Managing Informal Learning in Engineering Contexts: The learners’ perspective

Clara Viegas, Maria Marques, Gustavo Alves, Nikolas Galanis, Francisco Garcia-Peñalvo

According to recent studies, informal learning accounts for more than 75% of our continuous learning through life. However, the awareness of this learning, its benefits and its potential is still not very clear. In engineering contexts, informal learning could play an invaluable role helping students or employees to engage with peers and also with more experience colleagues, exchanging ideas and discussing problems. This work presents an initial set of results of the piloting phase of a project (TRAILER) where an innovative service based on Information & Communication Technologies was developed in order to aid the collection and visibility of informal learning. This set of results concerns engineering contexts (academic and business), from the learners’ perspective. The major idea that emerged from these piloting trials was that it represented a good way of collecting, recording and sharing informal learning that otherwise could easily be forgotten. Several benefits were reported between the two communities such as being helpful in managing competences and human resources within an institution.

Paper presented at CISPEE 2013 1st International Conference of the Portuguese Society for Engineering Education
Porto (Portugal), 31 October – 1 November 2013

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