Institute for Academic Development
Institute for Academic Development

Materials education for engineers

Materials education for engineers: a transformation

Principal applicant: Jane Blackford


“Materials are the heart of all branches of engineering. It can be argued - and with not much exaggeration - that engineering is the creative and rational use of materials for practical purposes… Engineers are better engineers if they have a good understanding of the properties of the materials which they use.” [Hall 2009].

It is essential that we educate engineers with deep knowledge of materials. To do this the students must understand the basics well.

The key aim of this project is to develop new methods, based on Socratic dialogue, to enhance interactive engagement and deepen students’ fundamental understanding of materials. To achieve our aims we will employ a research assistant.

Final Project Report

Final project report may be downloaded below:

Further Project Outcomes

  • Theofanidou, E (2013) Introducing Socratic Dialogue in Materials Science and Engineering Education (unpublished MSc Thesis), University of Edinburgh
  • Is Ice a good substance for educating engineers about materials ? European Geophysical Union, Session organised and sponsored by ESF research networking programme on the Micro-Dynamics of Ice (Micro-DICE), 2011, Vienna, Austria
  • Basics of materials : properties and microstructure of ice, and Ice and industry, Summer School on Microstructures of Ice and Snow, 2012, Obergurgl, Tyrol, Austria