June 20, 2010
June 20, 2010
June 23, 2010
15.85.1 - 15.85.7
A Robotics Engineering M.S. Degree
There is an increasing demand for creative scientific, engineering, and management talent to meet national needs. We believe that the best way to educate professionals for leadership roles is in a unified multi-disciplinary curriculum. This paper describes one such program, a Master of Science degree in Robotics Engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute, whose goal is to prepare men and women for technical leadership in the robotics industry and research in robotics.
The program, launched in fall 2009, develops competence in electro-mechanical-computational systems and an awareness of management systems. It constitutes a multi-disciplinary effort by faculty in Arts & Sciences (Mathematics and Computer Science), Engineering (Electrical & Computer Engineering and Mechanical Engineering), and Management. The program is organized around a technical coursework core with select science and engineering electives. Technical strength is supplemented by organizational and management principles embodied in context courses in Systems Engineering and Management. The program culminates in individual capstone projects that take the form of a thesis, directed research, or practicum with written report. In all cases, a public oral presentation is required. A B.S./M.S. option allows the program to be completed in a single additional year of work past the Bachelor’s degree.
By using existing courses where appropriate, we were able to start the program by developing only two new courses, Foundations of Robotics and Robot Dynamics, supplemented by special topics, independent study, and other project work. We anticipate adding new courses as the program grows, additional faculty join the program, and as we introduce a Ph.D. in Robotics Engineering. Initial response to the program by students and industry has been very positive, and the program shows great promise to contribute significantly to meeting future engineering workforce needs.
There is an increasing demand for creative scientific, engineering, and management talent to meet national needs. We believe that the best way to educate professionals for leadership roles is in a unified multi-disciplinary curriculum. This paper describes one such program, a Master of Science degree in Robotics Engineering (RBE) at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI).
The M.S. program is a natural successor to the B.S. program in Robotics Engineering that was introduced in 20071,4. The B.S. offers what we believe to be excellent undergraduate education in preparation for careers in robotics and related fields. However, there is a limited amount of scientific and engineering material that one can cover in a 4-year degree while still providing the rich undergraduate experience necessary to become a well-rounded citizen in today’s society. The RBE M.S. degree goes beyond the B.S. to prepare graduates for technical leadership roles in the robotics industry and research in robotics.
ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2010 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015