Hands-on learning has been advocated by many educators to promote students’ motivation and provide concrete learning experience. The end-product of hands-on work is also treated as the main learning goal and adopted to gauge students’ performance. However, the industrial automation of robotics and advance of artificial intelligence cast doubt on such education rationale. This study, from the perspective of cognition, addressed the challenge of hands-on learning and summarized contemporary literatures to provide supports for teachers. Students’ high-level cognition ability and capability in grasping core concepts and the concepts themselves are claimed to be the undeniable value of learning, especially in higher education. This study hopes to contribute to teachers’ better understanding of hands-on learning and adopt such pedagogy accordingly.