Engineering and Business education is in the whirlwind of reforms
2023-09-14, 09:20– (Asia/Tokyo), Training Room 1

During the past ten years engineering and business education and research at Turku University of Applied Sciences have changed remarkable. This study uses qualitative methods and describes a case study on the actions taken at the Turku University of Applied Sciences in the field of engineering and business for curricula reform and faculty development. The main research question is “How engineering and business education has been steered with curricula reforms during the faculty development process?”.
Early 2010 our university had three faculties offering engineering and business education, and we had a pedagogical framework called Innovation pedagogy. The faculty of Engineering, Environment and Business (EEB) was one of the key developers and implementers of this pedagogy. At the same time the faculty of Telecommunications and e-Business (TEB) focused on implementing international CDIO framework. The third engineering faculty Life Sciences and Business (LIB) followed university’s general pedagogical framework. In addition, there were faculty for Arts and two faculties for health and wellbeing.
In 2013 two of these engineering and business faculties (TEB and LIB) where merged to a new faculty of Business, ICT and Chemical Engineering (BIC) and first major curricula reform was introduced. The reform leaned on the elements in the CDIO approach bringing for example Introductory and Capstone courses into the curricula.
In 2018 the two remaining engineering and business faculties (EEB and BIC) were merged into the current format of Faculty of Engineering and Business. At the same time second major curricula reform was implemented. It combined the main elements of Innovation Pedagogy and CDIO and created a common framework for all our bachelor programs in engineering and business.
At the end of 2022 third curricula reform was started with the aim of new curricula for autumn 2024. This reform had three main aims: 1) Professional core in focus, 2) Strengthen the quality of education and improve completion and 3) Personnel wellbeing.
Along with the mergers and curricula reforms the operational questions have been solved too as during this journey of ten years the number of students has increased heavily, the portfolio of degree programs has evolved, applied research has grown, and continuous learning has a bigger role. This paper describes how engineering and business activities have developed and how we have responded to the ever-growing demands and global challenges.

Turku University of Applied sciences has reformed engineering and business education with three major steps during the past ten years. This study describes the steps taken, solutions implemented and rationale for all this. The focus is to describe the pedagogical and framework level developments and as well as the required organizational changes. The paper discusses the experiences and lessons learnt as well as presents the latest aims and goals.


Curricula reform, CDIO, Innovation pedagogy, faculty merger, case study

See also:

Juha Kontio is a Doctor of Sciences in Economics and Business Administration. He received the M.Sc. degree in Computer Science from the University of Jyväskylä in 1991 and the D.Sc. degree in Information Systems from Turku School of Economics in 2004. He is the Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Business at Turku University of Applied Sciences. His research interest is in higher education-related topics. He is currently the co-director of the CDIO initiative and former co-leader of the European CDIO region.