Pilot case

Design your Success!

Putting student in the driver’s seat of designing the present, short-term and long-term future.
Design your Success!

Pilot leader

Jani Romanoff
Ville Kivimäki


School of Arts Design and Architecture, School of Business, School of Chemical Engineering, School of Electrical Engineering, School of Engineering, School of Science


353 students


Jan 2020 – Dec 2020


Some 20% of university students report experiencing high stress during their studies. We address this issue by teaching student’s to regulate their learning by providing opportunities for goal setting, self-control and self-reflection. Overall goal is to boost students’ ability to cope in a mentally demanding environment, putting student in a driver’s seat rather that keeping him/her in the passenger seat.

 Course description

The aim of the course is to help students develop life management skills. Through iterative and incremental process student takes control of one or more personal development tasks, learns how to measure progress and celebrate success. Personal Development Project Plan (PDPP) can focus e.g. on studies or wellbeing. Success in studies is seen as a result of a holistic approach to student’s life. During this course student selects a number of personal goals that can be reached during a fixed time period and that can be measured.

Current situation

Currently course ENG-E2010 PDPP – Personal Development Project Plan is a pilot concept in a small scale. As of 2019 it has been listed on Personal Impact course listing (see: http://www.personalimpact.aalto.fi/). The course concept has been iteratively designed together with students in Aalto ENG between 2014-2019. Concept has been matured and it was published in 2018 (Kivimäki  V & Meriluoto S. Holistic Perspective to Individual Study Plan: Personal Development Project Plan, in G Craddock , C Doran , L McNutt & D Rice (eds) , Transforming our world through design, diversity and education. Studies in health technology and informatics , vol. 256 , IOS PRESS , pp. 514-526 . DOI: 10.3233/978-1-61499-923-2-514).

Course makes use of MyCourses activities, mainly link collection, file sharing, exercise submission, feedback rounds and progress bar.

From problem to solution

Theoretical and practical background is solid. However, current delivery of the course is heavily depending on contact clinics. All submissions are reviewed by teachers. This approach promote scaling up of the course. In order to scale up the course to serve all Aalto students, we need to digitalize the course and implement a tool (Dynamic Feedback System) to the course. With this tool we can utilize student’s personal competence and related workload to be in synchrony with his/her PDPP. PDPP helps student to make a plan, Dynamic Feedback System helps to follow its execution.

Platforms and tools

Automated workflows (not actually assessment) for a few parts of the course process: mainly to thank student for the submission and provide information. (Design, implement)

Peer review process for assessing other students’ submissions. (Selecting the service based on earlier experiences in other projects, and implementinting it)

Continuous self-assessment is part of the course. For this we implement the Dynamic Feedback System and visualize the data for students.

In addition, we will examine the possibilities of OnTask (https://www.ontasklearning.org/). When OnTask is accompanied with Dynamic Feedback System data, we can send personalized messages and tasks for masses semi-automatically.

Impact of the activities are evaluated through course feedback, study profile questionnaire and interviews: learning experience, development in learner profile, overall estimation of own well-being.

Pedagogical methods

  1. PDPP-course with fully digitalized path
  2. Dynamic Feedback System implemented to be used to monitor and self-monitor study activities
  3. Further development of Dynamic Feedback System tool: application version for students to use as a part of their own study planning (new interface for students)
  4. Integrating Dynamic Feedback System data to be part of Student Dashboard (together with ITS)

Involved courses

ENG-E2010 – PDPP – Personal Development Project Plan (1 ECTS)
37C00100 – Management Information Systems (6 ECTS)
57C99902 – Bachelor’s Thesis Seminar (2 ECTS)
CHEM-C2450 – Materiaalien ominaisuudet (5 ECTS)
MEC-E2007 – Ship Structures and Construction (5 ECTS)



Jani Romanoff
School of Engineering, Department of Mechanical Engineering / Marine Technology
Pilot leader

Ville Kivimäki
School of Engineering, Department of Mechanical Engineering / Marine Technology
Pilot leader


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