Applying an Experiential Learning Cycle with the Aid of Finite Element Analysis in Engineering Education
To enhance student’s understanding of basic engineering concepts, engineering education should include more active learning in its curricula. This article purposed to develop an active learning module for mechanical engineering students through a commercial finite element package. Kolb Learning Cycle was employed as the fundamental pedagogic of the module. This paper outlined how Kolb’s theory of the experiential learning was used to improve a learning module for ‘Heat Transfer’ course in mechanical engineering education. This model, which covered three topics (steady state heat conduction, transient heat conduction and thermal stress), briefly summarized, and reviewed Kolb’s stages of the experiential learning. A commercial finite element software was choosen to facilitate students’ understanding of difficult mathematical concepts. Each stage of the learning module was highlighted. Recommendations were made for future evaluation and research.