Salt Lake City, Utah
June 20, 2004
June 20, 2004
June 23, 2004
9.542.1 - 9.542.11
Engineering Design in Computer Systems: An Interdisciplinary approach in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Auckland
Stephan Hussmanna, Nitish Patela, Bruce MacDonalda, Abbas Bigdelia and Julainne Sumichb a Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering / bElam School of Fine Arts University of Auckland Private Bag 92019, Auckland, New Zealand
This paper reports our recent initiatives in introducing an interdisciplinary environment in a year three computer systems design course, as well as how the teaching of design skills is achieved. For the past two years third year computer systems students worked together with a fine arts elective group of year two to Masters students, in the final project of a full year design course. The experience gained from both sides is discussed and this new initiative is compared to other approaches in other Universities around the world and inside the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Auckland. The history of the design courses in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and the School of Fine Arts is reviewed and the current course structure is examined. Results are presented from a student survey, conducted to evaluate the students’ viewpoint on the course. The paper concludes with a discussion on the benefits perceived so far, from the standpoint of the student, both Faculties and the profession.
Engineering disciplines have a strong tradition of practical problem-solving. University engineering programs have reflected this in specialized design courses, where the emphasis is on the process, the technical and communication skills involved in the project, and the team work, rather than the demonstration of academic knowledge in a final examination. In New Zealand as in other countries this emphasis has been reinforced in the last two decades as large employers scaled down training programs for young engineers. Government engineering departments were sold off to the private sector and large companies streamlined operations. Universities are expected to prepare students to work in engineering design teams as well as imbue them with academic knowledge and skills.
Over the past few years many educational institutes have addressed such trends by undertaking a variety of approaches. Engineering curricula have been altered to include introductory hands-on design courses at different levels (from first year to final year)1.
Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright 2004, American Society for Engineering Education
Hussmann, S., & Patel, N., & Sumich, J., & MacDonald, B., & Bigdeli, A. (2004, June), Engineering Design In Computer Systems: An Interdisciplinary Approach In The Department Of Electrical And Computer Engineering At The University Of Auckland Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. https://peer.asee.org/12748
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