Professor David L. Darmofal

Dr. Darmofal is Director of the MIT Aerospace Computational Design Laboratory (ACDL). His principal areas of interest are computational methods for fluid and aerodynamic design; robust design of turbomachinery including effects of manufacturing and wear; and engineering education innovation. He received a CAREER Award from the NSF in 1997. In recognition of excellence in teaching and advising at MIT, he was honored with the School of Engineering Bose Award for Junior Faculty in 2002, appointed as a MacVicar Faculty Fellow in 2004, and received the Earll M. Murman Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Advising in 2011.

 

November 29, 2011

Incorporating Engineering Education Best-Practices in the Classroom

Abstract: While the days of the solitary professor lecturing in a cloud of chalk dust (or a blur of viewgraphs) are not gone, a noticeable change is occurring in the engineering classroom. Although some aspects of this evolution are due to technology, many are the result of continued progress in the understanding of how we learn. Educational research has led to the recognition of several principles of effective teaching, and these principles are now finding their way into our classrooms. This talk will focus on incorporation of these principles into an undergraduate subject in aerodynamics. In particular, three specific techniques will be discussed: concept-based instruction coupled with look-ahead homework; a semester-long team-based project; and, oral exam assessments. Student achievement and subject evaluation data will be presented to motivate the need for change, to better understand the impact of these techniques, and to highlight lessons learned.

 

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