An Integrated Curriculum Approach to Develop Industry-ready Biomedical Engineering Graduates

An Integrated Curriculum Approach to Develop Industry-ready Biomedical Engineering Graduates

Kallen Chong, Ong Hui Yng, Liang Kwong and Choo Keng Wah

In 2013, an Applied Study in Polytechnics and Institute of Technical Education (ASPIRE) committee was set up by the Singapore Ministry of Education to identify strategies to strengthen the applied education pathways, in partnership with industry, to enhance career and academic progression for polytechnic graduates. The Singapore SkillsFuture framework was then conceptualised in 2014 to support and encourage applied and lifelong learning so that Singaporean stay relevant and responsive to a changing workplace in Singapore. In responding to these initiatives, the Diploma in Biomedical Engineering at Nanyang Polytechnic, Singapore, went through a major review of its curriculum in 2014 and introduce a new applied learning track on Quality & Processes in Biomedical Manufacturing within the diploma. The aim is to equip graduates with skills and competencies that meet the emerging manpower needs in the biomedical manufacturing industry.

This paper shares our experiences in designing an integrated curriculum for the applied learning track which systematically builds up students’ key knowledge and skill required for the biomedical manufacturing industry, integrates students’ learning of personal and interpersonal skills, and product, process, and system building skills as they progress from the first year to the third year of studies. It also shares our experiences in developing a 24-week structured internship programme that is jointly developed with the industries which provide internship opportunities for our students. The paper concludes with an evaluation of the efficacy of the integrated curriculum for the applied learning track, and discusses measures to address the gaps identified in the implementation process.

KEYWORDS Integrated and experiential learning, integrated curriculum, competency-based assessment, contextualized learning, Biomedical Engineering.

Note – In the context of Nanyang Polytechnic, the term ‘course’ refers to a ‘program’ while the term ‘module’ refers to a ‘course’. For example, Diploma in Biomedical Engineering is a course; Biomedical Project is a module.

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

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