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Appears in:
Pages: 1702-1706
Publication year: 2016
ISBN: 978-84-608-8860-4
ISSN: 2340-1117
doi: 10.21125/edulearn.2016.1339

Conference name: 8th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 4-6 July, 2016
Location: Barcelona, Spain

LEARNING-BY-DOING: A PBL APPROACH TOWARDS THE TEACHING OF ELECTRONICS

S. Tainta, R.A. Perez, J. Goicoechea

Universidad Pública de Navarra (SPAIN)
Project Based Learning (PBL) is a well-known pedagogical model that implies the resolution of real world problems as a way for the students to acquire the required knowledge and skills associated to a certain area of education. Although the basic idea of learning-by-doing was proposed as early as the beginning of the 20th century, it hasn´t been until recently that it has attracted attention for its application to higher education. However, changing to this pedagogic methodology involves several challenges which are very depend on the knowledge area of the subject.

In this paper, our experience introducing PBL in one of the courses of the Electric and Electronic Engineering degree at the Public University of Navarra will be presented. The course chosen for the pilot test was Instrumentation Laboratory, which introduces the concepts of electronic sensing, signal conditioning and analog to digital conversion. This class is taught on the sixth term of the degree and corresponds to 6 ECTS, that is, 60 class units. Due to the plan of study, half of these class units are currently be devoted to theory lectures, whereas the other half are devoted to laboratory sessions.

To introduce PBL, initially a partial approach has been employed. As a result of this, the theory lectures have been only slightly reduced and some guided experiments are still kept for the laboratory sessions. However, the temporal planning of these activities has been rearranged, so that the students have the last six weeks of the term free. This time is fully devoted to the development in the laboratory of a project in groups of two to four students. The topic of the project is picked by the students and has to cover some of the different areas studied previously during the course. At the end of the term, each group has to do a public presentation to the other students and write a document explaining the objectives, development, results and difficulties found.

So far, the experience using this approach has been very positive. Thanks to the application of the topics studied to a real problem, the students have increased their interest on the contents of the course. As a matter of fact, the results of the surveys made by the university to evaluate the teaching quality of the imparted curses have improved, obtaining an evaluation above the mean results for the rest of the courses both of the degree and of the faculty. Also, working in groups and having to do a public presentation of the obtained results has compelled them to develop their teamwork and presentation skills. As a result of this, it is being planned to move in the future towards a more applied approach by reducing the number of hours assigned to theory classes and increasing the number of hours devoted to the development of the projects.
@InProceedings{TAINTA2016LEA,
author = {Tainta, S. and Perez, R.A. and Goicoechea, J.},
title = {LEARNING-BY-DOING: A PBL APPROACH TOWARDS THE TEACHING OF ELECTRONICS},
series = {8th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies},
booktitle = {EDULEARN16 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-608-8860-4},
issn = {2340-1117},
doi = {10.21125/edulearn.2016.1339},
url = {http://dx.doi.org/10.21125/edulearn.2016.1339},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Barcelona, Spain},
month = {4-6 July, 2016},
year = {2016},
pages = {1702-1706}}
TY - CONF
AU - S. Tainta AU - R.A. Perez AU - J. Goicoechea
TI - LEARNING-BY-DOING: A PBL APPROACH TOWARDS THE TEACHING OF ELECTRONICS
SN - 978-84-608-8860-4/2340-1117
DO - 10.21125/edulearn.2016.1339
PY - 2016
Y1 - 4-6 July, 2016
CI - Barcelona, Spain
JO - 8th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
JA - EDULEARN16 Proceedings
SP - 1702
EP - 1706
ER -
S. Tainta, R.A. Perez, J. Goicoechea (2016) LEARNING-BY-DOING: A PBL APPROACH TOWARDS THE TEACHING OF ELECTRONICS, EDULEARN16 Proceedings, pp. 1702-1706.
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