Crisis and catalyst: the impact of COVID-19 on global practice in engineering education

Co-sponsored by: University consortium
Project conducted: 2020 – 2022
Report published: October 2022

Informed by the perspectives and experiences of the global engineering education community, the Crisis and Catalyst report takes stock of the sector-wide impact of emergency teaching. It addresses two central questions:

1. What were the experiences of the engineering education community during emergency teaching?

2. How will this systemic shock impact the direction of travel for the sector beyond emergency teaching?

The study draws on interviews with university leaders, engineering instructors/faculty, educational specialists and engineering students from across the world. Their feedback overall suggests that, while emergency teaching has undoubtedly been a period of crisis – exposing and exacerbating major challenges facing engineering education – it will also act as a catalyst for a new generation of leading engineering programmes in which the opportunities, learning and wellbeing of students are placed at the forefront. While the report focuses on the experiences and priorities of the engineering education community, the findings have wider applicability across the higher education sector.

The research was supported and co-funded by a consortium of universities and organisations: Aalborg University, Denmark; Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne (EPFL), Switzerland; Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), US; Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), Norway; Olin College of Engineering, US; Pontifical Catholic University of Chile (PUC), Chile; Royal Academy of Engineering, UK; Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD) Singapore; Tecnológico de Monterrey (Tec de Monterrey), Mexico; University College London (UCL), UK; and 4TU Centre for Engineering Education, The Netherlands

The report is also available on DSpace@MIT.

Published Oct 2022

Published Oct 2022