The CDIO approach to engineering education

Start date 01/01/2000
End date The project is closed: 31/12/2015

Throughout much of the 20th century, engineering education programs offered students lots of hands-on practice. Courses were taught by practicing engineers and focused on solving authentic problems. But, as scientific and technical knowledge expanded rapidly during the latter 1900s, engineering education evolved into the teaching of engineering science and de-emphasized engineering practice.

​Project leader: Johan Malmqvist

More about the project
​In recent years, industry began to find that graduating students, while technically adept, lacked many abilities required in real world engineering situations. Engineering education and real-world demands on engineers had drifted apart. Faced with the gap between scientific and practical engineering demands, we took up the challenge to reform engineering education. The result of our endeavor is the CDIO approach.

CDIO stands for Conceive — Design — Implement — Operate. The CDIO Initiative develops a new vision for engineering education that while stressing engineering fundamentals is set in the context of the Conceiving — Designing — Implementing — Operating process, which engineers use to create systems and products. A CDIO-based engineering education is rich with student projects, features a simulation-base to teaching mathematics and integrates the learning of technical knowledge and generic skills.
  • ​Approx. 100 universities across the world
  • Product development, School of MATS
Area of Advance
​Chalmers University of Technology

​Johan Malmqvist,
More information is available at the CDIO Initiative's home page,

Page manager Published: Mon 26 Oct 2015.