operation of CDIO student multimodal workspaces. 


Authors (New): 
Clément Fortin
Greg Huet
Edward F. Crawley
École Polytechnique de Montréal, Canada
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA
Multimodal Learning Environment
Spatial settings
Teaching and learning modes
CDIO workspaces
Crawley E.F.,Malmqvist J., Ostlund S., &Brodeur D. (2007). Rethinking Engineering Education: The CDIO Approach. New York, NY: Springer.: 
DymC.L.,Agogino A.M., Eris O., Frey D.D., &Leifer L.J. (2005). Engineering design thinking, teaching, and learning.Journal of Engineering Education, 94 (1), pp. 103-120.: 
Crawley E.F.,Hallam C.R.A., &Imrich S. (2002). Engineering the engineering learning environment. CASI.: 
Strong D.S.,&McCowan J.D. (2005). Effective workspace for engineering education: the Integrated Learning Centre at Queen’s University in Kingston.Proceedings of the 1st annual CDIO conference, Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario, Canada, June 7-8.: 
Young P.W.,Malmqvist J., Hallström S., Kuttenkeuler J., Svensson T., & Cunningham G. (2005). Design and development of CDIO student workspaces – Lessons learned.Proceedings of the 2005 ASEE Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon, June 12-15.: 
Carlson L., &Sullivan J. (2006). A multi-disciplinary design environment.Proceedings of IDETC/CIE 2006 ASME 2006 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences & Computers and Information in Engineering Conference, September 10-13, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA: 
Wallin, H-P. &Östlund, S. (2002). CDIO Workshops and Laboratories Survey for the Vehicle Engineering Program at Royal Institute of Technology, Technical Report, Department of Vehicle Engineering, KTH, Stockholm, Sweden.: 
Gunnarsson S., Eles P., Krantz-Rülcker T., &Frykman, P. (????). Survey of Laboratory Exercises within the Applied Physics and Electrical Engineering (Y) program at Linköping University.Technical Report, Applied Physics and Electrical Engineering, Linköping University, Sweden.: 
Scott-Webber L. (2004). In-sync-Environmental behavior research and the design of learning spaces. Ann Arbor, MI: The Society for College and University Planning.: 
Go to top