Challenges for engineering students working with authentic complex problems

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Engineers are important participants in solving societal, environmental and technical problems. However, due to an increasing complexity in relation to these problems new interdisciplinary competences are needed in engineering. Instead of students working with monodisciplinary problems, a situation where students work with authentic complex problems in interdisciplinary teams together with a company may scaffold development of new competences. The question is: What are the challenges for students structuring the work on authentic interdisciplinary problems? This study explores a three-day event where 7 students from Aalborg University (AAU) from four different faculties and one student from University College North Denmark (UCN), (6th-10th semester), worked in two groups at a large Danish company, solving authentic complex problems. The event was structured as a Hackathon where the students for three days worked with problem identification, problem analysis and finalizing with a pitch competition presenting their findings. During the event the students had workshops to support the work and they had the opportunity to use employees from the company as facilitators. It was an extracurricular activity during the summer holiday season. The methodology used for data collection was qualitative both in terms of observations and participants’ reflection reports. The students were observed during the whole event. Findings from this part of a larger study indicated, that students experience inability to transfer and transform project competences from their previous disciplinary experiences to an interdisciplinary setting.
TitelSEFI 2022 - 50th Annual Conference of the European Society for Engineering Education, Proceedings : Annual Conference 19-22 September 2022 Barcelona
RedaktørerHannu-Matti Jarvinen, Santiago Silvestre, Ariadna Llorens, Balazs Vince Nagy
Antal sider10
ForlagSEFI: European Association for Engineering Education
ISBN (Elektronisk)9788412322262
StatusUdgivet - 2022
BegivenhedSEFI Annual Conference - Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya · BarcelonaTech (UPC), Barcelona, Spanien
Varighed: 19 sep. 202222 sep. 2022
Konferencens nummer: 50


KonferenceSEFI Annual Conference
LokationUniversitat Politècnica de Catalunya · BarcelonaTech (UPC)


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