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Board 4 : Work in Progress: Designing an Introduction to Biomedical Engineering Course Around a Design Challenge

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2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 23, 2018

Start Date

June 23, 2018

End Date

July 27, 2018

Conference Session

Biomedical Division Poster Session

Tagged Division

Biomedical Engineering

Tagged Topic


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Paper Authors


Jennifer Bailey Rochester Institute of Technology (COE)

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Dr. Jennifer Bailey is a Senior Lecturer of Biomedical Engineering at Rochester Institute of Technology, where she has taught since January of 2014. She previously taught at the University of Illinois and the University of Southern Indiana after graduating from Purdue University. Bailey's passion is lab course development and improving student learning through enhancing lab and other hands-on experiences.

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Christine Dobie Rochester Institute of Technology


David P. Wick Rochester Institute of Technology

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David Wick is an Associate Research Professor in the School of Individualized Studies and Assistant Vice President in the Division of Diversity and Inclusion at Rochester Institute of Technology.

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The original objective and focus of the 1-credit Introduction to Biomedical Engineering course was to introduce students to the areas within biomedical engineering and possible career paths. The implementation of this objective involved the faculty rotating through a weekly lecture and offering one hands-on activity related to their specialty in a two hour workshop. This method succeeded at introducing the freshmen to the faculty and potential areas of specialization. However, the explored areas were limited to the specialties of the faculty and the course was lacking connection to the curriculum and tangible preparation for how to be or think like an engineer. The next version of the course limited the carousel of faculty to a few weeks with the objective to introduce students to areas of biomedical engineering. The hands-on activities were revamped with the objective of introducing skills that were lacking in the curriculum. However, the course continued to lack tangible preparation for how to be or think like an engineer and while restructuring the workshops enhanced connections to the rest of the curriculum it now lacked connection to the lecture. At this time, a missed opportunity was identified that would enhance student understanding for how to be an engineer: the curriculum lacked an early introduction to design that could be built upon throughout the program. A complete restructuring of the course occurred in order to 1) introduce design thinking, 2) enhance spatial representation skills, and 3) increase comradery among the cohort by having team-based activities throughout the semester. These three objectives are being achieved through the development and implementation of a semester long design problem with a final build and test. Presented is the process of change and results after a single offering along with plans for future implementations.

Bailey, J., & Dobie, C., & Wick, D. P. (2018, June), Board 4 : Work in Progress: Designing an Introduction to Biomedical Engineering Course Around a Design Challenge Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--30024

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