Crisis scenarios require the flexible adaption of learning concepts to the given situation. The blended learning concept comprises of both traditional classroom teaching/learning and e-learning approaches, and provides the flexibility required throughout different crisis scenarios. As such, there are many variants of this educational approach: complete classroom replacement, e-learning with classroom time supplement, e-learning at the institution campus, continuous rotation of classroom and e-learning periods, etc. This means that classroom time is reduced (or even eliminated) with a significant amount of time being dedicated to teaching via online platforms (such as learning management systems or other digital resources). Of course, to define which educational tools and approaches to use (and when) depends on the given situation and requires re-thinking and reconsideration of the teaching and learning process within the product design domain.

Course Types and Assessment Approaches

Mechanical engineering education is based on various learning and teaching approaches that express in different course designs and assessment approaches. In this initial section of the framework, Part A and Part B, comprehensive lists of common course types and assessment approaches have been established.
With the digitization of learning content and tools that enable a more efficient collaboration over the internet classes can be held much more flexible, addressing different boundary conditions for teaching activities. Part C of the framework comprises a dissection of technological support levels and the application of technological levels to courses and assessment methods.

Crisis Scenarios in Higher Education

Every crisis brings with it a set of limitations for the affected population. The limitations can vary in intensity and duration. Moreover, a crisis often occurs unexpectedly, demanding a rapid adaptation to the new conditions. The global Covid-19 pandemic demonstrated how vulnerable the higher education sector is when confronted with a crisis. 

This section of the framework encompasses three main objectives…