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InteractingAcademy@DICAM - A Project for Innovation in Teaching

Figure 2 - Interactive teaching

The Project "Innovation in Teaching" by DICAM

InteractingAcademy@DICAM is a project launched by Department  DICAM in 2017 for promoting excellent and innovative teaching methods.

The initiative is framed within the Project Department of Excellence financed by the Italian Government that includes DICAM among the awarded departments. InteractingAcademy@DICAM aims to promote teaching methods based on the active participation by students by using innovative technologies and social media. A fundamental role is played by the interaction between students and teachers.

The project aims to integrate the traditional one-way flow of knowledge from teacher to student with a feedback flow from student to teacher and a cross flow among students (Figure 2). The target is achieved by assigning an active role to the student during his/her education.

Framework of the Project

InteractingAcademy@DICAM is structured over 3 pillars:

  • Stock-taking of the best teaching practices of the Department;
  • Development of innovative teaching skills;
  • Practical development of innovative teaching methods.

Best practices were inventoried through forms compiled by the teachers during the first part of the year 2018. The forms highlighted that a number of teachers in the Department are already practicising innovative teaching procedures. The collected forms can be downloaded by clicking here.

Innovative teaching skills were developed through three steps:

  • Organization of language courses to improve the knowledge by teachers of technical English. Several teachers already obtained the C1 English certificate;
  • Organisation of courses for teachers of innovative teaching methods in a context "English as a Medium of Instruction" (EMI; about 30 teachers attended the courses);
  • Use of e-learning and e-tools. Several teachers attended a specific course organized in 2018, which was taught by experts in the field.

Innovative teaching methods were used in 2018 by a number of teachers. The underlying concepts are:

  • Students are invited to take an active role during their education;
  • Teamworking is promoted as an essential part of the education process;
  • Open access and continuously evolving information is widely used and made permanently accessible;
  • A Continuous verification of the teaching results is carried out with innovative methods;
  • Emphasis is given to the value of diversity of culture and interdisciplinarity, as  well as to student's experience as an essential value during the education process.

Development of the project during the AA 2018-2019

During the academic year 2018-2019 the project InteractiveAcademy@DICAM will be articulated in two experimental phases in the Degree Programmes of the Department.

The first phase will focus on the subjects of the Degree Programme in Offshore Engineering and will be developed in cooperation with the Department of Education Studies  (Professors Dina Guglielmi and Ira Vannini). The first phase will be framed within the project "Formative Educational Evaluation" of the University of Bologna. The latter project aims to support teachers to assess and redesign their teaching methods. It is mainly driven by the feedback by students and third parties (including industrial partners and local administrations).

The second phase will focus on all the subjects of the Department. Teachers will be invited, on a voluntary basis, to experiment innovative teaching methods. The related subjects will be labeled and students will be informed accordingly. The Moodle platform will be used and the opinion of students will be continuously monitored.

A synthesis of the results of the project will be presented by a workshop that will be organized by the Department in 2019.

The present page will be continuously updated as the project evolves.

A powerpoint presentation of the Project InteractiveAcademy@DICAM is available for download by clicking here.