Authors: Vaibhav Gandhi; Zhijun Yang; Aiash Mahdi
Addresses: Department of Design Engineering and Mathematics, Middlsex University, London, UK ' Department of Design Engineering and Mathematics, Middlsex University, London, UK ' Department of Design Engineering and Mathematics, Middlsex University, London, UK
Abstract: This paper focuses on teaching control systems to engineering students through a blending of traditional lectures; student-focused problem-based self-directed learning projects and student presentations. Engineering field constantly evolves and thus teaching a module to engineering students should involve current state-of-the-art research trends. The work presented in this paper revolves around three miniprojects, each project on a different aspect of control engineering and to be completed within 2 weeks each. The aim of these problem-based self-directed learning miniprojects is to get acquainted with the practical aspects of the theoretical learning that has been undertaken within the lectures, something that UK Standard for Professional Engineering Competence focuses on. After completion of the miniproject, the students present their work/discuss results as a PowerPoint presentation lasting 15 min and address queries from peers (compulsory) and tutor, thus promoting lifelong learning along with class participation and peer assessment. These projects also help the student to keep alight with the practical aspects of the current professional practices in industry. The inclusion of the blended approach has improved the student's reading beyond the course requirements, has encouraged them towards deeper learning and also improved both their theoretical as well as practical aspects in engineering education.
Keywords: control engineering; deep learning; lifelong learning; mini-projects; self-learning.
International Journal of Continuing Engineering Education and Life-Long Learning, 2017 Vol.27 No.3, pp.198 - 208
Accepted: 18 Sep 2016
Published online: 04 Apr 2017 *