Lifting the constraints - Closing the skills gap with authentic student projects

Richa Awasthy, Shayne Flint, Ramesh Sankaranarayana

Research output: A Conference proceeding or a Chapter in BookConference contributionpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Preparing Software Engineering graduates with skills to satisfy the demands of industry has always been a challenge for universities. One way to overcome this challenge is to provide students with an authentic team project experience. Authentic student projects are those that are as close as possible to real projects in terms of uncertainty, complexity and diversity. In order to achieve this, collaboration with business and other external stakeholders is essential. However, such collaboration is often hindered by constraints around team structure, team and individual student assessment, the use of specific processes and technology, providing technical and other support, and fixed project durations. In this paper, we present a simple course structure and assessment process that has allowed us to remove the majority of such constraints, while maintaining integrity around student learning and assessment. By removing these constraints, we are providing students with authentic team project experiences that prepare them well for future employment. Preliminary evaluations of our approach indicate that despite several challenges, the experience has led to high levels of satisfaction among students and our external partners including employers.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of 2017 IEEE Global Engineering Education Conference, EDUCON 2017
Place of PublicationUnited States
PublisherIEEE, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)9781509054671
Publication statusPublished - 7 Jun 2017
Externally publishedYes
Event8th IEEE Global Engineering Education Conference, EDUCON 2017 - Athens, Greece
Duration: 25 Apr 201728 Apr 2017

Publication series

NameIEEE Global Engineering Education Conference, EDUCON
ISSN (Print)2165-9559
ISSN (Electronic)2165-9567


Conference8th IEEE Global Engineering Education Conference, EDUCON 2017


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