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Abstract

Team-based learning (TBL) is one of the most important instructional strategies used in engineering education. It emulates real-life professional situations where most activities tend to be team-based. TBL helps to develop intrinsic motivation as per the self-deterministic theory and aides to develop ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology) criteria such as, the ability to work in multidisciplinary teams and the ability to communicate effectively. TBL helps in developing other abilities such as to conduct and design experiments, to design a system, component or process and to identify, formulate and solve engineering problems and to understand the impact of engineering solutions in global and societal context, etc. Addition of project based learning (PBL) enhances all the benefits of TBL. Given these benefits, we have been employing the strategy in many of our courses. In this paper we illustrate its usage in two non-traditional sophomore courses – “Liberal Learning” and “Innovation and Creativity”. In the Liberal Learning course students learnt non-engineering areas on their own in clusters of 15 students and in Innovation and Creativity course they chose to do innovative team projects based on their passions.

We received overwhelmingly positive feedback for both the courses. In the case of Liberal Learning, students seem to have liked the course and its approach. Besides the overall theme, they liked the freedom offered to them to choose topics and opportunities to make presentations. Interestingly, one-third of the students who provided feedback did not dislike anything. Some of them wanted more time and more credit for the course which can be considered as positive feedback. Students conveyed their liking for the Innovation and Creativity course by giving the highest votes for course plan. The ‘disliked’ factors that captured the highest votes were paucity of time which can be considered as a positive feedback. The strategy does require some efforts on the part of faculty but the returns are more than worth the efforts.

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/content/papers/10.5339/qproc.2015.elc2014.40
2015-08-29
2019-10-16
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