UCL Changemakers


Resource Library for the MEng BARC0132 Module

This case study explores how students and staff collaborated to create an array of support resources for students taking the BARC0132 module as part of their MA in Engineering.

19 July 2021

Case study by Manuela Sadik

What was the aim of your project?

The objective of this project is to create a resource library for engineering students. The library will include calculation tutorials to support students completing their final engineering project as well as more general seminars on structural designs and systems.

What did you do?

We created two calculation tutorials. One outlined a step-by-step method for calculating a building’s live and dead loads, and the other outlined a method for sizing its primary structural elements. We also developed two seminars providing in-depth explanations of the basics of connection design and the different types of structural systems that can be applied to steel buildings.

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

Calculation Tutorials: We manually solved a calculation example using a case study building. This involved calculating the live and dead loads for the building and sizing it’s elements. The step-by-step method of the calculation process was then turned into a concise PowerPoint presentation, featuring enough detail for students to easily follow. Finally, a video explaining this presentation was recorded.

Seminars: We researched the basics of connection design and structural systems (not included in the modules syllabus) and presented the information in another concise presentation. A video explaining the presentation was again recorded. Compiling the information for this presentation was very time-consuming as it required an iterative evaluation and extensive cooperation with the project’s staff member.

What difference has this project made to the UCL community?

The usefulness of the project has not yet been evaluated. However, through discussions with students, it has been made clear that the tutorials are already being actively used to aid students completing their final engineering projects. The seminars have also been used, but more for general knowledge. 

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

The supporting materials (seminars and tutorials) were developed in accordance to the student feedback we received. This establishes the project as a successful reaction to the students’ voice and an example of student feedback being actively used to improve course content.

In addition, these materials as part of the resource library will be accessible to future engineering students and existing students throughout their academic careers. We hope that it will be distributed to other structural engineering courses taught at UCL, not only so that more students can benefit from its insight but also to raise awareness about the importance of ChangeMakers projects and their impact.