Design of Learning Artefacts - Prototyping Change of Educational Culture

Design of Learning Artefacts - Prototyping Change of Educational Culture

Åsa Wikberg Nilsson and Oskar Gedda

ABSTRACT In this paper we propose that both teachers and students are in need of support in order to successfully implement CDIO standard 1-4: context, learning outcomes, integrated curriculum, and introduction to engineering. The main reason for this is a need for clarification of objectives in order to begin progress into a professional engineering role. Put differently, we in this paper explore how self-regulated learning can be integrated, supported and expressed in the form of learning objects, as part of strategic pedagogical development such as a CDIO implementation. From a leadership perspective, one of the challenges is to implement change of practice within rather autonomous teaching and learning communities (Clegg, 2003; Mintzberg, 1978). Our experience is that teachers often state that they are alone with the practical responsibility of teaching in courses, and that overall pedagogical intentions and objectives of a CDIO implementation is perceived as a strategic task for leaders. These are two quite different practices. Among both leaders and teachers, this however involves a challenge to convert the intentions of the CDIO standards and syllabus, into practical tools and everyday teaching and learning activities that in the end have only one overall objective: to support student learning. One of CDIOs basic intentions is that of developing the professional role of the engineer. For this reason we have explored the role of 'learning objects', i.e. artifacts with potential to support interpretation and meaningful negotiations. The idea explored in this paper was to prototype different kinds of support contributing in strengthening students’ ownership of their learning process, through increased awareness of their professional identity as engineers. Based on an idea of action learning through design, we designed learning objects that show potential in facilitating participation and reification. On a micro level, this involves what the individual student and teacher do in a teaching and learning activity. On a meso level it involves what the faculty can do that influence students’ learning experience. On a macro level it also includes national and international perspectives on strategic pedagogic development that can or should influence a learning framework. In this paper we propose learning objects to not only support students’ learning, but also help teachers' ability to design a learning framework that contribute to students’ understanding of the professional engineering role and hence contribute to an overall CDIO intention. The aim is to reach a state where the dialogue about context, learning outcomes, integrated learning experiences, and the professional engineering role are considered of uttermost importance, and continuously influence what, how and why in what teachers and students do. However, to be able to consider this as an integral part in a learning framework, we need a change in attitudes, learning, and behaviour as well as an experienced return on investment among leaders, teachers and students. Then, and only then, we can say that we have implemented the CDIO learning framework.

KEYWORDS Professional role, learning objects, self-regulated learning, learning framework, artifact, strategic pedagogic development, CDIO standards

Proceedings of the 13th International CDIO Conference in Calgary, Canada, June 18-22 2017

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