June 28, 1998
June 28, 1998
July 1, 1998
3.192.1 - 3.192.4
Designing a Design Project
Martin Pike Purdue University School of Technology at Kokomo
With the current stress on incorporating design throughout the curriculum, many courses that have in the past lacked a design component are being altered to include one or more design experiences. Some courses, specifically upper division, are easier to incorporate design projects because of the knowledge and maturity level of the students. Creating good design projects for lower division courses tends to be more difficult because of the limited knowledge and skill base of the students, lower maturity level and typically over full schedules to cover all required topics. This paper will discuss techniques and suggestions on how to design a good design project with a stress on the lower division courses. Included will be a short discussion of using the ABET design criteria and choosing which aspects of the criteria should be present in a given design project. Following will be suggestions of other qualities that make good design projects such as creating open ended projects, reporting requirements, project definition hints, and designing the project for “easy” grading and evaluation.
Incorporating design in both the curriculum and individual courses in engineering and technology is continuing to be stressed. There has been a realization that design experiences need to be presented throughout the curriculum, and are very important in the first years of a technical education. Numerous papers have been written and presented on the importance of design and the importance of including design projects in the curriculum.
Upper division courses allow for easier incorporation of design projects because of the maturity and knowledge level of the students. These factors allow for the upper division design experience to be either very broad integrating many topic areas or very narrowly focused in a specific application of a given technology. In addition, upper division design projects can be either very complex as are many “capstone” design projects, or simpler one to two week exercises. Lower division students are limited in their technical background, skill base, and maturity level. These factors limit the scope of potential design projects to a few topic areas and limited complexity. Creating good design projects for lower division courses tends to be more difficult because of this in addition to the trend that lower division courses have overly full schedules to cover all required topics. This paper will discuss techniques and suggestions on how to design a good design project with a stress on the lower division courses.
Pike, D. M. (1998, June), Designing A Design Project Paper presented at 1998 Annual Conference, Seattle, Washington. https://peer.asee.org/7023
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