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Education for Chemical Engineers
Journal Prestige (SJR): 0.273
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Number of Followers: 5  
  Hybrid Journal Hybrid journal (It can contain Open Access articles)
ISSN (Print) 1749-7728
Published by Elsevier Homepage  [3207 journals]
  • The introduction to engineering course: A case study from Universiti
           Teknologi Malaysia
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 6 April 2019Source: Education for Chemical EngineersAuthor(s): Aziatul Niza Sadikin, Khairiyah Mohd-Yusof, Fatin Aliah Phang, Azmahani Abdul AzizAbstractAs part of an effort to enhance students' first year experience, all Chemical Engineering students in Universiti Teknologi Malaysia are required to take the Introduction to Engineering course. This course is designed to stimulate students’ passion and strengthen motivation for further engineering studies, as well as to enhance their technical knowledge and relevant professional skills. To investigate the impact of the course on students’ knowledge of engineering, an exploratory study is conducted through an open-ended survey, given at the beginning and end of the semester. The analysis shows that the ITE course successfully served the purpose of raising awareness about engineering profession among students, while motivating them through student-centred learning approaches. A qualitative study is also conducted by analysing reflection journals submitted by students to identify the improvement on professional skills that students have developed as they go through the course. This study concludes to show that first year engineering students who have gone through the activities in the course have understood the role of engineers and their job functions. They have also managed to develop professional skills as part of their initial journey to become good engineers.
  • Towards understanding the moral reasoning process of senior chemical
           engineering students in process safety contexts
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 1 April 2019Source: Education for Chemical EngineersAuthor(s): Brittany Butler, Cheryl Bodnar, Matthew Cooper, Daniel Burkey, Daniel AnastasioAbstractDespite process safety and ethical decision making being recognized priorities in many chemical companies, process safety incidents continue to occur with unfortunate regularity. In order to understand why such incidents keep occurring, and to prevent future accidents from happening, it is important to study the decision-making habits of people employed at chemical companies, and to inform students of the difference between the influences of ethics and behavioral ethics in process safety decision making. This study seeks to determine how senior chemical engineering students approach reasoning through process safety scenarios through the use of a mixed methods study. This study found that four out of the five students who participated in the study demonstrated post-conventional reasoning, and the remaining student showed conventional reasoning based on the quantitative analysis of their responses. Students showed mostly post-conventional reasoning in their responses based on a qualitative analysis; however, through comparison of these results it was found that the moral schema students were classified as was not always truly representative of their moral reasoning.
  • Study of Binqui. An application for smartphones based on the problems
           without data methodology to reduce stress levels and improve academic
           performance of chemical engineering students
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 19 March 2019Source: Education for Chemical EngineersAuthor(s): Sergio Paniagua Bermejo, Raúl Herrero Martínez, Ana Isabel García Pérez, Luis Fernando Calvo PrietoChemical Engineering students are usually exposed to stress and anxiety situations during university period.
      Authors consider that a reduction in students’ stress levels can improve their academic results. A new experience based on the introduction of gamification strategies by incorporating a new methodology for solving engineering problems called PWD (problems without data) was proposed. This was related with a specific app design. Two students’ groups were randomly done and, despite having the same academic content and teacher, only one group used this methodology. Results showed that using these new elements for a subject called Basic Operations, belonging to the area of Chemical Engineering area of the University of León, the comfort and stress level of the students improved significantly. Thus, the average value of the stress perceived by the students, which initially was above a value of 5 out of 10, was reduced for those students who have followed the proposed methodology to levels below 3.5. Additionally, an related to the academic degree, a difference of 1.5 points (out of 7) was found for the students who had used the PWD methodology with respect to the control students.
  • The importance of rapid and meaningful feedback on computer-aided graphic
           expression learning
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 14 March 2019Source: Education for Chemical EngineersAuthor(s): D. Alique, M. LinaresAbstractMeaningful and effective feedback is a critical issue for a real development of new competences in technical careers. Traditionally, they have been provided in asynchronous form and expressed as a numeric mark. However, many studies indicate that information and guidelines given during this process become more effective as the delayed time between exercise execution and feedback decreases. This fact is especially relevant for modern Graphic Expression courses, in which development of technical abilities in CAD are provoking a significant increase on the number of tasks requiring to be evaluated. The present work analyzes the benefits of meaningful and timely feedback used for laboratory practices with AutoCAD in Graphic Expression. The proposed methodology is applied on weekly sessions with a duration of 2 h per session in which the class is divided into two groups, reaching a ratio of around 15–20 students/professor. The proposed practice cases are evaluated timely just in the computer room, taking only a few minutes at the end of each session. The instructors check concrete aspects for each case accordingly to a very simple rubric, providing an immediate feedback to the students. Thus, they are aware of their own faults just-in-time, being possible to take concrete measures to advance in a deep knowledge. Results evidence a significant improvement in developing CAD competences as comparing to previous courses in which a traditional delayed feedback was used. Additionally, despite the required time to prepare meaningful exercises, the proposed methodology also prevents an excessive work overload for professors during conventional evaluation periods.
  • New chemical engineering provision: Quality in diversity
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 5 March 2019Source: Education for Chemical EngineersAuthor(s): David J. Brown, Grant M. Campbell, Daniel J. Belton, Phil Cox, Pablo Garcia Trinanes, Chedly TizaouiAbstractRecent growth in chemical engineering student numbers has driven an increase in the number of UK universities offering the subject. The implications of this growth are described, along with the different challenges facing new providers in the UK compared with established departments. The approaches taken by the various new entrants are reviewed, with reference to recruitment strategies, infrastructure, the use of external facilities, and the particular flavours of chemical engineering being offered by the new providers. Information about the differentiating features of the large number of chemical engineering degree courses now available is somewhat indistinct: this should be rectified in the interests both of prospective students and of employers. Dilemmas facing new providers include the need to address the fundamentals of the subject as well as moving into more novel research-led areas; enabling students to develop the competencies to sustain them for a whole career as well as meeting immediate employer needs; and providing sufficient industry understanding when academics may lack substantial industrial experience. The central importance of practical provision and of the design project, and the approaches taken by new providers to deliver these components, are reviewed, together with the role of software tools in chemical engineering education, and measures to facilitate industry input into courses. As long as it is not used prescriptively or to inhibit innovation, the accreditation process provides constructive guidance and leverage for universities developing new chemical engineering programmes.
  • Students’ performance and perceptions on continuous assessment.
           Redefining a chemical engineering subject in the European higher education
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 8 February 2019Source: Education for Chemical EngineersAuthor(s): E.S. Sanz-PérezChemical Engineering taught as a subject across three Energy Engineering-based degree streams was evaluated considering two cohorts in two consecutive years after the implementation of the Bologna Process in Spain. A regular continuous assessment methodology yielded negative results during the first year. Student insight on course development, own expectations and results, and the evaluation system were then explored via a 33-item survey with participation levels between 41% and 82%. Direct answers were evaluated including ranked correlations between all items. The 465 correlation coefficients obtained showed stimulating and unanticipated results. For example, it was shown that a severe grading process (external blame-assignment) was only identified as an explanation for a low mark by those students who performed most poorly in the subject and, therefore, had a poorer understanding of the materials.Besides, the feedback received from students was used to implement several changes in both teaching practice and the assessment method during the second year, like incorporating exam-like problems in daily classes and setting two midterm exams instead of the final one. The results registered after the second year pointed to substantial progress in student learning. Pass rates also rose from a 30% in the first academic year to 49% and 58% in the two following ones.Graphical abstractGraphical abstract for this article
  • Applying PBL methodologies to the chemical engineering courses: Unit
           operations and modeling and simulation, using a joint course project
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 7 February 2019Source: Education for Chemical EngineersAuthor(s): Miguel A. Ballesteros, Miguel A. Daza, Juan P. Valdés, Nicolás Ratkovich, Luis H. ReyesAbstractUnit Operations and Modelling and Simulation have been for long time a staple of the academic formation of any chemical engineer. Both are integral to the analysis of any chemical process, discretizing it into smaller specific processes that can then be characterized and modelled through the solution of balance, thermodynamics and transport equations. However, students usually perceive these subjects as separate fields of knowledge, and they do not develop the ability to correlate and integrate them to solve real-world problems in their future profession. On account of this, a Project-Based Learning (PBL) methodology was proposed in the redesign of the abovementioned undergraduate courses, focusing initially in Unit Operations. This PBL method was implemented alongside a joint course project, consisting on the design, assembly and characterization of a centrifugal pump, to be analyzed experimentally and computationally. To assess the success of this methodology, a survey was conducted on the students after they finished their courses. The results were mostly positive (85%), as the students appreciated the design component of the project, considering that it benefits their learning process, as well as the challenge it presented. This difficulty forced them to resort to different sources of information and areas of knowledge, alien to those provided in the courses. The limitations of the chosen project revolved around its limited scope and lack of connection with other topics of the courses (i.e. distillation columns). These limitations will be addressed with the design of transversal projects, which can cover more of the subjects seen in both classes.
  • Teaching chemical engineering students industrial symbiosis using online
           resources: A Singapore case study
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 15 January 2019Source: Education for Chemical EngineersAuthor(s): Chun-Yang Yin, Lai Yeng LeeAbstractA new and simple qualitative teaching method incorporating online (cyberspace) resources (e.g. Google Maps™) aimed at introducing the concept of industrial symbiosis (IS) to chemical engineering students is described. This method has been trialled as an exercise for a module as part of a chemical engineering degree programme taught in Singapore with integrated local industries and circumstances. A compilation in the form of eclectic mix of IS initiatives showing by-product and utilities flows in Singapore is also provided. The result of a student survey suggests favourable reception of the teaching methodology, which aided their understanding of the general IS concept as applied to the Singapore context. The method is envisioned as a useful complement to conventional IS lectures and workshops due to the convenience and high accessibility of Google Maps™ and online company information which can be readily employed without incurring significant costs.
  • Special issue IV conference on innovation on chemical engineering
           education (IV CIDIQ)
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2019Source: Education for Chemical Engineers, Volume 26Author(s): Raquel Ibañez, Maria J. Rivero
  • Professional design of chemical plants based on problem-based learning on
           a pilot plant
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2019Source: Education for Chemical Engineers, Volume 26Author(s): Fernando Vega, Benito NavarreteThis work describes a novel teaching methodology and its application in a subject framed in the last course of the master’s degree in Chemical Engineering at the University of Seville. The main aim consists of promoting a way to facilitate professional practice in this field to the students.
      Authors also aim at guiding the transition to the new learning requirements demanded by the European Higher Education Area (EHEA).The novel methodology is based on the development of a detailed design of a pilot plant that can be further evaluated by the students themselves. Students are also allowed to run experiments at the facility and carry out several standard tests to verify the quality of the results of their works. The novelty of this proposal consists of incorporating a real installation available in our department to drive new learning methodologies applied in Chemical Engineering curricula. The methodology is distributed across several tasks: training (self-learning), project execution and supervision, comparison with a real installation and pilot plant experiences. The application of the proposed teaching methodology provided quality didactic material production, high satisfaction of the students with the new learning approach and the fact that they gained practical experience at industrial scale.
  • Learning-by-Doing: The Chem-E-Car Competition® in the University of
           Cantabria as case study
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2019Source: Education for Chemical Engineers, Volume 26Author(s): Antonio Dominguez-Ramos, Manuel Alvarez-Guerra, Guillermo Diaz-Sainz, Raquel Ibañez, Angel IrabienAbstractIt is widely known that the Learning-by-Doing (LbD) pedagogical tool is not the most common form of education in Chemical Engineering nowadays. The aim of this work is to describe the application of LbD considering as case of study the participation of undergraduate students from the Chemical Engineering Degree of the University of Cantabria (UC) from Spain in the Chem-E-Car Competition® in the 10th World Congress of Chemical Engineering (WCCE10). The Chem-E-Car Competition® is a world-known student event run by AIChE, which provides chemical engineering undergraduate students with the opportunity to participate in a team-oriented hands-on design and construction of a small prototype car powered by a chemical reaction. Within the context of the WCCE10, the competition gathered 18 teams from different countries all around the world. The UC team ended in the 6th position and won the award to the best inherent safety design. Overall, the benefits outpaced the time cost both for students and the teaching staff. This situation was not clear at the beginning of the project.Prior to this competition, LbD was used as an innovative pedagogical tool for the requested acquisition of competences. The proposal of a multi-annual Final Degree Programme was a win–win situation for all the stakeholders. From a teaching point of view, the LbD let transferable and core competences to be evaluated not only internally, but also externally thanks to the competition. A survey was completed among the students that participated in the project. Competences such as “Problem-solving” and “Adaptation to new situations” were pointed out as those which were developed in a higher level by the students.
  • Reprint of: Motivational active learning: An integrated approach to
           teaching and learning process control
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2019Source: Education for Chemical Engineers, Volume 26Author(s): Manuel Rodríguez, Ismael Díaz, Emilio J. Gonzalez, María González-MiquelAbstractProcess Control is a course that needs a thorough understanding of how the different unit operations work and what are the implications of changing operation variables in a process. This paper presents how education innovation can help students to improve their learning and understanding of the different concepts and thus to get better results in the subject and to achieve the desired outcomes. The Process Control Course is taught in the Bachelor Degree in Chemical Engineering at the Technical University of Madrid. Different methodologies have been integrated and used in the course as: flipped classroom, peer instruction or gamification. In order to implement the mentioned methods, the following material has been developed: screencasts, concept tests, trivia contest and simulations besides the traditional lecturing material (slides and text). First year results show high student motivation, higher participation in class and better results (marks) in the subject.
  • Reprint of: Education of chemical engineering in Spain: A global picture
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2019Source: Education for Chemical Engineers, Volume 26Author(s): Gumersindo Feijoo, Raquel Ibañez, Javier Herguido, Pedro Partal, Montserrat Tobajas, Julia Sèmpere, María Fernanda López-Pérez, Maria J. RiveroAbstractThe general framework of the Chemical Engineering studies in Spain includes the Bachelor's Degree (4 years), Master's Degree (the most common duration is 1.5 years) and Doctorate (3-4 years). In 2008, the Conference of Directors and Deans of Chemical Engineering (CODDIQ) was constituted with the main objective of promoting and improving the quality of Chemical Engineering studies in Spain. Currently, Faculties and Schools of 29 Spanish universities are members of CODDIQ. An analysis of the most characteristic indicators provides a representative radiography of the Chemical Engineering Studies in Spain, whose most outstanding data are: (i) 7,396 undergraduate students, 1,014 Master students and 556 PhD students, (ii) according to the gender profile of undergraduates and graduates, the percentage of women is similar to that of men, while for faculty staff, the percentage of women is 43% and 46% for Associate and Assistant Professor (respectively) and 23% for the category of Full Professor category; (iii) after completing the Bachelor studies, most of them continue their training in the MSc in Chemical Engineering, (iv) the employability after obtaining the Master's degree is very high (>75%), which in the case of PhDs is close to 100%. The studies of Chemical Engineering in Spain have a very direct relationship with society, especially in the chemical, environmental, biotechnological and energy fields. The companies that collaborate in the training of future professionals are distributed throughout the national territory, which allows a strong connection with the socioeconomic environment.
  • Improving the internship experience in the master of chemical engineering
           at the University of Granada
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2019Source: Education for Chemical Engineers, Volume 26Author(s): M.A. Martín-Lara, I. Iáñez-Rodríguez, G. LuzónThe purpose of this paper is to analyze the present status of the internship program of Master of Chemical Engineering at the University of Granada and establish a systematic model to annually acquaint the satisfaction of students. It will allow the improvement of the internship program according to the opinions of students. The authors have examined a total of 33 items grouped in 7 different blocks. The results showed that the majority of students were satisfied with the internship program. Students recognized that the possibility of carrying out the internship abroad and improve the soft skills are some of the advantages of the internship offer of master’s degree. In fact, most of them prolonged their training period in order to perform their final Master project in the research center where they had carried out their internship. Some aspects should be improved, namely the communication between the academic tutor and the students, the information and guidance in the internship selection or the proposal of practices in more varied sectors. The findings of the present study had let to propose improvements for the internship program.Graphical abstractGraphical abstract for this article
  • Potential impact on the recruitment of chemical engineering graduates due
           to the industrial internship
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2019Source: Education for Chemical Engineers, Volume 26Author(s): G. Feijoo, A. Arce, P. Bello, M. Carballa, M.S. Freire, J.M. Garrido, D. Gómez-Díaz, J. González-Álvarez, S. González-García, M. Mauricio, R. Méndez, M.T. Moreira, A. Mosquera-Corral, J.M. Navaza, M.C. Palacios, E. Roca, E. Rodil, H. Rodríguez, O. Rodríguez, J. SineiroAbstractPreparing, finding and making the transition from a Bachelor degree level to a successful job in the profession of Chemical Engineering requires not only an investment of time and effort but also prior training in a work placement environment, which allows the development and strengthening of the professional skills of the future graduates. A central aspect of this process is the ongoing consideration of an industrial internship to take advantage of the goals, strengths and opportunities that such alternative offers to undergraduate students. The Industrial Internship Program of the Department of Chemical Engineering at Universidade de Santiago de Compostela prepares third- and fourth-year college students to successfully integrate and thrive in the professional world and to have their first experience in a real-life work context, supported by a dynamic community of administrative and teaching staff and employers. Companies that collaborate in the training of future chemical engineers are distributed throughout the national territory, which allows a strong connection with the socioeconomic environment.
  • Workshops of innovation in chemical engineering to train communication
           skills in science and technology
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2019Source: Education for Chemical Engineers, Volume 26Author(s): P. San-Valero, A. Robles, M.V. Ruano, N. Martí, A. Cháfer, J.D. BadiaAbstractThis paper shows the application of an innovate pedagogical approach based on the project-based learning technique, focused on the training of communication skills in the framework of a workshop of innovation in chemical engineering. Written, graphical verbal, and non-verbal communication were tackled. For that purpose, a project of technological innovation was developed by the students in teams within the specific area of chemical engineering. A professional-like environment was simulated by a final workshop where the students defenced and supported their project by using oral presentation and production of a poster and a video. Several surveys were performed before and after the project application. The final survey revealed that both students and lecturers perceived an improvement on the communication skills of the students. Moreover, both lecturers and students declared satisfaction with the methodology, recommending its application in other disciplines.
  • Incorporating life cycle assessment and ecodesign tools for green chemical
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2019Source: Education for Chemical Engineers, Volume 26Author(s): M. Margallo, R. Dominguez-Ramos, A. AldacoAbstractChemical engineers assume a broad range of roles in industry, spanning the development of new process designs, the maintenance and optimization of complex systems, and the production of intermediate materials, final products and new technologies. The technical aptitude that enables chemical engineers to fulfill these various roles along the value chain makes them compelling participants in the environmental assessment of the product in question. Therefore, the introduction of life cycle assessment (LCA) and ecodesign concepts into the chemical engineering curriculum is essential to help these future professionals to face design problems with a holistic view of the technical, economic, social and environmental impacts of their solutions. The teaching of these and other disciplines by means of student-centered methods, based on a holistic structure, have demonstrated better teamwork and communication skills. For that reason, this paper proposes a Micro (Assess-Analyze-Act) (M-3A) model of assessment mainly focused on closing the loop of the learning activities. This model has been applied to an ecodesign case study of the “University master’s Degree in chemical engineering” of the University of Cantabria/University of the Basque Country, with positive feedback of the students. They felt that the approach has allowed them to utilize their analytical skills in quantifying a situation before applying other subjective measures, and that the public discussion of the results was a satisfactory element for improving their communication skills. Moreover, the students found that the workload was nicely adjusted, highlighting the acquisition of 4 competences preferentially: teamwork, creativity; relevance of environmental issues and initiative and entrepreneurship. Finally, the students suggest that the application of this methodology into their degree could motivate future students improving their performance.
  • Development and application of scoring rubrics for evaluating students’
           competencies and learning outcomes in Chemical Engineering experimental
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2019Source: Education for Chemical Engineers, Volume 26Author(s): Montserrat Tobajas, Carmen Belen Molina, Asuncion Quintanilla, Noelia Alonso-Morales, Jose Antonio CasasAbstractThis paper reflects on the interest of several teachers in reviewing the instruments and evaluation processes in Chemical Engineering experimental courses taught during three consecutive academic years at Universidad Autónoma de Madrid: Engineering Laboratory, Experimentation in Chemical Engineering and Process Scale-up.In this study, a methodology has been proposed to design, develop, and apply rubrics based on competence and learning outcome approaches. Thanks to the collaborative work of the three teaching teams involved, the application of comprehensive rubrics to provide gradual attainment of competence and formative evaluation over the academic years was rendered possible.Rubrics were developed to evaluate the main tasks of the courses: Personal Work, Written Report, and Oral Presentation. The rubric for each task contained the same evaluation criteria and dimensions with four levels of achievement, but differed in the scoring strategy depending on the course in which the rubric was implemented.The use of evaluation rubrics had a low impact on the final students’ grade; its greatest impact was on Personal Work, as a larger number of students achieved higher scores. The rubrics fostered transparency in the evaluation process of the students and homogenized the evaluation criteria for a large number of teachers (22) and students (180 per year).
  • A successful experience with the flipped classroom in the Transport
           Phenomena course
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2019Source: Education for Chemical Engineers, Volume 26Author(s): Mario M. Valero, Maria Martinez, Francesc Pozo, Eulàlia PlanasAbstractTransport Phenomena is a core subject in Chemical Engineering studies. Its fundamentals need significant effort to be understood. Furthermore, students must apply theory to solve practical engineering problems, and it is usually problem resolution which has the largest weight in course assessment. However, due to the high amount of theory that must be covered in Transport Phenomena courses, usually little classroom time is reserved for practice and problem-solving skills are not worked in class. This constitutes a serious misalignment between learning activities, expected outcomes and evaluation. In this article, we propose the flipped classroom as a suitable methodology to solve this issue. As a pilot study, we flipped one unit of the Transport Phenomena course of the Bachelor’s Degree in Chemical Engineering. Theory was provided through whiteboard animated video before the classroom sessions. Classroom time was mainly dedicated to participative discussion and problem solving in small groups. Satisfaction questionnaires were used to monitor student perception of learning quality before and after the methodology update. Student judgement on the interest of the subject and the value of the learnt concepts boosted about 20% on average with the flipped classroom. Around 70% of the surveyed students reported that the new methodology increased their motivation and that it helped them to learn both theory and practice. These results indicate that the flipped classroom is suitable for highly-technical classes with a large amount of complex theory, and it helps in the understanding and application of such theory.
  • Monitoring questionnaires to ensure positive interdependence and
           individual accountability in a chemical process synthesis following
           collaborative PBL approach
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2019Source: Education for Chemical Engineers, Volume 26Author(s): A. Aranzabal, E. Epelde, M. ArtetxeAbstractTeammates in a Project Based Learning (PBL) methodology do not all start with the same motivation, expectations or self-commitment, which can lead to disappointing learning experiences. Thus, the main difficulties in cooperative learning are promoting positive interdependence and individual accountability. This work aims to analyze whether monitoring questionnaires (MQs) allow rating each teammate’s individual accountability in a chemical process design project. Students took MQs just after finishing each deliverable, in order to verify each one’s knowledge of the essential aspects of the team project. We assume that, if all the teammates work responsibly and cooperatively, they will be able to answer the MQs easily and correctly. The MQs were designed to be: 1) generic; 2) succinct; and, 3) quickly answered in the classroom. In addition, different rating methods were analyzed to incorporate MQs scores into each individual’s project grade. The best results were obtained when student’s individual grade was computed as the product of the team assignment grade and the weighting factor WF3, calculated as the individual average MQs rating divided by the highest MQs rating in the team. A compensation factor (0.75–0.85) was included to correct the excessive downgrading for students with intermediate project grade.
  • Practical demonstrations designed and developed by the students for
           pedagogical learning in transport phenomena
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2019Source: Education for Chemical Engineers, Volume 26Author(s): Paulo A. Augusto, Teresa Castelo-Grande, Angel M. EstevezCore disciplines in chemical engineering master, like the case of Transport Phenomena, and although its content is 100% related to the master, are always hard to understand by the students. We have implemented a new methodology where teams of students should perform the concept, design and development of practical demonstrations of Mass Transfer Phenomena and Theoretical Background, in order for all of them to be able to really get involved in the thematic, and thus easily assimilate concepts and theoretical development as applied to practical phenomena. After the first application of this methodology and after a deep analysis of previous results we have made important enhancements on the innovative work. Among several other modifications, students were able to select the field on which each practical demonstration would be developed (among the three usual transport phenomena: mass, fluids and heat) and most particularly encouraged to design and develop practical demonstrations on the thematics and sub-thematics they had higher difficulties. A total of 6 experiments/demonstrations were developed by the students of the two academic years. To determine the perception, impact and improvement made by this methodology, surveys were also made to determine the initial and final status of the students concerning their knowledge and difficulties, so as to conclude fairly about the success of application of this methodology. Final Exam marks have also improved. In this paper we present the results obtained and describe the application steps of this methodology and discus the evaluation of the successful rate of the methodology.Graphical abstractGraphical abstract for this article
  • Application of the Microsoft Excel Solver tool in the solution of
           optimization problems of heat exchanger network systems
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2019Source: Education for Chemical Engineers, Volume 26Author(s): L. Briones, J.M. EscolaAbstractOptimization of heat exchanger networks (HENS) is a field of interest in Chemical Engineering. The aim is to use the residual heat of process streams to raise the temperature of other process streams which are cold, thus minimizing the use of hot and cold utilities. The usual way to deal with this task is to pose a linear programming problem according to a transshipment model in order to minimize either the general services consumptions or the number of hot and cold stream matchings required. This optimization is subjected to several restrictions given by the energy balances corresponding to each heat exchange.The high number of variables and equations obliges the use of specific software to solve these problems, e.g. GAMS (General Algebraic Modelling System). However, this software is not intuitive and requires a long time of training and a certain level of practice for the students to adequately use it.This work describes the use of Microsoft Excel-Solver for the sequential solving of HENS optimization problems according to the transshipment model. Solver is a much simpler, intuitive and easily available tool for the students who, besides, usually learn how to use it in the first years of their degree, in Informatics or similar subjects. Thus, it is not necessary to spend extra time in the teaching of the software, time that may be devoted to other contents.This paper presents an example of HENS problem proposed in the subject Simulation and Optimization of Chemical Processes corresponding to the Joint Master in Chemical Engineering of the Rey Juan Carlos University and the Autónoma University of Madrid and solved by the students using Excel-Solver.
  • Learning about distillation curves as a way to define a process stream
           from crude petroleum
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2019Source: Education for Chemical Engineers, Volume 26Author(s): Amparo Gómez-Siurana, Alicia Font-Escamilla, Cristina García-SolerAbstractThe advanced courses of Separation Processes use to include some reference to the different types of distillation curves, such as the True Boiling Point (TBP) curves, in order to characterize crude petroleum or its derivatives. The concept of pseudocomponents as well as the way to extract them from a TBP curve can be easily understood by reading classical bibliographic references. Chemical process simulation software packages serve as a useful tool that, once the desired number of pseudocomponents to be considered has been specified, automatically generate them. Nevertheless, the lack of correspondence between cuts of a TBP curve and zones with slight temperature changes makes difficult to identify pseudocomponents and to decide on the adequate number of pseudocomponents to be defined. In this work, a very simple exercise is proposed to introduce the idea of TBP distillation curves in the classroom and to explore their characteristics through the analysis of the influence of the number of extracted pseudocomponents.
  • A novel educational laboratory experiment for constant-mass expansion of
           petroleum fluids
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 12 December 2018Source: Education for Chemical EngineersAuthor(s): Francisco J. Argüelles-Vivas, Ryosuke OkunoAbstractThis paper presents a new way to conduct an educational experiment for bubble-point determination of a hydrocarbon mixture. The visual fluid cell newly designed for educational purposes made it possible to teach bubble-point determination safely at low cost within a few hours for groups of students in a laboratory class. The educational experiment developed has been successfully implemented for three semesters at the authors’ institution with positive responses from a vast majority of the students. It is hoped that this paper helps other interested instructors enhance students’ learning experience in the subject of fluid properties.
  • A teaching methodology based on Mathcad for improving the calculation of
           pumping power
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 4 December 2018Source: Education for Chemical EngineersAuthor(s): A.A. Cuadri, J.E. Martín-Alfonso, J. UrbanoAbstractSome of the most important engineering skills required nowadays are related with the management of computational tools. This study proposes the implementation of a novel teaching methodology for improving the calculation of pumping power by using the Mathcad software. This methodology includes: (1) training courses on initiation to Mathcad, (2) the delivery of a report with theoretical considerations about pumping power, the problem statement, the traditional procedure to solve it, as well as the main indications to do it with Mathcad, and (3) a virtual platform conceived as a meeting space. The assessment of this educational experience, which was carried out with the second-year chemical engineering students enrolled in the Fluid Flow course, revealed that Mathcad is a powerful computational tool for them. Thus, it eliminates the mathematical difficulties, facilitates the understanding of the phenomenon under consideration and the study that the input variables exert on the solution, and also increases the motivation of the students for solving other engineering problems. Therefore, these results support the hypothesis that computational tools like Mathcad direct chemical engineering students towards successful learning.
  • The effect of virtual field trip as an introductory tool for an
           engineering real field trip
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 17 November 2018Source: Education for Chemical EngineersAuthor(s): Mostafa Seifan, Debby Dada, Aydin BerenjianDue to the limitations associated with real field trips (RFTs) and considering the advances in technology in the last decade, virtual field trips (VFTs) have been introduced to replace RFTs. In the present study, we investigated the essentiality and usefulness of VFTs on student’s learning as well as the acquisition of insight for designing an industrial scale plant. A combination of quantitative and qualitative methods was used to investigate the importance of different types of field trips in promoting student’s knowledge and perceptions. The results show that students rated RFTs higher as it enhanced their perceptions, provided an opportunity to communicate with experts in the field and witnessed how theoretical knowledge can be applied to practical knowledge. However, the lack of pre-information substantially decreased the effectiveness of RFT. The results of this study clearly demonstrate that VFT can be a powerful supplement to RFT as it provides the necessary pre-knowledge to students in a way that maximises learning during the RFT while concurrently providing opportunities to digitally revisit the plant after the RFT has ended.Graphical abstractGraphical abstract for this article
  • KBR (Kinetics in Batch Reactors): a MATLAB-based application with a
           friendly Graphical User Interface for chemical kinetic model simulation
           and parameter estimation
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 16 November 2018Source: Education for Chemical EngineersAuthor(s): Raúl Molina, Gisela Orcajo, Fernando MartinezThe simulation of chemical kinetic models is necessary in order to analyze comprehensive chemical reaction mechanisms and perform the estimation of the kinetic parameters. In many cases, a chemical process can be composed of several series and/or independent reactions that requires a complex set of kinetic equations to be solved. Computer-based tools for the study of kinetics of chemical reaction networks have been used since the last 50 years. However, the educational tools in this field should be friendly for the user and easy to learn and adapt to practical cases, avoiding long frustrating learning curves. Herein, the main objective of this contribution is to present a Matlab® application for the evaluation of Kinetics in Batch Reactors (KBR), which will help students to estimate kinetic parameters of complex chemical reaction models. The KBR application was used in the Final Degree Projects of Chemical Engineering and Environmental Engineering Degrees at Rey Juan Carlos University (Spain). This application provides a friendly Graphical User Interface to formulate any kind of kinetic model for subsequent simulation in order to monitor the evolution of reagents and products along the reaction time. Moreover, the student will be able to estimate kinetic parameters according to available experimental data as well as to apply sensitivity analysis of those parameters for particular cases of chemical reactions in batch systems. Finally, the results can be exported for further analysis as a spreadsheet of an Excel® file (.xlsx).Graphical abstractGraphical abstract for this article
  • Implementation of the Italian school-work alternating programme within
           chemical engineering activities
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 14 November 2018Source: Education for Chemical EngineersAuthor(s): Cristina Moliner, Elisabetta AratoAbstractThis paper shows the implementation and the results of the application of the problem-based learning methodology within the framework of the school-work alternating programme (SWAP) in Italian High Schools. This methodology was articulated through five specific projects aimed at different student profiles inside a research group of Chemical Engineering at the University of Genoa (Italy).The proposed activities were aligned with the expected learning outcomes where creativity and originality were highly encouraged in order to promote lateral thinking. All the tasks were carried out in groups to boost team engagement and collaborative learning and used technological tools in specific problem-solving contexts.Students demonstrated positive attitudes towards the used technological tools, the collaborative work and the applied methodology. The great majority of the students showed satisfaction with the ICT tools and considered them as useful for their future career. The results also pointed out that participation and motivation were highly appreciated which was actually the basis of a successful implementation of the methodology.As a result of the exchange, students were able to promote their social and intellectual skills outside their usual comfort zone. At the same time, it constituted a public engagement opportunity for University as well as an important promotion tool towards society. Overall, the activities satisfied the main objectives of SWAP in terms of development of transversal competences and promotion of new technological skills and, more importantly, constituted an informative appreciated link between classroom lessons and, in this case, their immediate future as university students.
  • BIOPRO World Talent Campus: A week of real world challenge for
           biotechnology post-graduate students
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2018Source: Education for Chemical Engineers, Volume 25Author(s): Isuru A. Udugama, Hannah Feldman, Simoneta Caño de las Heras, Arathi Kizhedath, Jesper Bryde-Jacobsen, Frans van den Berg, Seyed Soheil Mansouri, Krist V. GernaeyAbstractFocus on sustainable processes and renewable raw materials, combined with rapid advancements in technology developments across scales, makes bio-based production processes a subject of great interest to both industry and academia. Despite this increasing prominence of bio-based production processes, there is a lack of a single course that can provide a thorough overview of the state-of-the-art industrial scale bio-based production, to early stage practitioners and researchers such as post-graduate students. BIOPRO World Talent Campus (WTC), developed and initiated in the year 2013 by the BIOPRO Strategic research consortium, was specifically designed and developed to address this shortcoming, and has thus far trained more than 120 post-graduate students from related yet diverse academic backgrounds from all across the globe. This manuscript describes the general and technical organisation of BIOPRO WTC, and the unique academic and industrial collaboration that exists in Denmark, which makes WTC a reality. A special focus is also placed on discussing a 48 h industrial challenge that is set by leading Danish bio-based production companies and its impact on young post-graduate students, who get hands on experience in dealing with “real world” problems. Results from student surveys carried out during the five years of WTC are reported and discussed to understand the impact of the course. A future perspective is also presented with the focus on the possibility of employing emerging technologies to extend the outreach of the program.
  • Everyday chemical product design as platform for teaching transport
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2018Source: Education for Chemical Engineers, Volume 25Author(s): Felipe Salcedo Galán, Hugo Mauricio Buitrago Mora, Alexa Tatiana Jiménez Heredia, Laura Lucía Sierra Peñuela, Andrés Fernando González BarriosTransport phenomena is proposed as the second paradigm as a consequence of the inadequacy of the unit operations field for solving process and product engineering problems. The appearance of Bird’s transport phenomena textbook put transport phenomena as an engineering science along with thermodynamics for chemical engineers. Even though this field provides some important fundamentals to solve upcoming undergraduate problems, we have found that students constantly perceive this field as abstract and difficult to apply due to the fashion in which the problems are posed, the mathematics involved, and the three-dimensional view required to understand the phenomena. Chemical product design on the other hand represents the fourth paradigm which has permitted the evolution of the formation of the engineer to a more market-oriented design, so the student becomes more aware of the impact of his design. Here, we show how everyday life product design has facilitated the understanding of the fundamental concepts in transport phenomena for the student using active learning methodologies centered on evaluation of market needs.
  • Advancing experiential learning through participatory design
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2018Source: Education for Chemical Engineers, Volume 25Author(s): Pavan Inguva, Daniel Lee-Lane, Anastasia Teck, Benaiah Anabaraonye, Wenqian Chen, Umang V. Shah, Clemens BrechtelsbauerAbstractParticipatory design (PD) as a module development tool offers significant potential to enhance experiential learning courses such as laboratory modules. Involvement of students and other stakeholders results in pre-delivery feedback on module design, implementation strategy, and teaching material. In this study, PD was employed for design and development of a systems control and reaction engineering laboratory project. The nature of stakeholder interaction at various levels was analysed and specific examples for how such an approach improved the development process is presented. Current students provided feedback on how the module was perceived by their peers and participated in developing solutions to make the learning process more inclusive. Senior students and graduate teaching assistants (GTAs) were able to contribute at a higher technical design level. Students were intellectually stimulated by the module design, enhancing the overall teaching and learning process.
School of Mathematical and Computer Sciences
Heriot-Watt University
Edinburgh, EH14 4AS, UK
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