+6012-546 7577 mukhlis@petroleum.utm.my


ASSOC. PROF. Dr Mukhlis A rahman

teaching philosophy

The lecturer strongly believes that undergraduate/postgraduate students should have self-motivation to be skillful graduate. Difference from school environment, classes in university should nature students to think creatively, so that they are prepared to embrace into a real and harsh career world. Therefore, the lecturing approach consists of understanding fundamental knowledge assisted by a series of questions that related to the main topic. This approach will enable the student to remember the most crucial knowledge effectively. Through this approach, communication skills and confident level of students will be improved.

 Motivating the students also becomes the priority of the lecturer. During class, occasionally, students will be exposed with the knowledge that not really related to their courses. For example, information related to how Sun sustained their energy, what is the most common substances in the universe, how new materials acted to surrounding etc., are discussed during class to raise their motivation that knowledge is actually unlimited and no boundaries.

To perform this task, the lecturer must prepare myself to new knowledge, which later disseminated to students either to lecture or to motivate them. To sincerely do this, the lecturer always accepted/assume that students are just our children that should be leaded, taught and reminded constantly.

teaching technique

During lecture, a number of teaching techniques have been applied. Description can be found as follows:

Syllabus Overview: At the beginning of semester, students will be given overview of the course syllabus, learning outcomes and assessment method. This is to ensure students are ready throughout semester. They are advised to prepare for class, which through this the learning period will be effective. Students will be explained that they need self-learning hours to further understand the syllabus. At the end of session, they will be given opportunity to ask various question related to the course.

Class session – lecture + cooperative and active learning + peer teaching:  A number of teaching techniques have been applied. Primarily, lecturer will explain a fundamental knowledge related to students. The courses involved are not new, but continuity from either 1st or 2nd year, or even from secondary school. To facilitate critical thinking and active learning, a various question will be given, which students needs to answer verbally. A teaching method namely “compulsory-to-answer-questions-given-by-lecturer”, was introduced previously, but this approach caused alarming stress to the students. Although high marks were given even to wrong answer, this approach was discontinued. This approach is replaced by a voluntary approach, which requires students to raise hand to answer questions given by the lecturer. If the question answered correctly, a candy will be given to the student, which cumulative candies in the end of class will be calculated. The students who collected the highest number of candies will be rewarded. Peer teaching is encouraged among student. This enables students to develop their communication skills and facilitate other students to understand better. Occasionally, expensive rewards will be given for this effort.

Group Projects:  For courses that assess team working, student will be divided randomly to test their teamwork and leadership. Typically, discussions related to the project are carried out outside lecture room, to give students freedom to make decisions and the direction of the project. Students may ask lecture, but encouraged to do it outside lecture time.

Exam, tests and quizzes: Questions related to assessment will be formulated in the class, during lecture and Q&A sessions. This fresh question will be preliminary tested verbally. Level of Taxanomy Bloom will be emphasized and reminded during Q&A session. For continues quality improvement, students will be explained answers for every question given. To boost morale, they will be reminded that there will be rooms for improvement for every difficulties faced by student. To develop formal questions for exams, tests and quizzes, proper verbs related to Taxanomy Bloom will be used. This enables student to recognize the level of difficulty of questions.

Grading: The grading will be carried out motivationally, which totally avoid a judgmental grading. Through this process, way forward for students can be developed. Students with poor performance will be consulted and guided through motivational personal talks. Grading also is the tool for lecture’s reflection, either current style of teaching need to be modified of continued.

Uses of technology: E-learning is used to disseminate lecture note. On certain occasion, lecture notes is distributed through class’s WhatsApp’s group so that students can refer it via smartphones. The use of this device is encouraged, which students can open literature sources directly during Q&A session. Lecture will use available Microsoft technologies, i.e. Words, Excel, and PowerPoint, and IOS Apps, i.e. notability, to facilitate lecture. There is a course that requires student to use mathematical software, i.e. Polymaths, to perform group project. They will be assisted during a special class, which tutorial about the software will be given. During pandemic outbreak, online classes are conducted using Webex. YouTube also is used as a tool to facilitate teaching and assignments.

teaching improvement

Improving subject understanding: Basically, the lecturer must fully understand subjects/courses prior to lecture, so that students will be able to benefit the knowledge disseminated. To improve teaching style, foreign materials related to courses from various universities worldwide are included. This will benefit both students and lecturer. 

Improving method of delivering a lecture: To effectively disseminate knowledge, communication skills of lecturer are always checked by feedback from students. Students will be asked either they understand the knowledge, or repetition in explaining the lecture is required. The lecture always checks the speed of lecture, to improve students understanding. Students are always advice to have meal before class, to ensure they are energetic and capable in understanding knowledge. Lecturer also attends courses provided by university, which are listed below:

  1. Orientasi Penyeliaan/Supervisory Orientation Course
  2. BEM Mandatory Course on Engineering Management Practice
  3. Workshop on Curriculum Preparation Bachelor Degree Program on Energy Engineering
  4. BEM Mandatory Course on Code of Ethics/Regulations
  5. Basic Workshop on E-Pembelajaran
  6. BEM Mandatory Course: Safety and Health at Work Place

Improving grading skills: To improve grading process, rubric is used. The questions and schematic answers require vetting process to avoid errors during assessment. Every assessment requires a carefully designed rubric, which must be certified by coordinator. To further improve quality of assessment, rubric is improved continuously from one semester to another.

 Improving supervision skills:  Lecturer received a number of post-graduate students every semester. Therefore, supervision skills of lecturer should also be improved. To facilitate the progress of post-graduate students, progress meeting is scheduled every two weeks. Students are required to submit progress report at 14th and 28th of each month. The format of the report should similar to journal submission, so that students are ready to publish once experimental data and discussion are completed. Students are exposed to basic writing skill to facilitate thesis writing and journal submission.

Description of Course Materials (undergraduate)

Separation Process I

This course introduces different types of unit operations involved in the chemical and other physical processing industries such as humidification absorption, distillation, liquid-liquid extraction and solid-liquid extraction (leaching). It also deals with design of separation operations using mass transfer principles

By the end of the course, students should be able to:

  • Explain the differences of unit operation involved in the chemical industries
  • Calculate the number of equilibrium stages for plate tower or height/diameter for packed tower in gas-liquid separation
  • Ability to design a distillation column for binary mixture or multi-component system using McCabe Thiele method or short-cut design.  iv. Compare the number of equilibrium stages obtained by graphically and mathematically in absorption or distillation process
  • Determine the number of equilibrium stages and the composition of solute leaving for liquid-liquid extraction and solid liquid extraction
  • Cooperate in team working as part of a group of engineering students working to solve chemical engineering problems

Materials Engineering

Topics include classification of materials (metals, ceramics, polymers, composites and semiconductors); atomic bonds; crystal structure; crystalline defects and solid solutions; and phase diagrams. Main emphasis is on metals because metals are structurally the simplest to characterize and a sound knowledge of structure-property relation of metals can be extended to the study of ceramics and polymers.

The second part of the course deals with Mechanics of Materials. Topics cover stress and deformation of members under axial loading, torsion in circular shafts, analysis and design of beams for bending, and stress transformation. Throughout the course, strong emphasis is placed on drawing a free-body diagram, selecting appropriate coordinate system, using the correct sign convention.

By the end of the course, students should be able to:

  • Describe structure-property of traditional and modern engineering materials
  • (metals, ceramics, polymers and composites) and propose class of materials for a given application (i.e. simple material selection)
  • Describe types of atomic bonding (ionic, covalent, metallic, secondary) and relate bonding to materials properties.
  • Describe and compare crystal structure and point defects in metals (FCC and BCC) and draw crystallographic direction and planar indices in isometric of cubic unit cells.
  • Describe and differentiate eutectoid and eutectic phase diagrams of binary systems, perform simple calculations (lever rule) to quantify phase composition and fraction using phase diagram, and predict microstructure as function of temperature and composition.
  • Analyze structural members under axial load and torsion and determine the corresponding internal force, stress and deformation.
  • Determine location of centroid, moment of inertia, and normal stress due to bending in a beam of given cross-section. viii. Draw/construct shear force and moment diagrams, design and select beams based on allowable normal stress.
  • Apply Mohr’s circle method to determine stress transformation at a point (principal stresses and planes, maximum shear stress, average normal stress)

Mechanics of Materials

The course covers both the theory and application of the fundamental principles of mechanics of materials. Emphasis is placed on the importance of satisfying equilibrium, compatibility of deformation, and material behavior requirement. Topics being covered include stress and strain under axial loading, torsion, bending, combined loadings, stress transformation, design of beams and shafts, and deflection of beams and shafts.

By the end of the course, students should be able to:

  • Apply concepts of stress, strain and elastic behavior of materials to solve problems involving structural members subjected to tension, compression, torsion, and bending.
  • Analyze stress, state of stress, and plane stress under combined loading.
  • Apply differential and superposition methods for beam deflection analysis.
  • Able to perform collectively by leading team members in planning, coordinating, and presenting all ideas and efforts in analyzing beam or shaft analysis and designing problems.


Chemical Reaction Engineering (Current Course)

This course introduces students to chemical reactor design and theories in the area of chemical reaction engineering with emphasis on homogeneous and heterogeneous reactions. It will examine some problems related to multiple reactions and non-isothermal operations. Students will also work cooperatively on a computer assignment to expose them to solving problems using software packages such as PolyMath

By the end of the course, students should be able to:

  • Apply mole balance equation for isothermal reactor design.
  • Analyze kinetic data to determine rate law parameters.
  • Design a reactor for a range of conditions complex reaction system.
  • Derive energy balance for solving non-isothermal reactor design.
  • Develop rate law, which is derived from the mechanism of a catalytic reaction
  • Use IT resources for solving complex problem in reaction engineering
  • Engage in lifelong learning activities

Membrane Technology for Gas Separation (Current Course)

This course enables students to appraise membrane fundamental related to gas separation. Various engineering knowledge related to separation mechanism, geometry, separation regime, membrane morphology and membrane materials will be discussed. The knowledge in selecting the best fabrication technique will also be highlighted. This part enables the student to analyze and correlate the membrane performance and membrane preparation. Selection of characterization techniques will be discussed which based on the material and membrane performance. This course also enables the student to differentiate the membrane applications in various gas separations. The overall course provides a very good knowledge in membrane technology starting from material selection to application

By the end of the course, students should be able to:

  • Appraise membrane fundamental related gas separation
  • Select the fabrication technique that relates to the material and membrane performance
  • Select characterization techniques for different types of membrane
  • Differentiate membrane applications in gas separation