Teacher competences for active learning in engineering education

Renato Martins Neves, Rui M. Lima, Diana Mesquita

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)


The implementation of active learning strategies in engineering education still encounters barriers when facing conventional teaching-learning practices. This work aims to contribute to the discussion on teachers' pedagogical competences required for active learning. This contribution is developed from the perceptions of 205 engineering teachers of Brazilian higher education institutions, centered on significant teaching competences necessary for teachers of engineering courses and how to develop them in the active learning context. The results show that essential competences identified by the participants are (I) teamwork (teachers' cooperation); (II) teacher-student relationships (empathy); (III) feedback about students' performance throughout the learning process; (IV) information and communication technology (ICT) competences; (V) selecting and adapting the teaching-learning methodologies to the class context; and (VI) creativity. A complementary logistic regression model suggested that female Ph.D. full-time teachers are more likely to employ active learning. Differences in active learning adoption among Brazilian regions were also captured by the model. The identified competences are essential for the sustainability of the innovation of teaching practices in the context of active learning, which may be used to inform more effective professional training of engineering teachers in the current globalized scenario.
Original languageEnglish
Article number9231
Number of pages21
Issue number16
Publication statusPublished - 2 Aug 2021


  • Active learning
  • Brazilian higher education
  • Pedagogical competences
  • Problem-based learning
  • Professional development
  • Project-based learning
  • Sustainable engineering education
  • Teachers’ training


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