Development of professional capabilities in a challenge based learning environment

Renate Klaassen*, Birgit J.E. De Bruin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientificpeer-review

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Often industry expects university graduates to hit the ground running. One way to deal with this expectation is to offer our graduates opportunities to collaborate with the industry - a collaboration to acquire theoretical skills and acumen in engineering practices and how a business works. Challenge-based learning environments intimated by the CDIO principles, which focus on real-life experiences, external stakeholder involvement, complex problem solving, and a focus explicitly on knowledge application, offer a rich environment that may allow the needed preparation. One of the proposed outcomes for students is the improved acquisition of professional capabilities. However, it is not established yet, whether these professional skills are acquired or strengthened in CBE settings. Professional capabilities focus on four levels; knowing oneself, critically thinking about the problem, collaborating, and having contextual and ethical awareness. In this study, we surveyed if students perceive improvement in applying professional skills. We particularly questioned professional skills enabling behaviors based on validated questionnaires of EPFL and Univ. Sydney. Additionally, we have gathered and analysed the peer feedback within teams on personal leadership. Contrary to the expectations, leadership skills and professional capabilities are unrelated.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 18th CDIO International Conference, CDIO 2022
EditorsMaria Sigridur Gudjonsdottir, Haraldur Audunsson, Arkaitz Manterola Donoso, et al.
PublisherChalmers University of Technology
ISBN (Electronic)978-993596556-1
Publication statusPublished - 2022
Event18th International CDIO Conference, CDIO 2022 - Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: 13 Jun 202215 Jun 2022


Conference18th International CDIO Conference, CDIO 2022


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