Åsa Wikberg Nilsson
Åsa Wikberg Nilsson, teacher in Industrial Design Engineering. Photo: Tomas Bergman View original picture , opens in new tab/window

Awarded teacher with high requirements

Published: 20 December 2013

"We have enough of crappy products", says Åsa Wikberg Nilsson, Senior Lecturer in Industrial design that has been awarded for best educational effort in 2013 at the Department of Business Administration, Technology and Social Sciences at LTU.

She wants the students to learn the importance of good design and to have the end user in mind.

– To understand how a product will be used is a key issue to good design. I do not believe that all students have seen product development in that way. If I ask them to go out and explore the users in a given context, I fail the ones who have not done a good analysis. It is a challenge for them. But we have enough crappy products. It is better that we get stuff that works well, says Åsa Wikberg Nilsson.

Åsa Wikberg Nilsson likes to challenge both students and colleagues to new ways of thinking, and has been a driving force of the Pedagogical idea LTU that is about a common approach where an understanding of student learning is the focus.

– Traditionally, we have focused on the topic, which is important. But knowledge of how we teach and how students learn is just as important, says Åsa Wikberg Nilsson.

Independent students in flexible classrooms

Åsa Wikberg Nilsson has many answers to the question of how students learn, but she emphasizes that it must be clear to the students what is expected of them. Clear educators provide independent students. Another aspect of learning is the classroom's design.

– We need more flexible classrooms that can be adapted to the situation. When you leave the room can all the furniture be rolled away, and when the next group arrives can the students themselves be responsible to furnish their learning environment. When students step into a lecture hall with rows of fixed seats, it's like saying, "Sit in the back and fall asleep." It becomes very passive and students learn best through interaction, says Åsa Wikberg Nilsson.


Justification for the price:

Senior Lecturer Åsa Wikberg Nilsson has been awarded the 2013-teaching prize for her praiseworthy teaching efforts and strong commitment to educational development. Apart from continually delivering good results as a teacher in her own courses, she has done a good work to develop the university's educational idea and has contributed to revitalizing the talks around teaching at LTU.