New Orleans, Louisiana
June 26, 2016
June 26, 2016
August 28, 2016
Engineering Design Graphics
Shermer (2002) describes humans as pattern seeking, story-telling animals. Critical thinking is evaluative, selective, analytical, fact based, convergent and logical. It can be viewed as “pattern thinking”. Creative thinking on the other hand is exploratory, nonjudgmental, imaginative, divergent and playful. It can be viewed as “pattern breaking”. Creative thinking is a basic mental operation available to everyone, and research studies indicate it can be developed. In engineering design, creativity goes beyond consumer wants and needs; it brings added utility to a design and bridges the gap between form and function.
Teaching Engineering Graphics to freshman engineering students though ideation methods is the subject of this paper. Various learning-centered instruction strategies are being implemented in a freshman engineering graphics course. With the instructor acting as a facilitator, the objective of each of these strategies is to increase the student responsibility in learning through improved engagement. Engineering graphics is essential part of the engineering design process through which engineers and designers generate new ideas and solve problems. Ideation is traditionally defined as a structured approach to thinking for the purpose of solving a problem. Ideation process involves critical thinking augmented with creative thinking.
Albert Einstein once said “You can’t solve a problem with the same thinking that created it”. This work poses following questions to define engaging classroom activities with ideation stage of design and to develop new methods in teaching graphics and visualization fundamentals to freshman engineering students.
Does our education and curriculum-based classroom learning focus us to think in a certain conventional way? Why is engineering design typically done with a set of predefined parameters (Engineering Specs) operating within a restricted framework (constraints) with an end-use in mind? Don’t you think that restricts your imagination and ties you down with conventional thinking leading to routine engineering products? Why do we take conventional methods and wisdom for granted? How do we untie ourselves from conventional thinking? How to come out of design fixation problems? What is the role of Unconventional Thinking in Engineering Design (UnTiED) ideation? How about designing products even without any predefined end-use in mind and after design is done determine how the product will be useful? How fun will it be to question the status quo and design something just to quench your curiosity thirst? How to create engineering design ideas by seeking random connections with unusual combinations between unrelated concepts?
This work is part of author’s Teaching Scholar Program to explore research and best practices related to a theme, and develop initiatives to pilot during the Fall and Spring semester (2015 – 2016), incorporating and implementing the new ideas they have developed. The primary objectives of this work is
to develop critical and creative thinking skills in freshman students through activities and discussions on major discoveries in science, engineering and technology that questioned the conventional wisdom Using UnTiED ideation methods for engaged learning in Graphics and Visualization Course Preparing students to contemplate and question the day-to-day products around us in terms of the way they look, the way they are designed; argue and challenge the status quo of variety of engineering products; and realize the value in unconventional thinking, a productive process enabling us to be more creative and innovative. Develop metrics and assessment tools for creativity and critical thinking skills in individual and team design visualization student projects.
Pucha, R., & Utschig, T. T., & Newton, S. H., & Alemdar, M., & Moore, R., & Noyes, C. R. (2016, June), Critical and Creative Thinking Activities for Engaged Learning in Graphics and Visualization Course Paper presented at 2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana. 10.18260/p.26596
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