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A Hybrid Engineering Course Combining Case-based and Lecture-based Teaching

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2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Tampa, Florida

Publication Date

June 15, 2019

Start Date

June 15, 2019

End Date

October 19, 2019

Conference Session

Innovative Course Structures and Learning Environments

Tagged Division

Biomedical Engineering

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Paper Authors


Neda Melanie Bassir Kazeruni Columbia University

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Neda Bassir Kazeruni received her bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from ENSTA ParisTech, France, in 2012, an MSc in Bioengineering from Imperial College London, United Kingdom, in 2013, and an MSc in Systems Production and Management from ENSTA ParisTech, France, in 2014.
She is currently pursuing her PhD in Biomedical Engineering at Columbia University where her research interests include nanobiotechnology, the study of wear and fatigue at the nanoscale, as well as education.

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Henry Hess Columbia University

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Henry Hess received the Dr.rer.nat. in Physics from the Free University Berlin, Germany, in 1999.
He is currently a Professor of Biomedical Engineering at Columbia University, New York, a member of the External Advisory Board of Nano Letters since 2010, and serves as the Editor-in-Chief of the IEEE Transactions on NanoBioscience since 2014.

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Engineering and business school courses both aim to teach students to solve problems, but the approaches they use to reach that objective are traditionally perceived as fundamentally different. Engineering courses provide the students with dense technical knowledge that helps them give a definitive answer to a problem, while business school classes focus more on collaborative learning by confronting the students with real-world cases and by encouraging teamwork in order to find viable solutions to a question, the question not necessarily having a single black and white answer. We combined both of these approaches in a single course by designing the semester-long “Introduction to Nanobiotechnology and Nanobioscience” course. This engineering course was directed towards senior undergraduate and first year graduate students. It incorporated key elements of business schools’ case study approach to learning, without altering the class time or the elements drawn from the traditional engineering education style. The format and different active elements of this hybrid course was presented at the ASEE last year as a work-in-progress project. Building on that prior work, our objective here is to prove the effectiveness of the hybrid format introduced in the course. To that end, two feedback tools were implemented: (1) a pre-course survey was used to gauge the students’ self-reported knowledge on key element of the course. The same survey questions were added to the end of semester survey, thus enabling us to quantify the progress that was made. (2) Students’ participation was recorded both qualitatively and quantitatively during all class sessions, thus providing us with information about the effect of the business-school inspired elements on students’ participation, and the repercussions those activities had on the traditional lecture sessions.

Bassir Kazeruni, N. M., & Hess, H. (2019, June), A Hybrid Engineering Course Combining Case-based and Lecture-based Teaching Paper presented at 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Tampa, Florida. 10.18260/1-2--31962

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