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2. ENGINEERING AND TECHNOLOGY
In an attempt to increase engagement in a third-year mechanical-engineering mathematics module, a series of group-work sessions were introduced on a single topic. Students were asked to use the solution of a second-order differential equation (previously introduced in lectures) to solve a problem in which they must design a simple spring-damper system for one of a lorry, digger, truck, tractor, car, motorbike or pogo stick. This project was worth 10% of the module and done in groups of four. The groups gave an oral presentation of their results and a written report was handed up for grading. A detailed description of the implementation of this assessment is given along with an analysis of how student performance in questions on similar topics in the terminal examination for this module.
Carr, M. & Ní Fhloinn, E. (2017). A Project-Based-Learning Approach to Teaching Second-Order Differential Equations to Engineers. Proceedings of 45th SEFI Annual Conference, Azores, Portugal, 18-21, September.