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Undergraduate Final Year Project Guideline for Lecturers 2014


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Undergraduate Final Year Project Guideline for Lecturers 2014

  1. 1. FYP (UG) Supervision: Managing Preparation, Support & Expectations (For Engineering Students) Professor Dr. R.Badlishah Ahmad (UniMAP) 2014 Modification from: Sally Cook & Wendy Saunderson
  2. 2. OUTLINE ●How to supervise ● EAC Expectation ● Evaluation ●Discusion
  3. 3. CONTEXT & PROBLEM • Tens of thousands of UG students complete Dissertations in UK HEIs each year (across the Arts, Humanities, and Social, Natural and Behavioural Sciences) • Despite the significance of Dissertation re. student learning & staff workload: there is a paucity of guidelines, Supervision Sessions are not subject to peer-review, and are rarely observed by QAA auditors. (Rowley and Slack, 2004; Todd et al., 2005)
  4. 4. VARIABLE STANDARDS & PROVISION • HUGE VARIATIONS in the nature, approach, attitudes, concerns, provision, strategies and experience of both Supervisor and Supervisee: But • COMMON CHARACTERISTICS and COMMON CHALLENGES / PROBLEMS
  5. 5. COMMON / KEY CHARACTERISTICS • Student-determined topic; Self-directed learning; • Independent/individual work + Tutor support; • Typically includes empirical research component; – Empirical research is a way of gaining knowledge by means of direct and indirect observation or experience. Empirical evidence (the record of one's direct observations or experiences) can be analyzed quantitatively or qualitatively. • Involves prolonged & sustained engagement. USUALLY: • 20 credits - 200 hrs - Final year 1/6 • In UniMAP - 2 + 4 credits • 5 – 10,000 words; No taught component • Dissertation Handbook; Individual supervision • No formal Supervisor training or guidance
  6. 6. COMMON CHALLENGES / PROBLEMS  Delayed start/delay in choosing topic;  Poor time management;  Failure to fully engage with the process;  Dissertation as ‘unknown entity’;  Balancing workload (lectures) – 1 out of 6 modules;  Lacking self-confidence for independent work;  Unsure of Supervisor-Supervisee relationship;  Unrealistic (misinformed) expectations;  Fear of not knowing what is required, and  Fear of being unable to meet requirements.  Communication breakdown (a failure to exchange information) Risk of under-achievement & dissatisfied students
  7. 7. SUPERVISOR’S ROLE 1) ACADEMIC GUIDANCE: advice on suitability, feasibility, scale/scope of study; conceptual/ theoretical issues; ethical issues; research methodology; structuring; presentation. 2) AS ‘MOTIVATOR’: setting tasks and deadlines; managing expectations; providing feedback. Do we have a clear idea of our role? Boundaries? Time commitment? Depends on number of Supervisees? Or our own research/workload?
  8. 8. BOUNDARIES & BALANCE Where does the Supervisor Role & Responsibility start and end? • How much is enough? Students do need a certain amount of guidance, support and encouragement to gain confidence to apply their skills to complete. • How much is too much? Spoon-feeding infantalises (to treat (a child or adult) like an infant or baby) students and stifles original thought:
  9. 9. MANAGING EXPECTATIONS (& ‘FEARS’) • What ARE students’ expectations? • Where do they come from? • How realistic are they? • How often do students expect supervision? • By which means? Which types do they prefer? • How realistic/realisable are their expectations? • What are students biggest fears/concerns?
  10. 10. What ARE their Expectations? Fears? Survey of 80 UG students; Starting final year; Semi-structured questionnaire, pre-Dissertation Special Session & pre-Supervisor contact. 64% expect Strict Timetable of Supervision 36% expect Flexible Supervision
  11. 11. 2 4 94 Preferred TYPE of Supervision (% Ranking) 1st Preference 2nd Pref. 3rd Pref 22 73 76 22 4 2 Face-to-Face Supervision Phone Supervision
  12. 12. How often is private face-to-face Supervision expected? 2 63 31 2 3 Twice per Week Every Fortnight Once per Month
  13. 13. Expected duration of each private face-to-face Supervision 10-15 mins 30-60 mins 2 hrs 5 36 43 14 2 Weekly Supervision 10-15 mins 30-60 mins 2 hrs 5 13 67 10 5 Fortnightly Supervision
  14. 14. UG Students’ ‘Greatest Fears/Concerns’ at start of final/Dissertation Year Not being able to understand certain aspects of dissertation; not having enough time or 1-to-1 sessions with Supervisor That I won’t get a high enough grade; that I won’t pick the right dissertation title; that I won’t get enough guidance and support from my Supervisor Biggest fear is juggling Uni work with 2 jobs; failing; not understanding the work; time management. Doing something wrong in my dissertation and wasting time by not being able to fully understand it; Not having enough one-to-one time with my Supervisor That I will fall behind and not do my best and that my Supervisor won’t be interested in my topic; it will be hard to balance work & Uni Biggest fear is everything snowballing if I get stuck on one piece of work; time management; balancing dissertation with other modules
  15. 15. EXPECTATION BASED on EAC Manual
  16. 16. EAC Manual 2012 (page 12) ● academic programme component minimum total of 120 credit hours minimum of 80 credit hours engineering courses consisting of ● engineering design/projects appropriate to the student's field of study. ● Final year project (minimum 6 credit hours)
  17. 17. EAC Manual 2012 (page 13) ● Credit hours ● For a 14-week semester (not including examination or mid-term break), one credit hour is defined as: ● 3 hours per week of activities involving final year project inclusive of meeting with supervisor.
  18. 18. EAC Manual 2012 (page 15): Exposure to Engineering Practice ● Exposure to engineering practice shall also be integrated throughout the curriculum as it is a key component through a combination of the following: – Lectures/talks by guest lecturers from industry, Academic staff with industrial experience, Courses on professional ethics and conduct, Industry visits, An industry-based final year project, Regular use of a logbook in which industrial experiences are recorded.
  19. 19. EAC Manual 2012 (page 15): Final-Year Project ● the best means of introducing an investigative research oriented approach to engineering studies ● required to seek individual analysis and judgement, capable of being assessed independently. ● expected to develop techniques in literature review and information processing, as necessary with all research approaches.
  20. 20. EAC Manual 2012 (page 15): Final-Year Project ● final-year projects should also provide opportunities to utilise appropriate modern technology in some aspects of the work, emphasizing the need for engineers to make use of computers and multimedia technology in everyday practice
  21. 21. 3 Main Elements of FYP ● Investigative research ● Analysis ● Develop techniques (process information and design)
  22. 22. DESIGN METHODS ● Flow Chart ● State Diagram ● Block Diagram ● Circuits/PCB Diagram ● Simulation Models (Software Tools) ● Mathematical Models
  23. 23. Expectation ● Semester 1: – Literature Review – Design – Presentation ● Semester 2: – Implementation – Verification/Analysis – Report Writing – Presentation
  25. 25. WHAT ARE THE COURSE OUTCOME (CO) ? Have we explained this to the students?
  26. 26. COURSE OUTCOME (CO) ● CO1 : Ability to apply and integrate theory and practical which has been studied to solve the engineering problems. ● CO2 : Ability to develop the suitable research methodology for the project. ● CO3 : Ability to present and justify/defend the project proposal.
  27. 27. RUBRIC? ● Should inform them about the rubric? ● 3 Items/elements – Project Management – Report (Project Progress Report) – Presentation
  28. 28. DISCUSION QnA