Challenge-based learning is an approach used to bring work-life relevance to teaching and learning. Challenges from companies, public sector and society are integrated deeply into the teaching and learning through collaboration with real-life partners. Challenge-based learning is a call for action for students and partners to collaborate with current themes.
Project-based, problem-based and design-based learning has become increasingly popular in higher education. Challenge-based learning at Aalto University draws from the aforementioned approaches combining their characteristics into a learning model, which incorporates real-life challenges provided by partners into teaching in a multidisciplinary way. An exhaustive definition for challenge-based learning could be: “learning is organised in a collaborative manner around real-life challenges and is carried out in student-led projects provided by external partners.”
Challenge-based learning offers many possible benefits from establishing new teaching and learning practices which are aligned with work-life environments and increasing employability for students. Authentic learning experiences allow students to explore, discuss, and meaningfully construct concepts and relationships in contexts that involve real-life challenges and projects that are relevant to the learner.
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