To address the following questions: 1) How do students from engineering and healthcare fields differ in their views and reactions to open-ended problem solving? 2) What challenges do engineering and healthcare students face in multi-disciplinary team-based problem solving when immersed in a healthcare setting? 3) Can engineering and healthcare students develop "bilingualism" in language and culture through a year-long, cross-disciplinary collaboration?
We were able to build roughly 10 successful teams of students spanning multiple programs (we added in a second component: not just cross-program, but cross-"generation", combining undergrad/masters/PhD). Virtually all students reported positive outcomes on their learning and their interest in engaging in similar teams in the future. We have been able to build on this model for 2 additional years (2015 and 2016) of progressively larger size and scope.
Yes. We are using this as a model for ongoing teams that interweave (i.e. some students from one semester continue into the next to help integrate new students to the team, who then become the bridge to the following semester). We have had up to 40 students at a time engaging in these activities.
Advice to your Colleagues:
It's easy to get caught up in the excitement of doing and lose track of the documenting/assessing part! Stay with it from beginning to end...