Umbrella Courses at the BEng programme in Civil Engineering at the Technical University of Denmark

Hans Peter Christensen*, Jesper Molin, Adriaan Schelling

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearchpeer-review

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Based on solid principles for learning, a curriculum for our BEng programme in Civil Engineering has been built around large interdisciplinary so-called umbrella courses. Within a digital framework, the courses – in a novel way – combine motivating project work on authentic cases with embedded theory modules to generalise the learning, giving the students coherent, sustainable and applicable competences including important generic competences. The students find the umbrella courses very challenging, so a firm structure with a high level of information and rigorous planning has been necessary. Developing the umbrella concept has been a long and challenging, yet qualifying process for the teaching teams made up of engaged professors from several departments, and the rewards are now beginning to show. The students feel they get good learning, which is seen in the high grades, and older students, who first experienced the umbrella course, now see the value of the interdisciplinary approach and praise the courses for laying the foundation for a good education.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the SEFI 47th Annual Conference
Number of pages11
Place of PublicationBudapest, Hungary
PublisherEuropean Society for Engineering Education (SEFI)
Publication date2019
Publication statusPublished - 2019
EventThe 47th SEFI Annual Conference: Varietas delectat… Complexity is the new normality - Budapest University of Technology and Economics, Budapest, Hungary
Duration: 16 Sep 201919 Sep 2019
Conference number: 47


ConferenceThe 47th SEFI Annual Conference
LocationBudapest University of Technology and Economics
Internet address


  • CDIO project course
  • Complexity
  • Interdisciplinarity
  • Motivation

Cite this

Christensen, H. P., Molin, J., & Schelling, A. (2019). Umbrella Courses at the BEng programme in Civil Engineering at the Technical University of Denmark. In Proceedings of the SEFI 47th Annual Conference Budapest, Hungary: European Society for Engineering Education (SEFI).