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Adapting The Studio Critique To Large Capstone Design Courses

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2004 Annual Conference


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 20, 2004

Start Date

June 20, 2004

End Date

June 23, 2004



Conference Session

Multidisciplinary Design

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.145.1 - 9.145.15



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Paper Authors

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Richard Bannerot

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 3125

Adapting the Studio Critique to Large Capstone Design Courses

Paul Ruchhoeft Department of Electrical Engineering

Richard Bannerot Ross Kastor Department of Mechanical Engineering

University of Houston


In this paper we describe the successful adaptation and application of two techniques used primarily in teaching the visual arts, the studio and the critique, to a large capstone design environment. This new format for the class allowed us to successfully address four issues: to establish and achieve higher expectations for the teams, to improve each team’s understanding of the fundamental engineering and science of its project, to encourage and increase the interactions between the teams, and to help the students to better “think through” the writing process which in turn helps them to better understand the organization of their project.


The multidisciplinary capstone design course at the University of Houston, taken by the students in the Departments of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE), Industrial Engineering (IE) and Mechanical Engineering (ME), has been described previously 1. This course is a one semester, three-hour credit course that has been taught every semester since the 1960s. Prior to 2002 the course was taken by only mechanical engineering and industrial engineering (starting in 1985) students. In 1999 the ECE Department added this course to its undergraduate degree requirements and the ECE seniors began taking the course in 2002. The normal enrollment for the course in the 1990s was approximately 30 to 35 (an annual graduation rate of about 65 BSME and BSIE students). The annual graduation rates for the BSEEs and BSCEs (Computer Engineering) has historically been in the 90s. Therefore it was clear that the teaching effort would need to be increased. Ross Kastor had been the sole instructor for the capstone course since 1991. The other two authors of this paper were assigned as additional instructors for the course. They assisted and observed the course for the first

Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference &Exposition Copyright  2004, American Society for Engineering Education

Bannerot, R. (2004, June), Adapting The Studio Critique To Large Capstone Design Courses Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--13790

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