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Curriculum Development for a CAD/CAM Option in a Manufacturing Engineering Technology Program

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2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Vancouver, BC

Publication Date

June 26, 2011

Start Date

June 26, 2011

End Date

June 29, 2011



Conference Session

Innovative Curriculum In Engineering Technology

Tagged Division

Engineering Technology

Page Count


Page Numbers

22.411.1 - 22.411.14

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Paper Authors


Derek M. Yip-Hoi Western Washington University

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Derek Yip-Hoi has a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Michigan. He has broad experience in CAD/CAM and geometric and solid modeling from research and teaching experiences at UM and the University of British Columbia. Currently he coordinates the CAD/CAM instruction in the Engineering Technology Department at Western Washington University.

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Abstract Submitted to ASEE 2011 Curriculum Development for a CAD/CAM Option in a Manufacturing Engineering Technology Program By Derek Yip-HoiThe growth in sophistication and breadth of Computer-Aided Design and Manufacturing toolsthat are available today increasingly requires engineers and technologists who are specialized intheir use if their full benefit is to be realized. CAD systems have over time included more andmore advanced functionality. These have extended basic 3D parametric modeling, electronicdrafting and surfacing tools to include a growing range of specialized Design-for-Manufacture(DFM) modeling environments and analysis tools. DFM tools for example include modules forsheet metal or injection mold design where the designer works with features that are relevant tothe design domain so that the result can be manufactured accordingly. Analysis tools include theability to model and simulate the kinematics and dynamics of mechanisms, Finite ElementAnalysis and Computational Fluid Dynamics. On the CAM side, sophisticated tool pathgeneration programs are available for 5-axis machining and for tool path simulation andoptimization. In addition specialized CAM modules are also available for programming multi-spindle and turret turning centers. Engineers and technologists must also cope with diverse andcomplex organizational structures for the design and production teams in which they mustfunction which strongly impacts the management of CAD/CAM data. Consequently, their workincreasingly requires the use of complex Product Data Management (PDM) systems. Finally, aCAD specialist might also be expected to be able to automate a CAD system using programmingtools so as to improve design and modeling efficiency.It should be clear from the above that the skill set for an engineer or technologist capable ofeffectively using state-of-the-art CAD/CAM technology can be extensive. The traditionalspecializations defined by ABET can originate such a technologist from one of severaldisciplines the most likely being the Mechanical, Manufacturing or Drafting and Design routes.However, an argument can certainly be made for a unique and focused specialization inCAD/CAM.This paper describes efforts towards developing such a specialization. This effort has beenfollowing a two-phased approach. The first phase currently underway involves taking an existingIndustrial Technology program in CAD/CAM and converting it into an ABET accredited optionin Manufacturing Engineering Technology. The strategy of rolling an unaccredited program intoone that is accredited has been used by the ET department in the past and has proved to beeffective as a nursery for growing the new option both in size and quality before it emerges as astandalone program. The curriculum developed for the new MET CAD/CAM option will bepresented and experiences in doing this will be described in detail. This paper will furtherexplore the possibilities for the second phase of this effort. Proposed core requirements andelectives for a standalone curriculum for an ABET accredited CAD/CAM technology degree willbe presented. The logistical and resource challenges that are likely to be encountered in rollingout this program will be discussed.

Yip-Hoi, D. M. (2011, June), Curriculum Development for a CAD/CAM Option in a Manufacturing Engineering Technology Program Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC.

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