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Project-based learning and professional identity construction

  • Auteurs : A. Badets CESI LINEACT
  • Conférence : EAPRIL 2016, 22 novembre 2016
  • Ville : Porto (Portugal)
  • Mots clés : project-based learning ; professional identity ; professionalization ; identity formation ; becoming

CESI, a French school of engineering, has implemented a project-based learning curriculum in its combined work and study engineering degree programme, in October 2015. The new school curriculum is based on multidisciplinary 2 to 5 week projects, carried out in small groups and using loops inspired by the Deming Wheel as a problem solving methodology.
A previous research study, led by CESI’s Education Research Laboratory, showed that prior to the curricular evolution, key projects in the company played a major role in the construction of the professional identity of CESI’s engineering apprentices. A longitudinal study revealed that these milestones of the in-company training allowed identity transitions. The aim of our research is to study the impact on professional identity formation of the shift in the school curriculum of CESI’s engineering degree in apprenticeship, from traditional lectures to project-based learning. This research aims at studying if a school curriculum can allow better integration between theory and practice and enhance professional identification and sense of becoming not only during the applied (in-company) parts of the studies but also through school projects. This study should help us understand the interrelations between project-based learning and professional identity construction during a training programme