June 12, 2005
June 12, 2005
June 15, 2005
10.607.1 - 10.607.8
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
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