Häme University of Applied Sciences, Finland
The purpose of this article is to present an example of how to increase the community spirit, positive atmosphere and motivation in electrical- and automation engineering studies.The vision of Häme University of Applied Sciences (HAMK) is to offer the most inspiring higher education and the most customer-oriented applications of research. The students are a central part in all activities. HAMK's electrical- and automation engineering study programme is actively searching for ways to increase community spirit of students. The dropout percentage of technical students in Finland is high. The number of graduates and study credit accumulation affect the financing of universities. HAMK’s quality system is based on continuous improvement. Central part of this system is the feedback collected from students at the end of each module. The feedback consists of 13 questions and 3 of them focus on the subject of this article: 1. I have received enough guidance and support for achieving the learning outcomes, 2. The atmosphere of my study group is supportive of learning, 3. The module affected my motivation and commitment to study. The findings are encouraging. The methods that have been used are for example: project-based learning, working life-oriented learning, team work and development of meta skills. The students start their studies with a practical project to raise their motivation and commitment for their studies. A personal study plan is made for every student. Advancement of the plan and possible changes are reviewed annually in development discussions. The conclusion: line of development shows that pedagogical means can improve the communality of students and motivation. At the same time the monitored performance indicators are showing a positive development in number of graduates and in credit accumulation of students. Good results have already been achieved but the development work continues.
Community spirit, team teaching, quality system, degree of electricity and automation