Asee peer logo

Experience From A First Time Offering Of A Motor Sports Technology Course

Download Paper |


2005 Annual Conference


Portland, Oregon

Publication Date

June 12, 2005

Start Date

June 12, 2005

End Date

June 15, 2005



Conference Session

Real World Applications

Page Count


Page Numbers

10.607.1 - 10.607.8



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors

author page

Mark French

Download Paper |

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

Session 2249

Experience from a First-Time Offering of a Motorsports Technology Course Joseph F. Kmec Heather L. Cooper John R. Hartin Steven E. Widmer John R. Williams R. Mark French Purdue University

Abstract As part of a continuing effort to enforce the multidisciplinary and applied character of the courses offered, the department of Mechanical Engineering Technology (MET) has instituted a class on motorsports. It is intended to combine the different subjects taught in the undergraduate curriculum into a continuum as they are applied to open-wheel vehicles with a focus on Indy Racing League (IRL) cars.

There are a number of annual student competitions structured around motorsports. In two of them, teams develop small, but sophisticated cars to compete on prescribed tasks. These competitions along with natural interests among the students combine to make motorsports an attractive venue for an interdisciplinary senior level class. The course within the Purdue MET department is currently being presented as a special studies course. In this sense, it serves as a prototype for a permanently offered course.

Motivation This course was offered in response to requests by both students and outside organizations. Our students tend to be very interested in cars and often come us with a background in modifying, racing and even building them. The potential for outside support offered the possibility of creating an appealing course that would link a variety of subjects in a rigorous way. The student response was enthusiastic, so we think this is a good venue for highlighting how working with a complex system integrates subject matter from the entire curriculum1.

Basic Structure of Course The course was developed with 12 distinct modules:

1. The Role of Automotive Motorsports in the Undergraduate Curriculum 2. History of Automotive Motorsports 3. Automotive Motorsports Classifications: Styles and Racecourses 4. Vehicle Materials

Proceedings of the 2005 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference and Exposition Copyright © 2005, American Society for Engineering Education

French, M. (2005, June), Experience From A First Time Offering Of A Motor Sports Technology Course Paper presented at 2005 Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon. 10.18260/1-2--14569

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2005 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015