Research Article

Development of competences while solving real industrial interdisciplinary problems: a successful cooperation with industry

Rui Manuel Lima; José Dinis-Carvalho; Rui Manuel Sousa; Pedro Arezes; Diana Mesquita

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Abstract: The development of projects in industrial context constitutes an exceptional opportunity for engineering students to develop competences expected by the labour market. Therefore, the adoption of this type of interaction within engineering curricula is highly recommended, not only at the end of the degree, but also in the previous years. The main purpose of this paper is to present and analyse a Project-Based Learning (PBL) semester in which six teams of Industrial Engineering and Management (IEM) students integrate different areas of knowledge, while solving real problems of five companies, emphasizing the technical solutions developed by the students and the feedback provided by the companies. Students’ feedback will be also addressed. The main outcomes of this study reveal that most of the technical solutions lie in areas of Lean applications and ergonomic improvement of workplaces. Companies were very pleased with the results of this type of University-Business Cooperation (UBC).


Project-based learning, Engineering education, Industrial Engineering and Management, University-Business Cooperation


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