Student motivation and disciplinary expertise in Challenge-Based Learning

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Abstract

Challenge-based learning (CBL) seeks to help students acquire skills necessary for collaborative real-world problem solving. It generally favours self-learning, in which students should seek out their own role in a problem-solving environment and choose their own set of skills to develop which are relevant to the challenge. However students from traditional degree programmes may enter with an expectation that their disciplinary expertise will count and be valued in the context of a project, but face a situation that the problem chosen by a group or the dynamics of a group render their expertise less relevant. In survey-based studies of two CBL modules, we explore the relationship between the roles students play and their levels of motivation. We find no evidence that the lack of a disciplinary role strongly affects student motivation. Rather the data suggests that if a CBL environment is properly framed around self-development and multiple potential learning goals students can relax any commitments or expectations related to their expertise, and take on different roles. This is good news for the CBL aims and goals. That said students do have a tendency to revert to disciplinary roles over the course of projects and are against their disciplinary roles being excluded when they are clearly relevant. Instructors can potentially avoid problems by having students evaluate their role choices against desired project outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSEFI 2022 - 50th Annual Conference of the European Society for Engineering Education, Proceedings
EditorsHannu-Matti Jarvinen, Santiago Silvestre, Ariadna Llorens, Balazs Vince Nagy
Place of PublicationBarcelona ES
PublisherSociete Europeenne pour la Formation des Ingenieurs (SEFI)
Pages2053-2058
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)9788412322262
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2022
Event50th Annual Conference of the European Society for Engineering Education, SEFI 2022 - Vertex Building (Campus Nord of the Technical University of Catalonia, UPC), Barcelona, Spain
Duration: 19 Sept 202222 Sept 2022
Conference number: 50
https://sefi2022.eu/

Publication series

NameSEFI 2022 - 50th Annual Conference of the European Society for Engineering Education, Proceedings

Conference

Conference50th Annual Conference of the European Society for Engineering Education, SEFI 2022
Abbreviated titleSEFI 2022
Country/TerritorySpain
CityBarcelona
Period19/09/2222/09/22
Internet address

Keywords

  • Challenge based learning
  • expertise
  • interdisciplinarity
  • motivation

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