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ERIC Number: EJ983310
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Feb
Pages: 7
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-2158-0502
Learning from Engineering Failures: A Case Study of the Deepwater Horizon
Rose, Mary Annette; Hunt, Brian
Technology and Engineering Teacher, v71 n5 p5-11 Feb 2012
Natural catastrophes and engineering failures provide timely, motivating, and conceptually rich backdrops for learning. Engineering educators have long embraced case studies of engineering failures as a sound pedagogical strategy for meeting several learning standards, such as "design within realistic constraints", and teaching failure analysis. Within technology education, educators have employed several instructional strategies to examine engineering failures and natural catastrophes, such as debates, design activities, technology assessments, and laboratory activities. This article advocates an examination of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon catastrophe as a teaching case study for enhancing students' technological literacy. Following a pattern of case study pedagogy, the first section describes the technical system and reviews the events leading to the blowout on April 12, 2010. After highlighting factors that contributed to the oil spill, several opportunities for enhancing students' technological literacy are discussed. (Contains 5 figures and 1 table.)
International Technology and Engineering Educators Association. 1914 Association Drive Suite 201, Reston, VA 20191-1539. Tel: 703-860-2100; Fax: 703-860-0353; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A