Pedestrian dynamics for MSc/MEng Civil Engineers
Year of Project: 19-20
Number of student partners: 2
Number of staff partners: 1
Length of project: 10 weeks
Time Commitment: 2 days a week full-time
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Staff partner: Arnab Majumdar
Student partners: Alastair Shipman, Georgia Bateman
Background for project
The project engaged two postgraduate research students to undertake a project to develop course material for an MSc level course related to their PhD research on Pedestrian and Evacuation Dynamics. This enabled the students’ new and emergent research to be translated, using their expertise and in partnership with the staff lead in that area of teaching, into the curriculum.
This course was developed according to a flipped classroom approach, which enabled a legacy of the student’s inputs beyond their own time at Imperial. In this approach, lectures are pre-recorded and delivered to students for their own consumption outside of timetabled teaching hours, whilst the timetabled sessions are then devoted to workshop-style sessions. Both students spent their time as StudentShapers creating and testing this course material.
A range of course content was created, including:
- 1 x 1 hour introductory course lecture
- 1 x professionally produced video introducing the content of the course
- 13 x 8-10min lecture ‘screencasts’
- 4 x 2 hour workshops
- 3 x multiple choice quizzes on course content
- 2 x exam questions
- Interactive visualisation tool
All course materials will be delivered to MSc Transport students who have elected to take the lecture Course in Safety, Environmental Impacts, and Pedestrian and Evacuation Dynamics. The screencasts recorded for the ‘flipped’ portion of the lecture course will be uploaded onto Blackboard to disseminate to students within the course, along with the workshop materials and blackboard quizzes.
Benefits to student learning and further outcomes
The subject matter covered in the new course will give students a good foundational knowledge of this topic. The industry of Pedestrian Dynamics is currently experiencing major growth, and therefore with interest from companies about potential internships and work experience opportunities, having high quality, up to date and student focussed course material available for students to learn from could represent a huge benefit to the Imperial College student body.
Both Student partners have been required to examine their knowledge of the fundamentals of their PhD research. They have also learnt a significant amount about modern pedagogies, and the development and delivery of lecture courses."
Following on from the development of this course, the project then went on to a subsequent StudentShapers project to develop a new I-Explore-STEM module, to broaden the access to this material to a wider range of students. One of the student partners took a lead in this project, working with undergraduate student partners to further develop the content a make fit for the new purpose. This involved collaborating with, and creating new Imperial Visualisations content for the course.
Over the course of the project both Student partners have been required to re-examine their knowledge of the fundamentals of their PhD research. They have also learnt a significant amount about modern pedagogies, and the development and delivery of lecture courses; as a result, both have undertaken a significant professional development opportunity and strengthened their skills for future careers beyond the PhD.