Engaging Learners through Designs that Matter

Jawaharlal Mariappan & Travis Covington, CalPoly Pomona

Our approach to teaching must be based on sound pedagogy that helps students to uncover the principles, instead of being told. Research indicates real learning occurs when learners are immersed in realistic situations in which they are forced to perform, get feedback, take action, and have chances to adjust their responses. While there are many ways to simulate such situations, the most effective approach is having students engage in learn-by-doing projects - real projects that can directly benefit communities, have the potential for commercial adaptation, and offer a unique way to learn, serve, and prosper. The objectives of this project are to place learners in realistic situations and provide opportunities to get involved in socially responsible projects. This paper discusses projects developed with support from NCIIA.

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