Structural Development of Substance in Engineering Education: Method of Cornerstones

Conference paper
Part of the Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing book series (AISC, volume 544)


During the current millennium, engineering education has confronted an emerging problem with learning. Driving forces have mainly been economical, since financial pressure and effort for increasing efficiency have given rise to growing amount of accessed and graduated students. Consequently, in the lack of time and financial resources, universities have had a tendency to decrease the emphasis on thorough and time-consuming learning of fundamentals. As a result, so called immediate skills have gained excessive role in comparison with long-term skills in engineering education. According to a generally accepted view, students learn to carry out engineering tasks quite well, but they do not necessarily learn to think. Recently, a study carried out at MIT ended up to call for “coherent and interconnected curriculum structure” to achieve excellence in engineering education. We suggest that by utilizing the hierarchical structure of natural sciences in engineering education, such a coherent and interconnected structure can be created. In this paper, we show how the method of cornerstones is implemented to clarify engineering substance and to promote higher learning. By making cornerstone-based structure visible to students, we aim to clarify and harmonize the substance and to promote both immediate and long-term engineering skills.


Engineering education Higher learning Method of cornerstones 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Tampere University of Applied SciencesTampereFinland
  2. 2.Tampere University of TechnologyTampereFinland

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