June 16, 2002
June 16, 2002
June 19, 2002
7.580.1 - 7.580.9
Main Menu Session 3566
FRESHMAN-SENIOR COLLABORATION IN A CAPSTONE DESIGN COURSE
William S. Janna, John I. Hochstein, Michael Racer, Anna Phillips, Hsiang H. Lin
Herff College of Engineering The University of Memphis Memphis TN 38152
ABSTRACT An innovative capstone design course titled “Design of Fluid Thermal Systems,” involves groups of seniors working on various semester-long design projects. Groups are composed of 3, 4 or 5 members that bid competitively on various projects. Once projects are awarded, freshmen enrolled in the “Introduction to Mechanical Engineering” courses are assigned to work with the senior design teams. The senior teams function like small consulting companies that employ co- operative education students; e.g., the freshmen.
One of the objectives of building this collaboration is a desire to increase the retention rate of the freshmen by involving them with the seniors in what appears to be some interesting design work. Additionally, the seniors benefit by developing the ability to communicate their ideas to a non- technical audience as their design work progresses.
At the conclusion of the semester, an assessment was made of this program to determine its effects as perceived by the senior students with the following findings: • Overall, the seniors perceived the freshman-senior interaction as a rewarding experience • The seniors perceived their freshmen partners as able to make useful contributions. • The seniors gained an appreciation of management theory through coordinating their freshmen partners. • The seniors did not perceive they were able to positively influence the freshmen regarding retention in engineering. • The seniors recommended that the program be continued in the future.
Results of several specific design projects are highlighted, and the freshman-senior interaction is described.
BACKGROUND “Design of Fluid Thermal Systems” is a senior-level, capstone design course at the University of Memphis. Students in this course are divided into groups of 3, 4 or 5 members who work together as a team on a design project. Selected projects are presented to the design teams who
Proceedings of the 2002 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2002, American Society for Engineering Education
Janna, W. (2002, June), Freshmen Senior Collaboration In A Capstone Design Course Paper presented at 2002 Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada. 10.18260/1-2--11073
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