Atkins

 

Introduction

The purpose of this session was to introduce pupils to the real world applications of the subject knowledge, understanding and skills they will meet in classroom experiences.

The project began in Rainey Endowed School with a presentation by a Chartered Engineer from Atkins. This was followed by discussion about the role of the Engineer, how engineering is used in local businesses and industry, engineering career paths and the importance of STEM subjects in industry. This enabled pupils to make connections between classroom learning and its application in the workplace.

Learning Intentions

Pupils will be learning about:

  • what is involved in the work of an engineer;
  • how engineering is used in local industries and businesses; and
  • the qualifications and routes necessary to follow a career in engineering.

Pupils will be able to:

  • identify how their classroom work in Science, Technology and Design, and Maths can prepare them to go on to further study and/or careers in the engineering sector.

Success Criteria

Success criteria for the visit/meeting with an expert and any related follow-up activities should be agreed by the teacher and pupils in advance, for example:

  • Pupils will identify a Science or Technology topic they have covered in class and show how it is related to a real-world activity drawn from the world of work.
  • Pupils will research examples of public civil engineering projects online and produce a slideshow of images to illustrate their findings.

Key Questions

  • What type of work does an engineer do?
  • What is a Chartered Engineer?
  • What are the different types of engineering?
  • What qualifications do you need to be an engineer?
  • What skills and capabilities does engineering require?
  • What are some of the problems an engineer might face?
  • What approaches do engineers use to solve problems?
  • How does learning about Science, Technology and Design, Maths and ICT in school apply to engineering?

Follow-Up Activities

After meeting with a visitor, expert or industry representative, follow-up sessions could be run to complement the exercise and draw out the learning from it. For example,

  • Extend the discussion of the work of the engineer to consider the applications of engineering that pupils encounter daily.
  • Consider Civil engineering – roads, bridges, urban infrastructure, public buildings, this could lead to the consideration of the costs of civil engineering projects and investigate the issues of local government finance and commissioning of public works.
  • Carry out online research into the work of the engineer. Identify search terms and investigate engineering projects. Research career routes.

Useful links

Skills and Capabilities

If you are thinking about running this activity in your classroom, it is a natural place to spend time helping pupils develop the Managing Information strand of the Thinking Skills and Personal Capabilities framework. For example:

  • Ask pupils to identify a range of questions to ask about engineering and the role of a Chartered Engineer.
  • Encourage pupils to ask focused questions. For example, pupils might ask why the engineer chose that career path or pupils could ask the engineer to give an example of an engineering problem they had to solve.
  • Enable pupils to use their own and others’ ideas to locate other sources of information about engineering.
  • Help pupils to consider their information with regards to accuracy and authenticity.

Guidance on skills and on the infusion approach are available at www.nicurriculum.org.uk.

Curriculum Links

  • KS3 statutory requirements for Science (Science and Technology and Design).
  • Depending on how the activity is structured and developed it could be used to emphasise key messages around Employability.