Tracks for change, flexibility, interdisciplinarity and creativity in engineering education
Paper in proceedings, 2020

This paper describes the early stages of the developments of Tracks, an initiative to create,
implement and evaluate a new educational model where the structure of the education is
developed to give students the opportunity to create multi- and interdisciplinary competencies,
meet their expectations and need for a more individualized study plan and shorten the lead
times for changing the education to embrace new technologies. The new education model is
based on the creation of tracks with different themes lying between existing programs not
belonging to a specific department or school. The idea is to create individual and flexible study
opportunities by introducing Track-courses within the themes. These courses address specific
challenges that may be broad societal and profound research-driven. Tracks also include large
investments in Chalmers learning environment. The paper focuses on Tracks as a large
change initiative, strategies to manage the complexity of this change as well as development
philosophy and working methods in the early phases of the initiative. Change at universities
has been discussed previously, but this is a unique opportunity to study how large change may
be managed over time, including both the content of the education and the learning
environments. Through action research, where interventions may be done to influence the
initiative, it is possible to develop practical contributions for other universities in need of similar
development. The research has been conducted over approximately a year and includes data
from interviews and action research, where the authors are the main people working with this
initiative. The close contact with the data gives a unique understanding of how different
activities within the initiative influence the outcome. Thus, this paper will contribute to the
understanding of how large institutional change initiatives are facilitated by a flexible and agile
approach contrasting the traditional and somewhat slower university culture.



Educational change




Mikael Enelund

Chalmers, Mechanics and Maritime Sciences, Dynamics

Kristina Henricson Briggs

[Stöd till utbildningsutveckling]

Proceedings of the International CDIO Conference

2002-1593 (ISSN)

Vol. 1 37-47

The 16th International CDIO Conference
Göteborg, Sweden,

Subject Categories


Pedagogical Work


Learning and teaching

Pedagogical work

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