The University of Essex is an innovative university that is always working on new ways to improve your student experience. One of these initiatives is the award-winning Challenge Week!
So, what is Challenge Week?
Challenge Week is when, instead of attending lectures, students at the University of Essex’s School of Computer Science and Electronic Engineering are given some fun and interactive challenges to complete instead!
Students are split into small teams and have to complete the tasks they are set together, giving a presentation at the end of the challenge.
By taking a “learning by doing” approach, Challenge Week helps students build important skills like creativity, critical thinking and teamwork. As it is held in the first few days of term, Challenge Week is also a great way for first year students to make new friends.
The University of Essex has held Challenge Week for the last 3 years, and it’s been such a success that other universities have recently expressed an interest in starting their own challenges. The initiative even won one of the University’s Excellence in Education Awards in 2018!
Challenge Week 2019
This year, students at the School were given a selection of projects to try out. They could either:
- analyse a live Twitter feed
- control a car using biomedical signals
- design a new board game from scratch
- or design a robot that could navigate a map.
To make it even more challenging, students had only 3 days to complete their project.
Dr Vishuu Mohan, who organised the year’s event, said:
“Using a playful project-based learning method, Challenge Week focuses on skills which students will need to adapt and succeed in the constantly changing and competitive global environment.”
During Challenge Week, students also benefitted from special lectures by industry experts, presentation workshops, and talks on how students can access the cutting-facilities at the University.
As this year’s Challenge Week at the University of Essex coincided with World Mental Health Day, students even got to attend a special session on mental health and wellbeing, which included an interactive performance all about student support services at the University.
2019 was the first year that Challenge Weeks for first year and final year students were running at the same time, so it was a very busy period indeed in the School of Computer Science and Electronic Engineering. In total, 650 students and 30 staff took part in activities in labs in the School and in the University’s new STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) Centre.
This created a unique opportunity for brand new students to learn from and share ideas with more experienced students at the University. This is very much in keeping with Essex’s spirit of innovation and cooperation and is a great reason to consider studying here!
Start your path to the University of Essex
If you’d like to one day participate in Challenge Week at the School of Computer Science and Electronic Engineering, or join any of the University’s other departments we can help! With Kaplan, you can take a pathway course that will help you to improve your academic skills, subject knowledge and English language level.
Check out the links below to get started, or use our handy degree finder below to search for available degrees now.