San Antonio, Texas
June 10, 2012
June 10, 2012
June 13, 2012
25.741.1 - 25.741.12
Impromptu Design Exercises in an Introductory Mechanical Engineering CourseIn this paper, the use of impromptu design exercises in an introductory mechanical engineeringcourse is presented. These exercises are used to introduce a variety of design ideas, including:the design process, brainstorming and decision making, optimization, and probability. In thispaper, the developed exercises will be presented along with details pertaining to implementingthese projects in the classroom and preliminary evaluations.In a typical impromptu design exercise, students are given a simple design task capable of beingcompleted in a short time, for example one class period. The student team approaches theproblem as they see fit – for example, design-build-test, build-test-redesign-build-test, etc. Whencomplete, the designs are tested with respect to some predetermined metric to determine awinner. This exercise is then followed by student reflection and class discussion.These projects have a number of advantages with respect to more typical education styles,including: 1) Using these hands-on activities give students concrete examples of the issues being discussed in class – e.g. students design something and then we discuss models of the design process. 2) Students really enjoy these projects and are left wanting more – this is clear from student responses on end-of-the-semester class evaluations.In addition to the advantages (a few of which are shown above), there are a number of issuesassociated with these projects which will also be discussed in this paper, including exercisedevelopment and keeping the students on track.
Clayton, G. M., & Wojcik, T. G., & Radlińska, A., & Comolli, N. K. (2012, June), Impromptu Design Exercises in an Introductory Mechanical Engineering Course Paper presented at 2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, San Antonio, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--21498
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