June 26, 2011
June 26, 2011
June 29, 2011
New Engineering Educators, Graduate Studies, and Student
22.293.1 - 22.293.10
Bootstrapping a New Graduate Curriculum through an Engineering Research Center Abstract No 2780 Submitted to the ASEE Graduate Studies DivisionAn NSF Generation-3 Engineering Research Center was awarded approximately two years agoto a partnership led by the author’s institution. As with all Gen-3 ERCs, the goal is to combinefundamental research and education while focusing on innovation. This would includecollaboration with small firms that engage in translational research as well as internationalresearch partners, thus serving to prepare its students for success in an increasingly complex andintegrated international economy. The goal is to produce graduates equipped with experience ininterdisciplinary, inter-institutional and cross-cultural research and education who are able todefine pathways to explore and realize innovation opportunities for success in both theirimmediate and global communities.Our ERC’s research theme is to produce innovative biodegradable metallic alloys andappropriate sensing technology for use in biomedical implant applications. The team builds ondistinct and complementary technical strengths of the core partners: materials engineering andnanotechnology at the lead institution, bioengineering and materials science at one core partnerinstitution, and corrosion science, sensor development and medical science at the other corepartner institution. The previous graduate and undergraduate engineering program offerings atthe lead institution did not include bioengineering. One of the overarching educational promisesof this ERC was to leverage the complementary strengths of the partners to aid in thedevelopment of a continuum of undergraduate, master’s and doctoral degree programs inbioengineering at the lead institution, a historic first for an HBCU.Towards this goal, the ERC has been developing a set of graduate courses co-taught by faculty atall three institutions that allow for effective pooling of resources as well as trans-institutionacademic interactions between faculty and students. Two graduate courses were taught duringthe first ERC year, one on cell and molecular biology and another on biodegradable metals andmetallic alloys. These courses were led by the bioengineering department at one of the partnerinstitutions, but had input from a medical school faculty member at another partner institutionand included lectures on creativity and bioethics from an education school faculty member at thelead institution, who additionally provided assessment. This paper will discuss the initiativesadopted, challenges overcome and the assessment outcomes for these first trans-ERC courses.
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