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Development of Mechanical Engineering Curricula at the University of Minho

[+] Author Affiliations
J. C. F. Teixeira, J. C. F. L. Silva, P. Flores

University of Minho

Paper No. IMECE2006-15170, pp. 353-359; 7 pages
doi:10.1115/IMECE2006-15170
From:
  • ASME 2006 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Innovations in Engineering Education: Mechanical Engineering Education, Mechanical Engineering Technology Department Heads
  • Chicago, Illinois, USA, November 5 – 10, 2006
  • Conference Sponsors: Mechanical Engineering Education, Mechanical Engineering Technology Department Heads
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4781-0 | eISBN: 0-7918-3790-4
  • Copyright © 2006 by ASME

abstract

The implementation of the Bologna protocol in the EU has set new goals for the whole higher education system as: a) a quality assessment for university courses; b) a framework for the exchange of students and academics and c) an opportunity for changing the teaching/learning procedures and methodologies. Within the context, the mechanical engineering curricula at the University of Minho has been comprehensively formulated in order to meet these and future challenges and expectations. The whole process has been based upon various cornerstones: the legal framework for the higher education system; the introduction of new learning methodologies and an accurate survey and understanding of the existing strong and week points of the previous experience. For this purpose, a comprehensive evaluation has been carried out with former students and a detailed map has been formulated regarding their professional careers and experiences. Furthermore, a discussion has been carried out in order to define the mission of the graduate in Mechanical Engineering. In brief, such mission may be referred by his ability to participate in the wealth creation through technology based innovation. Within this context, the curriculum has been structured in order to meet such goals. In addition to strong foundations in physics and mathematics, new subjects are introduced into the curriculum. The whole education is based upon project development which stimulates the students initiative, responsibility and their ability to integrate knowledge. Throughout the curriculum, students are enrolled into research projects developed in the department and it is expected that a few selected projects may be taken into a quasi industrial stage.

Copyright © 2006 by ASME

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