Teaching Tools to Promote Active Learning: Case Study

by N. Nirmalakhandan, Prof.; Civ. and Geological Engrg. Dept., New Mexico State Univ., Las Cruces, NM 88003-8001,
C. Ricketts, Assoc. Prof.; Engrg. Technol. Dept., New Mexico State Univ., Las Cruces, NM 88003-8001,
J. McShannon, Assoc. Dir.; NM Space Grant Consortium, New Mexico State Univ., Las Cruces, NM 88003-8001,
S. Barrett, Res. Assoc.; NM Space Grant Consortium, New Mexico State Univ., Las Cruces, NM 88003-8001,


Serial Information: Issue 1, Pg. 31-37


Document Type: Journal Paper

Abstract: In this case study, we present a teaching approach that promotes active learning in engineering classes. Students are provided with a combination of physical, mathematical, and computer simulation models that allow them to participate, act, react, and reflect, rather than just listen to lectures, as in traditional classes. We illustrate important aspects of our pedagogy with one of 12 modules that have been implemented in an undergraduate hydraulic engineering course. Student evaluations indicate that this approach is appealing to most students. Data are presented to show that this approach has contributed to improved student learning and achievement.

Subject Headings: Engineering education | Case studies | Students | Computer models | Hydraulic engineering | Mathematical models | Mathematics | Physical models |

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