Engineering Education Resources

On going projects

SENG undergraduate perceptions towards professional skills

The School of Engineering at HKUST launched a new engineering curriculum for the 2012-13 academic year and welcomed the first batch of 4-year curriculum students. E2I is investigating the perceptions of these students towards university study and the engineering profession with the aim of understanding the impact of the curriculum changes. Surveys conducted over the course of the students’ first year showed they had become more aware that technical knowledge alone is not enough and recognized the importance of teamwork and communication skills for the engineering profession. This perception change was more evident in the 4-year undergraduates than in the 3-year cohort, suggesting some positive impacts of the new SENG curriculum.

Service Leadership Initiative (SLI)

This project focuses on the education and promotion of service leadership at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST), and provides future engineers with opportunities for service leadership development. Service leadership development is essential for their future careers since Hong Kong, a cosmopolitan metropolis, has over 90% of the GDP from the service sector and engineers are professionals who provide technical and expert services to clients. The project is sponsored by the Victor and William Fung Foundation of Li & Fung Limited and supported by the Hong Kong Institute of Service Leadership and Management Limited (HKI-SLAM). The strategy towards SLI at HKUST is that it should be a cultural environment where everyone in the university understands the need to serve, and more importantly, the service occurs naturally. This concept is being facilitated through the development of a Service Leadership Community (SLC) within HKUST.

The Community is aimed at constructing a sustainable framework to seed the mindset of service leadership in all students. Through the implementation of a peer mentoring program, service learning courses, knowledge-based courses and other supporting activities like newsletter promotions and workshop training, students can have a variety of exposure to service leadership as something they can experience in their everyday life.

Outcome-based education for RPGs: Research supervision and professional development

In Hong Kong, universities are financed by public funds under the coordination of the University Grants Committee (UGC) and tasked to achieve four key responsibilities: providing high quality teaching and learning, covering the needs of society, being a source of future generations of academics, and acting as a driver for research in Hong Kong (UGC, 2010). Starting with the HKUST RPG education objectives (HKUST 2010, 2011a, & 2011c), this project hypothesizes that the development of an outcome-based framework for RPG education will enable support mechanisms to be established for Hong Kong RPG research supervision and professional development. We refer to the Researcher Development Framework (Vitae, 2011) and examine the skills of four aspects that RPGs should develop during research study: (1) knowledge and intellectual abilities, (2) personal effectiveness, (3) research governance and organization, and (4) engagement, influence, and impact.

Completed Projects

Teamwork development in the chemical engineering curriculum

A research study investigating the systematic development of students’ teamwork skills was conducted over a three-year period (2009-2011) in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, with the support from E2I. Specifically, student teamwork in two second-year laboratory courses and a third-year capstone experience (final-year projects) was analysed. The study found students had shown progressive improvements in their teamwork and cooperative skills over this three year period.