St. Louis, Missouri
June 18, 2000
June 18, 2000
June 21, 2000
5.291.1 - 5.291.10
Experiences in Capstone Design Projects: Partnerships with Industrial Sponsors
James N. Peterson Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering University of Idaho Moscow, ID 83844
Capstone design projects in the department provide student teams opportunities to create engineering solutions to problems identified and sponsored by industrial partners. A partnership relationship model for achieving engineering education goals, which is initiated between the department and the sponsor during discussions prior to student involvement, is the central theme that forms realizable expectations for student design projects. Experiences from 32 student project design teams over the past three years provide the basis for perspectives and insights on what is important for achieving a successful partnership and how to improve the odds for a successful student design project. Summaries from several actual student projects suggest the scope, depth, and expectations that have yielded success, plus some that haven’t been so successful along with diagnostic suggestions as to the cause and how to improve. A table shows the categories of sponsors, design team size, and key design goals for these student projects, plus an assessment of the success and engineering design quality for each project. A brochure is described that was created to concisely convey the partnership concept to prospective sponsors of student design projects. This tool has been very useful to convey quickly and painlessly the partnership expectations and general responsibilities when initially contacting potential industry sponsors. Experience indicates that partnerships with industry sponsors yield meaningful educational experiences for engineering students, allow industry to explore an idea with minimal commitment, create friends for the university, and can lead to permanent employment for students following graduation.
The Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Idaho requires all Electrical and Computer Engineering students in their senior year to take a two-course sequence, Senior Design, which emphasizes applications of engineering design. This fulfills the major design experience listed in the Professional Component of the Engineering Criteria 2000 (EC2000) accreditation requirements. It also helps achieve several of the EC2000 program outcomes statements including an ability "to design and conduct experiments", "to design a system, component, or process to meet desired needs", "to identify, formulate, and solve engineering problems", and "to communicate effectively."
Peterson, J. N. (2000, June), Experiences In Capstone Design Projects: Partnerships With Industrial Sponsors Paper presented at 2000 Annual Conference, St. Louis, Missouri. https://peer.asee.org/8373
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