June 26, 2011
June 26, 2011
June 29, 2011
Electrical and Computer
22.391.1 - 22.391.11
Creating a Global Computer Engineering Curriculum Based on Vital ElectronicsThe Internet of Things (IoT) is becoming hot topic for topical conferences and articlespopular computer and electrical engineering magazines IoT takes its place alongside arelated field of scholarly endeavor known as Cyber-Physical Systems. Both terms involveusing distributed micro/nano-scale computer and transducer technology to sense andcontrol the interactions between physical objects and processes. A wide array ofapplications can be imagined with the potential to improve the global quality of life.However, while the core technology is rapidly evolving and maturing, what is lacking isthe design methodology to enable, reliable, efficient, inexpensive systems and systems ofsystems. The Vital Electronics Initiative provides a set of rules and a designmethodology to enable implementing the Internet of Things and Cyber Physical Systems,capitalizing on local subject matter expertise. As a consequence Vital Electronics has thepotential to re-ignite hardware-based entrepreneurship and re-energize the teaching ofComputer Engineering.Unfortunately, even in the OECD, most university Computer Engineering programs haveevolved toward a heavy emphasis on software. This is both to due to costs andinfrastructure requirements to teach industrial-style, laboratory-based microelectronicsand the lack of a solid curriculum adapted to today's globally sourced computer-basedelectronics “state-of-the-practice”, global-scale project management and internationalcollaboration. In addition, many developing countries lack adequately trained faculty,up-to-date text books and equipment.To produce “global computer engineers”, the golden standard of global computerengineering education needs to include: 1) Web-based tutorials on theory and up-to-dateunderlying technology fundamentals; 2) Teaching the “state of the art,” through hands-on home-laboratory exercises and then "spreading the wealth" with capacity building; 3)Applying “state of the practice,” skills to solve real problems using industry-standardtechnology; 4) encouraging global innovation and creating new breeds of enterprisestaking advantage of subject matter expertise and relevant local knowledge – needsappropriate political and financial support from governments and NGOs. Thecombination of the home lab kit and web-based content engages students who have leftthe university for full-time employment, or who can only spend a brief time at theuniversity before returning to their remote home area.This paper will discuss the implications of these new initiatives and recount theirimplementation as the foundation of a new Global Computer Engineering Curriculum.The curriculum based on Vital Electronics is being piloted through traditional universitycourses, executive-level 1 or two day classes, and as IEEE-sponsored continuingeducation short courses for practicing engineers. Beyond the kindling of theseinitiatives, the paper will also discuss how they can lead to the definition andimplementation of the Global Engineer as they gain traction in academia and industryinternationally.
Kane, P., & Kochanski, T. P., & Rucinski, A. (2011, June), Creating a Global Computer Engineering Curriculum Based on Vital Electronics Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC. 10.18260/1-2--17672
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