Class and Home Problems—IDENTIFY-SOLVE-BROADCAST YOUR OWN TRANSPORT PHENOMENON: Student-Created YouTube Videos to Foster Active Learning in Mass and Heat Transfer


  • Fei Wen University of Michigan • Ann Arbor, MI 48109
  • Eshita Khera University of Michigan • Ann Arbor, MI 48109


Despite the instinctive perception of Mass and Heat Transfer principles in daily life, productive learning in this course continues to be one of the greatest challenges for undergraduate students in Chemical Engineering. In an effort to enhance student learning in classroom, we initiated an innovative active learning method titled “Identify-Solve-Broadcast Your Own Transport Phenomenon”. Key elements of project-based learning were adapted to create this three-stage method (identify-solvebroadcast) that integrates modern digital technology to cohesively link students’ natural learning instincts to their scientific knowledge of Mass and Heat Transfer. Our qualitative analyses show that this method serves to equip the students with competitive global skills like independent thinking, collaboration and efficient project management. Quantitative assessments further indicate that incorporation of the digital dimension resulted in a remarkable reinforcement of core concepts in Mass and Heat Transfer, as demonstrated by the statistically significant improvement in student performances. Overall, this project represents an effective type of class and home problem that motivates student-centric learning while enhancing self-motivation, creative thinking and critical analysis among students.

Author Biographies

Fei Wen, University of Michigan • Ann Arbor, MI 48109

Fei Wen is an assistant professor of chemical engineering at the University of Michigan. She earned a B.S. degree from Tsinghua University in chemical engineering and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in chemical & biomolecular engineering. Her current research involves protein assembly engineering, immunobioengineering, high-dimensional phenotyping, cancer immunotherapy, and personalized medicine.

Eshita Khera, University of Michigan • Ann Arbor, MI 48109

Eshita Khera was a graduate student in Prof. Fei Wen’s group in the Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of Michigan. She earned a B.S.E. in biotechnology from Visvesvaraya Technological University, India, and an M.S. in biomedical engineering from the University of Michigan. Her research was focused on engineering viral nanoparticles as affordable vaccines.