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- PublicationInclusive Teaching & Learning Case Studies in Engineering, Architecture & Affiliated DisciplinesDiversity and inclusion are core to UCD values. We seek to attract students from a wide range of social and economic backgrounds and students who reflect the true diversity of the country. And as a global university, UCD attracts international students from over 100 countries. This diversity enriches our campus, and the experience of our students. The University's strategy 2020-2024 'Rising to the Future' also recognises the importance of inclusion and diversity, in seeking to "provide an inclusive educational experience that defines international best practice and prepares our graduates to thrive in present and future societies." However, an inclusive educational experience will not be achieved by simply creating diversity in the student body. It requires that we adjust our approach in everything we do to support and encourage our students’ success. We have clearly articulated in our strategy, and further emphasised in our Education and Student Success strategy, that our goal is to "equip all our educators with the tools and resources required to embed Universal Design for Learning on an institution-wide basis".
- PublicationAligning Learning Outcomes to Improve Communication and Learning Skills in an Interdisciplinary Problem-Based Learning EnvironmentEngineers require the skill of effective communication and interaction with architects to be successful throughout their professional career. While the relationship between architects and structural engineers develops during their professional career, it is often overlooked during their undergraduate education. This paper presents learning strategies to improve the communication between engineering and architecture students as well as the awareness of the others’ profession. The strategy of aligning learning outcomes to develop communication skills and prevent reproductive learning are applied in four continuous assessment problem-based learning (PBL) submissions. The strategies were applied in the experimental setting of a Stage 1 undergraduate module jointly offered to architecture and general entry engineering students at the School of Civil Engineering, University College Dublin. Results from surveys showed the students enjoyed the module and had a high level of understanding of the other profession at the end of the module. The students identified an improvement in their own communication skills as a result of the module.
- PublicationCapability analysis of computational fluid dynamics models in wind shield study on Queensferry Crossing, ScotlandBridge aerodynamic studies are essential in ensuring the safety and acceptable performance of long-span bridges vulnerable to the effects of crosswinds. Aerodynamic studies were traditionally carried out in wind tunnel facilities, but there are now greater opportunities for using computational fluid dynamics modelling. Few studies of three-dimensional aerodynamic simulations of lightweight vehicles on bridges exist but there has been limited validation and verification work done to date. In the study reported in this paper, three-dimensional computational fluid dynamics models were developed for the Queensferry Crossing cable-stayed bridge in Scotland, containing wind shields and sample vehicles. The models considered the wind effects from a range of yaw wind angles and subsequently determined the aerodynamic coefficients of vehicles. The models were verified by means of a mesh sensitivity study, a domain sensitivity study and comparisons with wind-tunnel test results. The models were then validated by using the same modelling process with a different type of wind shield, and again comparing results with wind-tunnel test data for the same configuration. Results demonstrated that the modelling can determine the aerodynamic coefficients to a similar level of accuracy to that of wind tunnel tests.
- PublicationFleet Monitoring - Using Sensors in a Fleet of Passing Vehicles to Monitor the Health of BridgesThis paper proposes the use of a fleet of instrumented vehicles to monitor the condition of infrastructure and bridges. It is anticipated that data from privately owned vehicles with low-cost accelerometer and GPS data, will be available for this purpose in the future. An inverse version of the well known Newmark-Beta method is proposed to determine road/rail surface profile from measured accelerations. Some results are reported from an instrumented train that made repeat runs on railway track over a period of a month. For bridge health monitoring, the concept of a moving reference influence line is proposed as a damage indicator. It is shown in simulation to give good indications of bearing damage in a simply supported bridge.
- PublicationDeveloping interdisciplinary understanding and dialogue between Engineering and Architectural students: design and evaluation of a problem-based learning moduleEngineers and Architects require effective communication and interdisciplinary team working to be successful throughout their career which, is often overlooked during formal undergraduate education. The purpose of this paper is to disseminate the novel design and evaluation of a module on communication and interdisciplinary team working in the combined teaching of undergraduate Engineering and Architecture students. An Interdisciplinary Problem Based Learning (IPBL) approach is used and the theoretical construct for this work is the application of dialogical theory to the shared habitus between engineers and architects. The constructivist theory of learning was employed in the design and delivery of this module. It is an action research pedagogical intervention to support the improvement in the teaching and learning of communications and teamwork between architects and engineers. Feedback shows students identified improvement in their communication and teamwork skills at the end of the module.
196Scopus© Citations 4
- PublicationUsing statistical analysis of an acceleration-based bridge weigh-in-motion system for damage detectionThis paper develops a novel method of bridge damage detection using statistical analysis of data from an acceleration-based bridge weigh-in-motion (BWIM) system. Bridge dynamic analysis using a vehicle-bridge interaction model is carried out to obtain bridge accelerations, and the BWIM concept is applied to infer the vehicle axle weights. A large volume of traffic data tends to remain consistent (e.g., most frequent gross vehicle weight (GVW) of 3-axle trucks); therefore, the statistical properties of inferred vehicle weights are used to develop a bridge damage detection technique. Global change of bridge stiffness due to a change in the elastic modulus of concrete is used as a proxy of bridge damage. This approach has the advantage of overcoming the variability in acceleration signals due to the wide variety of source excitations/vehicles-data from a large number of different vehicles can be easily combined in the form of inferred vehicle weight. One year of experimental data from a short-span reinforced concrete bridge in Slovenia is used to assess the effectiveness of the new approach. Although the acceleration-based BWIM system is inaccurate for finding vehicle axle-weights, it is found to be effective in detecting damage using statistical analysis. It is shown through simulation as well as by experimental analysis that a significant change in the statistical properties of the inferred BWIM data results from changes in the bridge condition.
24Scopus© Citations 12
- PublicationAcademic Advising in Civil Engineering: design and evaluation of a hybrid modelA project to formalise and expand Academic Advising has been implemented at the UCD Civil Engineering School. The goals of this project were twofold: on the one hand, it aimed at training faculty members in Academic Advising roles and providing them with the necessary resources. On the other hand, the project sought to expand student interaction, in particular by engaging students informally in order to build a rapport between them and the academic advisors that we expect will bring long term benefits. The resulting model combines elements of both the prescriptive, e.g., formal training, informative talks on key topics, and developmental approaches, e.g., coffee mornings for students and faculty members. The evaluation of the project was carried out through questionnaires and focus groups. It highlighted very positive feedback from the students, who find these new lines of communication with the academic staff to be useful and productive.
- PublicationLaboratory investigation of a bridge scour monitoring method using decentralized modal analysisScour is a significant issue for bridges worldwide that influences the global stiffness of bridge structures and hence alters the dynamic behaviour of these systems. For the first time, this article presents a new approach to detect bridge scour at shallow pad foundations, using a decentralized modal analysis approach through re-deployable accelerometers to extract modal information. A numerical model of a bridge with four simply supported spans on piers is created to test the approach. Scour is modelled as a reduction in foundation stiffness under a given pier. A passing half-car vehicle model is simulated to excite the bridge in phases of measurement to obtain segments of the mode shape using output-only modal analysis. Two points of the bridge are used to obtain modal amplitudes in each phase, which are combined to estimate the global mode shape. A damage indicator is postulated based on fitting curves to the mode shapes, using maximum likelihood, which can locate scour damage. The root mean square difference between the healthy and scoured mode shape curves exhibits an almost linear increase with increasing foundation stiffness loss under scour. Experimental tests have been carried out on a scaled model bridge to validate the approach presented in this article.
30Scopus© Citations 10