Abstract: The capstone project in many academic institutions is the high point of undergraduate studies in engineering. The transition of graduates to industry is still not optimal, and there is a disparity between the needs of industry and the actual ability of academia to meet these needs. This study examines the role of the capstone project as a pedagogical tool in the age of Industry 4.0 in the field of product development, and as a bridge between academia and industry. The study combines qualitative and quantitative methods, focusing on four stakeholders (academia, industry, students and advisors). The study is based on several sources, such as: semi-structured interviews, questionnaires, observations, and more. The study results indicate that the capstone project is important and valuable for industry and academia, as well as being perceived by students as the most important undergraduate course. Nevertheless, the results reveal that it has many gaps and shortcomings and illuminate the need for a deep perceptual and structural change. Academia should reconsider projects’ length and define milestones in which independent learning is optimally enabled. The projects’ contribution to academic institution reputation, should be considered when defining the project goals. Coping with the challenges and gaps found in this study, the project can also be used in order to reduce incongruities, while preparing the students in a better way for their professional role in changing environment.
School Principals’ Levels of Administrative Competences based on the Perceptions of Principals and Teachers
Abstract: This study aims to determine school principals’ level of administrative competencies according to the perceptions of teachers and principals. The study group consists of 134 teachers and 35 principals. The data of the research, which was designed in the survey model, were collected with the “School Administrators’ Competences Inventory”. The results revealed that school principals and teachers exhibited high levels of administrative Competencies as expected from the school principals. The opinions of the teachers and principals did not differ significantly in thecomparisons according to gender, seniority, school type, and duties (teacher vs. principal). Likewise, the correlation coefficients between the administrativecompetence subscales were estimated above a moderate level. As a result of the research, it can be said that teachers and principals have positive views about the competencies of the school administrators. However, though the Ministry of National Education and the academic community put great emphasis on it and a significant deal of knowledge and database has been accumulated about it, it is an important problem that school administration has not been defined as a profession in Turkey and no sustainable policy in this aspect has been developed yet.
This is a preliminary study investigating the risks associated with smartphone addiction by personality and type of phone. The results relate to personal background, personality, smartphone usage, smartphone satisfaction, level of exposure to risks, and correlations between the variables. A significant but partial correlation was found between personality and smartphone addiction, satisfaction, and level of risk. Smartphone addiction was found to be positively correlated with extraversion (r = .21, p < .01). Satisfaction was found to be correlated positively with extraversion (r = .28, p < .01), agreeableness (r = .41,p < .01), and conscientiousness (r = .38, p < .01), and negatively with emotional stability (r = -.57, p < .01). Risk was found to be negatively correlated with agreeableness (r = -.17, p < .05). Differences between types of phone insatisfaction, risk, and smartphone addiction were examined. A significant correlation (F(4, 145) = 2.96, p < .05) was found in the level of smartphone addiction, but no differences were found in smartphone satisfaction or the level of risk associated withsmartphones (F(4, 145) = 2.96, p > .05 and F(4, 145)= .45, p > .05, respectively). According to the results, it seems that personality greatly affects phone usage and exposure to risks, regardless of the type of phone, and that reducing smartphone usage may be beneficial. However, further research using larger study samples is needed to confirm this.
A Novel Approach to Integrated Science Teaching and Learning in a Selected Ghanaian Junior High School
The study was about a novel approach to Integrated Science teaching and learning in a selected Ghanaian junior high school. In this study, the approach to teaching and learning Integrated Science has been made entirely new and meaningful in the sense that the four learning behaviours (acquisition of knowledge, comprehension, application of knowledge and experimental skills) which constitute profile dimensions were incorporated into the objective-stating, lesson-delivery and assessment of lessons. The researcher made use of profile dimensions in preparing lesson plans, taught students with the new strategy and assessed the impact of the new approach on students in terms of teaching and learning of science. The students were highly interested in answering low order question. About 80% of the questions were high order questions which were poorly answered. They actually showed very little interest in answering high order questions. However, as the weeks went by and the approach to teaching the new strategy was improved, students’ interests were aroused and sustained leading to students demonstrating high ability to answer high order questions conveniently. By the end of the study, the students were able to set up and conduct experiments, observe the outcome and draw their own conclusions. The students could classify items based on their characteristics and discuss issues (like balanced diet) and outline the effect of malnutrition in animals. Students’ scientific drawings were neater and clearer with less woolen lines. The implication of the finding is that, with these learning behaviours and skills, students could do analytical thinking and have the capacity to apply their knowledge to problems and issues.