Teaching risk management by using PBL - A risky approach?

R. J. Karpe, N. Maynard

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


Over the last 25 years the Department of Chemical Engineering at Curtin University of Technology has delivered a very traditional curriculum providing graduates with a strong practical orientation. Recent feedback from industry has, however, emphasised the need for graduates to have improved problem solving skills, interpersonal group skills and critical thinking. Problem Based Learning (PBL) is a learning environment in which the problem drives the learning. It has proved to be an effective and an enjoyable experience. However, most of the PBL courses were developed in the area of health sciences with very few engineering departments fully implementing the approach. Is PBL actually more difficult to implement into an engineering course? What issues do we have to consider in developing a suitable unit structure for PBL? This paper presents challenges being faced to implement PBL techniques in Risk Management, one of the chemical engineering degree's 4th year units, in order to create a learning environment that involves active and cooperative learning, prompt feedback, critical thinking, student accountability and a fun experience. The paper will discuss aspects of our executable plan of action for PBL implementation for this unit.

Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2009
Externally publishedYes
EventSEFI 37th Annual Conference 2009 - Rotterdam, Netherlands
Duration: 1 Jul 20094 Jul 2009


ConferenceSEFI 37th Annual Conference 2009


  • Chemical engineering education
  • Concept maps
  • Problem-based learning
  • Reflective journals
  • Risk management

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