Office of Education Development and Gateway Education

Student project team composition and learning outcomes of environment-related courses

TDGs - Teaching Development Grants

Principal Investigator

  • Dr. LEE Kwan-Hon Patrick

Co-investigator(s)

  • Dr. LI Wanxin

Abstract

Environment-related courses aim to stimulate environmental concerns, instill environmental values, enable discovery of environmental knowledge, and cultivate environmentally-friendly behaviors. Students in those courses learn from the instructors as well as their classmates, especially those who work on the same team project. Historians of science have argued that new discoveries usually emerge in trading zones where people of different disciplinary backgrounds meet and co-develop interactive expertise. In this way, a new discipline can potentially be established, e.g. biochemistry. Students taking environment-related Gateway Education (GE) courses are generally from diverse departments / disciplines within CityU and presumably, they engage in a trading zone. In contrast, students who study in the Environmental Policy Program are of the same major and thus, the homogeneous group does not provide ground for a trading zone. Under this intrinsic difference in student composition between the two types of courses, we aim to investigate the effects of project team composition on students’ learning outcomes as measured by their environmental values, concerns, knowledge, attitude, and intended environmental behaviors. The findings will shed light on how organizational features of environment-related courses impact students’ discoveries and learning outcomes. The results will speak to both environmental educators and educational administrators.