Tianjin University: The Fashion Password of the Centennial Mechanical Discipline

  Tianjin University Beiyang Power Team participated in the Formula Car Competition for Chinese College Students. Photo courtesy of Tianjin University

  If you ask a candidate who has just finished the college entrance examination, what is "machinery"? Perhaps the answers will be "gear", "lathe in the factory" and "robot", and at the same time, we should think of the impressions of "wide application" and "everywhere in production and life".

  Before learning machinery, Zhuang Zheming’s concept of machinery came from the cartoon "Transformers" he saw when he was a child. He chose the major of mechanical design, manufacturing and automation in the School of Mechanical Engineering of Tianjin University with a vision for robots. He graduated this year and fulfilled his dream of "robot" with a graduation design work of "snake robot". This work also won him the first prize in the 13th Graduation Design Competition.

  Let the students who have just entered the school gate and are still a little ignorant about the concept of mechanical discipline know more about the connotation of machinery when they leave the school gate, and plant a seed of "big machinery" that is "new and new" through "professional blending and advantage integration", and have the ability and experience of innovation and entrepreneurship, which is the concept and practice of "3 integration and 4 behavior" talent training exploration in the School of Mechanical Engineering of Tianjin University.

  "Three-in-one and four-in-one" means to further emphasize and attach importance to the cultivation of compound and innovative talents on the basis of the traditional training objectives of knowledge, ability and quality, put forward the reform concept of integration, sharing and innovation, construct the "three-in-one" guarantee system of professional integration, resource integration and teacher integration, and explore the "four-in-one" training mode with team as the body, scientific research as the source, innovation as the foundation and entrepreneurship as the purpose.

  The dilemma of "3A College"

  In Tianjin University, as a discipline established at the beginning of the school in 1895, machinery is an "old discipline" of the same age as the school. In the view of Wang Tianyou, president of the School of Mechanical Engineering, the development history of mechanical discipline in modern China has always stood at the forefront of history, but compared with a hundred years ago, "machinery" has undergone earth-shaking changes from the outside to the inside.

  The three first-level disciplines of the School of Mechanical Engineering of Tianjin University: mechanical engineering, mechanics and power engineering and engineering thermophysics, were all rated as "A" in the fourth round of national discipline evaluation, so the School of Mechanical Engineering is also called "3A College" of Tianjin University. The college has four undergraduate majors: mechanical design, manufacturing and automation, engineering mechanics, energy and power engineering and industrial design. Each major has a unique historical advantage and a strong disciplinary advantage. "Just like the four brothers in a big family, they are all wonderful and all ‘ Take care of each other ’ Live happily. Daily teaching and student defense, including teachers, are very independent. " Talking about the situation of three disciplines in the college more than ten years ago, Cao Shuqian, vice president of the college in charge of teaching, said that this has caused some problems in student training, the most obvious of which is that students’ knowledge and ability are single, and their ability to cross and cross borders is not strong; The superior teaching resources are scattered, and the students’ innovation platform is poorly shared. However, due to the prevailing atmosphere of emphasizing scientific research over teaching in domestic universities at that time, teachers’ investment in teaching was relatively insufficient and they lacked initiative in teaching reform.

  At that time, the speed of knowledge updating and interdisciplinary research in the international scope was accelerating, the coverage of major in mechanical engineering was getting wider and wider, and the development of new economy and new industry was changing with each passing day. There was an urgent need for compound and innovative engineering talents with cross-border and innovative ability. Obviously, the compartmentalized education and teaching organization model can’t meet the requirements of talent training.

  Tear off the "label"

  On the one hand, under the baton of scores, students’ enthusiasm for participating in innovative and entrepreneurial projects is not fully encouraged; On the other hand, the habitual identity consciousness of "you are mechanical", "I am dynamic" and "he is mechanical" has become an invisible "label" attached to teachers’ hearts, and teachers’ motivation for interdisciplinary teaching to cultivate talents is not recognized.

  In order for teachers to devote more energy to undergraduate teaching and students to devote more energy to innovation, it is necessary to change the meaning of grades and tear off the inherent identity "label" in teachers’ hearts.

  "The first thing to change is the meaning of the score." Cao Shuqian said that when there were only 2 credits in innovative courses at that time, the college increased the weight of scientific and technological innovation in students’ total scores, so that students’ scores were not only the exam results of the courses, whether in the evaluation of Excellence or in the insurance research. For example, the College issued the Implementation Measures of School of Mechanical Engineering of Tianjin University to Encourage Students to Participate in Extracurricular Science and Technology Competition (Trial), which clearly stipulates that undergraduates who won the top three awards in Class A projects during their studies (the weighted scores in the first three years were in the top 60% of their majors), undergraduates who won the top two awards in Class B projects and special group projects in Class C will be given extra points on the basis of the average weighting of students when they are exempted from graduate students. Award-winning for different projects can be accumulated separately. At the same time, the determination of the workload of competition instructors and the recognition and reward of competition award-winning instructors (coaching staff) have also been clearly defined.

  "All courses are open and teachers are open. Which course do you want to talk about, after passing a series of processes such as training, assessment, class assistance, collective lesson preparation and trial class, you can join the teaching team of the course and walk onto the podium. " Cao Shuqian said, teachers of public courses in disciplines get through, teachers of cross-disciplines in colleges get through, and the professional/disciplinary boundaries are broken … … At the beginning of the reform, the college has set up 17 teaching teams, 35 responsible posts and backbone posts, and teaching posts in several disciplines. Teachers’ performance and promotion are directly linked to teaching. This kind of teacher team integration and curriculum integration, on the one hand, has realized the adjustment and optimization of teaching teachers according to students’ needs, on the other hand, has promoted teachers’ investment in teaching, guaranteed the construction of important teaching projects, and improved the teaching effect as a whole.

  Blend and create new things.

  The team of teachers in the college has been opened, and the problem of sharing teaching resources and innovation platforms has been solved. The scattered 19 teaching laboratories were integrated into 4 experimental teaching centers, of which 3 were approved as national experimental teaching demonstration centers; Establish two national engineering education practice centers; Six national excellent courses and resource sharing courses have been built, and a group of innovation and entrepreneurship platforms has been built. The integration of platform and resources provides students with a broader platform for innovation and entrepreneurship, and also allows students to feel the struggle of youth in the initial experience of innovation and entrepreneurship and find the future direction.

  Liu Songtao, the founder of Chenxing (Tianjin) Automation Equipment Co., Ltd., founded Astro Boy, a high-end parallel robot brand, after studying in the School of Mechanical Engineering of Tianjin University for 7 years, and won the gold medal in the final of the 4th China "internet plus" University Student Innovation and Entrepreneurship Competition. Looking back on his own road of innovation and entrepreneurship, Liu Songtao believes that the experience of participating in the "Beiyang Power" team as an undergraduate made him experience the process of "entrepreneurship" for the first time. When he entered the laboratory in his junior year, he cooperated with his classmates to complete the research and development of a prototype of a new four-degree-of-freedom parallel robot product and won the first prize in the graduation design competition, which encouraged him to embark on the road of innovation and entrepreneurship.

  Compared with the seniors, Zhuang Zheming, who won the first prize in the graduation design competition this year, has the same rich experience in innovation and entrepreneurship: IEEE China Robot Design Competition, National Mobile Internet Innovation Competition (University Group), First Prize of National Renewable Energy Science and Technology Competition for College Students and National Youth Environmental Protection Competition & HELIP; … For Zhuang Zheming, the process of participating in the innovation and entrepreneurship competition is a process of teamwork, continuous learning and self-enrichment.

  "4 for" promising

  "Students’ bi-design comes from scientific research, innovation (college students’ innovation and entrepreneurship training program) comes from scientific research, competition comes from scientific research, students’ cross-disciplinary team cooperation and teachers’ cross-disciplinary guidance run through the whole process of students’ innovative training, and students’ innovative thinking and ability as well as their ability to solve complex engineering problems are fully exercised." In Wang Tianyou’s view, the "four-for-one" training mode with team as the body, scientific research as the source, innovation as the foundation and entrepreneurship as the purpose provides an effective path for the training of compound and innovative talents of traditional engineering majors.

  Today, as the first mechanical undergraduate graduation design competition in China, it has been held for 13 consecutive sessions, expanding from the original college to 14 universities in Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei and Central and East China. The entries involved more than 10 major mechanical engineering majors, including mechanical design and manufacturing and automation, industrial design, energy and power engineering, engineering mechanics, process equipment and control engineering, and thousands of students participated.

  All students realize the cultivation of basic innovation by participating in teachers’ scientific research projects and carrying out graduation projects; Teachers extract innovation projects and discipline competitions from scientific research projects, and more than half of the students realize the promotion and innovation training by participating in innovation and competition projects; Some students extract entrepreneurial projects from big innovation and competition projects to create technology companies. Student innovation projects have increased from 37 in 2012 to more than 100 projects every year; Students independently set up scientific and technological entrepreneurial teams from scratch, and now there are 14 and 12 registered scientific and technological companies.

  In the eyes of teachers and students, the training mode of "three in one and four in one" promotes the ability and level, and it is also the enthusiasm and passion for continuous innovation and entrepreneurship, which is the fashion password of century-old machinery. (Correspondent Liu Xiaoyan)