AC 2007-672: The Phased Introduction of PBL in the Engineering Undergraduate Programs at Victoria University

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Simcock, Alec L, Ives, Robert, Bronson, Paul, Mphande, Charles and Shi, Juan (2007) AC 2007-672: The Phased Introduction of PBL in the Engineering Undergraduate Programs at Victoria University. In: 2007 ASEE annual conference program : final conference program & proceedings, June 24-27, 2007, Honolulu, Hawaii. American Society for Engineering Education, Honolulu, Hawaii.


In mid-2005 Victoria University (VU), Australia committed itself to convert all of its undergraduate engineering programs to Problem Based Learning (PBL). The Vice Chancellor then mandated that PBL would be used to deliver the first year of these programs commencing in 2006, with an annual phased roll out of PBL into the later years of each program. This conversion to PBL was part of a strategy by the University to address declining enrolment numbers in engineering programs, and to meet requests from industry that universities should improve the personal and professional skills of their graduates. The changeover to PBL had been preceded in 2004 by a major revision to the programs to make them compliant with the Australian Federal Government’s Higher Education Information Management System (HEIMS). As a consequence the engineering programs have undergone their most significant revision in over 25 years. This revision has enabled the programs to simultaneously address the demands of external stakeholders and to compensate for the problems encountered by the traditional programs ensuing from the standards of prior education of students entering these programs. This paper looks at some of the background to the introduction of PBL, the models of PBL adopted and their justification, and the process of achieving such a radical overhaul of programs in the compressed time available.

Item type Book Section
Official URL
Subjects Historical > FOR Classification > 1302 Curriculum and Pedagogy
Historical > FOR Classification > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education
Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > School of Engineering and Science
Keywords PBL program designs, implementation, undergraduate engineering degrees, evaluation, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 Victoria University, Melbourne
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