Jordan University of Science and Technology

Learning Styles in Environmental Engineering Education at Jordanian Universities: A Comparative Study

Authors:  Abu Dalo, M, Abu Qdais, H., Abu Qudais, M., Hull, A.

Management of environmental resources to protect humanity and the systems that support life is one of the biggest challenges facing modern societies. This is especially true for Jordan, where fragile environmental resources started witnessing higher rates of degradation in recent years. Recognizing this fact and hoping to meet current and future environmental challenges, German Jordanian University (GJU) decided to offer a unique program in Environmental Engineering and Management. Being the first of its kind in the region, the program couples engineering and management with applied education from the first year of students' matriculation. This paper examined the learning styles of environmental engineering students at GJU using the Index of Learning Styles (ILS) developed by Soloman and Felder. Fifty undergraduate engineering students took the assessments. Findings show a strong preference for the visual category on the ILS. There also was a marked preference for sensing-facts, hands-on, problem-solving, ?real world? connection and sequential-linear progression. The GJU results were compared with the learning styles of civil and environmental engineering students at Jordan University of Science andTechnology (JUST), another public university in Jordan. The findings also agree well with the results of Soloman, who surveyed an even larger number of engineering students. Results from GJU and JUST will be used as a basis to develop a teaching methodology to support the construction of student knowledge and prepare them to work in the field.