IGIP Newsletter - Issue 01 - 2021

11th August 2021

IGIP Newsletter - Issue 01 - 2021

Editor Column

By Teresa Restivo, Newsletter Editor

During four years, Jose Marques served the IGP Newsletter as language and as digital Editor. This activity is not usually noticed, but it is vital. Now, with an acknowledged thank you to him, it is time to move and find a new help.

Susan Zvacek, IGIP member, who many of you noticed already as a very regular IGIP Newsletter columnist, will continue this valuable contribution and will join as language editor, too. Meanwhile, Eleonore Lickl , will be responsible for the digital edition. Therefore, this will be the new team: Teresa Restivo (Editor) and Susan Zvacek and Eleonore Lickl (Associate Editors).

IGIP President - Column

By Hanno Hortsch, IGIP President

Dear IGIP community, 

I hope you will receive the messages in our IGIP newsletter in good health. Many of our research and teaching activities can still only be carried out to a limited extent. However, we also receive messages over and over again that show, on the one hand, that “normal” teaching, learning, and research work at universities is part of everyday work again. On the other hand, the global conditions of the pandemic are still decisive for our academic work. The students, in particular, also suffer from it and sometimes have great motivation problems; student life so urgently requires personal contact and direct exchange, including joint student celebrations!

We are all the more pleased to note that our 50th IGIP International Conference on Engineering Pedagogy and the 24th International Conference on Interactive Collaborative Learning at TU Dresden and HTW Dresden, University of Applied Sciences, will be implemented in a hybrid approach. So far, the organizers say there has been a positive demand for the conference. Of course, the greater part of the participants in the conference will go to the "online rhythm." However, we are expecting a larger number of participants to warmly welcome to Dresden.

The hybrid approach is not easy for the organizers to implement, but the will to do this to the general satisfaction of those involved is there. For the first time, the conference will find common intersections with the Industry Forum of the Global Deans Council (GEDC) and with Petrus Communications and will link parts of the conference thematically and organizationally. The preparatory talks for this are in a good working phase.

Dear IGIP Community, 

let me remind you that in September IGIP members will elect a new President and Executive Committee. Because we expect that only a few members will have the possibility to attend the Annual General Meeting in Person, the IGIP EC decided in its meeting on 06 July 2021 that the elections will be held online on 21/22 September 2021. You will receive all necessary information in time, not later than two weeks before the election days.

Eligible voters are all members of IGIP on 30 June 2021 with a valid membership until 31 December 2021. You can find the list of eligible voters in the IGIP Intranet (https://igip.online-engineering.net/) under 'View documents for members' -> 'Member_Area'. There you can also find the candidates' CVs and motivation letters. Please take part in this election in large numbers.

As mentioned, the IGIP Executive Committee met in an online consultation on July 6, 2021.
1. Status of the preparation of the conference in Dresden (see also website of ICL/IGIP 2021:
2. IGIP Awards
3. IGIP Elections
4. Miscellanious
              50th anniversary of the IGIP

The Executive Committee has already turned its attention to the important anniversary, the 50th anniversary of the IGIP, which will take place in Vienna next year. In preparation for this anniversary, we would like to draw on your experiences and suggestions to celebrate an event worthy of the anniversary with the involvement of as many IGIP members and friends of IGIP as possible.

For the first time, IGIP held a webinar with COURSERA and PETRUS. The President and the Secretary General took part in this webinar and took the opportunity to explain the goals of the new prototype curriculum of the IGIP to the many participants. During the webinar, many questions were answered in the online chat by Prof. Auer and Prof. Hortsch. Another somewhat more detailed presentation of our work is being planned for the fourth quarter with COURSERA. 

The cooperation between IGIP and ASEE has already become a rewarding tradition. This year the American Society of Engineering Education conference again took place online due to travel restrictions. The board of directors of the ASEE invited the IGIP to the traditional partnership discussion, in which Prof. Hortsch and Prof. Auer participated. A wide range of ideas for joint further cooperation were discussed on the basis of the MoU that was newly concluded this year. One subject was the even closer cooperation in the field of advanced education for engineering educators in the United States.

I wish you all good health and look forward to seeing you again for our annual conference this time in Dresden, either in person or online.

Hanno Hortsch


IGIP EC Column

By Teresa Restivo, IGIP Past President

With COVID-19, the digital advances of recent years led to societal change and produced sudden and impressive effects, moving is in the direction of the so called “digital society.” As part of the first impact, however, came evidence of an increase in the digital divide. This effect was clear to many teachers after a few weeks of transforming face-to-face to virtual classes. Shortly after the lockdown beginning in March 2020, and following Institutional recommendations, the face-to-face learning classes moved to zoom sessions (or other digital platform sessions). I was surprised to face a “black rectangles cemetery.” I explained to my students the uncomfortable situation I was facing and also how unbalanced the situation was for me. As the semester went on, a few of them started to fill the rectangles now and then, trying to make me feel better. But then I understood the problem. Many of them did not have the right conditions to turn on their image and/or sound. Only then did I understand the reality and become aware of one of the problems that this pandemic situation made clear–the digital divide. Therefore, when thinking about Engineering Education, as in many other areas, we may want to consider: • How difficult academic activities became for many students; • How these fantastic universal tools are increasing our differences; • How access to connection “facilities” are so discretionary; • How this digitalization benefits or disadvantages us; and • How to handle the effect of COVID-19 on the learning of more vulnerable students. This is just one issue among so many that this pandemic situation brought to our lives.

IGIP IMC - Message of the President

By Tiia Rüütmann, Tallinn University of Technology, Estonia

Between January and July of 2021 IGIP IMC received 15 applications for ING.PAED.IGIP qualification and one application for renewal of an IGIP training centre accreditation. ING.PAED.IGIP applications came from Russia (4), Estonia (1), Czech Republic (1), Ukraine (3), and Slovakia (6). All the applications were approved. Application for the renewal of the IGIP accredited training centre came from the Centre of Education and Psychological counselling, Slovak University of Agriculture in Nitra. The application was approved. Members of IGIP IMC reviewed applications online, in the Conftool environment. For every application at least 2-3 reviewers were assigned. I would like to thank the members of IGIP IMC: Dr Ivana Simonova (Univerzita J. E. Purkyně v Ústí nad Labem, Czech Republic), Dr Alexander Soloviev (MADI, Russia), and Hants Kipper MSc (Tallinn University of Technology, Estonia) for their entire commitment, fruitful cooperation, and thorough contribution to the work of IGIP IMC.

University Corner - TalTech Interdisciplinary Workshops on STEM Integration

By Tiia Rüütmann, Tallinn University of Technology, Estonia

Interdisciplinary and collaborative programs at Tallinn University of Technology (TalTech) provide real-world engineering experience and know-how for Tallinn High School STEM teachers. The project “STEM Integration Workshops” is financed by the Tallinn City Government. STEM teachers from Tallinn High Schools are participating in the workshops providing the know-how on how to design real-world STEM projects for the interdisciplinary teaching of STEM. This research is on the topic of STEM integration and developing supportive learning environments in order to implement national curricula (NC) in schools, vocational schools, and study programs at student hobby centres. It is a pilot study based on the need to use existing resources more rationally to advance students’ achievement. In the framework of the project, STEM teachers have acquired knowledge and skills on the basic principles of STEM integration, engineering pedagogy, and STEM didactics. They have also learned how to implement STEM integration models, methods, and strategies in their STEM teaching at general schools. Additionally, practical workshops on the implementation of contemporary new technologies for STEM learning at general schools and high schools are held. The possibilities of using autonomous vehicles, drones, virtual reality, and robotics in the school programs are discussed and analysed. The TalTech Innovation Centre Mektory also provides workshops for school children, along with the courses for teachers within the project. Additionally, TalTech has started the young engineer programme for school children. In both types of workshops, STEM teachers and pupils enjoy the possibilities of innovative interdisciplinary teaching and learning. Teachers have designed five real-world practical projects for innovative teaching of integrated STEM subjects at general schools during these workshops. The cooperation between TalTech School of Engineering and Tallinn High Schools will continue for a year.

Talking About Teaching: What Does a Crowd Know?

By Susan Zvacek, CollegeTeachingCoach.com

Several years ago, a college professor asked me, “How do you feel about crowdsourcing as a way of teaching?” Eventually I realized that he was referring to everyone (students and instructors) pooling their knowledge as a way of learning. That’s not a bad idea, and there are many teaching strategies in which students play a major part in the planning and delivery of instruction. However, the original question had more to do with abundant knowledge as a recipe for deep learning. Knowing a lot makes for a good start, but it’s not enough. My response to the professor focused on how expert thinking differs from novice thinking. Put simply, it’s not just that experts know more, but that they organize and apply what they know very differently than a novice does, even if that novice has acquired a lot of knowledge on the topic. Three features of expertise are especially useful to consider in this case. First, experts do know a lot and it’s how they’ve structured what they know that facilitates new learning about their discipline. We know that concepts are stored in networked cognitive structures called schemas (or schemata). I might have a schema on the topic of “colors” that includes information about wavelengths and Isaac Newton and rainbows, for example. But an expert on color would have a huge, interwoven structure with concepts interconnected in multiple ways based on the relationships among those ideas. This framework enables them to plug new concepts into their existing schema, rather than establishing a new structure that may or may not connect with many other ideas. Why is that important? Because having concepts arranged in this intricate network helps the individual (i.e., the brain user) to store information efficiently, enabling them to retrieve concepts quickly when they’re needed. It also makes it easier to identify patterns in new information that helps the learner figure out how it’s related to what they already know. Another important difference between experts and novices is that experts know how to use their knowledge based on context. That is, an expert is more likely to understand what information is needed and how to apply it for a given purpose than a novice would be. Here again, the importance of understanding the relationships among concepts is the key. This gets us away from a “brute force” type of problem-solving in which we simply throw a bunch of unrelated knowledge at a challenge, hoping something applies. Experts understand what conditions require the use of which concepts. Finally, as a result of this organized framework of concepts and relationships, experts are able to retrieve and apply foundational knowledge almost as a background activity, requiring little conscious attention. This frees up some of the finite amount of cognitive processing power we possess (even experts have limits) to focus on more complex elements of a topic and manipulate ideas in novel ways. So, while my response to the professor may not have been as organized as this explanation or articulated as carefully, the main idea he went away with was that “sourcing” a collection of concepts from a “crowd” can be useful, but it cannot replace the utility and richness of expertise. As we study how best to put our students on a path toward this type of deep understanding, we should remember these three points: organizing concepts according to their relationships with what they already know, identifying the specific information they need to address a task, and building an easily-accessible foundation of basic knowledge.

Article - Promoting Sustainable Development Goals in higher education: The engineering schools’ role

By Ana Carvalho, Centre for Management Studies (CEG-IST), Instituto Superior Técnico, University of Lisbon, Portugal

The United Nations presented in 2015 an agenda to 2030, where 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were defined, so that sustainability can be achieved in the world. Higher Education has a special role in the promotion of SGD 4 - Quality Education, however the scope of these institutions should go far beyond this SDG. Higher institutions are centers of research and innovation and therefore they are an enabler towards the sustainable practices’ promotion. For instance, Medical Schools can provide new solutions to SDG 3 - Good Health, Social Sciences schools are very well qualified to promote SDG 5 - Gender Balance, establishing new interactions and support to women around the world. Engineering schools have a major role in the contribution to SDGs. Engineers create technology, technology that can be applied to change the sources energy consumption (SDG 7- Clean Energy), new ways of turn water available for the whole population (SDG 6 - Clean Energy), new technologies that allow cleaner production (SDG 13 - Climate Change, SDG 14 - Life underwater and SDG 15 - Life on land), more sustainable products (SDG 12 - Responsible consumption and production), and so many other contributions that can be made. How can engineering schools achieve a real contribution to the SDG, transposing academic knowledge into practice? First of all, a strong curriculum in sustainability issues is a must. Students need to know what sustainability is, what the SDGs are and how they can measure sustainability impacts, when creating new technologies. The integration of sustainability aspects does not require new curriculums, it just requires updating and adapting the already existing curriculum, with integrated theory and practical examples. Second, schools have to open their doors to the communities! Field work with local communities, NGOs, companies, and other organizations allow to identify the real challenges, which will frame the required problems to investigate. One example of a local promoter of this type of interaction is SILAB@Tecnico (http://silab.tecnico.ulisboa.pt/), a social innovation lab which promotes the integration of students with different stakeholders in the field. For instance, students received real problems from India, worked on them in the courses at Técnico, building new light bulbs for community houses and then went to India to test the projects they have developed (SDG 6 - Clean Energy). Third, multi-disciplinary research is needed. Projects with students from different backgrounds is a must! Inside the engineering schools’ multi-disciplinary projects involving students from different engineers should be promoted, and at a larger scale projects involving different schools and combining the different knowledges is critical to achieve viable and applicable solutions. A good practice is the ULisses Project, promoted by the university of Lisbon, where for 3 weeks, the students from the different schools were part of an international multidisciplinary team, whose task was to develop innovative techniques that contribute to the sustainability of the Oceans (SDG 14- Life underwater). Finally, promotion of transposing technology to reality. This turns engineers less technical and more business oriented. Expensive solutions that cannot reach all the people are not solutions for attaining the SDGs. Students need to understand that frugal solutions and technologies are key to bring a huge impact in the world. Infrastructures that promote this transition are needed and engineering schools schools must have them. Summarizing, contribution to SDGs is at hand of any of us! Higher educational institutions have all the ingredients to turn SDGs into a reality. Engineering Education might have a strong contribution. What are we waiting for?

How were Laboratory and Field Practices adjusted to accommodate Restrictions imposed by the CoVID-19 Pandemic? Distance learning experience

By Alexander Solovyev, MADI

Distance learning experience The onset of the new coronavirus infection "Covid-19" occurs in Russia in waves, starting from February - March 2020. In accordance with these "waves" Government decrees are issued on measures to protect citizens from this infection. For students, this means, in particular, a periodic transition to distance learning. The first results of the transition to "remote" learning summarized in articles published at the end of the 2020/21 academic year, discussed at the IGIP conference held in Tallinn in September 2020. Not only the opinions of teachers are interesting, but also the opinions of students. The latter characterized by complaints of difficulties with communication, lack of live contact not only with teachers, but also with fellow students. From the statements of the teachers, I highlight the opinion about insufficient feedback, about the biased assessment of students' competencies. Over the past fifteen months, information on the effectiveness of distance learning has expanded. I will share my experience gained during the 2020/21 academic year. We are talking about additional classes in mathematics with students in the final year of high school. The purpose of such classes is to eliminate gaps in knowledge and skills in the course of mathematics in general education secondary school. In fact, we can call such classes as "tutoring". Their essence is training, the accumulation of skills in solving problems with the simultaneous repetition of the formulations of rules, theorems, definitions of mathematical concepts. According to the Government decree, classes held remotely from October 6, 2020 to February 6, 2021. Namely, on the MS TEAMS platform, which is well adapted for these purposes, since it allows you to conduct a dialogue with students, conduct explanations with writing formulas and drawings in real time, and the demonstration of pre-prepared training materials. In February, the situation changed: the students returned to the classroom. It would seem that the changes are insignificant: from dialogue at a distance, we with them moved on to dialogue "eye to eye". However, both in my observations and in the opinion expressed by the students, the effectiveness of teaching has increased. In my opinion, a psychological phenomenon of personal contact of the teacher with the student explains the increase in efficiency.

How has the COVID-19 pandemic changed your teaching?

By Juergen Koeberlein-Kerler, Ukrainian Engineering Pedagogics Academy, Kharkiv, Ukraine, University of Applied Sciences Würzburg-Schweinfurt, Germany

From my point of view and my experience, it depends very much on the company, University and/or the research group. For instance, in the places I was working, it was overall fine. It depends strongly on the number of employees and the work they do, the work facilities and the money the lab/group has. I was working at a company with a good budget, so they could provide a laptop to every single employee and send them home. In a friend’s lab, they were many people, and they all had to work in the lab with experiments, so they were forced to set a schedule, where people could only come a couple of days in the lab. Other labs were lucky to had a lot of space, so they could separate in rooms their people.


Teaching Physics Post-CoVID: Modifications and Enhancements

By Teresa L. Larkin, Department of Physics, American University, Washington, DC

I have always used a large number of demonstrations in my physics classes. When CoVID hit, I promised my students that the pandemic would not impact the quality of my online courses. In order to assure that the students were able to benefit from the many demonstrations that are integral to key physics content, I spent several months making video demonstrations of literally every demonstration that I typically use in my introductory physics classes. To be safe, I brought a lot of demonstration equipment home and made video demonstrations in my kitchen and backyard. For the larger demonstrations that my department had only one of, I would come up to campus when no one was around, which was most of the time, and use the department’s equipment. I would set up each demonstration and then videotape myself explaining and going through it. After 2.5 semesters of teaching online, I now have nearly all of the demonstrations I use in my introductory courses in video format. While teaching online via Zoom, I would simply show the videos to the students by embedding them in my PowerPoints. What I found by doing this is that there are some advantages to showing the video demonstrations. The first advantage is I can stop and start the video as I need to and I can forward the video a step at a time to make whatever point I needed to make. The second advantage is that because I recorded my Zoom classes, students could go back and watch the class recording, including my demonstration videos as many times as they needed to. I envision that once things get back to “normal” and we return to in-person classes, I will find a way to utilize these video demonstrations in a way that will continue to enhance student learning.


How has the COVID-19 pandemic changed your teaching?

By Rastislav Harčarufka, Telegrafia a.s., Kosice, Slovakia

The ICT training has adapted relatively easily - significantly moved to online teaching, where the theoretical part takes place via online communication tools (Zoom, Webex, MS-Teams with audio and video) using screen sharing for demos, presentations or whiteboard, and practical exercises through online access to virtual labs - virtual machines and/or cloud services. Virtual labs are available 24/7 and often they remain available to participants for several months after ending of training for further individual use. Of course, it is specific for the ICT training, and the quality and availability of the Internet services are essential.

How has the COVID-19 pandemic changed your teaching? Laboratory Work

By Zulfiya Balgimbaeva, Al-Farabi Kazakh National University, Almaty, Kazakhstan

The organization and conduct of laboratory work are of particular difficulty in a pandemic. Currently, resources such as Google Classroom, Whats App, Telegram, and the University platform «Univer» are used to organize and conduct laboratory works in the education process. Nevertheless, taking into account the specifics of technical training and pronounced applied nature in the training of future engineers, the following methods are actively used: • online demonstration of experiences or experiments by teachers; • creation of technical models and diagrams using special software (e.g., Multisim); • demonstrating videos of experiments. For more effective support of the educational process in a pandemic, the most relevant is the creation of special software for remote control of specific laboratory installations and equipment at departments. Such an approach can ensure not only the achievement of the set educational goals, high-quality feedback, and assessment of the effectiveness of the chosen teaching method but its timely correction.

ANTIZ Industry and B. M. S. College of Engineering Collaboration

By Samita Maitra, BMS College of Engineering, Bangalore, India

Experiential learning is a vital tool in engineering education. To adopt this for the undergraduate education, we in collaboration with Antiz Technologies Pvt Ltd. has developed a Virtual Laboratory on Process Instrumentation. Three departments namely Electronics and Instrumentation, Chemical Engineering with Computer Science Engineering are part of this endeavour. A module to conduct ‘ON-OFF Valve Characteristics’ experiment was developed and successfully demonstrated. The experimental setup for the ON-OFF Valve Characteristics is with BMSCE. Antiz developed the user interface module and put it on the cloud for the student to remotely operate the experimental setup and conduct the experiment. The module has detailed step-by-step instructions (with voice-over by the faculty as well) to guide the student through the experimental procedure. The observation data gets automatically logged in and towards the end of the experiment, the interface creates plots for the following parameters: DC Current Vs Output Pressure of I to P Converter, DC Current Vs Stem Movement and DC Current Vs Flow rate.

News about the InnovaHiEd ATC

By Uriel R Cukierman, Universidad Tecnologica Nacional, Argentina, InnovaHiEd, PR

InnovaHiEd was created some years ago by our beloved and always remembered Lueny Morell. Later on, InnovaHiEd was accredited by IGIP as a new ATC and, together with colleagues from several countries, offered the IGIP's curriculum for engineering pedagogy, for the first time ever in Spanish, in the University of Puerto Rico Mayagüez for a group of 27 educators coming from Argentina, Peru, Chile, Colombia, Dominican Rep. and Puerto Rico. We then developed two more cohorts, one in Argentina, at the Universidad Tecnológica Nacional in 2018 with 50 participants and the third one in Chile, at the Universidad de la Frontera in 2019 with 45 participants. The fourth cohort was originally planned for 2020 in the Universidad de Guadalajara in Mexico but, due to the pandemic, it was postponed and transformed into a full virtual modality beginning in March 2021. After Lueny’s passing, Eduardo Vendrell (Spain) and Uriel Cukierman (Argentina), took the lead and transformed InnovaHiEd into InnovaHiEd Academy. Our first initiative was to create the Lueny Morell Award, organized together with IFEES and GEDC Latam, sponsored by CTI and IAOE and with the auspices of several international organizations. Now, InnovaHiEd Academy is pleased to announce the 5th cohort of the International Engineering Educators Certification Program (IEECP) accredited by the International Society for Engineering Pedagogy (IGIP). In this occasion, due to the current pandemic situation, the Program will be entirely developed in an online format and similar to previous cohorts, it will be offered in Spanish. Beginning with this cohort, IFEES will support and sponsor this offer, specially aimed at the iberoamerican community of engineering educators. The beginning of this cohort has been scheduled for next September. More information and registration at https://innovahied.academy/formacion-igip/


By by Alexander Solovyev, MAI

On April 16th, 2021 the MADI hosted the 10th International IGIP Regional Conference on Engineering Pedagogy "Modern Concept of Training Scientific and Pedagogical Staff in Engineering Postgraduate Education" which was supported by the International Society for Engineering Education, the Russian Association for Engineering Education, the Association of Technical Universities and "Higher Education in Russia" journal. Welcome addresses were made by Acting Rector of MADI, Doctor of Engineering, Professor A.V. Keller, President of the IGIP International Monitoring Committee, Associate Professor of Tallinn Technical University, Dr. Tiia Rüütmann, President of the Russian Section of the International Society for Engineering Education, Corresponding Member of RAS, Doctor of Engineering, Professor V.M. Prikhodko. The speakers who are representatives of engineering universities from different countries - Belarus, Latvia, Poland, Estonia as well as from different Russian cities - Bronnitsy, Kaliningrad, Kazan, Lermontov, Makhachkala, Moscow, Orenburg, Tambov, Cheboksary - discussed current issues of psychological and pedagogical training of postgraduates and professional development of higher school teachers. That exchange of opinions has a great importance for the project “Effective training model of technical discipline lecturers for the purpose of obtaining “International Educator of Engineering University” certificate - “ING-PAED IGIP” being now implemented in MADI, which, in its turn, has recently received the status of a Federal Innovation Platform. The conference was held in form of a combination of online and offline meeting. According to the results of the conference the articles will be published in one of the journals indexed in the international database “Web of Science”.