Implementation of educational modules in a biotechnology course: A challenge based education approach

Gülnur Birol, Ann McKenna, Todd Giorgio, Sean Brophy

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Biotechnology is one of the active domains in the NSF funded Engineering Research Center VaNTH (Vanderbilt, Northwestern, University of Texas, and Harvard/MIT) where an educational mosaic is currently being developed. This mosaic covers a collection of challenges designed around bioreactors, mass/momentum transfer issues, microbial kinetics, and downstream processing, which are among core biotechnology topics. Aspects of this mosaic have been tested by students at Vanderbilt University and have proven to be useful. Based on the results from these studies, the challenges relating to bioreactors and mass/momentum transfer are currently being refined. At Northwestern, Birol and coworkers have developed challenge-based educational materials that focus on microbial kinetics and downstream processing. The combination of the work developed at Vanderbilt with the new challenge topics at Northwestern form the basis of the 'mosaic' for a course on biotechnology. The aim of this study was to design a new biotechnology course centered on challenge-based education and to implement the new educational tools. This paper focuses on the implementation of the mosaic at Northwestern in the new Bioprocess Technology Course (BME 395). We also focus on how the new biotechnology course at Northwestern builds on the work from Vanderbilt and discuss issues relating to the implementation of innovative course materials.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)9005-9017
Number of pages13
JournalASEE Annual Conference Proceedings
StatePublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes
Event2002 ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition: Vive L'ingenieur - Montreal, Que., Canada
Duration: Jun 16 2002Jun 19 2002

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Engineering


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