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Climbing Bloom's Taxonomy With Jupyter Notebooks: Experiences In Mechanical Engineering




computation, education, jupyter, pbl, python, thermodynamics


Active learning techniques are well known to improve student outcomes and shift their thinking higher on Bloom’s Taxonomy. In this paper, I will present experiences from my implementation of active learning in sophomore-level Mechanical Engineering thermodynamics classes using Jupyter Notebooks. Jupyter Notebooks are a web-based programming environment widely used in software and other industries that allows students to combine code with equations and explanations of their work. By using this software to solve open-ended design problems, students move from the Remember, Comprehend, and Apply steps of Bloom’s Taxonomy to the Analyze, Synthesize, and Evaluate stages. Successfully integrating Jupyter Notebooks with these classes has required a shift in the focus of contact hours, going from didactic presentation of material to active practice with problem-solving techniques; most class material has been moved online. This approach has been successfully implemented over several semesters, but there are nonetheless still improvements to be made, which are discussed at the end of the manuscript.


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