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Impact of Nanoscale Science and Engineering Course on Undergraduate Engineering Education

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2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access


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Publication Date

June 22, 2020

Start Date

June 22, 2020

End Date

June 26, 2021

Conference Session

Mechanical Engineering Technical Session: The Art of Education

Tagged Division

Mechanical Engineering

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Paper Authors


Ozgul Yasar-Inceoglu California State University, Chico

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Ozgul Yasar-Inceoglu is an Assistant Professor in Mechanical and Mechatronic Engineering and Sustainable Manufacturing Department at California State University, Chico. She received her Ph.D in Mechanical Engineering from University of California, Riverside and her MS. degree in Materials Science from Norfolk State University. Her research interests includes synthesizing and characterization of nanoparticles and nanoparticles-based devices.

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Nanoscience and nanotechnology play a significant role in every field of our society. Nanotechnology is the backbone of high-tech industries and widely used in consumer products and industrial applications. Therefore, it is essential to highlight the importance of nanoscience and nanotechnology to undergraduate students and explain the science behind nanotechnology. For this purpose, an upper-level elective mechanical engineering course, Nanoscale Science and Engineering, is designed and added to the mechanical and mechatronic engineering curriculum.

This course introduces students to the interdisciplinary field of nanoscience and engineering including the areas of engineering, materials science, chemistry, and physics. The topics covered include advanced materials, synthesis, and modification of nanomaterials, properties of nanomaterials, materials characterization, nanofabrication methods, and applications. It has three modules, which are formal lectures, guest speakers, and projects. Projects will help students learn to conduct a literature search, critically review scientific articles, and learn advanced materials characterization techniques on a given topic. They will further have a chance to propose their own ideas for potential applications and asked to give a detailed methodology to execute the project.

In this work-in-progress study, we present the impact of the Nanoscale Science and Engineering course on undergraduate mechanical and mechatronic engineering students. Students were invited to complete a survey at the beginning of the semester, which will be also given to the students, at the end of the semester. The survey consists of 15 questions, which are aimed to analyze the pre-existing knowledge of students in nanotechnology-related topics and their interest level to increase their knowledge and advance their career in a nanotechnology-related field. In order to assess the impact of the course on students, the results of the survey will be compared. Student demographics will be included in the results. Possible changes in course content to improve student engagement in nanotechnology will be discussed.

The purpose of this course is to introduce undergraduate engineering students to nanotechnology. The inclusion of Nanoscale Science and Engineering course to the undergraduate engineering curriculum has a significant role in the advancement of nanotechnology. Students graduating with a solid understanding of broad applications of nanotechnology and advanced material fabrication and characterization techniques will have a focused start in their graduate research and education or faster adaptation to nanotechnology-related industrial job positions.

Yasar-Inceoglu, O. (2020, June), Impact of Nanoscale Science and Engineering Course on Undergraduate Engineering Education Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--34756

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