UCL Changemakers


Producing a Home-Based Experiment on Indeterminate Structures

This case study explores how staff and students worked together to create new, engaging student support resources on the qualitative analysis of structures.

20 July 2021

Case study by Manuela Sadik

What was the aim of your project?

The aim of the project was to teach students how to apply qualitative methods to the solution of structures. We planned to do this by using simple experiments that could be replicated at home.

What did you do?

We produced a lecture on the qualitative analysis of structures. This involved creating diagrammatic material for the lecture, designing the examples and planning/delivering the overall lecture. When creating such materials, there was constant conversation between the staff and students, with staff members providing feedback. 

What was involved in terms of approach, logistics, time and resources?

Our team met on a weekly basis to discuss our progress (e.g. on producing examples, explanations and pre-recording the lectures). We also used this time as an opportunity to compare materials, ensuring correctness and clarity. Approximately half a day per week was spent on the project over a three month period.

What difference has this project made to the UCL community?

It has ensured that students are confident in the qualitative analysis of structures. It has also lessened the gap between staff and students, primarily through the delivery of teaching materials by students further into their degree programme.

How will this project continue to improve the student learning experience?

Many students currently struggle to find a relationship between the physical world and thought material such as qualitative analysis explored in lectures/seminars. By introducing the use of practical tests to teach such material, we hope to continue to help struggling students.

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