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Creating A Process To Design A Capstone Program That Considers Stakeholder Values

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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

Potpurri Design in Engineering Education

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.350.1 - 9.350.17



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Paper Authors

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Robert Todd

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Spencer Magleby

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

Session Number xxxx

Creating a Process to Design a Capstone Program that Considers Stakeholder Values*

Robert H. Todd and Spencer P. Magleby Department of Mechanical Engineering Brigham Young University Provo, Utah, USA

Abstract Designing or redesigning a Capstone Program is a difficult and complicated task since these programs often embody complex relationships internal and external to the department and/or college, and can be costly in terms of funding, space and faculty time. Engineering education, and capstone programs in specific, have a number of stakeholders including students, faculty, industry and academic administrators. Identifying and meeting the needs and values of these various stakeholders is essential in developing educational programs and learning activities that are effective and sustainable. In this paper a process is developed for designing a capstone program that carefully considers the values of stakeholders. Key situational considerations are discussed for a capstone program. Stakeholders in engineering education are identified and their common values are articulated. A process for developing a Capstone course, with input from these stakeholders, is proposed and evaluated in light of stakeholder needs and wants. A case study for developing a two-semester senior design capstone course at Brigham Young University is presented.

Introduction Capstone courses have become widely used in engineering education throughout the United States1,2,3. The objectives of these courses vary, but in general they are designed to help students prepare for the practice of engineering. ABET accredited engineering programs require a capstone experience4. Unlike engineering fundamental courses such as statics, thermodynamics or strength of materials, capstone courses usually involve students in synthesis or design activities and often require the building of hardware. Since engineering design tends to be interdisciplinary in nature capstone courses often require significant resources to execute. Common resource issues include funding (for hardware), space and faculty time. In addition, the

* This paper is partially based on a paper presented at the Ibero-America Summit on Engineering Education, San Jose Dos Campos, Brazil, March 2003 titled Creating a Successful Capstone Program by Considering the Needs of Stakeholders.

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

Todd, R., & Magleby, S. (2004, June), Creating A Process To Design A Capstone Program That Considers Stakeholder Values Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--13554

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