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First-year Redesign: LabVIEW, myRIO, EML, and More

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2017 FYEE Conference


Daytona Beach, Florida

Publication Date

August 6, 2017

Start Date

August 6, 2017

End Date

August 8, 2017

Conference Session

Enrollment, Instruction and Pedagogy - Focus on Design-Based Projects

Tagged Topic

FYEE Division - Paper Submission

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Paper Authors


John Edward Miller Baylor University

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John Miller is a Senior Lecturer in the Electrical and Computer Engineering department at Baylor University. He teaches a wide range of courses, including the first-year program, mid-level laboratories, control systems, and capstone design. These courses lean heavily on hands-on experience and active learning. He has a B.S. and M.S. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Baylor University, and currently serves as the Assistant Chair for the department.

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Carolyn Skurla Baylor University

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Carolyn Skurla is an Associate Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Baylor University.

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Over the past year, faculty at Baylor implemented a new curriculum in a pilot course for first-year engineering students. The curriculum had four main objectives: encourage students to persist in engineering, foster self-motivation and curiosity, develop a fundamental set of knowledge and skills, and see the “big picture” of engineering design. Important characteristics of the new curriculum were the use of a variety of hardware and software tools (including LabVIEW, myRIO, SolidWorks, and a Makerbot 3-D printer), an increased number of hands-on labs and projects, a focus on connecting concepts to other courses (math, science, etc. and later engineering courses), and a multi-part project that involved reverse engineering, 3-D modeling, material and sustainability considerations, redesign for a target customer group, prototyping, and presentation. Part of the motivation for this new curriculum was to promote “entrepreneurially minded learning” (EML), which is to foster a mindset of curiosity, making connections, and creating value. Another motivation was to provide students with the tools they need for acquiring internships after their freshman year. This paper will explain the details of the curriculum, feedback from students, some quantitative data, and lessons learned by the faculty.

Miller, J. E., & Skurla, C. (2017, August), First-year Redesign: LabVIEW, myRIO, EML, and More Paper presented at 2017 FYEE Conference, Daytona Beach, Florida.

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