LEARNING WITH CIVIL ENGINEERING
‘Civil Engineering’ is the second oldest branch of engineering and it has been the aspect of human life since the human started abounded the nomadic existence. This course is apt for those who are fascinated to the massive buildings and infrastructures. Isn’t amazing that how the great sources of power in nature has been directed for the use and convenience of man such as construction of roads, bridges, aqueducts, canals, river navigation, docks, ports, harbours, drainage of cities and towns and various skyscrapers etc.
By study this course one gets the adequate knowledge about:
The term "learning" has many definitions. Commonly, learning is understood as a continuous process through a lifetime. People experience and perceive every day something new in different situations. In other words, they learn. Definition of learning stresses the importance of behavioral changes and changes in attitudes as a result of experience.
Learning is a cognitive process of acquiring knowledge or skills through study, experience or teaching. Learning can take place as organized and purposed activities, such as learning in a classroom with a teacher and ready-made learning material or unconsciously, without you being aware of the process of learning. For example, if you touch a hot pan and get burned, next time you will know that you should not do this again. You have learned from your experiences to stay away from hot things. Civil Engineering involves design, construction, and maintenance of everything from small infrastructure to large like Building, Road, Sewer Lines, etc. Civil engineering requires an understanding of core concepts including, mathematics, mechanics, concrete technology, the design of concrete structures and steel structure, structural analysis, highway design, and maintenance etc.
2Projects and activities
Due to the rapidly changing technology, these days, an engineer needs to have some hand on experience to meet the industry’s demand. The classroom teaching is not sufficient to enhance the subject knowledge unless the student is engaged in practical aspects of that subject in terms of real-time projects covering the subject matters. Therefore, to fulfill the need of the industry, students are encouraged to conduct the industry-oriented research program in the form of live projects. It provides them hands-on experience which is the demand of industry now a day, as well as make the learning interesting and easy. The projects are mainly concerned with highway engineering, building construction and software related. The benefits of the project are that these projects enhance the knowledge. The students study their subjects sincerely to accomplish the projects and hence, they are benefited in their curriculum as well. These live projects are conducted by students of every semester. Mainly the projects are related to their semester subjects, which they are studying or they have already studied in previous semesters. Apart from the live projects, every week two lectures are provided to the students to engage them in real time activities relevant to the industrial exposure. Different type of activities is performed which include but not limited to group discussions, mock interviews, quizzes, creative Writing, antakshari and so on. These activities may or may not be related to their subjects, like technological changes in the industry, politics, games, biographies and so on, but definitely important for the overall development of the students.
For most of us, the assessment is meant for the process by which we assign grades to the students in their respective subjects. But assessment is not limited to only assigning grades, it is a mechanism for providing data to the teachers in order to improve their teaching methods as well as guide and motivate the students to actively involve themselves in their own learning. As such, assessment is important for both teachers and students. The evaluation of students is a continual process. The assessment is in the form of three internal exams, assignments, tutorials, surprised tests etc. Regular assessment enables students to identify their own strengths and weaknesses and to find out the ways to improve themselves. It eliminates the several misconceptions and deficiencies related to the subjects. Through regular assessment, apart from the curriculum, the students are made to learn that they have to appear before a number of such assessment in their lives for continuous improvement of their performance.
Web-based learning has got much attention as being an incredible opportunity to study nowadays. Generally, web-based learning and traditional learning are similar in terms of desired goals: to acquire new knowledge and skills. In both ways, the teacher is mentoring and students are doing various learning activities. Differences between them are seen when we take a closer look at learning activities and tools, teaching approaches, communication issues, etc. Web-Based Technique of learning has following advantages.
- Students can work at their own pace when they want. Web-based learning enables to study more deeply areas of interest. It encourages exploring material on your own and enables to skip over materials already mastered. Web-based learning supports personalized learning and is self-directed. It builds self-knowledge and self-confidence and encourages students to take responsibility for their own learning.
- Web-based learning enables to join discussions at any hour and encourages also those who don't like to speak. It facilitates learning through a variety of activities. Learners have access to courses, which enables to reduce travel time and costs.
- Web-based learning provides interaction between students and instructors. Students can share their ideas with other students, which may help to understand the material better.
- Students can study anywhere and anytime if they have an access to computer and Internet. Web-based learning provides continual and also direct access to materials, resources in many different formats and of good quality.
- Working on the web offers an opportunity to communicate with students using e-mail, discussion boards etc. Teachers receive students' work quickly and they provide timely feedback to students' questions.
The fundamental teaching process such as giving a presentation, class discussion, guest speakers and field works are also important components of teaching method. Although the general teaching is the same, there are some differences in the culture and socio-economic demands.
There have been significant changes in undergraduate civil engineering curricula in the last decades. Key issues for university curriculum selection and transference of appropriate skills and attributes for students to succeed in the industry. Despite significant changes occurring in teaching theories, civil engineering education still relies heavily on deductive instruction. Case-based teaching is one of the most widespread forms of inductive learning. The benefits of using this approach are improved retention of knowledge, better reasoning and analytical skills, development of higher-order skills, greater ability to identify relevant issues and recognize multiple perspectives, higher motivation, and awareness of non-technical issues. Many of these outcomes are part of the expected attributes of civil engineers outlined by professional bodies. We, at civil engineering department, emphasize on case studies for engineering teaching in order to develop professional skills and knowledge of the students.
Industrial visit is very important to any student undergoing professional education such as Engineering, Business management, Biotechnology, Pharmacy, Architecture and many more, no institute providing these courses has got enough infrastructure to showcase all the real working equipment, machinery, operational methodology and everything else, that students will come across once they enter into professional field, after the completion of their respective courses, so these industrial tours are an effort to bridge this gap of practical exposure. One of the important objectives of engineering course is the desire to prepare graduates to quickly become productive upon entering the workforce. According to Sanroman Pazos and Longo (2010), industrial visits give students insight into their future professions by giving them the opportunity to observe industrial processes in operation. The civil engineering department regularly organizes industrial visits to acquire technical activities involved in construction sites, production of building materials, etc. For students, these visits focus on learning through interaction with managers/in charge who share with the students the recent developments, strategies and market moves of the industry.
In the classroom, Power Point's ability to integrate sound, animation, and video in a slideshow can capture the attention of students. Text in a PowerPoint is easier to read than on a blackboard. Teachers can have greater flexibility in presenting lessons, which can be used repeatedly and modified as needed to different classes. Benefits of using powerpoint are
- Flexibility: PowerPoint can be used in a number of different effective ways to communicate with the students. Slides are completely customizable to fit the need of the students.
- Visual Impact: Making presentation more interesting through the use of multimedia can help to improve the student’s focus. PowerPoint allows using images, audio, and video to have a greater visual impact. These visual and audio signs may also help a teacher be more improvisational and interactive with the students.