ERIC Number: ED214439
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981
Reference Count: 0
Undergraduate Project Work.
Harris, N. D. C.; Smith, B.
Undergraduate project work in a sample of British universities was investigated. After initial informal discussions with project supervisors and students, questionnaires were refined, and attention was focused on: project choice, project initiation, development and progress, staff/student relationship, assessment, and resources. Resources were one of the most important influences on the effectiveness of projects because of constraints on possible topics, availability of equipment for student use, and cost limits on each project. The research approach involved the following steps: contact with schools via the director of studies, contact with supervisors and supervisors questionnaire administration, contact with students and student questionnaire administration, series of meeting/interviews with supervisor/student throughout the course of the project, post-project meetings with staff and student, and second interview or meeting with student, where possible. It was found that not all schools offer a choice of projects to their final year students, and those who do not have a choice are usually involved in a design project where working as a team is part of the exercise. In some cases project topics originated in an industry problem, but usually the topics were related to a supervisors' own research interests. No two schools organized their final year projects in the same way and various kinds of grading schemes exist in different schools. Areas that appeared important to management/supervision of projects include: development of report-writing skills, care over the initial project stages, danger of oversupervision, presentation of possible topics, and availability of necessary resources. Case studies that illustrate project development and progress are appended. (SW)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Bath Univ. (England).
Note: For related document see HE 014 869.