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ERIC Number: EJ1077219
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 18
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0304-3797
Learning Mechanisms in Multidisciplinary Teamwork with Real Customers and Open-Ended Problems
Heikkinen, Juho; Isomöttönen, Ville
European Journal of Engineering Education, v40 n6 p653-670 2015
Recently, there has been a trend towards adding a multidisciplinary or multicultural element to traditional monodisciplinary project courses in computing and engineering. In this article, we examine the implications of multidisciplinarity for students' learning experiences during a one-semester project course for real customers. We use a qualitative research approach and base our analysis on students' learning reports on three instances of a project course titled "Multidisciplinary working life project". The main contribution of this article is the unified theoretical picture of the learning mechanisms stemming from multidisciplinarity. Our main conclusions are that (1) students generally have a positive view of multidisciplinarity; (2) multidisciplinary teams enable students to better identify their own expertise, which leads to increased occupational identity; and (3) learning experiences are not fixed, as team spirit and student attitude play an important role in how students react to challenging situations arising from introduction of the multidisciplinarity.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Finland
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A