OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY

Engineers as Learners, Engineers as Teachers: Representing Student Model Development in the Virtual Bioreactor Laboratory and Application to International Development Projects

TitleEngineers as Learners, Engineers as Teachers: Representing Student Model Development in the Virtual Bioreactor Laboratory and Application to International Development Projects
Publication TypeThesis
Year of Publication2010
AuthorsSeniow, Kendra R.
Academic DepartmentChemical Engineering
Thesis AdvisorKoretsky, Milo
DegreeHonors Baccalaureate of Arts in International Studies in Chemical Engineering
Number of Pages56
Date Published06/2010
UniversityOregon State University
CityCorvallis
Thesis TypeUndergraduate
KeywordsInternational Development, Model Representation, Virtual Laboratory
Abstract

A method has been developed in order to visually represent students' model use
and development while performing the virtual laboratory project. Model Development
and Usage Representations show the types of models employed, relevant runs and
emotional responses. Model Representations are useful in observing student learning
over the course of the Virtual Laboratory project as well as identifying knowledge
incorporated from prior experiences and influences of the general curricular structure.
The work of students from one cohort of a chemical, biological and environmental senior
engineering course has been examined using this method and preliminary analysis of
their learning made.
The same teaching and learning strategies employed in the virtual bioreactor
laboratory are then applied to international development projects. Management of
international development projects can be enhanced by framing them as cooperative
learning environments. Project success, in terms of physical function, overall
sustainability and intercultural relations, may be further enhanced by incorporating
educational principles such as social constructivism, problem-based learning and an
apprenticeship model. An example is provided to illustrate this application.
Furthermore, participation in projects founded on those educational pedagogies within
the university engineering curricula, such as the virtual laboratories, will better prepare
students for open-ended, real-life engineering experiences at home and abroad.