Monday, February 2nd 2015
My placement will be split into three sections: Analyzing, Extracting and Summarizing.
For background, there are a growing amount of programs from this group in Belgium that are working under the same mission: to ensure that engineers are not just getting technical knowledge, but are being prepared for society.
There are two main programs which I will be working with. The first is the integration of Community Service Engineering into a broader post-graduate offering. The second is integrating a ‘society’ certificate into a pre-existing Thomas Moore curriculum. In more detail:
Community Service Engineering is a class that is currently being piloted by a first group of students. Next semester, the project component of the course will increase from 15 ECTS to 40 ECTS and be a track in a greater post-graduate curriculum. I will be attending this piloted course and delve fully into its programs.
The part in Thomas Moore is slightly different, but with the same goal. They are trying to take the already existing bachelors program and incorporate the societal aspects into it. They are doing this by taking some of the current courses and making them into (for lack of better terminology) starred courses. These starred courses will include projects, have teamwork, and include aspects of engineering in society in them. Along with taking a certain number of starred courses, in order to get the certificate you would also take a 3 ECTS course which focuses on user-centered design and societal integration.
My part in this will be three-fold. First I will analyze the current situation of the program. Truly understand how everyone looks at these missions. This will include interviewing students, professors, those planning the project, marketing personnel and administration as well as reading all the existing material.
The second part will be extracting the crucial aspects of the programs. This will be used for both the integration of Community Service Engineering into the post-graduate course as well as building the 3 credit Thomas Moore extra course. I will be asking questions like: ‘What should the courses look like?’, ‘What is necessary to get a full understanding?’, ‘How can integration happen’, ‘How should they be perceived and marketed?’. In this phase I will also look at the Community Service Engineering project and see what needs to be changed to make it a 40 ECTS project instead of the current 15. How should the extra time be used by students? Should there be more scaffolding and exercises? What went well this year and what didn’t.
Finally, in the last part, I will summarize my work into a recommendation for those working on the project in a presentation. This should address both the project from Community Service Engineering, the integration of Community Service Engineering into the postgraduate course, the Thomas Moore 3 credit course and the marketing of the entire program.