MITIGATING DEFICIENCIES OF TECHNICAL EDUCATION

Sample Chapter

9. Matrix of Teaching Learning Process

It has been observed that a majority of teachers are not aware of the importance of various types of learning experiences to be provided to students to develop appropriate knowledge, skills and attitudes in them. For example, if swimming is to be taught, then this will require repeated swimming experiences to be given to students. No other method will help. Similarly, if one has to learn to drive a car, he/she has to be given actual driving experiences to learn car driving. Therefore, learning experiences means those experiences which help in acquiring desired competencies (knowledge, skills and attitudes) by the learner/students. While it is possible to develop all the learning outcomes when the teaching learning process takes place in an integrated manner Table 9.1 below details out learning out-comes and types of learning experiences which may be given to students for achieving such outcomes:

Table 9.1

Lecture Classes:

Lecture classes are very helpful in clarifying concepts, principles, applications and procedures to the students (See Table 9.1 above). Lecture classes are conducted by a teacher for a group of students, generally not exceeding 60 students in a group. To sum up, lecture method is useful in:

  • Creating motivation in the students
  • Introducing the course material
  • Providing factual information to the students
  • Explaining concepts, principles, procedures and practices
  • Cause and effect relationship
  • Recapitulation/summarizing the information given to students etc

Tutorial Classes:

Majority of engineering colleges are not organizing tutorial classes. Wherever organized, the group size is too large. There should not be more than 15 students in a tutorial class. Tutorial classes are very helpful in:

  • Comprehension of knowledge imparted to students in the lecture classes
  • Apply the acquired knowledge in solving simple problems
  • Analytical abilities to analyze and synthesize the problem

Therefore, proper planning of tutorial experiences are very important to develop above competencies.

Laboratory and Workshop Sessions:

Well Planned, laboratory and workshop experiences are helpful in:

  • Comprehension of knowledge imparted to students in the lecture classes
  • Application of knowledge (Concepts and Principles) in its utilization for solving a problem or making a utility job
  • Development of manual and machining skills
  • Developing capabilities of analysis and evaluation to solve a problem or making a job
  • Polishing measurement and report writing skills
  • Imparting creative and innovative skills
  • Imbibing proper attitudes and values

Seminars:

A Seminar is organized with a view to develop:

  • Learning-to-learn skills in the students
  • Acquire knowledge in the identified subject area
  • Report writing skills
  • Communication skills

Organizing seminars are thus very important for engineering students.

Industrial Training and Project Work:

As evident from Table 9.1, industrial training and project work are the heart of engineering education. Both these experiences are not given desired seriousness by faculty and students. Majority of students bring false certificates of having undergone industrial training. Project work is generally a mass activity i.e. more or less same project work is done by almost all students. This is one of the major lacunae of technical education in our country.

As can be seen from above Table 9.1, all the aspects of knowledge and skills i.e. expected outcomes can be developed if these two experiences are well planned, structured and supervised. Mainly depending on lectures is one of the major problems of technical education. All other learning experiences are essential for professional development of students and must be given due importance.

In this context, students should be advised to carry with them their industrial training and project report in placement interviews to show their technical strength.

Teachers are also required to deeply study the Table 9.1, with clear understanding regarding the importance of each learning experience to develop different types of competencies listed under learning out comes.

Hope that sharing above experiences will be helpful to the teachers in selecting appropriate instructional methods.

NOTE:

  1. Learning Outcomes only cover broader aspects of Bloom's Taxonomy of Educational Objectives and micro details under each outcome have not been covered.
  2. Learning Experiences also constitutes so many other aspects like: Brainstorming, Case Studies, Role Playing, Simulation etc. Only commonly used Learning Experiences have been included with a view to emphasize the need of Student Centered Learning Approaches, which currently are not given due attention.
  3. Please refer Chapters 10 and Chapter 15 for more details.



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