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Design Based Engineering Mechanics

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1999 Annual Conference


Charlotte, North Carolina

Publication Date

June 20, 1999

Start Date

June 20, 1999

End Date

June 23, 1999



Page Count


Page Numbers

4.161.1 - 4.161.8

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Yousef Haik

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

Session 2625

Design-Based Engineering Mechanics

Yousef Haik

FAMU-FSU College of Engineering Tallahassee, Florida


Engineering Mechanics at the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering is a four credit hours course offered every semester for chemical, electrical, environmental and industrial engineering students. The course covers the mechanics concepts in both statics and dynamics. Students classify the course as one of the most difficult core courses in their curriculum. Several educational approaches were examined to identify the best tool of delivery. Some of these tools that have been used by the author are cooperative learning, computer based instruction and design based instruction. This paper describes the design-based instructions in the engineering mechanics class. In the design based instruction, students are required to build a product that will require the engineering mechanics concepts while performing the analysis and optimization stage in the design process. Because the collaborative group learning is used for the all course assignments including the product design, students are placed in design teams. The assessment is based on competition between the design groups. By virtue of the nature of the course and the time limitation, the design process is taught through one-on-one interaction. Detailed requirements are given in the project statement. Design groups perform limited market analysis before their first meeting with the instructor who acts as a consultant. Functional analysis, idea generation and evaluation of the alternatives are done by one-on-one interaction between the consultant and the design groups. The systematic design approach is emphasizes. Upon completion the selection of one design alternative, the design group performs a complete statics and dynamics analysis of their design. Software such working model is used in the analysis. Through the three semesters where this approach was applied, students have showed higher participation, enhancement in their analysis skills and better understanding of the mechanical concepts.

I. Introduction

The FAMU-FSU College of Engineering serves two universities, Florida A & M University ( and Florida State University (, with a total enrollment of approximately 2,000 students. Engineering students from the chemical, electrical, environmental and industrial majors are required to take the engineering mechanics class. The average student enrollment is around 70 students each semester. The course is offered three times a year. Conventionally, mechanics is taught into two consecutive segments; statics and

Haik, Y. (1999, June), Design Based Engineering Mechanics Paper presented at 1999 Annual Conference, Charlotte, North Carolina.

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