ImaginaryBCN, scientific dissemination practicum
The project implements practical experiences from undergraduate and postgraduate courses in mathematics (bachelor’s and master’s degrees) in the fields of teaching and popularising mathematics. Its goal is to promote mathematical culture among citizens in general, and among primary and secondary school students in particular. The project offers workshops and specific materials for each level based on the "RSME-Imaginary" exhibition.
Google Docs integration with the Moodle platform
The project integrates Atenea and the cloud computing service Google Drive. Using the interoperability e-learning standard IMS LTI, we developed an application that acts as a bridge between Moodle and Google Drive. The results were presented at the 2011 MoodleMoot and 2012 UBICOMM conferences and published in the Journal of Universal Computer Science (indexed in the ISI-JCR). The application has been released as free software.
Integration of English skills in bachelor’s degrees
At the research group in multilingual scientific and technological communication Linguatech, our work is based on the belief that there is a need to train multilingual technology professionals. By analysing where students and lecturers start from, we have developed strategies and materials to facilitate course teaching in English. A highlight is the Multilingual Formulae website, which has been well received at several international conferences.
Quantum LEAP (Learning English for Academic Purposes) is an online learning environment for learning academic English at university. It contains ten modules that are fully operational, with multimedia material for practising oral and written communication skills (including oral production). Quantum LEAP is adapted to the EHEA, with interactive learning tools. This stage of the project has involved redesigning the learning environment, revising activities, and carrying out usability studies.
Sustainability in Systems Engineering
The goal of this project is to provide the teaching staff of the UPC with new materials and knowledge and the awareness needed to integrate the generic competence of “sustainability and social commitment” in their teaching. A set of interactive teaching resources have been created to help the theory classes, in addition to a web-based virtual laboratory for integrating this generic competence in laboratory practicals.
Web 2.0 on the ICT bachelor's degree
The team of lecturers at the EPSEM who are behind the bachelor’s degree in ICT Systems Engineering, the only one of its kind in Spain, has launched OpenCourseWare (OCW) that includes activities, laboratory practicals, exercises and notes. These teaching materials also provide lecturers with details of the content of the other courses that make up the degree, allow students to review content after they have finished studying it and provide additional information to the course guide for future university students.
Experimentation in Bioengineering
For this project, we prepared a “Mass Transfer” website and a “Fermenter” website. We designed interactive bioengineering practicals featuring two web pages of content, photographs and videos of the practicals and self-assessment tests. The material on the web pages is designed to help students prepare before they enter the laboratory, where they will work with two experimental pilot plants.
Interactive response systems integration
The three schools on the UPC’s North Campus use TurningPoint clickers in several courses, mainly first-year subjects. The limited number of clickers and the need to hand them out and collect them in class make it difficult to extend the use of the methodology. This project has developed a Moodle module and a set of applications that integrate interactive questionnaires in the UPC’s learning management system Atenea and allow students to use their smartphones or laptops as clickers.
Creating videos as mathematics support
We set our students exercises and, once they have thought them through, we show them a video (and a PDF file) with the solutions. The activity is part of a virtual course on the Moodle platform. We believe that offering solutions in this format is well received by the students, who are of a generation that has been immersed in ICTs since childhood. We consider that these tools are a good way of motivating students and of improving the quality of their learning.
Authoring tools: evaluation and development
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This project has been carried out at the Barcelona School of Nautical Studies in the courses Electricity and Electrical Machines. Its aims are to convert classrooms into laborator and laboratories into open spaces, in order to facilitate access to practical and experimental content on the topic of electricity and improve academic performance; to build didactic and portable for use outside the laboratory (in the classroom); and to introduce the use of simulation as a study tool.
Informatics Engineering in English
The foreign language competency and, specifically, a good level of English can be attained by taking subjects taught in English. In her election manifesto, the present dean raised the possibility of offering a whole line of the bachelor’s degree in Informatics Engineering in English, which would favour student mobility, new double degree agreements with universities abroad and internationalisation. For this project, the current situation of the FIB is examined, as well as similar experiences at other schools, and a pilot test is carried out.
Groundwater hydrology laboratory practicals
None of the courses on groundwater hydrology taught at the UPC include laboratory practicals. The courses are therefore purely theoretical, which does not allow students to fully assimilate basic concepts. For this project, which aims to solve this problem, we developed a laboratory practical in which a physical experimental model was used. The physical model is a synthetic aquifer reconstructed in the laboratory in a transparent acrylic tank in which pumping and tracer tests are carried out.
ATENEA in Electronic Circuits and Devices
In subjects related to circuit analysis and electronic devices new teaching methods are needed, both in teaching and in terms of teaching coordination, if students’ academic performance and the degree of coordination between different groups of students and different lecturers is to be improved. The project proposed here aims to harness the potential of the ATENEA campus to do precisely this.
Curricular integration of courses in the design of the new master’s degree in Aeronautical Engineering
Self-directed learning of structural analysis
For this project, we developed multimedia tools for self-directed learning of computational structural analysis using the finite element method (FEM). These tools will improve the training of engineering students in this area, and in particular will facilitate the development of independent learning competencies. As proof of concept, the self-learning tools were successfully implemented in the course Theory and Practice of the FEM in Ship Building taught at the FNB.
Teaching composite materials using technology
Composite materials technology combines a set of complex processes and materials. We designed a laboratory practical in order to transmit to students the concepts of design and manufacture using infusion and pre-impregnation techniques. We also designed an analysis and computer simulation practical with experimental validation involving a destructive bending test and a non-destructive ultrasonic test, and set students an oral presentation to be given in class.
OPTOstream - ICTs and clinical skills
The goal of the OPTOstream project is to systematise a set of skills that students need to pursue research and/or professional careers, through the maximum utilisation of their clinical learning experience in actual cases and simulation exercises, thanks to video recording and real-time or subsequent streaming.
Learning mathematics in the cloud
Thanks to Sage, an open-source mathematics program, lecturers can carry out non-trivial computations in the classroom and easily share them with students via simple devices such as mobile phones, tablets and laptops. The project develops interactive materials for mathematics courses in the first years of undergraduate engineering degrees. Students and lecturers can access these materials on the project webpage, which also includes materials collected from the Web.
Independent learning, collaboration and ICTs
The aim of the project is to improve the quality of teaching on the Architecture-Aware Programming course, for which students are typically required to systematically perform code optimisations and which does not involve independent study. To achieve our aim, therefore, we now focus on students’ learning processes through collaborative work outside of the classroom and have developed an ICT teaching support tool that automatically generates detailed feedback.
Integrating generic skills with ICTs
This project consists of a video-recording service that is designed to help students incorporate and assess generic competencies such as oral and written communication, teamwork and foreign language skills for all degree courses at the UPC Campus in Terrassa. It is an autonomous-learning resource that encourages students to assess their own activity individually and in a group (co-assessment) and that allows lecturers to improve certain parts of the curriculum as well as assess students’ generic competencies.
Developing a tutoring programme for the FIB
Most students who begin their studies at university are not aware of the dedication they require. Students often have gaps in knowledge, but also inappropriate habits and attitudes. The role of the tutor can be helpful, especially at the beginning of a course of study. The goal of this project is to design a tutoring plan for students at the Barcelona School of Informatics that will help them to improve their results.
Optional subjects with a common practical project
The main objective of this project is the design and application of 3 optative subjects, for the degree in Industrial and Automatic Electronic Engineering. A common platform is used on which to carry out tasks of increasing complexity, considering that in each one of the subjects the tools developed formerly have to be used. The goal is to provide to the student the connection among obtained knowledgement, and the student would be able to face the challenges, and use the critical thought, the analysis and deduction.
Active learning of information systems
We promote an effective learning process of information systems in organisations by encouraging students to visualise the problems of two real-world companies. Students’ interest in the content is sought, as is their understanding of the importance of the issues raised. Tools are provided that enable them to find out about new problems that were not raised initially.
Urban spaces: participation and sustainability
Espais Vius is a participatory learning initiative that analyses urban intervention and infrastructure with the aim of raising awareness and promoting transformation. It inspires curiosity and reflection on innovative experiences and best practices in urban spaces and integrates sustainability into university life. Topics covered include the open spaces on the UPC’s North Campus, the transformation of Poblenou and the 22@ district, and the Linear Sagrera Park, among others.
Electronics applied to biological systems
The learning goal is for students to understand the main functions and specifications of an electronic measurement and control system so that they are able to explain any deviation from the expected value. Laboratory practicals included measuring temperature with two, three and four wires, controlling temperature with a PID controller, measuring biological signals and acquiring data (in fast and datalogger modes). These practicals belong to two courses (22 face-to-face hours) and are in continuous development.
Professional skills at the FIB
This work puts forward a proposal on how to develop and assess, in general terms, generic competencies in engineering degrees. We propose defining each competency in terms of dimensions, which are further defined according to three-level objectives. These objectives and levels thereof are then set for each of the courses that make up a degree. One course may cover several levels and dimensions.
Cross-disciplinarity in management engineering
With this project, we have created links between different courses to increase cross-disciplinarity within the curriculum. Students are given the opportunity to solve problems that closely resemble real problems that they are likely to encounter in their professional practice. This brings together subject areas and methodologies that were previously dealt with separately. To deal with this problem, we created a set of cross-disciplinary cases that students work on over more than one course.
A competitive online game for learning statistics
A diagnosis of practical statistics classes led to the creation of a new course consisting of an online competitive game in which students make decisions based on statistics. The game uses simulation data on a website where students acquire data, use a budget, introduce their decisions and track their position in the game. The end result, PRESTON (PRácticas de ESTadística ON-line, Online Statistical Practices), has been used successfully in the ETSEIB by a total of 400 students for two semesters.
Image and video processing learning tools
This project promotes collaboration and coordination between image and video processing courses with the aim of improving learning outcomes. Its principal contribution is the creation of a shared bank of materials that includes graphic demonstrators, sets of problems and questionnaires. We also developed strategies for using this material in the development of specific and generic competences.
Materials for physiological optics practicals
Physiological optics studies the visual process from an optical point of view. Physiological optics courses include practicals in which the response of an observer to stimuli is assessed. Thanks to technological innovations, stimuli can be presented on monitors. The aim of this project is to develop software that allows practicals to be performed using ICT tools and thus improve the experimental setups that have so far been used at the Terrassa School of Optics and Optometry.
Improving wit and creativity
To develop students’ ingenuity and creativity we saw the need to develop the metacognitive process. To do this, we had two options: to leave students to it, so that they are the ones who take the initiative, or to guide them with very precise instructions. In the first case, we only reach the brightest students, whereas in the second, we reach a broader spectrum. We have developed a joint methodology and will later do micro-research on courses.