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Department of Information Technology

Introduction to Engineering Education Research


The course aims at promoting participants´ understanding of the EER field as a whole, covering issues such as relevant literature in EER, current EE research subfields, samples of research questions, EER and other fields of science, how to carry out research in EER and designing research projects.

After the course, the student should be capable of designing a research plan for his or her own research project in EER.


The course is directed to two groups of people from Nordic and Baltic countries

  • Doctoral students who wish to specialize in Engineering Education Research and pursue doctoral studies and research in EER.
  • Teachers and scholars in Engineering who wish to pursue research in Engineering Education and deepen their understanding of relevant aspects of high quality Engineering Education.

In this context, we wish to define Engineering Education in a broad sense. Engineering sciences cover many different areas in technology, but engineering studies also include for example mathematics, physics, chemistry and computer science. Therefore we also welcome people who have been working or aim at working in for example mathematics education research, physics education research, chemistry education research or computing education research, and thus we hope to bring these communities closer to each other.

The course is organized as separate units, which make up a whole. For each unit, at most 20 participants are accepted. If more people would like to take the course, the preference is given to those who aim at taking the whole course.

Accepted participants from Nordic or Baltic countries may apply for a grant covering the actual traveling and lodging costs up to the limits of 200 euro per participant for traveling and 350 euro per participant for hotel costs per unit. The NordForsk funding covers the costs for at most 15 participants.

There is no course fee. Also lunches and coffees are provided by the organizers. Participants from Baltic countries, however, need to cover 30 % of their costs (receiving a correspondingly smaller grant), due to NordForsk funding principles. Participants from other countries are welcome to the course, but their costs (travel, accomondation, lunches) cannot be funded from the NordForsk funding.


The course will organized during February - October 2010 in several intensive days concentrating on difference aspects of EER.


The networked course, "Introduction to EER", is jointly organised by Helsinki University of Technology, Finland, Uppsala University, Sweden and Aalborg University, Denmark, with Helsinki University of Technology as the lead institution.

Course syllabus

The course consists of three 5 ECTS credit modules, 15 ECTS credits in total. The modules are:

Unit A. Basics of EER

  • The landscape of EER: overview of relevant research questions. Engineering and educational components of EER, as a cross-disciplinary field of research. Designing research projects in EER.
  • Outcome: Identification of fruitful research topics and questions based on the needs of engineering education, and the context of the participant as a teacher or PhD student.
  • Organized Aalborg University, chair: Anette Kolmos and Erik de Graaff

Literature on EER will be sent out before the module starts.

Unit B. Introduction to research methodologies

  • Methods and results. Qualitative and quantitative research approaches. Relationships between research approaches and results. Quality of the results.
  • Outcome: A methodology section of the participant´s research plan or a section of a chapter in their thesis
  • Organized by Uppsala University, chair: Anders Berglund

Unit C. EER literature

  • Introduction to EER literature. Research approaches and sub-fields of EER and related fields. How to read and interpret EER publications? Central publication forums. How to write an EER research paper?
  • Outcome: A report discussing relevant literature in the area of participant´s proposed research topic, leading to a more detailed formulation of research questions and hypotheses.
  • Organized by Helsinki University of Technology

The course is assessed mainly by three reports submitted by the participants, one per topic, each building on the previous, so that the reports together form a research plan. Peer-reviewing and seminars on the reports. Shorter oral presentations and/or written assignments. Active course participation.

Each unit is organized in two intensive periods of 1-3 days. There are assignments, lectures, exercises and shorter student presentations, and peer-reviewed seminars.

Participants passing all units will receive a certificate for the whole course, signed by course organizers and the chair of the SEFI working group on EER.


Deadline for submissions is Dec 15, 2009. Notification of acceptance is by Dec 21, 2009. Applications can concern participating 1 or 2 units only, but preference is given to participants taking the whole course.

Updated  2010-12-14 14:56:30 by Arnold Pears.