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A. García-Rubio1, J.M. Paz-García2, C. Gómez-Lahoz1, C. Vereda-Alonso1, F. García-Herruz1, J.M. Rodríguez-Maroto1

1University of Málaga (SPAIN)
2Technical University of Denmark (DENMARK)
The subject "Simulation and Optimization of Chemical Processes" of the 5th year of the degree in Chemical Engineering has undergone a two academic years teaching experience in the framework of an Innovation Project of the University of Malaga. This experience is described on another paper of this conference, and basically consisted in the movement of the face-to-face instruction towards the computer classroom and the implementation of the e-mentoring or e-tutoring actions via the MOODLE platform. Here we present the evolution of the results and evaluation of the experience.
The change in the teaching methodology has required a continuous monitoring of the student learning as well as of their satisfaction as students. The tracking process was mainly implemented using some of the tools available in the MOODLE platform, which is used by the University of Málaga to create learning communities online. The satisfaction as students was monitored by anonymous surveys performed a few weeks before the end of the term. In particular, the main activity used in the virtual learning environment was the "Workshops", which was supported with other resources: doubts forum, criticisms and suggestions forum, instant messaging and internal email.
Regarding to the e-tutoring via the MOODLE platform, the participation of the students in the activities was always very high in both academic years (above 80%). In particular, an important increase of the contributions to the criticisms and suggestions forum is observed from the academic years 2008-09 to 2009-2010 (6-fold increase). Besides this quantitative increase, a qualitative change is observed in the authorship of the contributions; more than half of the contributions to this forum in the academic year 2008-09 were done using a fictitious student identity, on the contrary this fictitious identity was never used in the academic year 2009-10. Therefore, the need of the anonymous personality for a correct feedback process should be assessed.
Regarding to the anonymous surveys, the differences between the results obtained in the two academic years do not have statistical significance. The results indicate that the procedural changes introduced were well received by the students enrolled on the both academic years. A very high percentage of the students considered that the skills acquired during the course would be useful for their future professional lives. On the other hand, although they perceive the subject as of medium difficulty, they declared about 12 hours of personal work per week in the first year (4 hour of classroom teaching per week), which is well above the guidelines of the European Higher Education Area (EHEA), and 6 hours per week in the second year (target of EHEA).
Finally, we would like to emphasize the high success rate achieved in the student groups of the two academic years probably due to their continued work and dedication to the subject.