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S. Oliver del Olmo1, B. Amante García2, C. Romero García3

1Autonomous University of Barcelona (SPAIN)
2Polytechnical University of Catalonia (SPAIN)
3Universidad Europea de Madrid (SPAIN)
Today’s society is undergoing constant changes and this is reflected in the way the working world is structured. Not to mention, such pattern should play an important role in the university curricula since there is an increasing need of qualified professionals who will have to face such challenging changes and will have to prove, hence, their effective competences’ training besides from an efficient skill in the Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs).

In this sense, the 21st Century university should be able to offer its students suitable learning tools to become successful professionals of such a dynamic working world. Among other abilities, university students should become competent autonomous learners and it is with this goal in mind that the Tunning Project aims at implementing active methodologies in the classroom by enhancing content learning and competence acquisition simultaneously and, very often, through the use of the ICTs, among other methodological tools.

Therefore, in this paper we include a comparative study of the efficiency of new learning methodologies implementation in a wide range of subjects from different degrees, which, at the same time, belong to different academic cycles at university. Besides, we have also focused on the role of the ICTs as a main piece in the learning process. Our main objective, then, is to assess whether these methodologies and tools are suitable for technical subjects with different contents and from such varied curricula as: Environmental Sciences, Industrial Engineering and Civil Engineering of the Universidad Europea de Madrid (UEM) in Spain. Finally, in a second stage of this study, we have carried out some research on professors’ willingness to incorporate active methodologies in their classrooms and their degree of satisfaction when doing so in terms of learning/teaching quality improvement.

We would like to point out that the outcomes of our research will probably lead to some hypothesis for further research as there are several variables to be taken into account and they will be handled as a long term project. So far, we have only focused on the Superior Technical School of the UEM. In this sense, a step-by-step detailed explanation of the active learning activities designed and implemented in the several courses will be provided together with a full description of alternative examples.

As to the quantitative and qualitative analyses, first, we will deal with the evolution of the grades obtained by students (comparing before and after active learning methodologies implementation in the subject) and secondly, we will study the marks obtained in the subjects where active methodologies have not been implemented, yet. Variables, such as degrees and academic cycles will be also taken into account. Thirdly, we will carefully analyse the results of students’ satisfaction questionnaires in terms of acceptance of new methodologies implementation and enhancement of competences. And right after we will assess the data collected through the professors’ survey on new methodologies acceptance and students’ surveys on professors’ teaching quality per subject. Finally, we will discuss the outcomes from several studies carried out in other universities, which seem to validate our findings because of their similar results.