Enhancing student motivation and learning with monetary prizes in a construction management undergraduate subject
AuthorLim, SH; Chan, TK
EditorScott, L; Neilson, C
Source TitleARCOM 2020 - Association of Researchers in Construction Management, 36th Annual Conference 2020 - Proceedings
PublisherAssociation of Researchers in Construction Management
AffiliationArchitecture, Building and Planning
Document TypeConference Paper
CitationsLim, S. H. & Chan, T. K. (2020). Enhancing student motivation and learning with monetary prizes in a construction management undergraduate subject. Scott, L (Ed.) Neilson, C (Ed.) ARCOM 2020 - Association of Researchers in Construction Management, 36th Annual Conference 2020 - Proceedings, pp.706-714. Association of Researchers in Construction Management.
Access StatusOpen Access
Open Access URLPublished version
This study developed a competition mechanism that is integrated into an industrysponsored project to enhance student motivation, engagement and learning achievement in a construction management under-graduate program. As part of the formative assessment exercises in a construction technology subject, students were tasked to propose an alternative precast concrete building solution for a four-storey car showroom that was originally designed to be constructed as an in-situ reinforced concrete structure. An industry partner was actively involved in establishing the scope of the project, provided all necessary documents, arranged site visits and introduced the range of precast concrete components that were available for use. A design engineer from the company was invited to present a lecture on the design and construction of precast concrete structures. Students also visited a project where these precast concrete elements were being erected. Students were assigned to work in pairs to develop an alternative precast design and propose a detailed construction plan for the client’s consideration. More importantly for this assignment, the industry partner offered cash prizes for the best solutions. An experiment was conducted to examine the effects of the competition by comparing the students’ performance in this competitive environment to another assignment in the same subject that did not offer any cash rewards. The results of a survey of the students indicated that many were more motivated, worked at a higher level and attained a more positive experience compared to a previous assignment that had no cash rewards. However, a small number of students reported that they were not influenced by the prize money and did not report any improvement in performance or learning. These findings indicate that individual learning preferences may influence the outcomes from competition mechanisms. This study will inform on future industry engagements with the construction management program in terms of cash rewards to enhance educational value. The pedagogical strategies linking educational outcomes with competition and rewards will have implications for academic teaching and student learning.
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