CDIO Implementation for Engineering Education and Beyond


·Dates: March 25-27, 2015

·Venue: Vietnam National University Ho Chi Minh City (VNU-HCM), Ho Chi Minh City University of Technology (HCMUT) campus.

268 Ly Thuong Kiet Street., District 10, Ho Chi Minh City.

·Theme: "CDIO Implementation for Engineering Education and Beyond".


1. A CDIO review: Engineering Education forthe 21st century [Full text]

Johan Malmqvist, Professor, Product Development, Chalmers University of Technology,Sweden. Co-leader and Co-founder of CDIO

Engineering education of today faces many challenges,including to prepare future engineers for work in global, multidisciplinary teams;  to co-develop scientific knowledge and practical skills; to foster leadership, innovation and entrepreneurship; and to train students to take onsocietal challenges such as global warning. On the other hand, new pedagogical approaches, e-learning tools and digital engineering tools offer many opportunities for reforming engineering education to meet the demands of the 21st century.

 CDIO (Conceive-Design-Implement-Operate) proposes an novel approach for engineering education that starts from the tasks that engineer take on during the product or system life cycle: they identify customer needs, conceptualize new products, design in detail, code and manufacture, test, plan distribution, follow up use, plan recycling and ultimately retirement of products. CDIO further proposes that engineering education should prepare for taking on a specialist role in one of these phases, but also to be an effective collaborator with other specialists across the product life cycle and across the globe.

 The presentation will take its starting point inoutlining the need and rationale for a CDIO-based engineering education, and then move on to discuss the elements that are typical for a CDIO program:a multitude of design-build-test projects, integrated learning of teamwork and communication, simulation-based mathematics education and innovative learning spaces. Many examples will be provided. Finally, an outlook to the future of engineering education will be provided.

2. CDIO implementation: the effective approach to innovatefundamentally and comprehensively academic programs at VNU-HCM  [Full text]

Nguyen Quoc Chinh, Doan Thi Minh Trinh,  Department of Academic Affairs, VNU-HCM

In 2007, Vietnam has officially become a member of the World Trade Organization. The assessments from many international accreditation agencies on  Vietnam higher education system at that time shown several short comings from many aspects including:curriculum, teaching and learning practices, capability of teaching staff,learning space and environment that can help students to develop essential personal and professional skills. Higher education institutions in Vietnam faced the urged need to reform their academic programmes fundamentally and comprehensively. 

            To solve those interrelated issues, which collectively form a systems problem aswell as to promote innovation efforts, VNU-HCM has adopted  CDIO approach as a guidelines to achieve the following goals: (1) Systematically reform the curriculum in order to provide students with the knowledge, skills, and professional competences desired by relevant stakeholders; and (2) Use the best practices in CDIO implementation to build the model frameworks, which can be exported and replicated at member universities within VNU-HCM and at other higher education institutions in Vietnam.

VNU-HCM started CDIO implementation in 2010, with 5 programmes in the field of engineering and applied sciences at  2 member universities. By 2012, based on implementation experiences,VNU-HCM has introduced generalised frameworks for learning outcomes formulation and development, curricilum design, and programme evaluation. Those frameworks helped spreading CDIO implementation to many programmes in various fields including engineering, aplied sciences, science, business, and management. At the end of 2014, CDIO has been implemented at 4 member universities, 20 departments, 45 academic programmes, which is about 50% total number ofacademic programmes at VNU-HCM.

Plays a leading role in CDIO implementation in Vietnam,VNU-HCM has hosted numerous training workshops and conferences on CDIO, has published 4 books sharing the results of CDIO implementation at VNU-HCM that has attracted the wide attention of many universities across the country.


3. University-Business Catch-up Game orVertical Integration in Education  [Full text]

Nguyen Thanh Nam, Vice-president, FPT University

Does competition exist in business life? Sure, fiercely.Without good performance, without innovation and market updates, will a companydie? Sure, sooner or later. Many companies were born and have died, even including the big guys like DEC, COMPAQ, SUN, etc. But we have hardly ever seenany sizeable universities going out of business. Tertiary education market seems to lack competition, which is the key for innovation growth.

Less competition means less pressure to renovate and nofatal threats if still staying idle and lazy. This can explain why university operation and government policies in higher education stay much the same today,regardless of dramatic changes in technology and business mindset. Ironically, how can a university teach a student to compete and succeed in the real world of business if it is not run like a business and its managers do not have business mindsets? For universities, keeping themselves staying out of the technology and innovation spiral means staying low in terms of tech-savvy and innovative performances, just like the “dead” companies in the business world of competition.

The penetration of technology has fundamentally alternated the way business used to operate. Technology does not only lower the entry barrier and enables creativity but also invites a lot of new competition. Likewise, technology greatly enhances the effect of globalization, when a Ukrainian company can compete successfully with their US foe to win over Nigerian client in Lagos, using the internet to navigate their software from off-shore.

The more business experience changes, the deeper the gap between them and higher education institution may get. As part of one of the largest technology company in South East Asia - FPT, we experienced it, felt it, suffered from this gap and get determined to find the solution. The quality of curriculum is no longer enough. Globalized mindset, foreign language, technology ownership and the understanding of business rapid changes are the requirements for any graduates willing to survive in the competitivereal-life game.


4. Think Like an Engineer: CDIO andEngineering for the 21st Century   [Full text]

Mushtak Al-Atabi, Dean, School of Engineering. Taylor’sUniversity

The talk introduces entrepreneurship, innovation, creativity,critical and systematic thinking through the CDIO framework and explores how wefeel, think and learn and anchors engineering education in the latest brainre search findings and business practices. It presents critical and systematic thinking as the way to achieve the human potential and provides innovative techniques to help us unlock value and have a more balanced life. The talk provides practical, easy to follow exercises to improve thinking and learning that can be used by educators to empower their students to thrive forsuccess. The talk is based on the book “ hunk Like an Engineer” that have received positive reviews on Amazon and currently it is a recommended reading at the Australian Maritime College and the University of New South Wales.

5. Engaging students throughCDIO-based projects  [Full text]

Pham CongBang, Nguyen Huu Loc, Mechanical Engineering Faculty, HCMUT, VNU-HCM

Since 2010, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering at Ho Chi Minh City University of Technology has piloted the CDIO model for the manufacturing engineering program. Up to now,this model has been employed for the other five programs in the faculty when developing 4-year curriculums in which engineering skills are consolidated by four project-based courses of the program, including: Introduction to engineering project, Design project, Engineering project, and Capstone project. Since its emergence in the late 1960s, mechatronics has become well-establishedas an academic subject, and is now researched and taught at a large number of universities worldwide. With a mission of providing students a comprehensive educational environment through cutting-edge courses for mechatronic engineering,Department of Mechatronic Engineering in the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering has pioneered in many ways since its inception in 1999. This paper firstly presents an overview of how engineering programs at the faculty of mechanical engineering are structured. It is followed by a show case of an educational approach that found interested and fascinated by all stake holders through which the project focus is on training rather than studying, coaching rather than teaching, experimenting rather than reading, and working together rather than apart.


6. Preparing Vietnam’s technical workforce forthe next wave of growth: HEEAP’s role   [Full text]

Nguyen GiaoHoa, HEEAPCountry Manager, Arizona State University


7. CDIO Implementation at RMUTT: A Journeyto Produce Hands-on Graduate Rajamangala University of Technology Thanyaburi,RMUTT, Thailand   [Full text]

Natha Kuptasthien, Assistant to the President – InternationalAffairs, Rajamangala University of Technology Thanaburi

RMUTT has participated in Conceive, Design, Implement,and Operate (CDIO) Framework for Re-Thinking Engineering Education since2013.  After one year of implementation, the CDIO framework has proved tobe the most appropriate framework to produce hands-on graduates.  RMUTThas integrated CDIO-based Education into university’s strategic plan.Major changes and improvement involve in integrated curriculum development, workspace renovation, teaching and learning methods, faculty member competency enhancement as well as assessment methods.   RMUTT has been appointed as CDIO collaborator in the CDIO Worldwide Initiatives since March 2014.RMUTT hands-on model with the foundation of CDIO framework has been fully implemented and reached 11 faculties, 84 bachelor degree programs, 900 faculty members.  RMUTT is now expanding the network of CDIO-based Education atRMUTT and other universities in Thailand.


8. Applying the CDIO approach toNon-Engineering Education  [Full text]

Johan Malmqvist, Professor, Product Development, Chalmers University ofTechnology, Sweden. Co-leader and Co-founder of CDIO

CDIO has its origins in engineering education and hasmostly been applied in engineering programs. However, the principles andpractices of the CDIO approach can be applied to many programs in higher education. At its most abstract level, the CDIO approach asserts the following:

  • The education should be in the context ofpractice;
  • There is an identifiable list of knowledge,skills, and attitudes in which students should gain proficiency, and by engaging with stakeholders, the desired level of proficiency can be determined
  • The curriculum and pedagogy should bedesigned in an integrated manner to ensure meeting the desired learning outcomes, and include a rich variety of practice-like educational experiences,and training of professional skills such as teamwork, ethics, communication,and leadership
  • A systematic program evaluation process should be in place to follow up student learning and alumni views, and serve asthe basis of continuous improvement.

In addition, CDIO provides a methodology for systematically developing educational programs starting from the needs of students, industry and government that is general and can be applied beyond engineering education.

In the presentation, it will be shown how the main CDIO concepts can be translated and transferred to other areas, and examples provided.

9. IntegratingPersonal, Interpersonal And CDIO Skills Into HCMUS-FIT Curriculum And Our Focus  [Full text]

Dinh BaTien, Facultyof  Information Technology, University ofScience, VNU-HCM


11.GE Vietnam – Approach to Engineering and Leadership Development   [Full text]

NORMAN O'ROURKE, EngineeringDirector, Asia Pacific, Subsea

GE Oil & Ga


12. Two-way values of CDIO through Joint-research and exchangeprograms at Duy Tan University  [Full text]

Nguyen Thi MinhPhuong, Dean of Department for Environmental Engineering

The CDIO Framework has been deployed at Duy Tan University (DTU) during the last four years in a number of study tracks like Information Technology, Electrical Engineering, and Civil Engineering. Most recently, the Faculty of Environmental Engineering also made a move to adopt CDIO for its programs. A major advantage of CDIO adoption has been our joint-research collaboration with Singapore Polytechnic (SP)through the Learning Express Programs (LeX) and Oversea Industrial Training Programs (OITP). As a result of these programs, our students have had the opportunity to work with students from SP as well as from other countries for the time period of one to two whole months during our regular semesters. The OITPs specifically offer students the chance to experience real working life and put their learned skills to good use at some real-world businesses or organizations. With the LeXs, students work with other students from all overt he world to make real change to real lives in developing countries in the South East Asia and to learn innovative ways of thinking and implementing. Besides OITPs and LeXs, Duy Tan University also participates in the foundation and development of Passage to ASEAN Program (P2A), which helps raise students’ awareness about different matters in life. This presentation will deliver a detailed overview of the work we have done in OITPs, LeXs and P2As, and how those programs have supported our CDIO efforts as well as how CDIO has helped enhance the quality in those programs.


13. The Development of design International business curriculumbased on the CDIO framework  [Full text]

Nguyen Duy Quang, Deputy Dean ofFaculty of International Economic Relations at University of Economics and Law.

This paper discusses the implementation process and progress as well as potential challenges in adopting CDIO framework to re-design international business program at University of Economics and Law. Following the CDIO approach, students capacities are fully trained to enhance students comprehensive quality in order enable them to participate in the innovation processes in their future working places and develop them.

Our curriculum design process started in 2013, and to date we have completed the design of Program Learning Outcomes (PLO), curricula and course contents,  teaching reform measures with the CDIO education philosophy as a guide and student assessment.

Although, this has been a short time, experimental results show that the use of CDIO model has agood effect for the stakeholders in the learning model: our students,university/ faculty and employers.

14. "Development of Essential employ ability skills for University Students with Project-Based Method”  [Full text]

Huong Thanh Ho, Business Advisor, LSH GROUP

Stemming from the students’ needs for social skills embellishment, real work-place experience,and hence equip, enhance those skills as well as put them to practice before graduating, Smart Learning teamed up with The University of Natural Science(particularly the Faculty of  Electronic Telecommunication and Faculty of Chemistry), and more than 15 firms from Ho ChiMinh City, to introduce the training course of “Employ-ability Skills for University Students with Project-Based Method”.

This course will helps the students to:

  • Obtain Acquire knowledge and skills necessary for trainee & internship programmes, as well as actually taking up a position in firms
  • Participate & practice in a business environment, providing the students with realistic expectations of future career
  • Have a better career orientation after graduation

The training program is designed based on the Smart Learing Integrated Learning Cycle Model. During the course, students will have learnt important skills through in-classlectures, combined  with practicing through the progress of a real project.

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