Flipping the classroom: applying the circuit in Foundation Design





Engineering Education, Alive Engineering Education, IJAEEdu, ICAEEdu


The assessment of the student's academic results is one of the most challenging tasks in education because it may be subjective, lack clarity and goals. In addition, many professors and institutions have a deficient comprehension of the assessments' purpose and have used the students' grades as a means to determine the reach of the educational objectives. Trying to address that question, the Circuit is an alternative form of assessment based on the interaction and cooperation between students that aims to verify the results of the learning process through ludic activities. This paper presents the results of applying the Circuit in Foundation Design, an undergraduate course of the 5th-year of Civil Engineering at the Universidade Estadual de Santa Cruz - UESC, in Ilhéus, Brazil, in 2017. The professor decided to use the Circuit in this course as an attempt to enable the students to interact and share what they have learned with their classmates. By doing so, the professor considered the concept of the Zone of Proximal Development, from Vygotsky, assessing the students’ ability to deal with problems with the help of their peers and learn with them. The method, although containing many rules, was easy to apply. The students, divided into groups of three, were expected to create two reports based on data for one Standard Penetration Test – SPT - and one Cone Penetration Test – CPT. Each member of the group played a different role on the activity: the "engineer" produced the report; the "technician" completed the missing data of the tests; the "manager" corrected the final reports. After completing the activity, each student gave feedback on its negative and positive aspects and this information was used to compose the results. From the results, the method showed to be effective because more than half the students pointed out that it developed their sense of responsibility and was innovative. Conversely, it may have failed with respect to the distribution of time, what may have affected the results of the groups. Therefore, the method proved to be promising, but it still demands some improvements for subsequent applications.

Author Biography

Patrick Borges Rodrigues, Universidade Estadual de Santa Cruz

Patrick Borges Rodrigues is a Civil Engineering undergraduate student at the Universidade Estadual de Santa Cruz in Ilhéus, Brazil. In 2015, he received a scholarship from Brazil Scientific Mobility Program and studied Civil and Environmental Engineering at the Syracuse University in Syracuse, USA, and was undergraduate research student from the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago, USA. He is interested in Water resources, BIM and Engineering Education.


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