UB - University at Buffalo, The State University of New York Chemical and Biological Engineering

The UB CBE Spiral Learning Initiative

"We are particularly proud to offer UB CBE undergraduate students a three-year design project, which we use as a pedagogical focal point for each class of students."


Dr. Johannes Nitsche, SUNY Distinguished Teaching Professor and Director of Undergraduate Studies, and Spiral Learning Initiative Designer

UB CBE builds design into the undergraduate curriculum as soon as the first semester. By year two, students will begin work on their Spiral Learning Design Project. Our Spiral Design problems are spread over multiple courses in the sophomore, junior and senior years; introducing and revisiting scientific themes and knowledge areas underlying the design project they will ultimately complete in CE 408 Plant Design in their senior year. The benefits of the Spiral Design program are:

•students are more effective in working on their design project

•students appreciate the usefulness of what they learn, and understand connections between elements of knowledge and skills they acquire in different courses

•the program reassures students that there is a reason and a plan underlying their curriculum



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