PBL Courses at Nepal Engineering College

The following courses were offered practicing the PBL methodology:

  1. Core Course: ELX 315 (3-1-2) Integrated Digital Electronics (IDE) adapted PBL Course offered to 5th semester students of Electronics and Communication Engineering.
  2. Elective courses: Artificial Neural Network (ANN) offered to 7th semester students of Electronics and Communication Engineering.
  3. Undergraduate projects offered to final year students of Electronics and Communication Engineering

PBL integration in general

Course 1: Integrated Digital Electronics(IDE)(Adapted PBL Course)

In contrast to traditional teaching approaches, problem-based learning uses real-world problems as a case to increase student learning of concepts and principles. PBL also encourages critical thinking, soft skill development, teamwork, and stakeholder analysis. Considering all of these benefits, our department has decided to update the IED course offered to fifth semester students of Electronics and Communication students and amend it according to PBL methodology. The total number of students is 15.Nepal Engineering College is an affiliated college, and the University imposes the whole syllabus of any discipline. We only have freedom on internal assessments, which account for about 25 % of total grades. We firmly used this percentage to evaluate the students.We formally planned a one-day session on PBL methodology to tackle any problem for the first time. Then we assigned four themes and assigned each student to work on a specific problem. They formed groups and actively worked on these topics during the program. They actively contributed in listing and categorizing the problems. They also brainstormed on this issue and came up with some sort of solution. Finally, at the workshop's conclusion, they presented the solution in the form of a block diagram. This was a small group of fifteen people who were effective in applying IED knowledge to these problems.Following this workshop, they went to the National Innovation Center with a list of questions. They interviewed several employees of the innovation center and gathered a large amount of insight. Later, students grouped those thoughts and discussed solutions to the difficulties. In the approaching semester, they will give their reports as well as some results. We are shocked that students are now involved in societal problems and working in groups to address those challenges.

Courses 2: Elective Artificial Neural Network(ANN)

Universities typically provide optional courses to bridge the gap between academic and industrial needs in order to address the rapid technological shift. In the Electronics and Communication Department, we often provide a pool of such courses to students and ask them to select one. Artificial Neural Network was one of the electives chosen in the previous semester. This is a brand-new domain in our department, and it is being offered for the first time to seventh semester Electronics and Communication students. Many students were eager to take this course, and the entire class (total 30 students) ended up taking it as an elective. Typically, universities allow colleges the authority to develop the syllabus for such optional courses, and the examination requirements are flexible. Given this independence, our department has begun this course using the PBL teaching technique. A few lectures were given on topics such as motivation for this course, group discussions, ideation, and some type of tangible output. However, since the pandemic COVID shutdown, things have altered. Colleges and institutions have been closed for more than four months, and all academic courses have been completed virtually. This had a significant impact on the course, and the PBL technique was only lightly followed. However, if all goes well in the coming semester, we intend to run this course in accordance with PBL guidelines.
Courses 3: Final Year Project

Final year project work is a requirement of any undergraduate program in the engineering domain at Nepal Engineering College. It is usually an open-ended engineering problem that should be turned into a design project. Students complete such projects by applying knowledge from different courses that they have studied in their curriculum. Such projects usually end with a final prototype or with some designs, which are usually simulated on some platforms. To complete these projects, a group of two to three people is usually formed. This group is formed on the basis of students' requests. In the electronics and communication department, we usually have seven to eight such groups. Prior to the implementation of PBL in our departments, students often chose topics assigned by supervisors and worked within the constraints provided. There was no brainstorming or group discussion on the student side, and they usually search the internet for code or circuits, only to wind up repeating the work of others. Things have changed since the PBL courses. We frequently see students attempting to carry out projects based on societal issues that exist in our communities. They frequently approach the supervisor with a topic in mind and ask them to organize transportation for the site visit.We have two such projects this semester: Mushroom Disease Detection and an IoT-based Hydroponics Control System. We were astounded by the impact of PBL on these pupils. Toward the end of the semester, one group visited a mushroom production farm. They gathered plenty of questions and presented them to the farmers. They discovered that mushroom disease consumes the majority of farmers' revenues as a result of this. They finalized the topic of mushroom disease detection and are working on this project as a result of identifying this problem. The effort is still ongoing, and it appears that they will complete this project with tangible results by July 2022. They are also looking for companies to partner with on this project, therefore it appears that they are, deliberately or unknowingly, engaged in stakeholder analysis
PBL Pilot Case Study:
  • IoT based smart Hydroponics System
  • IoT based fertilizer doser system
  • Behavioural Change Monitoring of Autistic children
  • Technical Assistant for Verbal Autistic Child in Nepal
  • Mushroom Disease detection using CNN


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Last Updated (Saturday, 10 September 2022 12:01)