Is attending lectures still relevant in engineering education?

Fitzpatrick, JJ, Cronin, Kevin and Byrne, EP (2011) Is attending lectures still relevant in engineering education? European Journal of Engineering Education, 36 (3). pp. 301-312. ISSN -


A case study was conducted on a group of undergraduate chemical engineering students to assess the relevance of attending lectures from a student perspective and to understand why these students attend and do not attend lectures with a view to developing approaches to teaching, which are of greater interest and benefit to student learning. The students were surveyed by means of a questionnaire-type survey, which collected both quantitative and qualitative data from them. The majority of students stated that lectures are still very beneficial to their learning and are not an out-of-date mode of education. The major reasons for lecture non-attendance were time priority and curriculum overload issues with other scholarly activities and poor quality teaching. The students provided a number of suggestions to improve lectures and lecture attendance, including the incorporation of active learning in lectures, linking lectures to assessment and adding extra value to what is already in the notes.

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