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ERIC Number: EJ865957
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Dec
Pages: 11
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 48
ISSN: ISSN-0304-3797
Using Journal Clubs to Cultivate a Community of Practice at the Graduate Level
Newswander, L. K.; Borrego, M.
European Journal of Engineering Education, v34 n6 p561-571 Dec 2009
This paper discusses the benefits of a community of practice (CoP) approach to graduate education in engineering and examines guidelines for implementation. Community of practice theory and applications to practice are presented. Journal clubs, groups of faculty and students who meet regularly to discuss literature, are identified as one specific tool to improve engineering graduate education by building a community. Although the benefits of a journal club are implicit, few empirical studies validate these claims or tie them to theory. Therefore, we undertook an observational study of a long-standing journal club at a large university in the eastern USA. The findings demonstrate that principles of community found in the theory are present in the journal club. Thick description of specific interactions further defines the benefits of (1) knowledge accumulation, (2) problem solving and creativity, and (3) collaboration and peer-learning. Additionally, specific guidelines are given for the practical implementation of CoPs in engineering education. (Contains 5 tables.)
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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