Robot racing

The Engineering Design Show is currently in full swing here, with the competitions for the various design projects. The white-line followers kicked off proceedings. They were pretty impressive, with all but one team successfully being able to follow the (very squiggly) line without mistakes. There were traps to confuse the robots – the line got […]

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A closing thought for Friday

We are three-quarters of the way through semester A. My Friday afternoon 🙁 tutorial for solid-state physics is still very well attended.  Is this: A. Because the students are really engaged in this paper, learning a lot, and generally want to be there, or B. Because they don't have a clue what's happening and are […]

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When does collaboration become collusion?

Yesterday I attended a very interesting discussion on the problem of student collusion in assignments. It's a really grey area that is particularly prevelant in the sciences and engineering. This is the kind of thing we mean: Student A and Student B discuss their assignment one evening. Together, they think through what processes are needed […]

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Explaining the blatantly obvious

I've had a few difficulties in some discussions with students recently. It comes down to this: "How do I explain something that is so blatantly obvious it doesn't need explanation?"  The problem really is that a particular concept can be obvious to me, but not obvious to a student. The danger is then that, in […]

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