Politecnico di Milano has started an initiative to innovate PoliMi’s teaching activities and techniques.
This will be affective starting from the next academic year, but the Dipartimento di Elettronica, Informazione e Bioingegneria (DEIB) has started to work on this initiative in advance and we are pleased to share with you the result of this, the so called “PEoPLe@DEIB: Politecnico Experiences on Passionate Learning” initiative.
The PEoPLE@DEIBgoal is to present several courses, competitions and events that will make focus on some aspects of the engineering world – and not only – in a way of presenting these topics that is different from the one you experienced during your academic career in Politecnico.
These events will be scheduled and proposed in a way that will not impact the normal academic activities, and that is one of the reasons why we included “Passionate” in our slogan, they will be held in the late afternoon, in the evening and during the weekends. Don’t worry, it is extra work – it’s true – but it is only on a voluntary basis; you will decide what to attend to and whether to do it. You will get extra credits for the courses/activities that you decide to attend and these will be listed in your diploma supplement when you graduate.
We do have the perception that a close connection between research and education has to be pursued to properly prepare our students. Research and education is perceived as a dichotomy. It has often been hard to couple them in a productive and virtuous cycle but we do believe that Research can obtain great benefits from Teaching and the other way around and this basic principle is at the basis of all the PEoPLE@DEIB activities. In particular, involving young students in research activities will heavily increase the creative and brainstorming phase of a research group. Students are not yet constrained in a research framework and they are not scared by the idea of trying and failing to see their ideas coming reality through their work. On the contrary, from an educative point of view, giving the students the chance to be involved in real projects will mean giving them the chance to experience real design and development challenges and by guiding them during the design and development we can, in a maieutic way, teach them how to approach real life projects.
In such a context it is necessary to provide the students with an environment where they can work and experiment a motivating experience and this is exactly what we are doing with the PEoPLe@DEIB initiative.
We strongly believe that students are terrific, they are young, but that just means that they need to be properly trained and helped in understanding that failures are part of the learning process. Without trying, you are not going to fail, but without trying you cannot learn new things, you can not achieve greatness!
PEoPLE@DEIB is working towards this objectives, trying to make students more self-confident.
Courses can be in English or Italian. We decided to use a policy to present them. In each brochure you can find a calendar presenting all the available courses. The description has been added in a brochure only if a course will be provided in that specific language.
The unstoppable evolution of technology and the parallel innovation of jobs are generating the request from industry of new professional profiles that go beyond their specialized competences (“hard skills”). To address this need, new teaching methods are being introduced in academic education for stimulating learning based on passion and individual attitudes. The goal is that of privileging flexible and multidisciplinary approaches, with particular attention to project based methodologies.
This proposal of innovative teaching wants to follow this international trend and proposes a set of extra-curricular courses/activities that, based on the competences acquired in the regular courses, allow the student to experiment new ways of learning through the interaction with instructors, companies, as well as with national and international organizations.
In particular, the proposal includes courses oriented to:
- Acquire competences on general purpose tools and methodologies
- Multidisciplinary and project oriented activities
- Company driven activities, team work, direct interaction with other students (workshops, contests, hackathons).
The proposal of innovative teaching is based on the assumption, confirmed by a large number of success stories at international level, that there are several “personal capabilities” (so called “soft skills”) able to support and even strengthen, if properly trained and used, the technical and scientific skills that academic programs provide. They also improve the performance not only at university but also during professional career after graduation: from the acquisition of techniques for fast and persistent memorization, to strategies for the optimization of the study quality/time ratio; from the definition of a dynamic action plan for the achievement of the personal vision of professional growth to the knowledge of the signals of body language and their use for the improvement of the communication skills; from the acquisition of creative and psychological instruments for the definition, management and dissemination of innovative ideas to the strategies for the improving the impact of public presentation of research projects.