LEARNING BY-DOING: AN ACTIVE STRATEGY TO IMPROVE THE TEACHING-LEARNING PROCESS IN TECHNICAL TRAINING. A CASE STUDY IN ELECTRICAL AND ELECTRONICS ENGINEERING
University of Zaragoza (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN15 Proceedings
Publication year: 2015
Conference name: 7th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 6-8 July, 2015
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Abstract:Nowadays, the learning mode has evolved from a classroom learning to distance learning and virtual classroom. Different technologies have also helped in the process of developing content for students. Thus the knowledge society has become a learning society. The aim of learning by-doing is to improve knowledge, skills and competence with a personal, social or civic perspective. However the development of a new educational environment through learning by-doing provides several implications to the way students learn, for example in the teacher's role and functions of the teaching and learning process. An important change has produced in the teaching-learning paradigm where the educational methodologies are designed to evaluate the student effort. Motivation is essential in the teaching of various knowledge disciplines, especially the associated with the Electrical, Electronics and Telecommunications Engineering. In this sense, the incorporation of active-collaborative methodologies such as learning by-doing allows that the student should reach a much more significant learning in order to develop others educational competences such as: formal and informal learning or social and technical abilities; while it assumes the responsibility of his own learning.
Learning by-doing has become an important concept in higher technical education. Most science and engineering educators believe that the learning by-doing in the laboratory is a necessary supplement to the relatively passive experiences of reading textbooks and listening to lectures, which comprise a large part of the student life in universities. In addition, it was noted that the use of this teaching and learning methodologies may bring some advantages especially with regard to research and clarify doubts in real time. Learning by-doing is a very effective idea to acquire knowledge, if students are well motivated. Thereby experimental learning and the suitable laboratories utilization have a crucial role in the education of the future engineers; however there is a discussion among different educators about which technology types should be used (real, remote or virtual labs). Applications focused in learning by-doing allow to speed-up the learning process; this facilitates the design and implementation of active strategies in the classroom. Moreover, it has been shown that these experimental activities are an important resource in the educational context for subjects like physics and engineering.
Teaching and learning methods at universities are under a constant review process in these last years. When it’s applied a new teaching methodology, always a question appears: Do they reach the same knowledge level as in classical methodologies? Can this new procedure be applied everywhere at anytime in engineering? These methodologies are adequately assessed? This paper attempts to answer this series of questions and remove doubts on the use of these active methodologies. In fact, there is a balance between the quantity and quality of knowledge that a student can acquire on a given topic and the number of hours spent by the teacher. However, it is doubtful if student are able to perceive the amount of knowledge they have acquired with the application of these new active methodologies. It’s necessary to indicate also the importance of the ICT’s (Information and Communication Technologies) in the university classroom and his possibilities to develop new manners of learning.
Keywords: Learning by-doing, Experimental Learning, Autonomous Learning, Knowledge Integration, Learning and Teaching Methodologies, Learning Experiences in Education.