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Webinar 4 of the Series is by Emeritus Professor James Trevelyan, The University of Western Australia.

 February 22, 2022: 2:00 pm GMT (7:30 pm IST) Effective Teaching and the Social Purposes of Engineering


After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting. Space is limited.


Emeritus Professor James Trevelyan
The University of Western Australia

James has taught engineering for over 45 years. He has researched and observed engineering practice, what engineers really do, in Australia, India, Pakistan, China and several other countries. His books “The Making of an Expert Engineer”, “30-Second Engineering” and “Learning Engineering Practice” are helping students and engineers worldwide, and are also helping to reshape engineering education.

He is also a leading expert on robotics and artificial intelligence. He was awarded the Joseph Engelberger award in 1993, the world’s most prestigious award in robotics, for the development of sheep shearing robots in Australia. He and his students pioneered the Internet of Things in the 1990s.

Most recently, James has become a start-up entrepreneur, inventing and commercialising new air conditioning technology. His machines can provide affordable and sustainable cooling for billions of people who have to endure hot climates beyond the limits of human physiology for months every year.


In this presentation, I will explain and demonstrate how the results from research on engineering practice can enrich engineering education and better explain the social purposes of engineering. I will also question common notions of effective teaching, arguing instead that the performances and experiences of young engineers at work can tell us whether we are teaching effectively. I will also challenge the use of competencies as educational outcomes, suggesting instead that knowledge of engineering practice, what our graduates are really expected to do, is a better guide for faculty who design curricula and learning experiences. Finally, I will offer some suggestions for junior faculty to use in classrooms that don’t require formal approval or curriculum changes.

The talk draws on extensive engineering practice research in India and Pakistan.

Suggested Prior Reading (or afterwards) (5 mins – 2 hours, depending on whether you do the exercises) (15 mins) (15 mins) (15 mins)  (1 – 2 hours)


Further details

Details of the Brent Felder Webinar Series are at

Recordings and discussions among our Community of Practice is on Canvas. If you are not yet a member of our Canvas, please email Sridhar Nori at

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