INCORPORATING TEAM-EFFECTIVENESS AS A LEARNING OBJECTIVE IN THE DESIGN PROJECT WITHIN A TECHNICAL CORE COURSE

Greg Evans, Patricia Sheridan, Doug Reeve, Maygan McGuire, Kristina Minnella, Estelle Olivia Fisher, Lydia Wilkinson, Todd McAlary
2013 Proceedings of the Canadian Engineering Education Association (CEEA)  
CHE 230 'Environmental Chemistry' is a core Chemical Engineering course offered in the spring semester of second year. A central element of the course is the 'Environmental Consulting Engineering' project, a full semester design project that is executed in five-member teams. The acquisition of teamwork and group-leadership skills has been one of the project learning objectives for about five years; the related instructional components have been refined every year. This presentation will
more » ... tation will describe the theoretical foundation and methods used to teach team-effectiveness as part of this design project. Instruction of team skills has been based on two conceptual frameworks. A leadership styles framework examines the preferences of individual students and helps students see how these styles are manifested within a team. This framework allows students to identify their leadership style preferences and more importantly, recognize the strengths of others, and styles that may be missing from their team. A team-effectiveness framework helps students examine organizational, relational and communication behaviours evident within their team, and thereby helps students to recognise where they do, or do not, tend to contribute. These two frameworks provide students with a shared vocabulary, along with a basis to observe and understand their team experiences that can then be used to promote learning and structured reflection. The instructional components used are an introductory lecture on team effectiveness, a two-hour team formation workshop, a reflection done by the team after the first major deliverable and an individual reflection at the end of the course. These components are intended to direct students from recognizing aspects of team-effectiveness, towards seeing deficiencies in their team or their individual contributions. The students are then guided towards finding practical tools and techniques that they can use to become more effective at different aspects of teamwork.
doi:10.24908/pceea.v0i0.4870 fatcat:zmqdelkigja33leu5bsl3vvo6y