Managing for the Triple Bottom Line in Project-Based Learning

N. M. Viljoen, “Managing for the Triple Bottom Line in Project-Based Learning," 42nd International Conference on Computers and Industrial Engineering, Cape Town, South Africa, July 16-18, 2012.


Managing for the Triple Bottom Line in Project-Based Learning
Project-based learning is a popular engineering education approach that involves at least three stakeholders – students, faculty and an external client. But more often than not, one or more of these parties have to compromise their goals in the interest of the learning experience. This discourages stakeholders and threatens the sustainability of project-based learning programmers. This paper defines the objectives of the stakeholders that engage in project-based learning, defining the triple bottom line that a project-based learning experience should aim to fulfil if it wishes to be sustainable. The iTransport team at the Georgia Institute of Technology is one of many Vertically Integrated Projects that seeks to implement meaningful technology applications for real life clients through a multidisciplinary, multi-ranked student group. The paper further presents a case study of the first four semesters of the iTransport team highlighting that expectation management, management of the team dynamics and keeping the triple bottom line front-of-mind through good project management principles is essential to addressing the triple bottom line.