The Teamwork Initiative works towards making projects more meaningful, intentional, and connective for undergraduate engineering students by integrating experiential equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) learning and team-building skills into coursework.
What is the Teamwork Initiative
We see teaching and learning as an ongoing, lifelong process. E-IDEA is contributing to enhancing McGill’s engineering curricula by providing a space for students and faculty to better understand the systems we come from, contribute to, and shape with our beliefs, choices, and actions.
In an increasingly dynamic and multicultural workforce, high performing organizations seek graduates that can successfully manage interpersonal dynamics and collaborate across differences. Having these skills in today’s world requires a sensitivity to and genuine understanding of EDI. This initiative provides course-based teamwork and EDI training for students and then challenges them to apply these principles in the context of engineering project teams that includes technical engineering work.
The Teamwork Initiative continues to enhance the training of our engineering students by improving their ability to communicate, discuss and manage issues related to equity, diversity, and inclusivity. Students will learn to recognize and navigate these topics in a setting that resembles real-life engineering work environments.
What it looks like in action
Building on the success of the pilot year (2019-2020), The Teamwork Initiative continues this ambitious experiential learning framework centered around deepening equitable practice in teamwork contexts. Additionally, the Teamwork Initiative integrated into engineering curriculum so that EDI becomes part of the fabric of engineering training. It’s a new approach to teamwork training that provides students and professors with learning through actual experiences of working in diverse teams and managing complex team dynamics with the guidance of specialist facilitators.
Embedded into a technical engineering course, students have opportunities to engage in self-reflection, examining their own relationship to equity, diversity, and inclusivity through the vehicle of hands-on, task-based teamwork projects. Specific soft-skills development has been woven into class-based project work, providing students and professors with additional training in topics such as: understanding the self; team formation; team functioning; meeting skills; communication and conflict; giving and receiving feedback; and managing projects as a team.
To read more about this project, see our research publication below:
E-IDEA has engagement opportunities for faculty, staff, youth, and local community organizations. We’d love to connect with you and see how our visions align.
To learn more about E-IDEA or to get involved, please contact: eidea.engineering [at] mcgill.ca