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Implementing Design Based Engineering Education With Computer Simulations

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1998 Annual Conference


Seattle, Washington

Publication Date

June 28, 1998

Start Date

June 28, 1998

End Date

July 1, 1998



Page Count


Page Numbers

3.322.1 - 3.322.8

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Paper Authors

author page

Kathi Cahill

author page

Joe C. Guarino

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 1658 TS/2


Joe C. Guarino, Kathi Cahill Mechanical Engineering Department Boise State University


Design-Based Engineering Education (DBEE) is a method for introducing design into basic engineering science courses. DBEE uses specially structured computer-simulation modules to introduce basic principles through a discovery-learning process. The DBEE modules are supported by Working ModelTM; an engineering simulation software package developed and marketed by Knowledge Revolution. The DBEE modules are open-ended situations incorporating two important target concepts. The modules are structured to ensure that target concepts are discovered by the student during successful completion of the module. The modules typically require an hour to complete, and are assigned in place of two traditional drill problems. DBEE uses design to introduce basic concepts; therefore, the inclusion of DBEE into engineering science courses does not require additional study time from the student. The DBEE project was implemented in a 1995 pilot study partially funded by an equipment grant from Hewlett-Packard. Following the success of the pilot project, a grant was obtained from the Idaho State Board of Education to implement DBEE in Statics and Dynamics courses at the three engineering colleges in Idaho. The implementation and evaluation of DBEE in an Internet-based environment will be presented and discussed, and results will be critically assessed. The evaluation process used in our study can easily be adapted to measure the effectiveness of other innovative teaching methods.


Cahill, K., & Guarino, J. C. (1998, June), Implementing Design Based Engineering Education With Computer Simulations Paper presented at 1998 Annual Conference, Seattle, Washington.

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