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INNOVATION AND COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGIES + PROBLEM BASED LEARNING: A NEW APPROACH FOR TEACHING ARCHITECTURE

J. Ruiz-Jaramillo, M.I. Alba-Dorado, G. Cimadomo, E. Jiménez-Morales, M.D. Joyanes-Díaz

Art and Architecture Department. University of Malaga (SPAIN)
Despite being very present in the current university educational environment, the use of new technologies in the classroom does not imply an improvement in teaching quality or the acquisition of knowledge by students. In fact, higher education still clung in the simple transmission of content in a unidirectional way, being the students mere passive recipients of information. This generates apathy, demotivation and few expectations with respect to the utility and application of the theoretical content to real-world practical scenarios.

Progressive changes on the curriculum in the Schools of Architecture have originated a redistribution and update of content but these have had lacking incidence on the way these are transmitted. Learning on different subjects continues linked to the masterclass supported by resolution of theoretical exercises on unrealistic models with limited application to the reality of the profession.

In order to incorporate improvements and enrich teaching and learning process, it is proposed the implementation of a methodology supported by problem based learning (PBL) based on the underlying potential in the use of new information and communication technologies (ICT). The aim is to offer real models, next to the working context where students have to prove the skills acquired throughout their training. In addition, the use of technological tools enriches educational as well as evaluation process, making easier the monitoring of the work and at the same time increasing the commitment and interest of students for the content. Its familiarity with digital media and interactive platforms, focused on the communication and transmission of information through sharing resources and experiences in real time, is a parameter that new ways of teaching cannot ignore. As a result of this ICT are teaching instruments of great interest being essential to obtain the maximum performance from them.

This article presents the results during the first course of application of the educational innovation project developed at the School of Architecture of the University of Malaga so called “New frameworks of teaching: ICT applied to problem based learning in technical bachelors” (PIE 15-166). During its first year the research has been focused on developing of educational strategies based on exploiting the potential of ICT, taking PBL as a framework of action. Its application on subjects from different fields of studies (architectural composition, urbanism, architectural projects and architectural construction) has allowed assessing the adaptability of this methodology depending on the content. Among the obtained results can be highlighted the improvement in cross curricular coordination between subjects from different fields of studies; breaking the traditional variables of space and time between teachers and students and between themselves, providing different ways of synchronous and asynchronous communication to generate a greater interaction between all the involved subjects; facilitating in addition the management and exchange of information.