PROJECT-BASED EDUCATION, REDISCOVERING FUN IN LEARNING
Project-based teaching of physics, electronics, electricity, mechanics ... is more than linking the environment of students and these subjects. It requires a thoughtful instructional design of the lesson to combine the theoretical parts of the course with the technical aspects throughout the project, to choose and to treat topics in a meaningful way.
This project was organized in the first year of the Bachelor’s degree in electromechanics (2/60 credits).
This project combines different educational approaches using new technologies to teach students not only theoretical topics and practical skills, but also competences and attitudes using a multidisciplinary approach. The subject, changing a pocketbike into an ecological pocketbike, is a motivating topic. The organizational aspects, the educational approaches with new technologies and the evaluation method can be transferred to other projects.
"Pocketbike Project" is based on teamwork. Students are challenged with: "Make your pocketbike ecological".
The students use the EPARR scientific method rules(explore, prepare, act, reflect and report) to guide them through the research (inquiry based learning).
At the start of each session, the entire class group takes a multiple choice test about a research assignment using an audience response system. Following that, subgroups start to complete the various assignments (technical, research, communicative & administrative). Subsequently each subgroup has to communicate with the other subgroups about the gathered information, ideas, problems and solutions using the jigsaw method. Finally the entire class group is re-tested (peer instruction).
Students are evaluated for the different assignments. The assignments focuses each on another skill. The competences like commitment, teamwork, critical reflection, ... are evaluated through observation with a checklist and through peer assessment.
We are currently working on a survey of student’s perception and are analysing the evaluation of the students. In the presentation we will give the outcome of the project and share our experiences and conclusions on improvements for next year’s program.