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An Integrative Approach To Computer Graphics For Freshman

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1998 Annual Conference


Seattle, Washington

Publication Date

June 28, 1998

Start Date

June 28, 1998

End Date

July 1, 1998



Page Count


Page Numbers

3.90.1 - 3.90.5

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Robert M. Koretsky

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

Session 1253

An Integrative Approach to Computer Graphics for Freshman

Robert M. Koretsky University of Portland School of Engineering

ABSTRACT: The paper describes a multi-disciplinary computer graphics course with a final project whose basic intentions are 1) to provide motivation through creativity and cooperation for the study of engineering and 2) to develop the graphical communication and visualization skills of the student via the use of pencil-and-paper sketching supported by appropriate computer software. A majority of the course content was designed around a report, Proceedings of the NSF Symposium on Modernization of the Engineering Design Curriculum, 1990, Mechanical Engineering Department, University of Texas at Austin, and uses the Barr/Juricic model of the curriculum. Electrical, Civil, and Mechanical Engineering freshman develop a “sketch-as-plan” approach to their creation of images that vitalize design ideas. Image content is manipulated and re-worked in pencil and with AutoCAD Release 13 or MicroSim PSpice. A common final project for Civil and Mechanical Engineering revolves around solid model construction. An Electrical Engineering project involves designing, building, analyzing and testing a milled printed circuit board for a regulated power supply chip. The paper describes the history of the content and implementation strategies for all disciplines.

Course General Description EGR 112, Engineering Design Graphics, is the third course in the sequence of common engineering courses given at the University of Portland School of Engineering. The first two courses in the sequence introduce basic concepts and practices in Civil, Electrical, and Mechanical Engineering. EGR 112 is a three semester-credit hour class, with a one hour lecture and two hours of back-to-back lab periods, given one day a week. Approximately three to four hours of homework are assigned each week of the semester. There is a project which has milestone due-dates spread over the entire semester. The main computer system used is Unix/X Windows run on Sun SPARCstations and X-terminals.

Basic Philosophy In order to formulate a unique motivating strategy for students at the beginning of their engineering educational experience, two fundamental approaches have developed. First, the creative aspects of their normally routine in-class work and homeworks are emphasized by keeping the worked examples and exercises open-ended. For example, a given architectural elevation drawing can lead to any number of generated plan views that the student is allowed to invent on her own. All submitted work suits the particular individual esthetic and appeals to the student’s talents, common-sense, and notion of what is appropriate. Second, subject matter is specialized according to the discipline of interest. For example, the class is tracked into Civil, Electrical, and Mechanical Engineering, where lecture, labs, homeworks, and project are

Koretsky, R. M. (1998, June), An Integrative Approach To Computer Graphics For Freshman Paper presented at 1998 Annual Conference, Seattle, Washington.

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