Evidence-based practice to the forefront: a case study of engineering team Project-Based Learning in an online learning environment
Document typeConference report
PublisherUniversitat Politècnica de Catalunya
Rights accessOpen Access
Except where otherwise noted, content on this work is licensed under a Creative Commons license : Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 4.0 International
Approaches such as problem and project-based learning (PBL) are the cornerstone of modern engineering curricula. With a growing need to move these student-centred active learning curricula to online and blended learning environments due to issues including increasing cohort sizes and limited budgets, it is essential that instructional designers in engineering education understand the impacts that these differing mediums may have on student collaboration. This study is the beginning of a body of work with the aim to develop effective teaching and learning strategies for team project-based learning in online and blended learning environments. This case study was carried out in an Irish university in 2021 in a first-year engineering module during the COVID-19 pandemic. The study followed an explanatory mixed methods design in which a questionnaire and semi-structured interviews were utilised to collect data. The research data was gathered in two phases. Phase 1 included a questionnaire with both closed- and open-ended questions (N=94). Phase 2 was based on semistructured interviews (N=7). This paper will focus on the qualitative datasets, including the open-ended questions and interviews. After completing a thematic analysis, we identified six themes and eighteen sub-themes that affect students’ perceptions of team project-based learning (PBL) in an online environment. Each of these themes are discussed within this paper. The paper concludes with an outline of future research plans for the ongoing project.
CitationO'Connor, S. [et al.]. Evidence-based practice to the forefront: a case study of engineering team Project-Based Learning in an online learning environment. A: SEFI 50th Annual conference of The European Society for Engineering Education. "Towards a new future in engineering education, new scenarios that european alliances of tech universities open up". Barcelona: Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, 2022, p. 2108-2114. DOI 10.5821/conference-9788412322262.1183.