Capítulo 42 Building a transition to the engineering fieldwork through project-based learning
Ching-Chiang, Lay-Wah Carolina
Carrera Moreno, Diego Fernando
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Higher education faces a challenging moment that presses to search for educational models to prepare students for the social and professional demands of the 21st century. The dynamic job market and the constant need for competitive knowledge personnel bring the need for universities to tie the learning process to the true business world. These changes require universities to rethink the way students are prepared for the changing and emerging job market. Traditional teaching methods are less effective in motivating students to learn (Freire, 2006). This represents an imperative call for a 180º change in the traditional learning and teaching dynamics in which the main actors, content, methodologies, activities and technology operate (Silva Quiroz & Maturana Castillo, 2017). Not only are core knowledge areas important in the professional world, but problem structuring, critical and strategic thinking, and understanding of the political and institutional contexts seem critical (Van Horen et ál., 2004). For these reasons, it makes sense that universities implement internships as a way to prepare students for professional work. However, the original purposes of internships have been replaced by a market in which the commonality is unpaid positions leading to fewer job offer positions after graduation and a fierce competition of well-qualified applicants willing to compete for free (Howe, 2014). It seems that companies are less concerned with the development of the interns and more about what they can get from them, deviating from the original purposes of internships.