Proceedings of The 5th International Conference on Advanced Research in Education, Teaching and Learning
Perception among Students towards Learning Environment and Innovation: A Study among Engineering Students in Saudi Arabia
Zain Aljandali and Abu Samah Zuruzi
Human capability development is a key component of the Vision 2030 program of the Saudi Arabian government. Among others, it supports innovation and entrepreneurship culture to ensure global competitiveness of its citizens. Higher education institutions such as universities serve a special role in nurturing innovation. This paper investigates learning environments in Alfaisal University in Riyadh, how they stimulate innovative competence, students’ perception of their competence and their perception of learning environment on campus to foster innovation. Data collection was carried out through a voluntary and anonymous online survey over a period of 16 days. A total of 60 students responded comprising of 31 females and 29 males. Results of a survey among students of various engineering programs in the university is presented. The survey instrument uses a 7-point scale response format to assess (i) classroom learning environment (ii) innovation competence and (iii) relevance of innovation competence. Students have the highest degree of self-confidence for their innovative competence with the creativity scale getting the highest average rating with mean and standard deviation of 6.64 and 1.69, respectively. In contrast, students gave the lowest average rating with mean and standard deviation of 4.65. and 1.46, respectively, for scale focussing on innovative competence when assessing relevance of innovation competence. However, the high standard deviation shows a large spread of perception among students’ perception. The results suggest engineering curricula need to explicitly teach and assess innovation competence and students’ learning goal must include innovation competence. It is also found that perception of students in this study were consistently higher than those in Netherlands assessed using a similar instrument.
keywords: innovative perception; educational evaluation; engineering education; higher education; perception of learning; self-concept.