Implementation of project-based learning in structural design and architectural modules to achieve improved graduate employability

Rizzuto, Joseph and Balodimou, Efcharis ORCID: (2022) Implementation of project-based learning in structural design and architectural modules to achieve improved graduate employability. In: Expert Academy Festival of Learning and Teaching, 19 Jul 2022, Ealing, London. (Unpublished)

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Many UK civil engineering and architectural programmes address industry's requirements for graduates that can identify and solve complex problems, understand ethical, environmental and the business aspects of Built Environment projects. Project-based learning (PBL) is a successful learning strategy for the development of graduate employability skills that has a considerable impact on work-readiness. PBL group projects lead to enhanced employability skills and provide ample scope for the development of original and innovative design solutions (Rizzuto, 2018; Rizzuto and Balodimou, 2019). Input from industry practitioners, in the form of guest lectures, site visits and work shadowing (Rizzuto and Chauhan, 2018) ensures that students get a tangible insight into the world of work. PBL covers holistic design projects which investigate authentic complex scenarios. Reflective of Industry practice, students are required to interpret a client’s design brief, establish preliminary outline designs, review, and critique these and finally produce a detailed design for one of their approved schemes. The briefs must be formulated to realise the full structural, architectural, economic, aesthetic and sustainability benefits (May, 2009). Students engage in group work which leads to subject-specific knowledge and helps develop inter-personal skills (HEA, 2103) as well as skills such as ‘critical thinking’, ‘problem solving’, ‘teamwork’ and 'communication' as these are among the graduate skills most valued by employers (Du et al 2009, UK-SPEC, 2013). Group interaction is based on gained experience from PBL activities encouraging creativity and good time management (Adams, 2011, Choi and Kim, 2016; Royalty, 2017). Industry's changing expectations must be accounted for and embedded in the curriculum to develop graduate skills that are needed by industry. It was found that PBL in the form of realistic group projects supported by Industry motivates students, improves learning, and encourages engagement with work related activities which enhance and improve graduate employability.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Keywords: Project based learning, Employability
Subjects: Construction and engineering > Civil and environmental engineering
Education > Higher education > HE pedagogies
Education > Higher education
Education > Teaching and learning
Construction and engineering > Built environment
Construction and engineering > Civil and structural engineering
Depositing User: Efcharis Balodimou
Date Deposited: 11 Aug 2022 13:21
Last Modified: 11 Aug 2022 16:04


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